American Black Walnut Hardwood Flooring

Walnut Wood Flooring is hard to beat for natural beauty. It is the only naturally occurring "dark" hardwood that grows in North America from the southern part of Ontario, Canada through to the central regions of United States.

Walnut Wood:
Walnut wood floors have a very distinctive colour with extreme contrast between the nearly white sapwood from the outside of the tree to the dark chocolate brown with a slight purple tinge of the heartwood. Higher grades typically have a larger percentage of heartwood and less of the white sapwood.

Often manufacturers "steam" the walnut in the drying process, in an attempt to create less contrast between sapwood and heartwood, but even then in the lower grades there can still be significant colour variations in American black walnut. Hardwood Flooring selection is mostly about making sure that you know exactly what you are buying, so ask about seeing a larger display or at the very least a picture to give you a clear understanding of the overall appearance to expect.

The grain of a walnut wood floor is predominately straight, with occasional burly patterns if the wood has been cut close to a limb. In fact it is the burly grain patterns that give a walnut wood floor its exotic appearance and customer appeal.

Janka Rating: 1010 - making it a relatively soft wood in comparison to most other hardwoods typically used for hardwood flooring. Thus you certainly have to be a little more careful with day to day traffic if the occasional dent is going to offend you. Many manufacturers only finish American black walnut hardwood flooring with a "satin" finish to make the denting less obvious.

Dimensional Stability: Walnut wood floors are one of the most stable, thus a particularly good choice in environments where maybe the humidity is not as well controlled as you might like it to be. This makes it particularly suitable for over radiant heating systems as well.

Machineability: Walnut is a nice wood to work with, thus if your renovation project extends to not only walnut wood flooring, but also baseboard, steps and railings, you'll find this wood a charm to work with and relatively easy on your saw blades.

More important than that is the fact that it requires no stain. The beautiful colour is natural so to apply the finishing touches only a clear polyurethane coat is needed on any accessories .... no mixing and matching, no scratching of the stain to expose the "real" colour below. In fact that is one of the biggest advantages of American Black Walnut Hardwood Flooring.


Further Information:
Hardwood Flooring
Other Wood Species of Hardwood Flooring
Janka Ratings For Hardwood Lumber