Hardwood floors have been around for many years. They still remain one of the most popular flooring products among homeowners today. Hardwood floors add beauty to just about any room in your house and also gives you a very durable product that you can enjoy for years to come. When it comes to hardwood floors, not all hardwoods are equal. The hardness level of any species of hardwood will help determine how well it will perform down the road. The hardness level is determined by a test called a Janka Hardness Test. This is a test that measures the force required to embed a 0.44″ steel ball into the wood to half the ball’s diameter. The results of this test gives you the hardness of any particular species of hardwood. So which hardwood floors are the hardest, giving you the best durability? While there are several hardwood species that aren’t mentioned in this article. We’ll cover the top 5 most durable hardwood floors that are readily available in the market today.
1.) Brazilian Walnut or “Ipe” is a beautiful dark exotic hardwood floor that carries towards the chocolate color tones. It is a very durable floor with a hardness rating of 3684. There is no comparison when comparing it to the hardness level of traditional red oak which is 1290. This species of hardwood will add beauty and warmth to your home while it’s hardness will give you confidence that it will last for years to come.
2.) Cumaru or sometimes called “Brazilian Teak” is another exotic species of hardwood from brazil. Color tones on this species vary from light yellow tones to dark, golden brown. Cumaru typically is available in pre-finished as well as sand and finish floors. With a hardness rating of 3540, this ranks as one of the hardest natural wood floor products you can find.
3.) Brazilian Cherry is one of the most popular choices for hardwood floors among homeowners today. This exotic floor is also found under the name “Jatoba”. This flooring in it’s natural color will give you a deep rich red color. Generally, when first installed, Jatoba appears to be very light in color. However, as it ages in natural light, the floor will darken substantially. Brazilian Cherry Floors have a hardness level of 2350 which is nearly twice that of northern red oak. This makes it a good choice for even the heaviest traffic areas in your home.
4.) Merbau is another species of hardwood that carries deep red tones like the Brazilian Cherry Hardwood. It is a native species to the Indo-Pacific and has a hardness level of 1925. Other names commonly used are Ipil and Kwila. While it is a bit softer than Brazilian Cherry, it still is considered a very dense hardwood when comparing it to other species of hardwood floors.
5.) Hard Maple is a yellowish blonde colored species of hardwood that is another one of the most popular hardwoods used today. With a hardness level of 1450, it’s about 10% harder than traditional red oak. This makes it a popular wood to stain since the softness will allow a stain to penetrate, allowing you to stain it just about any color you wish.