Monday, June 10, 2013

Types of Hardwood Moldings and How They’re Used

When it comes to hardwood moldings, not all hardwood floors are created equal. Different floor and surface types require different types of moldings, and there are lots of factors to consider: the expansion gap, floor type, floor thickness, transitioning, etc. But fear not, dear reader! For every floor type and application there is a molding that fits the purpose and looks great. Here are some descriptions of the most common prefinished hardwood moldings and the situations in which they are most useful. Enjoy!

Quarter Round
For a more subtle blend between wall base and floor, the quarter round – so-named due to its cut resembling one quarter of a circle – is used to help cover the expansion gap between wall and hardwood floor. The quarter round can also be used on its own to create a transition between a hardwood floor and cabinets.

Base Shoe
Slightly narrower than the quarter round, base shoe molding can also be used to fill in the expansion gap if a narrower look along the wall base is desired. It is also used as a transition between hardwood floor and wall under cabinets.

Cove moldings are used to cover gaps between vertical surfaces, including walls, staircases, and banisters, and between the tread and riser.

Wall Base
Another option for filling in the expansion gap, taller wall bases provide a cleaner juncture where floor meets wall and helps to give the room a more formal and finished appearance.

Square Nose
Square noses are used with floating hardwood floors. They are perfect for filling in the expansion gap between floors and vertical surfaces such as brick or glass, surfaces that cannot be framed by a quarter round or a wall base.

Moving into the molds that connect floor to floor, T-moldings are used to create a smooth transition between floor surfaces in adjoining rooms. They are most useful for joining floors of the same thickness.

Reducers are used to connect floors with differing heights. This molding comes in two varieties: flush and overlap. Flush reducers are used for glue or nail-down flooring installations. With hardwood floors that require space to expand and contract, an overlap reducer is required.

An extremely versatile floor mold, thresholds are also ideal for transitioning between flooring of different heights. Their use goes beyond hardwood floors; they can also be used to adjoin tile and carpet.

Stair Nose
This is another molding that comes in flush or overlap. Stair noses are used to give a finished look to hardwood steps and are an inexpensive alternative to laying down a tread. They are designed to take the brunt of foot traffic while maintaining each step’s beauty. Flush noses are used for glue and nail-down methods, while overlap noses are used on stairs that need space to expand and contract.

Want more information about hardwood flooring moldings? Give us a call today at 1-888-448-9663, or send us an email at We can’t wait to help you pick the perfect floor – molding, that is!

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