Properly installed, high-quality hardwood floors can last for decades, and even add value to a home.
Photo By Fotolia/Maksym Yemelyanov
Hardwood flooring has long been a popular choice among homeowners.
It's beautiful, easy to clean, and unlike carpet, doesn't harbor
harmful chemicals, dirt or dust mites that can affect indoor air
quality. Properly installed, high-quality hardwood floors can last
for decades, and even add value to a home.
If you're considering a new hardwood floor, but want to stay true
to your earth-friendly ideals, you're in luck, there's a long list
of sustainable hardwood flooring products to choose from. We've
assembled a few to get you started. Keep reading for a list of
companies that provide them.
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a nonprofit group that
promotes environmentally responsible forestry practices. Companies
can offer peace of mind to consumers by displaying the FSC's stamp
of approval, which is awarded by third-party organizations that
ensure certain stewardship standards have been met.
You don't have to sacrifice your options when you choose
responsibly. A wide range of flooring woods come with the FSC
stamp, including cherry, maple, birch, ash, Douglas fir, oak and
As the name implies, timber salvaged from old buildings, river
bottoms, or even trees removed from urban settings can become your
new hardwood floor. The finished product can have either a like-new
or antique appearance, and comes in a variety of lengths and
widths. Availability can be unpredictable, so plan as far in
advance as possible.
From time to time, a forest can become overly dense, resulting in
disease and fire susceptibility. Small trees in the forest's
understory are the casualties of the unavoidable thinning-out
process, but there's good news: They make excellent hardwood
- Less Expensive Wood Flooring
Some softwoods, such as pine or spruce, also make excellent
lower-cost floors. To learn more about choosing and installing
softwood floors, go to
Once you've chosen the perfect wood floor, don't reverse your
efforts to lessen your home's impact on the Earth by using toxic
finishes and adhesives during the installation process. Water-based
products are less energy-intensive to manufacture, less polluting
when disposed of, and less threatening to indoor air quality.
Where to find:
Dwight Lewis Lumber/Lewis Lumber Products
Picture Rocks, Pa.
Cascadia Forest Goods, LLC
Plaza Hardwood, Inc.
Santa Fe, N.M.
Tembec, Inc., Huntsville Division
Hunstville, ON, Canada
Elmwood Reclaimed Timber
Kansas City, Mo.
Big Timberworks, Inc.
Gallatin Gateway, Mont.
Vintage Material Supply
Green Mountain Woodworks