Wood FAQ's What is the difference between engineered flooring and laminate flooring?
Today’s laminate flooring is a photographed image on top of highly compressed wood products and cannot be refinished. Engineered flooring is made by actually adhering real hardwood to multiple layers of plywood and sometimes can be refinished. What kind of hardwoods can I place on concrete sub-floors?
When should hardwood floors be installed?
There are three typical types of wood products available for concrete sub-floors: engineered glue down, engineered floating floor and solid glue down.
Floor and Décor has introduced a fourth option with a solid hardwood flooring that can be floated with their unique clip together system. Any of their Floor & Decor labeled hardwood flooring can be installed this way.
If you’re having a home built or making some renovations it is highly suggested to have the hardwood flooring laid near the very end of the project after the ac/heating system has been installed and running for several days. The temperature and humidity of the rooms, the floors and the installed product need to be the same. Should I choose pre-finished hardwood floors or one that are finished in place?
Today’s pre-finished hardwood floor finishes are vastly improved and are finished in controlled settings. Many offer more than 6 coatings whereas a normal site finished floor (sanded and finished in place) would have 2-3 coats of finish. How do I acclimate the wood?
For new construction or remodeling, the heating system must be operational and the house must have been heated for a week at 71 degrees F. Can you install wood floors over ceramic tile?
Yes, if your tile is flat you can install and engineered floating floor. Can you put hardwood in a kitchen or bathroom?
Yes, hardwood is acceptable for installation in a kitchen or a powder room, but its highly recommended that you put a throw rug by the sink and tub because excess water can damage wood. If my wood floor changes color or fades, is it because the finish and wood are defective?
No, all floors experience a color shade with change overtime, due to natural characteristics. Area rugs and large furniture that cover the floor should be moved periodically to allow light and air on a specific area. If my wood shows gaps between boards in the winter months is it defective?
Nearly every wood floor endures some separation between boards. In winter, when homes are heated and the air is dry, wood flooring gives up some of its moisture and therefore shrinks. A wood floor can expand and contract an inch or more depending on the size of the room and type of wood. Do wood floors require a lot of time and effort to maintain?
Unlike other types of floor coverings, hardwood floors can be kept looking like new with minimum amount of effort. Never damp mop your floor. Use only products designed for wood floors. What’s the best way to remove dust and dirt from my wood floor?
Vacuuming is the best way to remove surface dust and dirt before it gets walked into the finish and dulls its luster.
Stone FAQ's What types of stone are sold for flooring projects?
There are four basic stone types, travertine, marble, granite and slate. Any of these can be used as a floor. Travertine, granite and slate all can take a lot of abuse and still look good. Marble takes a little more maintenance and care. Which stone you should use depends more on your lifestyle and what fits with other design elements in the home. Is a sealer needed with stone flooring?
All stones need to be sealed. Marble, travertine, and other types of soft stone must be kept well sealed or they may stain; apply a sealer made for natural stone. Granite is extremely hard and naturally resistant to stains, but we prefer that a sealer is still applied. Are certain stones more practical as kitchen counters than others?
Countertops get abused. They have liquids spilled on them, hot things placed on them, some people cut on them. So what a consumer needs to think about is how often anre these things going to happen and what risks are you willing to take. Granite, for example, does not react to acid. If we take a lemon (citric acid), something found regularly in our kitchens, and squeeze the juice onto the stone, nothing happens. If we take the same lemon and squeeze the juice onto marble, the stone starts to dissolve immediately. If you place a hot pan onto granite nothing happens, you can think of granite as polished lava, heat doesn’t bother it. Marble will scorch. Granite does not scratch, marble will. Travertine has the same issues that marble does but more so. Can I get the stains out of my stone?
We rarely meet a stain we can't get out. Removing a stain is a three-part process, the first stage involves identifying the stain, the second stage involves loosening or dissolving the stain, the third stage involves lifting the stain from the stone. Is slate a tripping hazard?
No. One consideration is that there are usually some pieces within a slate shipment that the tile contractor should sort and not install. Which is better, a solvent (oil) based sealer or a water-based sealer?
It is important to note that the respective solvent and water only serve as “carrier’s” to help transfer the actual sealer into or onto the stone. If my stone has a polished (shiny) finish, does it still need to be sealed?
Most marble, granite and some travertine and even slate is available with a factory polished finish. These polished stones are still porous, subject to staining, and should be sealed with a penetrating-type sealer.
Tile FAQ's What is the difference between "ceramic," "porcelain," and "quarry" tile?
How do I clean my tiles wall or floors?
Ceramic tiles are the standard tile, usually made from red clay, baked with a glaze on the top. The only part of a ceramic tile that is water proof or stain proof is the top where the glaze is.
Porcelain and quarry tile are part of the family of ceramic tiles, which are all clay-based materials. What is quarry tile? The quarry tile definition most often seen is tile that is extruded from a giant machine that looks much like a giant pasta machine. It is usually made from red clay and is then fired to help it become extremely durable and hard. If color is added to it, it is worked into the clay and goes all the way through the tile to keep the color as vibrant as the day that you purchased it. You can tell it is quarry tile because of the grooves on the back of the tile, while ceramic tile is pressed into a uniform flat shape. Quarry commercial tiles are durable and withstand traffic, explaining why so many restaurants and other commercial establishments swear by it.
Porcelain uses a finer clay with smaller particles, it is compressed at high pressure squeezing more material into the same space. It is then baked at a higher temperature. The entire body of porcelain tile resists water and stains so well it is virtually water and stain proof, thus it can be used outdoors, ceramic can not be.
Wipe glazed wall tiles periodically using a cloth or sponge dampened with a non oil-based household cleaner. Vacuum glazed floor tiles regularly to remove dirt and other gritty particles, then damp mop or sponge with an all-purpose, non oil-based cleaner. Can new tile be installed over an existing ceramic tile installation?
Can glazed tile be used on an exterior application in a freeze/thaw environment?
This is done regularly where there is not a floor height or wall thickness limitation and where the existing tile is well-bonded. To insure a good bond to the existing tile, certain procedures need to be followed; these are described in the TCA Handbook for Ceramic Tile Installation in detail TR712 and TR-713.
> Note: Not all thin-sets (nor polymer modified thinsets) are capable of bonding directly to tile - please consult the grout and mortar manufacturers specified for their recommended thinsets. Also, depending on the tile already installed, in some cases the tile must be mechanically abraded to insure a good bond - this is usually best determined with a "bond test".
Caution: Mechanical or chemical abrasion to tile can release fine particles which could cause harm if inhaled or ingested. Mineral analysis of the tile and glaze should be performed before performing any operation. Appropriate safety equipment should be worn at all times.
The consideration is how much water will get inside the tile, often the water goes around and comes in the back where the tile is not glazed, then when it freezes the water will expand and crack the tile. So, don’t use tiles that absorb water. What type of tile is recommended for kitchen counter tops and why?
Although a great variety of glazed tiles are used for counter tops, manufacturers specifically recommend only specific tiles. These are usually double glazed or glazes fired at higher temperatures, such as glazes on vitreous and porcelain bodies. High-gloss glazes are not recommended because they will scratch under normal counter top use. Does tile chip and crack?
Prior to installation, tile can be a very brittle product; but once it is installed, it becomes a permanent part of your construction. It will not chip or crack unless hit with a heavy object or in the case of an earthquake. How durable is tile?
If the right product is selected, installed, and maintained properly, that is, kept free of grit and sand, it should last the lifetime of your home; actually several lifetimes, go to Rome and ask how old some of the tiles are. What is the difference between glazed and unglazed tiles?
Glazed tiles are coated with a liquid glass, which is then baked into the surface of the clay. The unglazed tiles are pretty much the same as the glazed tile, except that their surface is not coated. What types of tiles are used for outdoors?
Any tile that is frost resistant may be used outdoors. Usually this means a porcelain tile. For safety reasons, only unglazed tiles with a slip resistant surface should be used on patios, walkways, pool decks, etc. Glazed tiles should only be used on vertical surfaces when used outdoors
Kitchen Cabinet FAQ's What do you mean by real wood cabinetry?
What are Factory Assembled Cabinets?
Our cabinetry is exactly that, Real Wood”. Each cabinet is constructed from furniture grade plywood with solid maple or oak face-frames, doors* and drawer fronts*.
Factory assembled cabinetry is "built-to-order" and is shipped fully assembled, ready to installed. Our trained assemblers fully inspect all products prior to packaging to insure your complete satisfaction. What are the doors made from?
Doors* and drawer fronts* are constructed from 3/4" solid maple or oak. As a convenience, sample doors are available for you to judge quality and stain colors. What type of drawers are in your cabinetry?
Our cabinetry utilized 4-sided drawer boxes constructed from 5/8” thick solid hardwood featuring dovetail carpentry joints and a fully captured, 1/4" thick plywood floor. Drawers glide smoothly on concealed, epoxy coated runners with 75 pound load rating. Optional upgrade FULL EXTENSION runners that provide easy access to the entire drawer and feature a soft close” shock buffer, are also available. What is the interior finish of the cabinets?
All cabinets feature a sanitary, wipe-clean natural maple laminated interior finish. There is no need for shelf paper or shelf liner material. Is this cabinetry KCMA approved?
Cabinetry is KCMA and HUD approved and proudly displays the KCMA certification seal. Are these cabinets strong enough to support a granite top?
Our plywood construction insures the strength required to support any countertop material that you may select, and no additional reinforcing is required. What is the difference between standard overlay and full overlay doors?
Overlay refers to the amount that a door covers, or overlays the cabinet face frame. Standard overlay doors typically cover 1/4" to 1/2" of the face frame leaving a 1” to 1 1/4" reveal (amount of face frame showing). Full overlay doors typically cover 1 5/16” of the face frame leaving a 3/16” reveal. Will my shelves sag if loaded with heavy dishes or can goods?
Our cabinetry shelves are 3/4" thick, cross-laminated plywood for maximum strength. Shelves are supported on high strength locking shelf rests and cabinets 30” and wider have an additional back support rest to resist sagging. The locking shelf supports prevent the shelves from tipping so nothing can slide out from the cabinets. Will the cabinet finish stand up to cleaning products used in the kitchen and bath?
A specially formulated, robotically applied topcoat will protect your cabinetry from everyday cleaning products. As with all furniture finishes, care and maintenance is recommended. What is the Soft Close” door feature?
All cabinets can be supplied with doors that have a SOFT CLOSE door shock buffer that prevents doors from being slammed shut. This buffer gently engages the door and quietly closes it much like a door closer on a screen door. What is your return policy?
Cabinets are considered special order items and can not be returned.