Whether you’re updating your flooring or remodeling the whole house, using materials made from reclaimed sources can be a great way to cut down on the cost and keep your home eco-friendly.
What Are Reclaimed Hardwood Floors?
A sustainable option, reclaimed flooring is made from wood salvaged from old buildings, antique barns, river bottoms, trees removed from urban settings, etc. As these types of floors are made from wood that doesn’t serve a functional purpose anymore, using reclaimed materials is a great way to repurpose historical resources and keep your home green.
What are the benefits to reclaimed hardwood flooring? In addition to the sustainability factor, reclaimed wood has a natural distressed look due to its history such as random nail holes.
How Reclaimed Wood Becomes Hardwood Flooring
Curious how the process works? There are a few key steps when it comes to reclaiming wood to use as hardwood flooring in a home:
- The manufacturer looks for obsolete structures built with wood species like pine, oak and chestnut and carefully harvests the wood, keeping them from taking up space in a landfill.
- After being removed, the best timbers are selected and de-nailed by hand before being sent to the sawmill.
- The sawmill runs the timbers through a process that helps prevent shrinking and swelling in addition to making sure they’re strong and supportive.
Is it possible to get reclaimed engineered flooring? Yes! In fact, reclaimed engineered flooring can be even better than solid because it helps the harvested timber last longer (just the top layer is reclaimed hardwood), can handle rooms prone to moisture with less expansion and contraction, and provides more stability than solid hardwood floors.
Taking Reclaimed Materials Beyond Your Hardwood Floors
No matter which areas of your home you’re remodeling, the principle stays the same: reclaimed sources of materials include those salvaged from old buildings, antique barns, river bottoms, trees removed from urban settings, etc. In addition to wood used for farms, “reclaimed” includes any type of material that was used for something else, discarded and then redesigned for a new purpose. These materials are great for eco-friendly flooring, but it doesn’t stop there.
When it comes to making your home eco-friendly, the sky is the limit. Kitchen countertops can be made from recycled glass or concrete, and materials like stone, tile or wood can be used in the bathroom, living room, entry way and more. House Logic shares great examples of homes made from reclaimed materials, including upper kitchen cabinets made from a warehouse’s old wooden lockers, a fireplace mantel made from hand-hewn chestnut timber that was originally an 1800s barn, a bathroom door salvaged from a sheep barn in New Hampshire and a medicine cabinet made from old thrift store luggage. Web Ecoist even showcases some examples of eco-friendly homes built from cans, shipping containers and more. Pinterest is a great source of inspiration for ways to use reclaimed materials.
Where to Find Reclaimed Materials
TLC recommends Craigslist and PlanetReuse, but feel free to give San Jose Hardwood Floors a call, too. We can help you find eco-friendly materials to use in your house in addition to recommending our partners that focus on sustainability so your home can have the look and feel you want while being kind to the environment.
Want to know more about reclaimed materials for your flooring or another part of your home? Come visit our showroom to talk to one of our experts, and remember to contact us for a free in-home estimate!
Photo credit: © Sutichak | Dreamstime.com – Timber Wood Wall Barn Plank Texture Background Photo