Is parquet flooring suitable for kitchens?

Your kitchen floor is really beautiful. It looks so stunning. How warm and attractive this parquet looks. These are some comments we hear all the time from our friends when they look at our kitchen parquet floor. „But, is wood really suitable for a kitchen?“, that’s almost always the next thing they want to know. Before I installed it in my kitchen I had the same question and I then did my research.

Parquet flooring is definitely suitable for kitchens and bathrooms. What you have to choose correctly is the type of wood. The hard wood from oak, for example, can withstand the heavy demands in the kitchen. For the kitchen area, my advise is a firmly bonded solid parquet floor or engineered hardwood floor with a thick top layer. 

But what are the reasons why we can say that Parquet flooring is suitable for kitchens? What kind of wood species you should choose? And finally how can you protect your hardwood kitchen floor? Let’s find out.

Is a hardwood flooring a good idea for a kitchen?

by Jimmy Dean

The kitchen often is called the Heart of your home. Like our heart the kitchen is often the center of activity for many families. It is therefore important that your kitchen floor is not only an eye-catcher  but also is durable enough to withstand everyday happenings like spills, scratches and heavy traffic. Generally, our kitchens  are usually used more than, for example, the bedrooms.

Of course, a kitchen is first and foremost a room where food is stored and delicious meals are prepared. But as we said earlier, the kitchen has always been the most important meeting place for the entire family. Especially since the late 20th century when open-plan kitchen became trend. Even with changing living trends to separate a work space from the living area, I think that open-planed kitchens will be attractive for most of us homeowners. 

Anyone who has dealt with wood for a long time like myself can confirm that wood as a material offers many advantages over other materials in use. It gives your home a cosy, friendly and inviting atmosphere with its authentic look. With real colors and different grades, each piece of hardwood becomes unique. Walking barefoot over real parquet becomes a pleasant haptic experience, because you can feel the wood, its warm character and surface. If you like to have a warm floor you could even use underfloor heating, so that you have pleasant warmth under your feet at any time of the year.

With well done parquet in the kitchen ROI can go up to 75% or more

When it comes to home improvement with new decorating and design ideas many homeowners like to start with their kitchens. When you look at home improvement sites and magazines wood is the most popular choice when it comes to kitchen floors in the last years gone by. And this trend will continue for years to come. Because of the aforementioned reasons but also because with a stunning, well done hardwood parquet kitchen floor your return on investment will  go up to 75% or more. This is yet another factor why you should consider Parquet flooring for your kitchen.  

Health factors can also play a role. For example, there are PVC floors or cheap laminates that can damage our health. Many of these floors give off unpleasant odors that can lead to irritations. Our Home is after the first, our natural, and the second, our clothing, so to speak, the third skin of us humans. Our home is often the only way to protect us from environmental influences. It is all the more important that our home does not also put a strain on our health. If we also know that the materials we use are harmless, we feel much more comfortable in our kitchen and can also enjoy tasty dishes.

We have seen that the kitchen as the center of activity is well suited for hardwood flooring. Since many years it has become a design trend which can give more resale value. Parquet flooring in general has a wonderful cosy feel and is an eye-catcher. And finally it is a good choice for a healthy living for us and our family.

What wood flooring is best for kitchen?

Which type of wood you choose depends primarily on your own taste and the design goals you have set yourself. However, there are a few things to consider in addition to appearance. In addition, the design is a very important element if you want to feel comfortable in your home even after years. If you want to sell your house in the near future, you should of course also take this into account. 

Degree of hardness 

In the kitchen your floor needs to withstand all kinds of demands. Something falls to the ground and makes a quirk. Hot or cold liquids are spilled. These and similar things happen very often in our kitchen work area. We should therefore be careful to select hard woods for our parquet floor and avoid soft woods such as pine. Among the woods that are suitable due to their degree of hardness are oak, walnut, ash, birch, red beech, cherry, and maple. To the same category we can count also tropical hardwood like bamboo, mahogany, azobe, macassar ebony, merbau or teak. If you are not sure you can ask me in the comment section below and I can look up the density and will tell you if your choice is durable enough.

Texture

Of course, our personal taste is also or especially important in the texture category. An oak parquet, for example, can have different textures. Oak offers a variety of characters depending on which part of the tree is used and how the wood floor is made. Depending on whether the parquet was taken from the lower trunk piece or other areas of the trunk, the grain also changes. 

Oak with brushed texture

Perhaps you prefer wild, playful textures with lots of knots, lively combinations with an attractive variety of lighter and darker strips which offer the advantage of being able to overlook dirt on the parquet flooring. Or you prefer calm, straight lines and relaxed planks in a harmonious hue that radiate a more upscale character of the wood. This is almost up to you. Why almost? Because certain Parquets come with a higher price tag. It has to be said that these almost or even knot-free parquets are falling in this price category. Why? because this parquet is cut out of the lower trunk and these pieces are far more expensive to purchase. 

Remember, on a calmer, relaxed surface, minor irregularities are immediately noticeable. On such a floor for sure you find the lost button of your shirt much quicker but you also might end up cleaning it more often. On a floor with lively structures, preferably even with visible knots, you are well advised because if, despite your utmost caution, an object falls on the floor, hardwood floors with a lively grain are the best choice.

You will also notice while deciding for a new Parquet flooring, that wood with extraordinary textures, some wild, some calm, will need generally a higher budget. How uniform or lively a parquet floor should look is ultimately a matter of taste.

Narrow or Wide?

Whether you decide yourself for narrow or wide parquet is first and foremost a question of taste. But it also depends on how much money you want to invest. Wide, long planks in xl format are of course more expensive because they are cut out of very large trunk diameters in the sawmill. These trees are of course rarer and therefore more expensive. But if you ever had the opportunity to visit a castle, for example here in Germany, you will often find so-called castle floorboards that even stretch from one end of the wall to the opposite end. These are of course the highest quality and most expensive parquet floorboards that you can buy. They can sell for more than 50$ per square feet, because they are produced exactly for the dimensions of the room. But they turn the rooms in which they are installed into real gems. 

However, if you only have a small room available, you can also use narrow planks that do not overload the space and may even better emphasize the design of your kitchen furnishings. There are also a wide variety of parquet patterns with which you can achieve breathtaking effects. However, these should best be installed by a specialist. But if you decide on such a parquet, it can make the kitchen floor a unique and special feast for the eyes.

Color, optical effect

How do I choose the right color for my parquet? The sheer variety that is available to us in nature is breathtaking. In addition, there are several ways to change the wood colors, such as staining or coloring. Of course, this opens up countless design and furnishing options for your kitchen. Even if you decided on a wood color a few years ago or the parquet has still its natural color, you can sand down the floor and turn it into something completely different with a new application of paint.

Dark wooden floors are very much in vogue at the moment. This is due to the fact that dark floors absorb a lot of light, because of their color properties, and this make them look very warm and cozy. So with dark colors you also have the possibility to furnish large rooms very comfortably. If you have unusual or antique furniture in your possession, a dark floor will show it off to its best advantage. Especially in combination with light colors on the walls and ceiling, this creates a very inviting character in your kitchen.

Animal hair is less visible with dark colored flooring

Exactly the opposite effect can be achieved with light parquet floors. If you have rather small rooms and want them to appear larger, a light floor is the right choice. Interestingly a lighter floor can emphasize certain design styles and make the furniture stand out. Mostly minimalist interiors or, for example, the Swedish style are off this sort. In any case, it is not a mistake if you are unsure to you get some samples from your parquet dealer and look at them in your own home in the appropriate room. You should also be aware when choosing the color, that dirt, scratches and dents are not so noticeable on light-colored parquet. On the other hand animal hair is less visible with dark colors

How do you protect a wooden floor in the kitchen?

You can choose your parquet in the kitchen either oiled or varnished. Oiled parquet ensures a natural and particularly warm appearance, but it should be glued firmly and without gaps. The surface treatment with oil definitely protects against penetrating moisture. However, you should be quick by removing stains because some liquids like wine or coffee can quickly penetrate into the surface. Once it did it will become permanently visible and you have to sand the spot. But here comes an advantage of oiled hardwood parquet, it can easily be repaired with a good repair kid and some effort.

A varnished Parquet you aim for a floor which require much less maintenance. Of course also with varnished Parquet you should be quick to clean off all spilled liquids. The Layer Varnish produces is of course a first protection for anything that might damage your floor. But if this layer is damaged you need to repair as quickly as possible because varnish penetrates not so much into the wood like oil does and so your wood is unprotected and stains could make a greater damage like in oiled Parquet floors.

Beautiful varnished flooring is easier to maintained

When it comes to basic cleaning, there is no difference between oiled and varnished parquet in the kitchen. Once a week you should clean your floor with a vacuum cleaner and then wipe it with a damp cloth. With oil it is best to use special cleaners. These applications help to increase the protection over time and can make your floor shine. It is better to buy a high quality cleaner, because cheap ones could be damaging your floor or even worse your health. Again my advise to always be quick to get rid of any stains right away it saves you much headache later.

Conclusion

As we have already said, the kitchen is the heart of our home. As such, good planning is essential. Through my experience and also through the research on this question, I can say quite clearly that a parquet hardwood floor definitely suits a kitchen. Our kitchen has definitely gained in character and cosiness. If you are planning a hardwood floor in your kitchen, you have many choices. The color, surface and shape of the floor must be selected. You have to be careful to choose a hard, durable wooden floor. And the surface sealing is of course also an important factor. In summary, one can say that glued hardwood parquet, especially in the kitchen, will certainly be a jewel for the whole house, and if you haven’t already done so, it might lead to planning a wooden floor for your whole home.

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