Categories Hardwood

How to Find a Quality Hardwood Contractor

Hardwood flooring is a large investment and selecting the right contractor can be an intimidating process. If you are ready to have hardwood flooring installed in your home there are a lot of things you will want to look for in your hardwood contractor to ensure you get a quality finished product. Like any service provider you will want to meet with a few estimators to see what different options they have, the knowledge they share and any other aspects you may need to consider. With any service you get what you pay for and this rings true for hardwood flooring as well. Choosing the lowest cost estimate may mean you are sacrificing quality and craftsmanship. 

When hiring a contractor there are some key points to consider and discuss with the estimator to ensure they are the right fit for your project. We have outlined some key points below to help make the process easier. 


  1. Discuss any licensing and liability insurance with your contractor. Any contractor you are hiring should have the necessary licensing for the state and all necessary insurance. While none of us are hoping a project will go wrong, insurance makes it much less worrisome if things happen to go wrong. A properly insured contractor protects you from any injury that may happen in your home and protects you from damage that may be caused if an accident occurs. 
  2. All contractors should also have workers compensation coverage for employees. When working with a contractor that does not have employees they may not have this type of coverage. Employers are required to have workers compensation insurance to protect injured workers and to cover their medical expenses and missed time if an injury does take place. This coverage helps to protect homeowners from lawsuits as well. 
  3. Ask your hardwood contractor for certifications like an NWFA certification. The National Wood Floor Association is an organization that certifies contractors for installation and other aspects of wood flooring finishing and can give you extra confidence in a flooring contractor. Not all contractors are NWFA certified but this is a great option for narrowing down contractors. The NWFA requires continuing education to keep up on these certifications so you know your contractor is up to date on the latest in the flooring industry. 
  4. Quality contractors measure and record moisture levels in the wood and subfloor. These measurements are used to ensure wood has acclimated properly to your home for a quality installation. The NWFA has measurement guidelines for relative humidity, floor moisture content and subfloor moisture content. These measurements are vital before installation to ensure the wood wont shift, cup or gap excessively. If you are installing a prefinished or engineered floor these measurements can help with warranty claims down the line. Acclimation of wood flooring is a non-negotiable part of your project and should be something your contractor does. Wood flooring needs to be in your home at least a week before installation and retested for moisture content before installation to ensure its ready to be installed. 
  5. Warranties are often a sign of a quality contractor. If your contractor offers a warranty on their work it often means they are willing to back up their work if something goes wrong. Many contactors offer different warranties for installation versus refinishing and the estimator should be able to discuss these differences with you. When investing as much money as you will in a hardwood flooring installation a warranty can help make the process feel less scary. 
  6. References are one of the best ways to find a quality contractor. The input you receive from other customers is very informative and can really help you to find the right contractor for your project. Many contractors will give you a list of references that you can call to hear how their project went. Online reviews are also a good option, we recommend making sure you read the response and don’t just trust the star rating. Many customers are unhappy about small issues and give one star ratings which unfairly affect the contractor. Read the response to the review and see if the contractor offered a reasonable response and remedy to the issue. Ask friends and family for recommendations as well. The BBB, Angie’s list and Yelp are also great options for finding feedback about your contractor. 
  7. When choosing a contractor you will want to talk to them about different aspects of their jobs like dust control, clean up, timeline and other details. Dust control is a huge factor when choosing a contractor because dust is such a big part of the finish process. Installing new flooring is messy and the methods of protecting your home are important for your overall experience. Baseboards are also an important part of the flooring installation and you will want to talk to your contractor about how they handle the baseboards. Finally the length of the job, if something to discuss. Some contractors may say they can get the job done faster than others and you may want to ask how or why. Depending on the company you use the timeline may fluctuate because a different crew comes in for finishing or because of the amount of manpower on the job site. 
  8. Payment structure is another factor to consider. Most contractors do not ask for payment in full before your project begins and this can be a red flag. If your contractor asks for money in full before they start you may end up getting scammed. Most reputable contractors ask for a downpayment to hold your project date and purchase your materials and the remainder at the end of the project. 


Hardwood flooring is a huge investment in your home and something to be excited about. Looking for a contractor doesn’t have to be a scary process when you know what to ask and what red flags to look for. Choosing the right contractor for your project can yield better quality results at a fair price. Colorado Hardwood is here to help with any hardwood flooring project you have. If you are ready to talk to a fair and trusted contractor call us today. 


Categories Hardwood

Can Hardwood Go in the Basement?

Hardwood flooring is a wildly popular flooring type because it is both beautiful and durable. Homeowners love the elevated feeling of hardwood and how it makes your room look elegant and put together with minimal effort. While hardwood flooring is a great option it can be a challenging flooring type for basements. Basements come with a variety of different challenges but the concrete slab is the biggest concern for hardwood flooring. Water damage is much more common in the basement and hardwood and water are not friends. If you choose to install hardwood flooring below grade there are some extra steps and maintenance needs you will need to consider. Vapor barriers on the concrete and below the concrete are very important if you are considering concrete below grade. Additionally many people choose to add a sump pump to help remove any water. 

Basement flooring needs proper preparation to work with different floor types. The concrete slab needs to be properly installed and in good condition before flooring can be added. When the slab was poured a layer of porous fill should be added to the aggregate bed to help mitigate groundwater and allow for drainage. Ground water should run away from the home with proper grading or with the help of a sump pump basin. Many homeowners choose to add radiant heating before installing flooring on concrete slab to help counteract the cooling effect of the concrete especially in winter. If you are considering radiant heating the flexible tubing system may need to be installed before the concrete is poured. 

Concrete slabs need time to cure before flooring can be installed. The minimum time frame is 30 days but you will want to test the humidity of the slab before adding flooring to ensure it’s dry and ready. A vapor barrier is a necessary part of this process and should be added below the subfloor. A liquid vapor barrier can be rolled onto the concrete to create an extra layer of moisture protection. This liquid vapor barrier acts as an extra barrier for any moisture seepage. Vapor barriers are important when concrete is fresh and still wet but also remains integral because moisture can seep up into the concrete over time. 

There are a variety of different vapor barriers on the market including PVC, roofing felt and polyethylene sheets. The vapor barrier should be under the layers of insulation to prevent heat from leaching through the walls. Polyethylene is a new vapor barrier product and works with lots of different flooring types including laminate, tile, linoleum carpet and wood flooring. Polyethylene can resist mold, mildew and fungus and lots of moisture intrusion.  

After preparing the basement for flooring you will have to research the right flooring for below grade. Many manufacturers do not recommend hardwood for basements because of the higher moisture content but some have specific installation instructions. Laminate flooring is often recommended for below grade because of the core and its improved stability. Engineered hardwood is also on a more stable core and can work well in basements. Solid hardwood can be installed in basements but does have more susceptibility to water damage and moisture mitigation should be a top priority. 

While you can install whatever flooring you want in your basement there are some materials that perform better than others. If you are unsure what the best option is for your basement floor, a flooring contractor is a great resource. Colorado Hardwood is here to help and can meet with you to discuss flooring options including laminate, engineered and solid wood flooring. We can also discuss installation options and methods for mitigating moisture more effectively. 


Categories Hardwood, Hardwood Refinshes

Six Important Facts about Hardwood Refinishing

Refinishing hardwood floors gives them a much needed facelift and can make the floors look brand new again. The process of refinishing is cheaper than replacing the floor and is better for the environment. Woods natural variations can be highlighted and revealed during a refinishing and the ability to repair and refinish is part of the appeal of having hardwood flooring. Modern manufacturing has come a long way but still cannot replicate the beauty and feel of solid wood flooring. If you have considered refinishing your hardwood floors there are some things you need to know. 

#1 – Cleaning and restoring hardwood floors to their original beauty takes a lot of work. While the process may seem simple and straightforward there are factors you may not have considered. Repairs are a big factor that can impact the final outcome of your floor. Repairs often require a contractor to replace a few boards. Wood is a natural project and can be hard to match perfectly. Deep scratches and stains for pet accidents and other factors can be hard to remove without impacting the integrity of the floor. Every floor is unique and each refinishing requires unique steps to tackle the specific needs of your floor. 

#2– Preparing the floor takes a lot of work. It may seem that your flooring project is moving slowly in the beginning but preparing the space is labor and time intensive. Everything needs to be removed from the floor and all remaining decor will be exposed to dust and debris related to sanding the floor. Door ways, hall ways, and vents are often covered to cut down on dust in rooms that are not being refinished. The floor itself needs preparation as well, mopping and sweeping the floor are needed to ensure the floor is ready for sanding. 

#3– Gaps are not repaired during refinishing. Sanding your floor will not fill existing gaps, it can improve them some but these are part of the structure of the floor and cannot be fixed with refinishing alone. Most gaps in a floor are seasonal and filling them can cause issues when the seasonal gapping disappears. Gapping is not always a bad thing and is often just a part of normal seasonal shifts in humidity. 

#4– Refinishies are a great time to change the color of your floor. When your floor has been sanded down to raw wood you can stain the floor a new color. Stains are a great way to change the look of your floor without replacing the floors. Stain comes in a variety of different colors which allows you to choose the perfect option for your home. Stain doesn’t mean you have to darken the floor, you can also make the floor lighter during this process.Many homeowners find that they didn’t know the true color of their wood until it was sanded down because of the aged finish on top. 

#5– Plan to touch up your base after a refinish. Sanding and refinishing hardwood required heavy duty machines and even the most careful customer is likely to ding a baseboard or get a spot of stain or finish on the base. Contractors should be cautious in your home but it’s a good idea to have your base painted after refinishing. If you are planning to replace your base let your contractor know, they can remove the base during the sanding to allow them to work closer to the walls. Many homeowners find that their base looks dingy after a refinish because it no longer matches the refinished floors. 

#6 Finish makes a huge difference. Choosing a finish for your floor is an important part of the process and different finishes can create a different look. Oil based finish often looks more traditional but can amber and cause your floor to look dated over time. Water based may look thin to many home owners because it doesn’t have the thick look oil based finishes do but still offers the same protection. The sheen level also makes a huge impact on the look of your floor. Contractors are a wealth of knowledge on flooring finishes and can help choose the right finish for your floor. 

Refinishing hardwood floors is a great way to make your floors look beautiful again without breaking the bank. Colorado Hardwood would love to meet with you and discuss refinishing your floor. Call us today to set up a free in-home consultation. 

Categories Hardwood Refinshes

Should You Replace Your Floors Or Refinish?

Flooring can be a great way to improve the look of your home. Flooring is a permanent part of your home and maintaining it properly is crucial to keeping it functional and beautiful. Wood flooring can go years without major maintenance but eventually it will be time to decide if your floors need to be refinished or replaced. We can help you determine if it’s time to replace or refinish your floors. 

Benefits of Refinishing a floor

Refinishing hardwood flooring is a great way to change the look of your floor including the texture and color of the floor. If there are damaged or warped areas in the floor you may opt to replace the heavily damaged boards and refinish the rest of the flooring. 

Refinishing floors is a more affordable option over replacing the floors entirely. Working with a flooring professional is an important part of the refinishing process and they can advise you on the need to replace versus refinish the existing flooring. 

Drawbacks of Refinishing Floors

Refinishing hardwood flooring can be a time-consuming process. The sanding process can be messy and if your contractor does not have good dust containment your home can turn into a snowglobe. Trained professionals know how to handle the chemicals used in the refinishing process. When these flammable chemicals are put in the wrong hands the results can be catastrophic. Additionally these chemicals can be finicky and if used by an amature the results can be less than ideal. 

If you are looking for a budget friendly option for refreshing your flooring, refinishing may be the ticket. The refinishing process can be intrusive into your space but often takes less time than a full install. Our team is happy to help inspect your floor and advise if refinishing is an option for your flooring. 

Benefits of New Hardwood Floors

There are many advantages to having hardwood flooring installed in your home, wood flooring is a timeless flooring option and can be incredibly elegant. Wood works in any design style including contemporary, rustic and even modern designs. There are so many different wood types you can choose from including oak, hickory, cherry, beech and even exotic wood species. Some homeowners choose softer species like pine or bamboo, these floors need to be cared for properly to ensure they can last a lifetime. 

Hardwood flooring is durable and when properly maintained can go years without being refinished. Many experts recommend having your floors refinished every 10 years to ensure they look beautiful and are well protected. When hardwood floors are cared for and properly maintained they can last well over 100 years. 

One of the big advantages of wood flooring is the reduction in allergens. If anyone in your family has respiratory issues or allergies you may want to consider wood flooring, hardwood doesn’t collect dust and allergens the way carpet does. Hardwood is versatile and can lend itself to any design style. Hardwood is a great option to add value to your home. If you are planning to sell your home you will find that hardwood floors add to the value of your home. 

Drawbacks of New Hardwood Floors

While the beauty of hardwood floors is undeniable the cost is not in everyone’s budget. Hardwood flooring can be expensive to install. Additionally hardwood is susceptible to scratching and if you have pets you may find that your floor scratches more quickly than you would like. Refinishing can remove these scratches but that adds to the cost of the floor. 

Another disadvantage of hardwood is the susceptibility to moisture damage. Hardwood can cup or crown if moisture is allowed to soak into the floor. Spills should be wiped up quickly to prevent damage. Creaks are another issue some people find with hardwood flooring. Gaps can be filled and joists can be shimmed to reduce creaks but they may not be entirely eliminated. 

When considering the options of installing hardwood floors it can be easy to get caught up in the cons but it’s important to remember all flooring options have drawbacks. When hardwood is cared for properly it can last years to come. 

We would love to chat with you about the options for your existing floor or a new floor. Many homeowners are unaware that a refinish allows them to change the color and sheen of the floor making refinishing even more appealing. Contact Colorado Hardwood today for your free in-home estimate. 


Categories Hardwood Refinshes

5 Reasons to Refinish Your Hardwood Floors in 2022

Hardwood flooring is a beautiful and durable flooring option but that does not mean it does not require some maintenance and care. Sanding and refinishing your floors periodically is the ideal way to protect your investment. It can be hard to know when it’s time to sand and refinish your floors. There are five signs to look for to know it’s time to refinish your floors in 2022. Some of the signs are easy to spot while others are less obvious.

Read More 5 Reasons to Refinish Your Hardwood Floors in 2022

Categories Hardwood

How to Extend the Life of Your Hardwood Floors

If you have added hardwood flooring to your home you are probably wondering how you can extend the life of your new investment. Hardwood flooring is a beautiful addition to any home and with the right care you really can add years of life to your flooring. Hardwood is durable and can withstand pets and children with the right precautions. There are a lot of dos and don’ts for protecting and maintaining hardwood flooring that we will go over.

Read More How to Extend the Life of Your Hardwood Floors

Are Steam Mops Good for Hardwood?
Categories Hardwood

Why Hardwood Maintenance is Important!

The beauty and natural elegance of hardwood flooring is what has made it such a popular flooring choice over many centuries. Hardwood flooring has been used for hundreds of years and continues to grow in popularity because of new technology including improved finishes and maintenance. Hardwood is also great because it reduces allergens like dust and debris that can live inside carpets but it’s not as cold on the feet as tile.

Read More Why Hardwood Maintenance is Important!

Categories Hardwood

Should I refinish or Replace My Hardwood Flooring?

If you have existing hardwood flooring that needs attention you may be wondering if you are better off to have it refinished or to just replace it. Refinishing and replacing both have their benefits and drawbacks and there is generally one option that is better for your flooring situation.

First, lets talk about what hardwood refinishing it. Refinishing your floor is when a layer is removed, sanded smooth and then a new finish coat is applied. This process can be done 4-5 times depending on the level of damage, the wear layer of the wood and additional factors. When the wood is sanded down to raw wood the imperfections like scratches, dents and marks are removed and the floor looks brand new again. Some stains cannot be removed so if your floor is badly stained this might be something to consider. Homeowners do have the option to add a stain to their flooring during this process to update the look.

When deciding whether to replace or refinish the biggest factor to consider is the condition of the existing floor. If it severely damaged, dented or marred it may not be a viable option for refinishing. If the floor is in good shape but has some common wear and tear it will likely be a great candidate for refinishing. Rot and water damage are two areas that are likely going to need to be replaced not refinished.

If you want to update the look of your home you will wanted to consider if a stain would do enough for you. If you want a totally different look like wider plank style, a different wood grain or other design idea you will need t consider replacing the floor.

A factor you made need to consider with the help of a flooring contractor is if the floor has been refinished previously and if it has enough wear layer remaining to be sanded again. Some older homes may have original flooring from the 1920s or even earlier, this is often the flooring that you find under carpet and cannot believe anyone covered it up. A professional can tell you if there is enough left to sand the floor again or if replacing is your only option.

Time may also be a factor you want to consider when deciding whether you would like to replace or refinish. If you have a lot of wood flooring that needs some attention and are considering a color change, some replacement boards for damaged areas and other steps to refinish the floor it could take a week while ripping the flooring out and installing new flooring may only take a few days. Some refinishing projects are faster than installs, it just depends on the circumstances. Also you will want to consider if you are reinstalling sand on site wood or if you would be installing engineered or prefinished.

Finally, budget is a big factor for most people. Refinishing generally is significantly cheaper than replacing. Some engineered products may be cheaper than a refinish but they likely would not boast the same quality and craftsmanship.



Categories Hardwood

Best Hardwood Flooring Options for Pet Owners

Pet owners often have a lot of questions about what flooring types will work best for their household. Dogs and cats have different affects on flooring types. Depending on the type of pets you have, and your family’s needs some flooring types may be better for you thank others.

A common question we get about wood flooring options is “What can I have that will look beautiful without scratching?”. It is possible to get beautiful wood flooring or wood look flooring that stands up to pets and other abuse. Engineered hardwood flooring is a durable beautiful option, wood look tile has become popular and there are lots of high-quality vinyl products that work great in households with pets. Vinyl flooring is popular because it is waterproof and makes cleaning up pet messes easy.

Carpet is a common option and can be good for pets because it does not scratch but does have some issue because it stains easily. Dogs will likely not do much damage to your carpets structure but may track mud in, have house breaking accidents or stain the carpet another way. Cats can be a bad combination with carpet because they may scratch the carpet and damage it. If you have allergies carpet is likely not a good choice. Pollen, dirt, and pet dander can all get trapped in the carpet and exasperate your allergies or asthma.

Laminate is another common choice of flooring. Many people like laminate because it is affordable, but it can scratch and stain. Depending on the quality of your laminate it may scratch and dent very easily. Also, laminate is made of synthetic products which can add more VOCs than other hard surface flooring. The gassing off period can be unhealthy for your pets.

Vinyl is another common option and its not the same vinyl your parents had installed. The luxury vinyl products are beautiful and look extremely high end. They are durable and waterproof which makes them a great option for a lot of people. Vinyl is also made of synthetic products and can have increased VOCs which you will want to consider. Formaldehyde is commonly found in these products.

Engineered hardwood flooring is one of the top choices for homes with pets. The finish coats that are used on engineered wood are extremely durable and are a great option for homes with pets. Homeowners also like that planks can be replaced as necessary with these types of flooring to ensure they can repair instead of replacing. Hardwood floors also are great for increasing the value of your home.

When choosing a flooring type, you will need to consider your lifestyle, the size of your pets, and any other factors that may affect your flooring. There are benefits and drawbacks to all flooring types and there are lots of varieties in each type of flooring to ensure you find something that meets your homes aesthetic.

There are some steps you can take to help keep your flooring in good shape with pets in your home. First you will want to make sure their water and food bowls are not set directly on the floor. The grit from the food and the moisture from the water can damage your floor. Second, keep litter boxes off the floor for the same reason, protecting your floor from debris is vital. Third, vacuum or sweep regularly. Removing dirt, grit and fur from the floor will keep the finish coat strong for a long time. Fourth, clean up any spills or accidents quickly. And finally, wipe your pets’ paws before they come in especially if they are dirty or wet.

Categories Hardwood

Best Ways to Clean Your Hardwood Floors

With your new hardwood floor installation, you want to make sure you are doing your very best to keep it in the best shape possible. As people have become more concerned with how they can maintain their home’s cleanliness, more people have wondered just what the best practices are when it comes to their hardwood. Getting your hardwood installed was a big decision, and you want to make sure you are protecting it as much as you can. Below, you’ll find an easy three step process to follow when it is time to clean your Colorado hardwood. We were able to use some infor from this article here for proper hardwood floor maintenance.

  1. The first step is to remove the largest particles (dust, pet hair, leaves brought in from outside, etc.) with a hardwood floor vacuum or by sweeping. In this step, it is important to only use a hardwood floor vacuum or a regular vacuum with the deactivated brush roll so that your flooring does not get scratched. Additionally, these types of vacuums tend to also have rubber wheels to prevent scratching as well.


In those high traffic areas of your home (think the kitchen, entryway, and hallway) it’s best to do this step once a day. While this might not be feasible all the time, the more frequently it’s able to occur, the better your hardwood will look in the long run – just remember the investment you made into your floor!


  1. The next step is to mop your Denver hardwood. It is up to you what type of cleaning solution you choose to use, just make sure that it is safe on hardwood floor installations! In fact, if you wanted to create a solution yourself, a simple mix of dish soap and water will suffice. Never shake this mixture but mix gently.


Rather than using a soaking wet mop to throw onto large sections of the floor, do small sections at a time with a damp mop. Not only will this dry quicker and allow you to use the room again sooner but will also protect the hardwood from getting soaked. When completing many things on your chore checklist in one day, clean the floors last so that they have time to dry before you need to walk on them again. Using too much water at once is quite possibly one of the worst things you can do for your flooring, as it can get in between the cracks in the wood and make it swell and warp underneath. Additionally, refrain from using any waxes or types of furniture sprays on your hardwood rather than a hardwood-recommended product. These will most likely void the warranty on your floors and will make them extremely slippery. To get your floors to dry faster, consider turning a fan on in the room.


  1. The last step is to take care of scratches or dullness. While a solution you provide for your floors often won’t be quite as good as a professional could do, it can be a good idea to do if your floors are still relatively new and there isn’t much damage to take care of. The longer it has been since your hardwood floor installation, the more scratches (and life!) happen. Knowing how to deal with them and minimize them is key. For some instances, using a liquid hardwood scratch concealer is a good, quick fix – simply follow the directions of the product you decide to use and let it dry!


Once your floor starts to look a little dull after a few years of heavy foot traffic, it is possible to restore a bit of that shine with a floor polish. Additionally, you can also use a floor wax to do the same thing while also cleaning them. If your floor is really starting to look worn, you might also consider refinishing it. This option we typically recommend leaving up to the experts as the flooring would need to be sanded and then have a new finish applied (sanding can create a lot of dust that most homeowners are not prepared for). If you’re not sure how to fix scratches or dullness – or simply don’t have the time – we encourage you to use a Colorado hardwood professional for the best results.

While these may seem like some very in-depth steps to follow, they become routine once you’ve followed them a few times! With the proper maintenance of your hardwood floors, you will be well on your way to enjoying them for many long years to come. Incorporating this cleaning regimen into your daily, weekly, and monthly chore list is a great way to keep your hardwood a priority in your home – and you should be able to tell a difference almost immediately. Another great way to cut down on the amount of dirt accumulating on your floors is by having some high-quality mats at all of your entrances. Taking off your shoes before you come inside is another way to reduce the dust and outside dirt from being tracked in, especially during stormy or snowy days when you are more likely to have wet shoes.

For those with animals, keeping your pets groomed with their nails cut is another preventative measure to maintain your floors. Taking the time to wipe your pet’s paws off before coming in from the outside will ensure dirt and mud aren’t tracked in. And lastly, keeping a mat underneath their water bowls will stop water from standing on the hardwood. Through only a few preventative steps, your hardwood is set up for a long healthy life! Because the actual installation of the hardwood has just as much impact as the maintenance of it, using a trusted hardwood installation company is crucial in the long run. If you are in need of new hardwood or simply have questions on the best way to take care of your new installation, feel free to give us a call! Being able to protect your floors is our favorite part about our business.

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