Are Wood Floors Bad in a Kitchen?

Wood flooring is popular because it is stylish, natural, and warm. Good quality wood is durable, and it will last a long time if you care for it properly. Many homes have an open floor plan, with wood floors in the rooms surrounding the kitchen. As a result, they want to know if wood floors will work in the kitchen as well.

You can have wood floors in your kitchen successfully as long as you proactively clean any water or other liquid spills and manage water leaks. Your lifestyle will ultimately determine whether wood floors are bad for your kitchen. Some things to consider are how much traffic there is in your kitchen and whether there is direct access to a garage, swimming pool, or backyard.

Let’s go over the importance of managing spills and stains and how your lifestyle will probably be the critical factor determining whether wood floors are bad for your kitchen.

Spills and Stains Are a Real Threat You Have to Manage

Wood is very porous and can easily absorb water and other liquids, damaging your wood floor in various ways. For example, with enough moisture, your floor may start buckling or cupping, which may require repairing or replacing areas of your floor.

Moisture can be the enemy of wood, and the kitchen has clear moisture threats above (kitchen sink) and below (water piping.) Ceiling fans in the kitchen may help evaporate excess moisture, but you should only install ceiling fans in the kitchen when it makes sense.

Most sources agree that you need to be proactive and quickly clean any spills of water and other liquids to beat this enemy.

Some families are very good at being proactive and cleaning as they go, but some are not.

So, to answer whether wood floors are bad in the kitchen, we first need to answer these important questions. First, is your family good at cleaning as you go? And depending on the layout of your house, how willing are you to clean a lot?

Is Your Family Good at Cleaning as You Go?

There is no doubt that good quality wood is not bad in a kitchen at all. If can make it really classy and beautiful. But the family in that house needs to manage the spills and stains.

I don’t think I have to convince you that a house with only a responsible couple will probably have more success with wood floors in their kitchen than a family with four active kids.

If your kids drop chocolate milk and orange juice every other hour and you have to be behind them cleaning every spill as it happens, you may not think that wood floors are the best choice for your kitchen.

There is a discussion about this topic in Houzz, and most participants in that discussion have positive things to say about having wood floors in the kitchen. However, I noticed that only one mentions lifestyle concerns; having two boys in their teens, the participant is concerned about a lot of traffic in the kitchen. I wonder if the other people on the discussion have no kids at home.

Bottom line, you can’t generalize and say that every type of family will be successful with wood floors in their kitchen. You may even be thinking of having carpet in your kitchen.

Is Your House Layout Prone to Water Spills and Stains

Most garages are often close to the house’s kitchen. If that is the case in your house, depending on how dirty your garage is and whether people take their shoes off, you may have to clean the kitchen floor every time someone comes from the garage.

Is there a swimming pool with access to the kitchen? Just imagine having kids running from the swimming pool to the kitchen in the summer. You will need a part-time kitchen cleaner for the summer.

Does your kitchen have access to your backyard? Our kitchen has direct access to our backyard, and we often play with our corgi, Luna, and unfortunately, we frequently bring dirt and water inside the kitchen. And this is without having kids at home. Although, to be honest, having Luna is like having a busy kid –we love her, though.

Ultimately you need to determine if your lifestyle can handle wood floors in your kitchen.

The Floor You Pick in Your Kitchen Needs to Match Your Lifestyle

This video from Big Bob’s flooring goes over some key points you should consider to determine if hardwood floors are the right choice for your kitchen. Some considerations the video highlights are:

  • What is the goal of your kitchen? This will determine the amount of traffic expected in the kitchen. Entertaining often in the kitchen will require more floor maintenance than just cooking for yourself.
  • Does the kitchen have access outside? Having direct access to a garage, swimming pool, or backyard may mean more floor maintenance is required.
  • How long do you plan to be in the home? Hardwood floors are an investment in time and typically are more expensive than other flooring alternatives. If this is your forever home and you love wood floors, by all means, do it! But if you are planning on moving within a few years, wood flooring may not be your best choice.

Flooring Options for Kitchens

If you still haven’t made up your mind, this video from The Good Guys may be useful. The video goes over a list of flooring options for your kitchen, including wood.

Please note that I am not sponsored or receive money from The Good Guys. I just think the video may help you make up your mind if you haven’t decided yet.

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