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The Janka Hardness Scale

The Janka Hardness Scale


When evaluating hardwood flooring, one metric in the flooring industry to consider is the Janka Hardness Scale. This is the rating in which hardwood flooring is tested to measure it’s quality or durability.



The test is done by driving a steel ball into the wood. The ball is pressed until it reaches half of its diameter. Janka is a measurement of the pressure it takes to do it.



The video below shows the Janka hardness test in action on bamboo flooring


So for example, American walnut and American cherry are very soft on the janka rating
Whereas Brazilian cherry and Brazilian walnut are going to be extremely hard on the janka rating
Make sure you know this before you buy your next hardwood floor


When Is It Time To Refinish Your Hardwood Floors?

When Is It Time To Refinish Your Hardwood Floors?


Refinishing your hardwood floors is one of the least expensive ways to improve and change the look of your home. It is especially impactful if you have hardwood underneath your carpet and/or if you change the stain color.

To some extent, this is a personal choice as to when you refinish your hardwood floors. I certainly have customers who are very particular and like their floors in tip top condition; I have others that have let their floors go for 20-30 years, so there is a wide range. On average, most customers will sand & refinish their floors every 10 yrs or so – potentially sooner if you have a busy household with lots of kids and pets; potentially longer if you/your kids take your shoes off in the house.

Refinishing your hardwood often costs less than most customers think – I love doing these free flooring estimates because I always feel like I’m delivering good news – here’s an inexpensive way that we can greatly improve the look of your home…and, it’s less than you thought it would be!

For those of you not familiar with the process, it is a bit long and messy, so this is often why people put it off. First, you sand the floors – you take off the first couple of layers (including the current stain color), so you are left with raw unfinished wood. Usually, you do 3 cuts (each one with finer sanding grains) so the floors are smooth. Then, you apply stain (or leave natural) and let it dry 24 hours. You then add on 2-3 coats of polyurethane letting each coat dry for 24 hrs (and you screen it in between coats so the poly will stick better). Women – for those that get manicures, it’s basically the same process to make sure your nail polish stays on longer.

During this time, you can not walk on the floors and ALL furniture needs to be moved out of the rooms. This is where the complications lie.


So, when is the best time to refinish your hardwood floors?

1. Before you move in. By far, this is the best time to refinish hardwood since there’s no furniture and no disruption of living nor the smell. So, if you know someone moving into a new home and considering this, tell them to do it NOW (before they move in) and not later. It’s also less expensive if the room is empty (no cost for moving furniture).

2. If you already live in your Charlotte or Lake Norman home, then try to refinish the floors while you are away. This is a must do if it involves steps or sections leading to the bedrooms – remember you can’t walk on them for 4-5 days. You also avoid the smell this way. Alternatively, you could stay with family or friends.

3. If you are selling your home, try to refinish before you sell. If your hardwood floors are in bad shape, it’s a reflection of how well the house your house is maintained. Doing this project before the house is listed is a very smart investment and believe me you will get your return on it. It will help your house sell faster and a higher value. If it’s not done, potential buyers know they will need to do it and they will think it’s more expensive than it really is and hold back that amount in what they are willing to pay for the home. Again, you may consider doing this while you’re away. Or, if you’ve already moved, now is a perfect time for it.

Will It Clean? Watch the Mohawk Carpet Challenge

Mowhawk Flooring manufactures one of the most easy to clean carpets in the industry. Charlotte Flooring company Above Board Floors presents the will it clean challenge showing how Mowhawk flooring let the crowd of the Tough Mudder challenge cross the finish over a stark while carpet. The results are amazing making Mowhawk Carpet the easiest to clean carpet in the world and you best local flooring store.


Solid hardwood Vs Engineered Wood Flooring Guide

With so many choices, it’s hard to know where to start with finding the right flooring for your home. We’ve created a visual guide to learning about Solid hardwood Vs Engineered Wood Flooring. This guide however doesn’t account for one’s own taste in appearance. That’s why Above Board Flooring Showrooms in Charlotte NC and Mooresville NC offer a great opportunity to also judge the look and feel.

(Click to enlarge)


Lowe’s Stops Sales of Laminate Flooring Due To Toxic Formaldehyde Levels


Recently, we received word that Lowe’s Home Improvement has put a hold on sales of Chinese-made laminate flooring as testing.

Mooresville, NC, May 4, 2015—Lowe’s halted sales of its Chinese-made Tescun laminate flooring over the weekend after Xuhua Zhou, short seller and the man who sparked the formaldehyde allegations against Lumber Liquidators, said that tests of the product revealed toxic levels of formaldehyde.

Tecsun Building Products, based in City of Industry, California, confirmed that sales of the flooring have been stopped and that it will be doing its own probe. The company contracts with factories in China and said its products are compliant with U.S. regulations. Lowe’s is its largest customer, according to Bloomberg Business.


If you had laminate flooring installed from Lowe’s directly or through a contractor or installation company that get’s their supply possibly from Lowe’s, contact Above Board Flooring today. Owner Andrew Linford is a National Hardwood Certified Inspector through the National Wood Flooring Association. Andrew is one of the few local flooring experts qualified to inspect your flooring and make safe recommendations.

CARB Phase II Compliance and Formaldehyde Emissions

Above Board Flooring only works with the best suppliers. It’s understandable that the lumber liquidator fiasco has caused concern among all suppliers. We received a letter from one of our sources recently that we felt we should share as it speaks to the quality of the company.


Dear Valued Customers,

Impressions Hardwood Collection has always been committed to providing you with quality hardwood flooring products. We take pride in the products that we do provide and the relationships that we have with our manufacturing partners.

In light of the attention to the issue of formaldehyde emissions from wood products brought about by the recent CBS program, 60 Minutes, we want to assure you that our products are safe. We require all of our manufacturers to adhere to all environmental, health, and safety requirements, including stringent standards on formaldehyde emissions.

All of our products are CARB (California Air Resource’s Board) II compliant. The CARB II standard is one of the most stringent standards in effect to limit formaldehyde emissions. The regulation establishes emission standards at levels that protect the public health. Our products are also 100% Lacey Act certified. Third party certification agencies are used to verify that all raw materials used in the production of our wood products are of legal origin.

We truly are dedicated to supplying you with the highest quality and safest wood products. If you need specifics on any of our products or would like more information, please contact Lori Garner at 866-722-4442.

With sincere thanks for your business!

Impressions Hardwood Collection

After 60 Minutes Story WBTV Channel 3 News Interviews Above Board Flooring

After 60 Minutes Story WBTV Channel 3 News Interviews Above Board Flooring

On March 4th 2015 Charlotte’s Channel 3 On Your side news interviewed Charlotte’s National Hardwood Certified Inspector and owner of Above board Flooring, Andrew Linford about the breaking safety story about Chinese Laminate Flooring.

Customers want to know what’s in flooring after ’60 Minutes’ story

MOORESVILLE, NC (WBTV) – After a 60 Minutes story called the safety of laminate flooring into question, a Mooresville company is taking precautions.

Andrew Linford owns Above Board Flooring and says customers are calling and asking about what’s in their floors.

Concern over health hazards connected to laminate flooring came after a 60 Minutes report that examined the materials used by industry giant Lumber Liquidators. The piece looked into how the company’s flooring allegedly had excessive amounts of formaldehyde in their products.

Original 60 Minutes Story

Chinese Toxic Laminate Flooring

Lumber Liquidators linked to health and safety violations

60 Minutes found that Lumber Liquidators’ Chinese-made laminate flooring contains amounts of toxic formaldehyde that may not meet health and safety standards

If you have installed laminate flooring and heard this story, you’ve come to the right place. Above Board Flooring owner Andrew Linford is a National Hardwood Certified Inspector through the National Wood Flooring Association.

Andrew is one of the only Certified inspectors in the Charlotte area. Find out if your floors are safe. Get the piece of mind you deserve. Call us today at 704-746-1311 to set up an in home inspection of your hardwood or laminate flooring. We are trained and here to help you. You can also email us directly below. However, this new is just now breaking and appointment times are first come first serve.

Above Board Flooring To Attend SOUTHERN Spring Home & Garden Show

Above Board Flooring To Attend SOUTHERN Spring Home & Garden Show


Join Us: February 20 – 22, 2015 AND February 27 – March 1, 2015

Spring time is a great time to check out home improvement options. This February Above Board Flooring, Charlotte’s flooring installation and hardwood flooring restoration specialist will attend the Sourthern Spring Home & Garden Show.

350 companies will be exhibitors during the show. These are industry leading experts available to talk to homeowners about the latest products and trends. This is a great opportunity to learn what’s hot for 2015.


Above Board Flooring is proud to attend as we will be featuring the high quality flooring products by Cali Bamboo. We will also be featuring fantastic lines of carpet and tile. We’ll be showing some of the hottest trends in flooring and custom flooring options. We will also be offering the best money saving tips when it comes to your flooring projects. For example, as a certified flooring expert we can show you ways to save your floors even beautiful hardwood flooring through our dust free flooring restoration and repairs.

And who doesn’t love a deal? When you visit us at the homeshow, we will be offering the highest savings trade show deals. Be sure to come out and ask us about it.

How Does the “Feel” of Engineered Wood Compare with That of Solid Wood?

Are you planning to install new floors in your home and you cannot decide between engineered wood and solid wood?

Would you like to know what the difference between them at a sensorial level, rather than just regarding their properties? The best way to find out how engineered wood feels compared with solid wood is to get up close and down right friendly with a few planks of the two materials in one of our local flooring stores.

However, the devil hides in the details, and differences may appear in terms of feel of movement, dimensional stability, thickness and texture. Therefore, knowing a few things about the manufacturing technique of both materials, about their properties and their behavior throughout the year is the best way to realize what the differences are and how these differences may influence the feel.

Manufacturing Differences

Engineered hardwood usually consists of at least 2 layers, with the top one made of wood veneer. Manufacturing standards impose a top layer thickness of 2 to 4 mm, but, usually, the thicker the top layer is, the closer the resemblance between the feel of engineered and that of solid wood is. As for the lower layers, they are usually made of HDF, plywood or solid wood. The layers are pressure bonded to one another. The profiles available are either click locking or tongue-and-groove.

Manufactured from single wood pieces, solid wood planks usually have a thickness of ¾” and the most used profile for installation is tongue-and-groove.


Engineered hardwood has been proven to have minimal movement and maintain dimensional stability even in high humidity conditions. To prevent noticeable seasonal gapping and reduce movement, the average annual humidity level indoors should be somewhere between 40 and 65% throughout the year.

Solid hardwood, on the other hand, as a natural product, responds to the variations in the air humidity levels. If you want to avoid noticeable seasonal gapping and reduce movement, the average annual humidity level indoors should be somewhere between 45 and 55%.

As a result, in homes with high humidity levels and high temperature fluctuations, stepping on engineered hardwood floors will feel safer, steadier than stepping on solid wood floors.

Dimensional Stability

The lower layers of engineered hardwood ensure a better internal balance, reducing the possibility for twisting and warping to occur. Movement is minimal throughout the seasons, the flooring maintaining its dimensional stability. As a result, in homes where humidity and temperatures fluctuate significantly throughout the year, engineered wood is preferable to solid wood.

During humid and warm summers, solid wood often expands. During dry and cold winters, it often contracts. If you cannot keep the humidity levels and the temperature in the rooms where you want the new floors installed under control, minor cupping or gapping may occur.

This means that engineered floors may feel smoother, steadier and more even than solid wood floors in homes with higher humidity levels and fluctuating temperatures.

Design and Looks

Leaving differences that fluctuating temperatures and high humidity may bring about aside, engineered wood flooring usually looks and feels just like solid wood flooring. This is due to the fact that its top layer consists of real wood lamellas, with the same aspect, feel and texture as that of solid wood flooring.

More than that, both types of flooring come in the same range of stains and finishes, so they look the same. It is important to note, however, that, unlike site-finished solid wood flooring, prefinished engineered flooring has a microbevel on its four sides.

In proper temperature and humidity conditions, engineered hardwood and solid wood floors look and feel the same, so, choosing one over the other should be a matter of costs and practical considerations.

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About Us

Above Board Flooring is Charlotte North Carolina's leading flooring expert. Learn More About Us

Mecklenburg County Towns and Neighborhoods we service:

South Charlotte:
Including Ballentyne, Matthews, Mint Hill & Indian Trail:
The Arboretum on Pineville-Matthews Road,Ayrsley in the Southwest corner of Charlotte, Ballantyne off Johnston road near South Carolina, Barclay Downs by the SouthPark Mall, Beverly Woods by Park Road in South Park, Carmel Village by Carmel Road, Blakeney near Ballantyne neighborhoods, Chantilly around Plaza-Midwood, Cotswold, Dilworth, Landsdowne, Madison Park by E Woodlawn Road and Park Road, Myers Park, Nations Ford,Parkdale, Piper Glen, Quail Hollow, SouthPark, Steele Creek

North Charlotte:
Derita, Highland Creek, NoDa, University City, Northlake, Hidden Valley, Pleasant Grove, Croft, Newell

Lake Norman, NC:
Including Mooresville, Huntersville, Davidson, Cornelius, Troutman, Statesville, Sherrils Ford and Denver , NC

The Peninsula,The Point, River Run,Birkdale, The Hamptons, Govenors Island, Alexander Island, Wynfield, MacAulay, The Farms, Northstone, Skybrook, Antiquity, Sailview, Norman Pointe

West Charlotte:
Ashley Park, Berry Hill, Biddleville, Lincoln Heights, Oakview Terrace, Paw Creek, Shuffletown area, Thomasboro/Hoskins, Wesley Heights, Mountain Island Village,Yorkmount Park

East Charlotte:
Eastland, Grier Heights, Plaza-Midwood, Sherwood Forest, Hickory Grove, Hickory Ridge, Idlewild, Oakhurst, Reedy Creek, Shamrock, Sardis Woods, Stonehaven, Center City,

Charlotte, NC Location
10100 Park Cedar Dr.
Charlotte, NC 28210

Mooresville, NC Location
836 Williamson Rd.
Mooresville, NC 28117

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