Innovations have brought many possibilities in the flooring industry, including various hardwood look-alike floors. Some of the alternatives are not only low-cost, but they also have other features that real hardwood floors don’t have, for example, waterproof.
Hardwood flooring is manufactured from timber. It is a common flooring option in many homes in the USA. The timber comes from various wood species, including red oak, white oak, walnut, cherry, ash, among others. Some hardwood floors are domestic tree species, while others are exotic.
There are two types of hardwood floors: engineered and solid hardwood floors. Hardwood floors are durable, lasting several decades. To renew their look, the floor is sanded and refinished.
Why Install Wood Floor Alternatives?
There are various benefits that hardwood look-alike floors come with. Some of the hardwood flooring options have obvious advantages over real hardwood. We discuss some of the reasons why homeowners or commercial contractors choose hardwood look-alike.
1. To Match a Hardwood Flooring Theme
The main reason for installing a hardwood floor alternative is to achieve a wooden appearance in your space. If you have installed a hardwood floor in some rooms in your house or commercial building, the hardwood look-alike floor will help you achieve a harmonious flooring look. On the other hand, you may want your space or room to have a hardwood theme.
2. For a Cheaper Flooring
Your flooring doesn’t have to be a budget-buster. Unlike hardwood floors, which come at a high price, most hardwood look-alike floors are reasonably priced. Since they are not real hardwoods, their production expenses are lower than wood, making them more affordable. Their manufacturing is also not as controlled.
3. Some Hardwood Flooring Look-alike are Environment-Friendly
Some hardwood floor alternatives are eco-friendly, utilizing other wood or plant materials or wood by-products. A good example is bamboo flooring. Bamboo is a grass plant that takes a short time to reach the harvesting stage. Cork flooring is also a perfect wood look-alike manufactured from the bark of the cork oak hardwood tree. Another eco-friendly flooring option discussed below is plywoods made from wood by-products. Furthermore, the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill has brought another wood floor alternative called hemp flooring.
4. Some Hardwood Alternatives are Waterproof & can withstand Floods
We have tiles that have all the features of tiles, but they resemble hardwood. You can install such tiles in water-prone areas like the kitchen, bathroom, mudroom, and laundry room. A vinyl floor is another type of hardwood look-alike flooring that is waterproof and can withstand floods if installed well.
5. Some Hardwood Flooring Look-alike are Quite Durable
We have various hardwood flooring alternatives that come at a fraction of the cost of hardwood floors, yet they are durable. They include vinyl, laminate, and tile floors.
Wood Floor Alternatives
1. Bamboo Flooring
Although it is a grass plant, bamboo may be regarded as a hardwood floor. It is environment-friendly because, unlike woods, bamboo plants take a short time to mature. Additionally, it is cheaper than hardwood floors.
2. Hardwood Look-alike Tiles
We have various tiles that come in different lengths and widths, colors, and designs, with some mimicking the look of wood. The features of tiles include water resistance, ease to clean, and sturdiness for durability. As such, it is ideal for any room in a house. You can install it in kitchens, bathrooms, mudrooms, the basement, and laundry rooms.
3. Vinyl Planks
Hardwood look-alike vinyl planks are perfect copycats of a hardwood floor. This makes it possible for you to achieve a hardwood flooring look at a fraction of the cost. It is easy to clean and sturdy for durability. What’s more, you can choose to replace only damaged planks when renovating the floor.
4. Cork Flooring
Cork flooring easily passes as a hardwood flooring option. However, it is not really a hardwood floor. Manufactured from a cork oak tree’s bark, the bark is ground, compressed then formed into flooring sheets after being bonded with resins. Worth noting, it is a solid flooring that is resistant to mildew, mold, and insects. Cork flooring is also an acoustic and thermal insulator and ideal for cold places and upstairs rooms. It is available in different sizes, colors and you have a choice between buying tiles or planks.
5. Hardwood Look-alike Luxury Vinyl Tiles
Luxury vinyl tile flooring is one of the latest innovations in the flooring industry. The floor combines various features to make it ideal for almost any space. It is water-resistant, durable, quiet, and warm underfoot. It is also quite resistant to scratches making it durable. Since it is waterproof, you can use it in most rooms in a house, including your bathroom and kitchen floor. However, costs vary, with some being as expensive as hardwood flooring materials.
6. Laminate Flooring
With various styles and colors available, including wood floor alternatives, some laminate floorings imitate wood perfectly. Resistant to moisture and stains, it is a sturdy flooring that you can install in water-prone areas like kitchens and bathrooms. It is also suitable for installing in high traffic areas like hallways.
7. Hemp Flooring
You can call hemp a new kid on the block when it comes to flooring types currently available in the industry. It is still a new flooring type, and as such, you may need to source it from special manufacturers. Hemp is a perfect wood flooring alternative. Hemp flooring is manufactured using fiber obtained from the industrial hemp plant. It is an eco-friendly flooring type. The hemp plant is eco-friendly because it is an annual crop that takes about three months to reach maturity.
8. Plywood Flooring
Last but not least on our list of flooring is an improvised flooring type that is not sold as a flooring type, namely plywood flooring. Although plywood makes great sub-floors, it can also be used as a top flooring option. The ideal plywood top flooring material should be constructed from tough hardwood species like oak, cherry, or walnut because they are hardwood species that can withstand high traffic. The plywood has to be treated with polyurethane and then painted or stained to achieve a good wood look-alike.
You can achieve any hardwood theme with a hardwood look-alike flooring. You have a wide range of options to choose from. Therefore, with a big or small budget, you can find a hardwood look-alike flooring that suits you.