Will My Hardwood Floor Change Color After Installation?

September 12, 2018 6:21 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Chances are, if you’ve recently installed hardwood flooring, you put a whole lot of research into determining exactly which type of flooring you wanted before you decided to make the investment. Of course, it’s important to note that the color the wood is when you first install it may or may not be the color it is a year or two from now.

Say, for example, you’ve chosen some gorgeous cherry hardwood flooring in Santa Cruz, CA, and specifically selected it for its deep red hues. Once you install the flooring, you’ll be putting furniture and rugs over the top of it. But say down the line you decide you’re going to do some redecorating, which involves different placements of furniture or rugs. There’s a chance that when you move an area rug or a couch, you’ll see the color under the rug is much deeper or darker than where the rug had not been lying.

We hear reports of this happening all the time, and the types of questions we get tend to be if there is something wrong with the wood, or if there was some sort of chemical or material in the rug that affected the floor.


The explanation for this phenomenon is actually quite simple. This is called “patina,” which happens to floors as they age. It’ll be much more rapid and therefore noticeable during the first several months after you install the floor, and should be finished after about a year. You can help to keep the process even by moving your furniture and rugs around to even out spots that are not exposed to light, though we generally recommend you avoid the use of large area rugs as much as possible within the first several months.

All species of wood are capable of changing hues over time due to light exposure or oxidation. There are some species of wood in which this change is quite dramatic, and some in which it’s not very noticeable at all. Some species of wood get darker over time, while others get lighter. This is a normal condition that isn’t always entirely predictable with regard to the amount of brightening or darkening one can expect, and the process is not at all related to the kind of urethane finish you apply to your floor.

Before you decide to purchase a hardwood floor, simply ask your dealer if you can expect any patina, and whether the floor will get lighter or darker if the patina does occur. If you want your floor to be the exact color it is when you lay it down for the long haul, your hardwood dealer might have some other options in mind for you that will give you that look when patina is complete.

If you’re interested in learning more about hardwood flooring in Santa Cruz, CA and what you can expect to encounter as a homeowner with hardwood floors, we encourage you to contact the team of experts at The Wholesale House today.

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