Category: Blog


How to Choose a Heavy-Duty Wood Floor

By Perswood Team,

Seeking a wood floor that is durable yet pleasing to look at? Find out how to choose a floor that is resistant to dents and damage.

Your floor is an unsung hero as the most-used surface of your home, office or business. After all, you and countless others tread on it day in and day out, move furniture and roll trolleys and toys across it. So, when it comes to choosing a floor, it makes sense that one of the primary considerations be how much wear and tear it can take.

An additional consideration could be pets if you have any, and how well the floor can weather their paws and claws.

Select a wood that accommodates your household’s intensity of use, by keeping the pointers below in mind.

 

Wood that’s suitably hard 

Your floor’s degree of hardness, as measured on the Janka scale, can be one way of determining the hardiness of your floor. The scale, named after Austrian researcher Gabriel Janka, measures the force needed to press a steel ball of 11.28mm diameter into a surface until the ball has sunk in to half its diameter.

In general, wood floorings that are 1,000 pounds-force (lbf) and above on the Janka scale are appropriate for homes. This is especially true for Asian households where shoes are usually taken off, lowering the likelihood of heels or soles indenting the wood. Meanwhile commercial projects, such as restaurants, shopping malls and hotels, work well with wood types that are higher on the scale, around the 2,000 to 3,000 lbf range.

Other factors that homeowners may want to take into consideration include the colour, grain and texture of the wood. Wood types with evident grain and warm neutral tones complement most home decors. Examples of wood floor types that tick all these boxes, and have acceptable hardness, are oak, walnut, birch and teak.

For commercial projects, ipe, Brazilian cherry, wenge and South American timbers are recommended for their harder surfaces to better withstand high foot traffic.

 

Scratches are unavoidable

Though harder wood types can prevent the surface from getting dented, pets can still scratch your floor – regardless of how high it may be on the Janka scale. Tip for pet owners: keep claws trimmed to minimise damage to your flooring!

Nonetheless, wood floors are still a great option for furry friends because of the warmth and comfort they provide.

 

Engineered vs solid wood

Engineered wood has the same degree of hardiness as solid wood, provided that the top-most wood surface is 3mm or more. The advantage of engineered wood is its coating – being UV-cured in the factory means that its coating is more durable and resistant to indentations, compared to the coating done for solid wood onsite.

 

Helping your floor last  

Wood flooring types aside though, the best way to keep your wood floor in tip top shape is to maintain it well. This includes having mats at your doorways to prevent any grit and fine dirt that could scratch the floor from being tracked in, sweeping or vacuuming daily, and mopping with a microfibre mop that is only slightly damp once to twice a week.

Also avoid dragging furniture across the floor, and place protectors under chair legs.

If you want to restore your floor to as pristine a condition as possible, you can lightly sand and recoat your floor every five to six years (a rough guide is when you repaint your home’s walls). The light sanding will remove any residue and contaminants that may have accumulated on its surface from cleaning products, food stains and others. Recoating will then restore its protective layer.

For commercial developments, ensure that a commercial-grade coating is used for the floor. You can top up this coating every year since it’ll see more wear and tear (subject to manufacturer’s recommendation).

 

Conclusion

Though hardness can be a key factor in choosing a suitable wood for your floor, there is a wide range which looks good while lasting through years of use. Regular and careful maintenance will also ensure that your floor endures.

Browse our range of solid and engineered wood, which includes the Janka ratings and descriptions of their characteristics, and chat with us to explore customisation options.

 

 

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Green Timber Ramps up View of CBD Greenery 

By Perswood Team,

Survey the tropical lushness of Marina One’s Green Heart park from a curvilinear ramp made of sustainably-sourced Balau timber.  

Nestled among four glass towers in downtown Singapore, is a verdant park. An array of trees, shrubs and flowers come together to form the surprising rainforest-esque public space amid the expanding Central Business District. The development is Marina One, a futuristic collection of office, retail, F&B, and residential spaces, and its stunning centrepiece is the Green Heart.  

A 100-m-long timber ramp threads through the Green Heart’s over 350 varieties of trees and plants. The incline provides a sweeping view of the lush landscape, with one vantage point parked just behind a three-storey-tall waterfall. It also serves as a connector between the first and second floors.  

 

Sustainable wood 

Crafted from timber that Perswood carefully selected and prepared, the ramp adds to the park’s green factor in another way. The client required the use of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Certified Balau timber. This would mean that the timber had been harvested in a sustainable manner that met stringent environmental and social standards.   

While Europe had numerous sources of FSC-certified wood, this was less common in Asia, where Balau wood hails from. Balau is commonly used as outdoor flooring in this region due to its hardiness in tropical climates. After extensive sourcing, we finally searched out a supplier in Indonesia which had an equivalent certification from the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC).  

 

Features for safety and inclusiveness 

Visitors are assured of a firm footing and helped along in their ascent of the ramp by the anti-slip properties of its timber. We carved a fine reeded surface into the wood  to ensure it met the R11 anti-slip rating recommended for outdoor environments. 

The ramp’s strikingly seamless aesthetic is due to long lengths of 2.5m x 145mm planks without joints in length. The unusually broad pieces had to be painstakingly cut, with provisions made for the wood to taper at the curving points of the ramp.  

As you ascend the ramp, you’ll notice its gentle slope halts and levels out at various points. This design and the ramp’s generous width make it friendly for wheelchairs. Tactile features on the flooring also help guide the visually handicapped.  

Conveying you through the various layers of the Green Heart’s vegetation, this solid yet elegant Balau ramp is itself a feature to enjoy, and integrates naturally with its luxuriant surroundings. The inclusive design applied to the ramp and its wood means that anyone can enjoy traversing its length to discover its surrounding tropical oasis.  

 

 

 

 

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How To Best Clean Your Wood Floor

By Perswood Team,

Keep your hardwood floors spotless after gatherings using these recommended techniques.  

 

A clean and well-maintained wood floor is one of the first aspects of your home that guests are bound to notice. Not only is the rich wood grain pleasing to the eye, the smooth panels are also a pleasure underfoot.  

But cleaning your wood floors and keeping them in prime condition takes some know-how. Host visitors with confidence, and deftly clean up after they leave, through these simple steps that will keep your floor looking and feeling as luxurious as the day it was installed. 

 

Get rid of dirt and grit   

First off, sweep or vacuum up dirt, dust, and rough particles such as sand. Though tiny, these can have an abrasive effect, scratching your floor and causing it to look dull. This is the most basic step for timber floor care, and it’s best to do so frequently – ideally every day 

 

 

Use well-wrung mop 

Next, mop your floor. The key is to ensure your mop is well-wrung, not dripping wet. Otherwise, the wood, as a natural material, will absorb the excess moisture and expand. This may eventually lead to the wood popping up in a “cupping” effect. It’s recommended to use a microfibre mop. 

Speed up the drying of the floor by turning on the fan or airconditioning for a short while. Make sure the wood is fully dry before placing back any rugs or carpets.  

Clean water is sufficient for mopping; you can use warm water if you’re concerned about killing germs. However, should you want to add a floor cleaner into the mix, use one specially formulated for wood floors. Generic detergents can leave a residue on your floor. Mopping can be done once to twice a week. 

 

Actively clean spills and remove stains 

Wipe any spills on your floor as soon as they occur. Just like water, other liquids can be easily absorbed by your wood floor and stain it. Corrosive substances, such as thinner and nail polish remover, are especially dangerous as they eat away your floor’s protective coating.  

 

To get rid of stains on wood flooring that already exist, apply timber floor cleaner on a small portion of the stain and gently rub it with a soft cloth to try removing it. In the same way, remove the rest of the stain bit by bit. If it still refuses to budge, however, contact your wood supplier or chat with us for professional assistance.  

Also address water leaks promptly, so that your wood floor doesn’t drink up the extra liquid. Check under rugs and mats to make sure they’re not trapping moisture – rubber-backed anti-slip rugs are especially prone to this.  

 

Protect your floor from heat and humidity  

Check that your floor is not exposed to direct sunlight and gets ventilation. Too much heat can dry up your wood, causing it to shrink and leave gaps between the planks. With not enough ventilation, the humidity in the air can cause mould to grow on the wood.  

Easy fixes are installing blinds or curtains to shade your floor from the sun, and occasionally opening your windows or turning on your air-conditioning to help disperse the moisture in the air.  

 

Ensure rugs and furniture won’t mark the floor  

Inspect the furniture – their feet should be tipped with soft protectors so they won’t scratch the floor. These protectors wear out, so you’ll need to change them regularly. The feet of furniture and undersides of rugs also preferably shouldn’t have rubber backings, as these can cause heat and friction and leave markings on the wood floor.  

 

Oil up outdoor decking  

If you’ve got wooden flooring for an area that’s outside, applying protective deck oil will help protect the wood from the sun and maintain its condition. Clean it first with a soft bristle brush and a solution made from a deck cleaning product. Then mop it and allow it to dry. Rub the deck oil into the wood using a cotton cloth along the wood grain, and immediately use another cloth to remove excess oil. Then let the floor dry for at least six hours without anyone walking on it.  

 

Frequently made mistakes in cleaning wood floor 

Avoid these common missteps in timber floor maintenance:  

  • Using a sopping wet mop or steam mop: As mentioned, an excessively wet mop will cause your floor to soak up excessive water. Steam mops can also introduce too much moisture and heat to your wood floor.  
  • Mopping multiple times a day: Again, this exposes the wood to more moisture than is recommended, and is not necessary to keep your floor clean. What’s more important is to remove the grit and fine particles that could scratch your flooring.  
  • Not cleaning at all: Not cleaning your floor or cleaning infrequently will lead to dirt building up on your floor. That will ultimately dull the surface of your floor and result in patchy, stained flooring – not at all what you want to see.  
  • Using the wrong cleaner: It’s critical to use the cleaning products formulated for indoor timber floors and outdoor timber decks according to the area, as they’re designed for different purposes. The outdoor decks in particular, will need cleaners that help them maintain their weather-resistant properties.  
  • Using pressure jets to clean outdoor decks: It may seem convenient, but using water jets to clean your outdoor wood flooring can strip away the coating protecting it from the elements.   

 

Conclusion  

All it takes is a little care when cleaning your wood floor to maintain its distinguished and luxe appearance. Follow the steps above to keep your floor in its best possible condition through the years. Should you need to buy cleaning products designed for timber flooring, you can enquire with Timplex, or visit DIY stores or larger supermarkets. 

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