Oak flooring has been a standard flooring option in the United States for years, and for good reason. Oak is attractive, durable, and versatile enough to use in almost any room. Both red oak and white oak are popular hardwood flooring choices, but what are the differences between the two, exactly? Is one variety better suited for a dining room? What about a bedroom? Is one variety more durable than the other?
The following article examines both red oak flooring and white oak flooring in four important categories – Strength and Durability, Appearance, Movement in Service, and Maintenance – and compares the results side by side. If you have a project that involves oak flooring and you can’t decide between red or white, consider the following information before deciding. You’ll be glad you did.
Strength and Durability
Strength and durability are determined by two main factors: Janka hardness and density. The Janka hardness rating is a measure of how resistant a piece of hardwood is to indentation. Janka hardness is measured in pounds, and the higher the rating the stronger the wood. Density is a measure of how much of the wood is actually packed into a cubic meter. The combination of hardness and density can tell you how well a particular hardwood species will hold up to everyday wear and tear.