Our sales research at WoodHouse shows that hickory is trending. And why shouldn’t it? Hickory is the hardest wood flooring WoodHouse offers. Old timers will remember when it was the wood of choice for hockey sticks and baseball bats. It has a Janka hardness of approximately 1820, making it very dent and gouge resistant. Hickory is also beautiful wood. The color variation between heart and sap wood is great, but when stained a darker color the variation is much less. The grain is well defined and lovely. It seems to be the perfect wood for flooring, but not so fast…
What You Need To Know
There are distributors in the WoodHouse network that will not carry hickory. Why? It is less than ideal for dry climates. High desert areas, very cold areas in the winter and hot dry areas can all be problematic for hickory flooring. It is also less than ideal for installations where in-floor radiant heat will be used. In general hickory does not like being dried out. This shortcoming has been well known for a long time. Experienced dealers and installers understand this issue with hickory. Despite this concern, hickory remains a very popular choice.
Education and transparency is key to a successful hickory floor. The new owner of a hickory floor must be informed of the issue and educated on this special need hickory has. A whole house humidifier is going to be a requirement in dry areas or areas where heating systems are needed for extended periods of time (winter). This means making sure the climate control system is used and functioning properly as well.
Nearly all flooring failures, where the species is hickory, can be attributed to lack of knowledge about hickory or failure of the HVAC systems. Manufacturing defects are extremely rare and usually do not manifest in the cracking, splitting and delamination (engineered flooring) issues associated with excessive dryness. Always talk to your flooring professional about your particular installation before installing hickory. This is good advice for any type of flooring.
Hickory Flooring – Do It Right
Hickory must be properly installed. Like any other wood flooring, follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Don’t take short cuts with hickory. Let in acclimate properly. Fasten the floor down using the manufacturer’s recommendations. Don’t deviate from the instructions with hickory.
Hickory’s benefits far out weigh its possible issues. Install it properly and maintain the floor’s environment within the manufacturer’s suggested range, and you can enjoy your floor for many decades to come.
Hickory Flooring at WoodHouse
We love hickory flooring. You can too.