Natural Stone vs. Wood – Which Is Better for Flooring?
- September 05, 2019
Compared to walls and ceilings, floors are of high utility units in the construction industry. We used to expect smooth, clean, impervious, colorful, sturdy, durable, weather-resistant, and alluring surfaces from the floors. Our needs, expectations, and aspirations have given birth to various flooring material in the history of human civilization.
Today, with the advent of technologies, we have far better options to choose for the flooring material than our predecessors had. However, manufactured flooring materials are gradually becoming the least preferred choices due to raised environmental issues with it. Thereby, our inclination toward natural material is getting up and advanced technologies have made the availability of natural stones and natural woods easy as well as cost-effective even for lower to middle-class economy people.
To be green and natural, we two options to pull into the debate, natural stones and woods. Let’s explore to know what is best and worst for both worlds.
Availability of Stone vs. Wood for Flooring
The source of both kinds of paving material is natural but differs in many respects. Natural stone mining is green, which means environment-friendly whereas, woods are leaving negative impacts on the environment when cut. Thus, natural stones are the obvious winner here on the environment front.
Availability of Natural Stones
Natural stones are forming beneath the land surface and in a deep layer of land core strata. The quarries of natural stones yield different kinds of stones in different areas. Therefore, mining, cutting, packing, and supply factors are impacting the availability of natural stones. Fortunately, today, we have advanced technologies and infrastructure present to transport and ship natural stones to any corner of the world in the shortest timeframe and at affordable rates. It has made all types of natural stones available across the globe.
Availability of Woods
Woods are of varying types and found in different areas of the world according to the climatic, soil, and other natural conditions to grow the trees. Cutting and shipping of wood are now easy, so the availability of original wood material across the planet. Commercial plantations of demanding wood varieties have fulfilled the deficit of forest destruction a lot.
Design Choices of Stone vs. Wood for Flooring
Design Choices for Natural Stone Flooring
Natural stone has grains and patterns formed by the prolonged natural or geological processes such as thermal activities, sedimentation, and metamorphism. It creates different types of grains and patterns. Chemical changes during the processes bring different colors and hues in the natural rocks.These amalgamations bring natural beauties in the mass of natural stones. It lets you create different patterns and layouts in creative ways.
Design Choices for Wood Flooring
Wood has grains and layers, which are based on the Xylem, Phloem, Cambium, and Parenchyma like tissues in the mass of wood. These are a very complicated system and differs vastly among the wood tree species. Therefore, we get unique patterns of wood grains and layers in the wood to decorate our floor surfaces.
Material Types of Stone vs. Wood Paving
Stone and wood both have different types of species used in the flooring, and the following are the most common examples of it.
Material Type of Natural Stones for Flooring
Natural stones are classified into siliceous (Silica) and calcareous (Calcites) types based on the dominance of minerals they contain. If you want to know more about each type, please refer to our previous blog “10 Types of Natural Stones” with details.
Material Type of Woods for Flooring
Woods are typically classified into softwood (Coniferous) and hardwood (deciduous) trees in the construction industry. As its name suggests, hardwood is completely befitting in the criteria required for flooring material. Let’s see some examples of both types of wood species here.
Installation of Stone vs. Wood Floors
Installation charges add to the total cost of flooring, so it becomes the prime concern when total expenditure on flooring is calculated.
Installation of Natural Stone Floors
Natural stones are demanding intensive labor and use of heavy tools due to heavyweight of stones. The stone installation also demands skills and getting the right service provider is daunting if you are unfamiliar with contractors in your locality.
- National Average – $1,797
- Typical Range – $888 – $2,746
- Low & High End – $450 – $5,000
Installation of Wooden Floors
Wood logs are lighter in weight compared to natural stone slabs or tiles. Cutting is easy and quick. What you need is skilled labor for it. Thereby, the installation cost of wooden floors is cheaper compared to stones.
Maintenance of Stone vs. Wood Flooring Materials
You need scheduled cleaning of natural stones with the help of stone cleaning solutions appropriate to types of stones, mops, and dryer/dry clothes. Regular inspections of stone floors and timely replacement can make a big difference in the maintenance and replacement costs.
Maintenance of Wooden Floors
Wooden floors need extra precautions while cleaning and usage. You must avoid hard footwear while walking on wooden floor surfaces. Similarly, dragging and installation of heavy objects with sharp edges touching the floor is prohibited. Regular sweeping of dirt and steam mop or wet mot is essential on costly wooden floors. Thereby, overall maintenance cost goes high for wooden floors.
Applications of Stone vs. Wood Material for Flooring
Natural stone and natural wood flooring are possible on both interior and exterior spaces of domestic and commercial buildings.
Application Areas of Natural Stone for Flooring
Interior Natural Stone Flooring
We can use natural stones in dry and wet interior areas of our building using appropriate stone types. For instance,
Semi-glossy and non-glossy finished natural stone surfaces are good for wet areas like bath and toilet and washrooms. Thereby, granites, quartzite, sandstone, limestone, and slate are stone types mostly used in wet areas. However, many marbles with coarse finishes are a good choice of bathrooms and toilets.
Highly glossy surfaces of natural stone prove attractive and easy to clean and maintain if used in the kitchen, living room, study room, playroom, dining room, hallway, and entryway/porch areas. Here, marble, granite, and travertine are choice of stone types with glossy to semi-glossy finishes.
Exterior Natural Stone Flooring
Exterior Natural Stone Flooring:
Exterior landscapes have various elements, such as
- Backyard patio or garden patio in isolation
- Swimming pool areas
- Entry walkway
- Driveway to garage or parking
- Outdoor kitchen, barbeque, and grills
You can find details of applications in our Infographics.
Applications Areas of Wood for Flooring
Different types of woods used to apply in different areas based on their properties. For instance,
Laminated Wood Flooring
It is an excellent choice in hard traffic areas such as living room, study room, playroom, and so on.
Engineering Wood Flooring
Living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, and so on.
Solid Wood Flooring
Living room, hallway, and entryway areas.
Reclaimed Wood Flooring
Use only in dry areas of the building.
Use only in dry areas of the building.
Use it anywhere, including wet areas with proper sealing or coating with chemicals.
It is a softer wood type, so best for bedroom and playroom
We have seen that natural stone flooring is a superior choice in most the cases. It can augment your property values more than woods. Therefore, getting high-quality natural stones becomes imperative to create stunning, aesthetically pleasing, and high utility flooring across the interior and exterior areas of your building.
World of Stones USA, is the perfect destination to get the best stone material at the best price. It has a widespread supply chain across the States and adjoining countries to provide you a huge inventory of different natural stones and porcelain tiles at the place of your vicinity. Check where you will get supply in your town or city.