How Long Do Prefinished Hardwood Floors Last?

Traditional wood flooring installation takes approximately two weeks as it involves installing, sanding, staining, and applying multiple coats of sealant that must dry for days before being sealed over. Furthermore, this process emits potentially toxic fumes that must also be eliminated before final installation occurs.

Prefinished hardwood often features bevels on its edges and ends, creating less natural looking plans than squared site-finished boards. Some manufacturers provide options without bevels.

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Installing hardwood floors varies widely based on numerous factors that vary from home to home, but on average homeowners can expect to spend $12 to $23 per square foot of prefinished hardwood flooring – this may change depending on factors like wood type and space coverage needs; thinner boards may become damaged more easily in busy homes.

Labor costs also affect costs when installing prefinished hardwood floors, with professional installation usually being the optimal way to ensure they look their best. Furthermore, installers typically charge an overall flat rate instead of per-square-foot fees; meaning an entire room could take only one day rather than the 2-3 expected for on-site finishing.

Prefinished hardwood floors tend to be more durable and less likely to require refinishing in the long run, which can extend their lifespan and save you both time and money in the process. This could save both time and money over time!

One drawback of prefinished hardwood floors is their difficulty in upkeep compared to those which have been sanded and finished on-site, due to factory applied surface sealers being stronger and more resilient than what can be applied at home; they tend to resist staining and moisture more effectively than domestic sealants applied manually at home. Some may also object to beveled edges that form along prefinished plank tops which create visible lines across the floor surface.

People who dislike beveled edges can take steps to minimize them, such as using rugs in high traffic areas and installing doormats at home. By taking such precautions, dirt build-up will be reduced on your flooring surface and keep it looking its best for longer.


Homeowners have plenty of choices when selecting their hardwood floor. Prefinished and unfinished are both beautiful options; each offers different advantages and disadvantages. Prefinished floors typically install quickly and require less maintenance, though their lifespan may not match up against unfinished options and their quality varies between manufacturers.

Traditional hardwood floors must be sanded and stained after installation on-site, taking several days and restricting usage during that time. Furthermore, products used during the finishing process may leave an unpleasant odor that lingers even weeks later. Prefinished floors on the other hand are processed at a factory and coated with polyurethane before being shipped directly to your home for use.

Prefinished hardwood flooring typically boasts stronger finishes than on-site finished floors due to manufacturer use of controlled environments for applying multiple coats of polyurethane and aluminum oxide in layers, creating an impregnable barrier against denting and scratching that looks new for longer. Many manufacturers also include anti-scratch and sun guard protection on these prefinished floors.

Prefinished flooring’s versatility makes it ideal for older homes or remodels; unfinished options must be installed over a properly prepared subfloor which may increase project costs significantly.

Though both prefinished and unfinished hardwood floors are durable, their ability to withstand wear and tear depends on the thickness. Solid planks with thickness of 3/4 inches should typically require refinishing four to six times over their lifespan; for an unfinished floor with thickness of 5/8 inch this frequency increases considerably.


Hardwood floors make an elegant addition to any home, but the installation process can be disruptive. A two-person crew typically lays 80 to 1,000 square feet per day. To minimize downtime during installation, prepare before your installer arrives by clearing away furniture and covering electronics to protect them from dust. Furthermore, remove items in adjacent rooms to storage to reduce disruption during their work process.

Before installing hardwood floors, it’s important to carefully consider your desired species of wood and style of installation. Different species have various appearances and durability characteristics; select one which fits with your lifestyle best. Some popular choices for flooring include oak, maple, hickory and walnut; each species of wood comes with its own Janka rating to indicate density/hardness. Oak and hickory have higher Janka ratings than either walnut or maple but typically cost more.

Another key decision when installing prefinished or unfinished hardwood floors is whether to go for prefinished or unfinished options. Prefinished floors have already been sanded, treated, and sealed in the factory so they will outlive unfinished hardwoods in terms of life span and maintenance needs; additionally they’re easier to keep looking their best as no sanding or staining will need to be done afterwards.

Some prefer the classic unfinished wooden flooring look while others like the ease and speed of installing prefinished flooring. Both types can be installed in any room; when installing over concrete it is advised that a moisture barrier or underlayment be used as this will stop moisture seeping into the ground and damaging your hardwood floor.

When installing prefinished wood floors, make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s recommended finish and maintenance instructions to maintain their warranty. While some manufacturers allow you to refinish, doing so can be expensive and may require professional assistance.

Prefinished hardwood floors require regular care in order to remain beautiful. Start by sweeping regularly to remove grit, which could scratch their surfaces. Next, vacuum or mop them weekly using products specifically tailored for hardwood flooring – oil soaps may break down protective coatings leaving residue that attracts dirt.


Prefinished hardwood flooring’s durability depends heavily on proper maintenance. Sweeping or vacuuming regularly to remove dust, dirt and grit that could scratch its finish is key; mop using a soft cloth and cleaner that complements its finish; avoid oil soaps as these break down the finish further and attract even more dirt; do not leave standing water on the floor as this can stain it; keep pets’ nails trimmed to prevent scratches or gouging damage to avoid costly replacement costs later on; as well as keeping pet nails trimmed to avoid scratched up repairs cost in terms of both financial and maintenance costs!

Another key consideration should be your local weather. Wood can expand and contract as humidity levels fluctuate, altering its finish. To combat this effect, use a humidifier during summertime and dehumidifier during winter to maintain stable wood conditions that won’t warp boards over time.

Wood type should also be taken into consideration, since different varieties have different hardness ratings on the Janka scale. If your plan is to install flooring in high traffic areas, select species with higher Janka ratings so as to protect against furniture dents and scrapes and heavy foot traffic.

While prefinished hardwood has many advantages, there are a few important points to keep in mind before investing in this form of flooring for your home or business. While prefinished wood may be easier to maintain than its unfinished counterpart, repairs may require more effort, and its color may fade or dull with use over time.

Hardwood floors are unmistakably beautiful and can add great value to any property. No matter if you choose prefinished or unfinished hardwood flooring, both options can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance.

Prefinished hardwood offers many advantages over unfinished flooring options, including easy installation and walking on them within 36 hours. Furthermore, prefinished floors are more resistant to damage and discoloration than unfinished floors; yet due to this increased longevity it should be reapplied every five to ten years.