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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

What Rooms Should Hardwood Floors Not Be Installed In?

The following post was a suggested topic by one of our followers, “Mindycure”

Thanks for the suggestion!

Even though hardwood floors can be installed in any room, I typically do not recommend installing hardwoods in full Bathrooms, Laundry rooms or in very active Kitchens.  I will go a little more in depth as to each in just a moment.  Having my recommendations in mind… If you are conscious of spills and proper maintenance, hardwoods will perform just fine in these areas.

Full Bathrooms… A bathroom with a bathtub / shower, toilet and vanity w/ sink.  With as much wet activity that occurs in a full bath, hardwoods will be much harder to maintain.  Getting out of the shower, washing hands in the sink and potential for toilet overflow are all factors that could cause a hardwood floor to fail or sustain water damage.  Installing hardwood in half bathrooms, or bathrooms with no tub or shower, typically get less use and therefore are acceptable for hardwoods.

Laundry Rooms…  Rarely will I install a hardwood system in a laundry room.  There is a high potential for water damage with washing machines because they do leak quite often.  Most of the time, home owners have no idea they are leaking because the water hoses in the back of the machine frequently spring pin hole leaks that weep for weeks or months unnoticed.  In addition, dryers produce a large amount of steam that can negatively affect the relative humidity in the room that can cause a hardwood system to react drastically, ie: cupping and (or) crowning. 

Very Active Kitchens…  What I mean by an active Kitchen is a commercial set up or medium to large family residence that uses the Kitchen several times per day.  The Kitchen is the most likely room in the house to have a spill.  Spills equal moisture introduction, which means added moisture content to the hardwood floor system.  Refrigerators, especially those with ice makers, produce condensation that can run onto the floor as well.  Dish Washers produce a lot of steam… So forth and so on.

To sum it up…  The above recommendations are just that… My recommendations based on my training and experience.  A hardwood floor can perform properly in any area that you desire one, assuming you are willing to put the time in that is necessary to keep it performing properly.  Area rugs, proper and frequent maintenance are the key to keeping your hardwood flooring system looking great and performing for years.


  1. The pictures above are of a water damaged hardwood floor system. The damage was in a Kitchen under a refrigerator.

  2. Nice information shared. I would have never thought of some of the issues you pointed out. Keep the great ideas flowing!!

  3. There are companies out there who are launching new innovative products with new <wood floor installation methods (like this: ) that allow you to install any type, thickness and width of hardwood flooring over virtually any floor surface in any room including basements AND on bamboo or engineered floors without any glues or nails.

  4. Dude.. I am not much into reading, but somehow I got to read lots of articles on your blog. Its amazing how interesting it is for me to visit you very often. -
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