Dated Red Oak vs. Modern White Oak Flooring

Posted by Aaron Schaalma

How many times have you looked at your dated red oak wood floors and been disappointed in how it dates the space? I know a lot of clients are going with the look of white oak floors in their homes. People don’t like the look red oak floors have when they are finished with oil or water based sealers. The complaints I hear are, “they look too golden” or “they appear to have a pinkish hue”. What if I told you that you don’t have to live with those floors that look like they are from the 90’s and early 2000’s?

This client in Neenah, Wi had this same dilemma. They had updated their kitchen and tried to live with the red oak floors how they were. But no matter how much they tried they couldn’t accept leaving those floors as they were. The client had been following me on my Facebook page and saw how I had transformed some red oak floors from the dated orange tone to a light modern and up-to-date floor. I went over some different options with her, and she ended up going with a white penetrating oil on her floors in Neenah.

Hardwood Floor Refinishing: Before and After

You can see the before pictures of these red oak floors really dated the space. Besides wall colors, the floor color is the second largest color your eyes will see.

No matter how many hardwood floors I refinish, it always amazes me at how changing the color of the floor changes the whole space! This project was an excellent example. Here are the after pictures of these red oak floors in Neenah finished with a white penetrating oil.

Distinguishing Red Oak and White Oak Flooring

Red oak and white oak are two of the most popular types of hardwood flooring available on the market today. Upgrading to a contemporary style can add value to any home, and there are some distinct differences between each type. Red oak is known for its old-fashioned warmth. The wood has reddish hues that can provide a cozy backdrop to any room in your home. White oak, on the other hand, is lighter with more subtle grain patterns and grayish tones. This makes it perfect for modern design schemes or contemporary spaces looking for an upscale feel.

Is White Oak Hardwood Flooring Expensive?

White oak hardwood flooring is one of the most popular and sought-after types of flooring available on the market. Not only is it durable and aesthetically pleasing, but its timeless beauty makes white oak a great choice for any home. Are white oak hardwood floors expensive to install?

The answer to this question depends on a few factors, such as where you buy your white oak hardwood flooring, how much square footage needs to be covered, and any additional installation costs. When compared with other types of wood flooring materials such as maple or red oak, white oak tends to be slightly more expensive.

However, not all oak flooring is created equal. There are different grades that can affect the price you pay. The grade of an oak floor will depend on the species of wood used and the amount of character marks visible on the surface. Clear and Select grade planks tend to be smoother with fewer knots and blemishes, making them higher quality and more expensive than lower grades such as Cabin grade.

How to Stain Red Oak to Look Like White Oak

Red oak is a beautiful, natural wood that has been used in many homes throughout the years. But if you're looking to change up the look of your older house, consider staining red oak to make it look like white oak. This method can give a home's interior an entirely new aesthetic with minimal effort and cost. To achieve this look, I use some basic wood staining techniques.

First, I make sure the surface is sanded down with fine grit sandpaper until it’s smooth and even. After that, I use an oil-based stain or gel stain with a light color like cream or honey. I apply the stain evenly using slow circular motions followed by long brush strokes for an even finish. Once the floor is dry, I apply a coat of sealer or varnish for added protection from wear-and-tear over time.

What is Clear Grade Oak Flooring?

Clear grade oak flooring is a type of hardwood flooring that provides an elegant, timeless look to any room. This durable and beautiful material is perfect for those looking to spruce up the interior of their homes. Clear grade white oak offers a variety of benefits, from durability to aesthetic appeal.

Clear grade white oak is composed of strong and stable boards with consistent color throughout each plank. It features no knots or other visual blemishes, resulting in a smooth and flawless surface. The wood's natural grain pattern brings character to the overall design, while its light tan hue enhances any current décor. Clear grade oak flooring also has great hardness ratings, making it an ideal choice for high-traffic areas such as living rooms or dining halls.

Select Grade Oak Flooring Explained

Select grade oak flooring features a tight wood grain pattern and fewer knots than lower grades. It also has very few color variations between boards so that each plank looks almost identical when laid down. This creates a more uniform overall look which makes it ideal for modern or traditional design styles alike. Additionally, select grade oak has moderate character marks such as wormholes and small mineral streaks giving each board subtle personality while still maintaining a smooth surface finish. The result is an inviting warm atmosphere that will remain beautiful for years to come.

Design Options with White Oak Floors

From traditional planks to parquet squares, there is no shortage of design options available when it comes to white oak floors. To make the most of your space with white oak flooring, consider adding contrasting accents along the edges in herringbone or chevron patterns. This creates visual interest while still maintaining a cohesive look throughout the room. For something even more creative, try alternating wide and narrow planks in a diagonal pattern to create an eye-catching effect that will draw attention from all angles.

Rejuvenate Any Room With Modern Hardwood Flooring

Modernizing your home with Signature Custom Flooring’s hardwood refinishing service is an excellent way to update the look and feel of your home. The new color will create a stylish room and make your home appear more inviting, clean, and fresh. This adds value to your property in the long run. Are you ready to give your home a stylish upgrade? Contact me for a free consultation or view my work!