The Latest in Hard Floor Design Techniques: Wire-brushed wood

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Hardwood floors have been the rage for quite some time. Homeowners love the natural beauty of wood, and appreciate the various stains and textures available to compliment any interior style.  One of the more popular trends in hardwood flooring over the last few years is wire-brushed floors.

 

So, what is a wire-brushed hardwood floor?  To explain it simply, wire-brushing is a finishing technique where the wood planks are scraped with a hard-bristled wire brush- creating a distressed surface.

 

If you thought the point of a wood floor was to embrace its natural appeal, you’re not wrong.
Light distressing can actually help enhance the wood grain and create more texture and personality.  As the wood is brushed, the soft grains from the growth ring are pulled back, exposing the heartwood.  The resulting look is a textured floor with a classically beautiful weathered, rustic look similar to what you would see with reclaimed or barn wood.

 

Check out our Elegance Series to see more wire-brushed floors!

 

 

 

 

If you touch the wood with your hand, the finished flooring will have a rougher, earthier feel than your typical smooth finish, which is obviously, smooth. And don’t let the terms raised grain or textured infer that the flooring will be uncomfortable on your feet. That is not the case at all; in fact, you may find that wire-brushed flooring is more comfortable and natural feeling than the smooth finish alternative.

 

As with any floor, it’s not unusual that family members track dirt, pebbles, grass, and other outdoor remnants into the home after being outside.  And that is one of many reasons why interior designers and contractors often suggest hardwood floors with a wire-brushed technique.  Not only does it help to better conceal tracked-in dirt particles between cleanings (let’s face it, we know that once we clean the floor, it’ll only be minutes before someone comes in from the backyard and traipses new dirt across the floor), it is easier to maintain in the long-term because of the intentional imperfections created by the distressing.

 

Since this distressing technique is typically used on wood on the higher end of the janka scale, such as Hickory and Oak, wire-brushed floors generally last longer and require less large scale maintenance (such as sanding and re-finishing) than their softer wood counterparts.  Additionally, the added texture tends to mask the general wear and tear (such as scratches and furniture marks) which ultimately translates into your floor maintaining its freshly installed beauty longer.

 

It is, however, important to understand that regular cleaning can be a bit more difficult with this style. The textured finish will naturally collect more debris which can’t be removed by simply wiping it away.   For the best results, you’ll need to leverage a micro-fiber mop that can get into the various angles to pull the dirt out and away. A soft-bristle vacuum is often recommended to remove loose particles before mopping.  For additional cleaning recommendations, see our blog post on cleaning and maintaining your floor.

 

If you are considering the type of wood floor finish to go with and just aren’t sure if the wire-brushed look is right for you, consider visiting your local dealer’s showroom to look at the various options available to you.  For additional information, please visit our frequently asked questions.  You can also request 3 free samples of any of our flooring products or contact our team of flooring experts to answer your lingering questions.