This is something that many Oregon Coast vacation homeowners ask themselves. Hardwood flooring is beautiful and resilient, which is why many people want to put it in a house near the beach. You can install hardwood flooring in your beach house; however, you need to be aware of a few things that might complicate the effort. Moisture is the biggest enemy of hardwood flooring. Obviously, that will be a problem if you live near a beach. The other danger is sand. Sand is harder than wood, which is why sand was used originally to sand floors. Before the days of sandpaper, crafters would spread actual sand on a wooden floor. They would then rub the sand around until the floor was smooth. That same process can scratch the floor over time. Here’s how to best utilize hardwood flooring in a home near the beach.
Choose Where to Install It
Choosing where to install hardwood flooring is maybe the most important decision you’ll make about hardwood flooring at your beach home. When you walk into your house from the beach, you’ll likely have sand and water on you and on your clothes. If you track those onto your floor, they can scratch up your floor and cause the wood to warp. So, it’s advisable to have some kind of mudroom. When you first walk into the house, a mudroom can be somewhere to take off the sandy and wet clothes.
An outdoor shower is also a good idea so that you can wash the sand off before coming inside. However, everyone who has been to the beach knows that the sand gets tracked everywhere anyway.
Deal With the Sand
Since sand is going to get spread around anyway, the best option is to deal with the sand frequently. You’ll need to choose a good broom. A good vacuum could help you as well. Make sure you choose a vacuum designed for sand, though. Sand can damage a vacuum if it’s not rated for it.
The Floor Itself
Lastly, you need to make sure the floor itself can handle the sand. Site-finished hardwood is typically finished with polyurethane, which can be scratched by sand. Prefinished hardwood is finished with an aluminum oxide finish that is much harder and won’t be scratched as easily. However, prefinished hardwood has beveled edges, which means it might have slight gaps between planks. Site-finished hardwood won’t have gaps. So, prefinished hardwood is less likely to get scratched but site-finished hardwood is less likely to allow sand between the planks.