POLL: Wood Floors in the Kitchen?

Emily H
28 de Febrero de 2014
última modificación:8 de Agosto de 2016

We see a lot of discussions about whether or not hardwood is an appropriate floor covering for a kitchen area with the potential for water always present. What do you think about it?
VOTE and share your experience in the comments!

Comentarios (234)

  • Froggy Toad
    I have wood floors throughout my first floor but in my kitchen I did a wood look laminate that matches my wood floors and I think it works great. The floor is easy to keep clean and I don't have to worry about water. When I mentioned it to a few of my guests they say they didn't even realize the difference.
  • goflyrm
    I would do the wood look....porcelain tile. more high traffic and durable
  • goflyrm
    A Hardwood company had given me the pros and cons of having wood flooring and it was the darkening of wood in areas where there is more moisture fridge, sink, dishwasher areas also, buff and coating the floors yearly to keep its seal...too much maintenance!
  • PRO
    Anne Aulbert Designs

    There is no maintenance if properly installed and finished except vacuuming and occasional damp mopping!!!!!

  • mmivelvet
    I would play it safe and opt for the wood grain tiles.
  • mmivelvet
    My good friend has wood floors in her kitchen & doesn't recommend them. They are very damaged in front of her refrigerator where they tend to get moisture.
  • printesa

    Not sure why your friend would have problems with the moisture,,I've had wood floor for 10 years and there is no moisture issue under the fridge or in front of it

  • Maryly
    We have tile throughout most of our first floor. We wear soft flip flops for cushioning.
  • lwhitener

    As far as cleaning goes we were told to use only clear water or water and vinegar on our wood floors. No flooring is going to last forever without wear of some sort. Eventually grout needs repair and sealing, carpet needs cleaning, vinyl/linoleum gets dull, scratched or gouged, laminate will scratch/chip or swell with water damage, and wood gets scratched and dented. I actually like to SEE the dirt, water, and pet hair/issues so that I can clean it up. Otherwise, it's still there whether you see it or not. I have had pretty much all types of flooring, 4 kids, and multiple pets. It is my contention to never have carpet again (just can't see the dirt and seems to need replacing more frequently to look good), to buy only the best laminate (don't let the cheap price lure you into putting down a cheap grade--it won't hold up under pressure or water), tile is cold and hard but the wood-look does look good installed in a sun room, linoleum is easy to clean and stand on but still has to be cleaned and still looks like linoleum, and wood is warm, cleans easily, looks higher end and doesn't go out of style. Yes, the first scratch is painful but some people put those there on purpose and in the end you just don't pay that much attention to them until they actually need to be refinished.......which is when you would also notice the carpet needs cleaned/replaced, the tile needs cleaned/grouted/replaced or the linoleum needs stripped/replaced.

  • rupertthecat

    I agree with everything you say...makes sense to me!!

  • whambette

    I love wood floors in a kitchen. I discovered recently that my 1949 bungalow has original oak flooring under several layers of various flooring types. We were shocked to find that the first layer on top of the beautiful oak is a very fake looking pine. Part of my current kitchen update is to uncover the floors. I can't wait.

  • Lisadoll

    I have wood in every room except the bathrooms, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Easy to clean. In a jiffy. Kid and pet friendly. Warm and beautiful!

  • PRO
    Gerety Building and Restoration

    Wood floors are a great way to go in the kitchen. Light water damage can easily be fixed. Wood has so many upsides that the risk of water damage kind of takes a back seat. Put some wood down in your kitchen, just be sure to take good care of it!

  • Eileen Eads

    I love wood floors and wanted to put them in our kitchen when we remodeled last year. But we have a pool and have to go through the kitchen to the bathroom and it just wouldn't be practical. We went with travertine.

  • Hope Anderson

    My kitchen floors are the original oak from 1937. When I moved in there was a leak from the dishwasher--the guy who flipped the house didn't connect the drain--that caused some warping, but it was sanded out when I had the floors refinished in 2012. Since then I've had no problems, and the good things about wood (comfort underfoot, esthetics) greatly outweigh the bad (water). I do keep an old towel on the floor by the sink at all times--that way I can wipe up any drips immediately.

  • Karen D

    Living in New Orleans, we have had our share of problems with wood floors and water. We have encountered some flooding from heavy rains causing damage to the wood floors both in the back of the house and in the front office area. We have also encountered damage caused by a pipe bursting.

    While I love the look of hardwood floors throughout a home, I don't think I would put them in my kitchen, as well. Luckily, my kitchen is a bit offset from the living area, so the transition is seamless and ceramic tiles work there. When and if I change the floors in the kitchen to something more updated, I will go with a porcelain tile instead of wood.

  • PRO
    Decor & More, LLC

    I love the wood look but the practicality of the luxury vinyl planks.

  • Sheila Rumsey
    We had wood floors in the kitchen of our last house. We put them in ourselves- backbreaking work and not for the faint of heart! But they were amazing, and I would do it again. As long as they have a couple good coats of urethane or something on them, and you don't let big puddles sit, water isn't usually an issue. That said- I would keep a pallet extra and use a water based finish, just in case something does ever happen. My parents had their ice maker leak and it isn't too bad, but you can definitely see the damage if you know where to look. It would be nice if they had some extra boards so that section could be replaced.
  • Sheila Rumsey
    @monika2024 use warm water and vinegar. Vinegar is highly acidic, so it kills most microbes as well as bleach, though it does take a few minutes longer. It is safe for the floor and many other surfaces in the home, plus it is naturally deodorizing once it dries. Don't use it on granite, marble, or travertine, as it can etch the surface, but it is perfectly safe for most other surfaces. It is also non-toxic, so is safe for pets and kiddos. I put a couple drops of Castile soap and some essential oils in mine to cut greasy grime and leave a fragrance behind. Many essential oils are also antimicrobial. Try eucalyptus, lemon, and peppermint for a sweet and clean smelling home. Plus, mice and many other pests hate those smells!
  • PRO
    Lunada Consulting & Design, Inc.

    Allowing for a seamless transition into the kitchen floor makes wood such any easy choice.

  • Mary Weaver

    I've had wood in a kitchen, high traffic areas became worn and tired looking quickly. We moved and the first thing I did was to spend the money to have porcelain tile put in the new kitchen. We have horses on the property. The correct porcelain tile hides dirt well and can take a lickin and still look good. Yes, tile can be hard on your feet but I have my indoor shoes that I wear while working in the kitchen.

  • joaybear

    I installed dark walnut floors in my kitchen 11 years ago and love them. They are easier on the feet and back than tile, and wear beautifully. We have kids, grandkids, and pets on them and the traffic has only enhanced the patina on the floor. We wipe up spills immediately (but wouldn't you do that anyway?) and have even had a plumbing leak under the fridge that was not noticed until the next morning and you would never know. I am very happy with my decision.

  • schmidth
    Birch,5" planking lumber liquidators, 10 years over vinyl floor,jell-rubber mat under foot at sink. Steam cleaned about every two weeks-no young kids, water in small amount-no problem. House 4 had tile-never again, hard,cold dirty grout lines.
  • Sheri and Kate Thompson

    Laminate! It's stronger than wood, looks great and, best of all, you can replace individual "boards" if you ever need to. I've had people get on their stomach on the floor insisting "This CAN'T be fake!" It's not---it's Pergo, and I'd never have anything else!

  • Delora Dickey

    It seems this is quite the controversial subject! Might as well have opened a forum on current politics (ha,ha). Having 1/2 our house in high gloss white ceramic tile (with bits of soft cream/grays) for 20 years, I would do it again and again...except now I would choose the wood-look tile (Tesoro). 2' x 5' throw rugs are used in front of the kitchen sink/dishwasher and refrigerator to catch most spills/slops. Hard on the feet? Only on the holidays when one spends 6 straight hours in the kitchen. Day-to-day activities have no impact at all. Cold? No. Can be cool in the winter, but I wear slippers in the winter, anyway. Drop something? Rarely, but from the height of holding something over 4' off the floor, most anything breakable will...break. I have seen the results of dog nail scratches on wood floors, messes that went unnoticed and left their mark on wood floors, and seen horrific damage from water leakages by icemakers and dishwashers. The wood flooring conditions (after only 5-8 years) of others was the best lesson for me. An active house like mine will always have tile!

  • lesleystein

    Wood floors are a healthy choice just like real foods are a healthy choice.

  • Joan Read

    I've had linoleum, Italian tile and hardwoods in my kitchens, and by far the most gentle on my body are the hardwoods. I love to cook. Standing on tile in particular can take a toll on one's back. I did have a water leak from a faulty refrigerator, which required that my hardwoods be refinished. Frankly, that was a real plus, given the age the floor had on it at that point. Hardwoods really warm a room, especially when just refinished.

  • pimms1967

    I did a gut renovation and addition on my kitchen in 2013. My house is a 1929 Tudor cottage, I was going to do slate tile, but my contractor convinced me to do hardwood to flow with house and said wood would be softer on feet and back. Glad I took his advice, very pleased with it, looks nice against the white cabinets, and maintenance has been no problem, still looks like new, and he did a great job matching the color. I also have a rug runner between sink and island, and LL Bean waterhog mat by back entry door, which helps. Awhile back, a friend of my sister's replaced all the flooring in their southern California house with tile for ease of maintenance and they quickly grew to hate it for several reasons. So I'm a fan of wood for kitchen floors.

  • TC Hudson

    We stained and installed our oak kitchen floor. I decided on Waterlox for the finish. It can be touched-up in spots as needed instead of needing a whole-floor refinish. Love it!

  • PRO
    Lisa E
    I build about 10 homes a year and I always do wood in the kitchen because it flows with the home. I always design open concept. Wood in kitchen is fine. But always tile the powder room and bathrooms. Here's some examples of my homes I build. Wood holds up in kitchens. But def not bathrooms.
  • nmowers

    From relatively new home owner. I hate my wood look laminate. The rest of the house has real wood floors and the difference is painfully obvious. I think wood look porcelain tile flooring may be just a trend that may not last, but I would love it truly if it looked like petrified wood instead of wood planks. Would fit right in with my quirky kitchen. Otherwise I'd rather go back to real wood. I miss my old apartment refrigerator that was no frills but had tons of space. As someone else mentioned, the ice and water dispensers tend to leak over time, (mine did 2nd year in.) And I need to finish replacing all the old plumbing that's anywhere near that kitchen, including the washer, dishwasher and sink, (ouch!) Once the plumbing's done I'll be ripping out that fake wood laminate. Definitely leaning toward replacing with real wood, but I know it'll require special care.

  • mhfallon

    I Have had hardwood in 2 kitchens & currently building a house also with hardwood in the kitchen. I like the continuity it gives with the rest of the house & the feel of it but you do have to be more vigilant wiping up water drips. So far I haven't had a problem even when I spilled a quantity of water on a pre-finished maple floor. The wood did start to cup after I had sopped up the water but it flattened again after it dried. Phew!

  • Alex R
    I did a guy renovation in my home 5 years ago and it was the perfect opportunity to install hardwood flooring everywhere. Including the powder room. I love it !! And everyone who's visited has loved it as well. And I haven't had any issues with water damage yet.
  • elevenarrows13

    I live on a farm and have eleven kids. I have wood throughout my house, including the kitchen with the exception of a slate-type tile in the master bath and foyer. We also home school and work from home so lots of people are on my floors 24/7. Our floors are also wide planks and a very dark finish. I LOVE them! I've never had any water damage, haven't noticed any scuffs or marks, etc.--even when my 130 pound Pyrenees slips inside and has to be dragged out every once in awhile! People will usually comment on the floors when they visit for the first time. Everyone loves them. I will mention that we clean them with hot water and distilled vinegar. I use natural cleaners in my home, but all the natural floor cleaners I've tried leave a greasy film. Vinegar is easier. I like to add essential oils to avoid the smell of the vinegar.

  • Jonathan Cardwell

    All the pics I see are pre fab/engineered wood (the ones that snap together). This is not 1 solid piece of wood. It has a vaneer coating in the top layer and works much better with humidity. Wood in the kitchen will work fine with this type of wood. If your have solid wood planks that are screwed into the floor board it's a whole different animal. I learned this the hard way. In Cali we can no longer use the thick polyurethane coating (it's ugly anyway imo) it's a no go in the kitchen or bathroom.

  • schmidth
    Tile vericose veins. Tile on concrete, cold in winter (heat sink)!
    Don't care what you use on your floor just don't do it to other people.
  • janislj

    Coming from a linoleum floor, the wood floor in the kitchen of my newly built home seemed luxurious. I do like the look and it is fairly easy to keep clean. But I did have a serious water accident where a pool of water sat on the floor for most of the day before I got home from work. Luckily the floor is light colored maple and the water marks are not noticeable, except to me! I have also dented the floor in a couple of areas where I have dropped heavy items. If I have to choose a floor covering again, I will look at other choices, but the look and feel of the floor under my feet would be a huge consideration, and for that, I do like wood.

  • PRO
  • harvey4754

    Best kitchen floor we've had! No nasty grout to keep clean, much more durable (pets, dropped knives,etc) than vinyl. Ours are solid wood, finished on site so cracks are filled in. A good decision for us.

  • momvo
    I've had wood kitchens 3 out of 4 homes and this last one we put in a wood till we fully reno'd... yeah no more wood. Dishwasher leak and the back of a freezer unit completely froze and defrosted water all over the floor...uh its a frost free...but whirlpool side kick nightmare that under warranty still won't replace. so no way will the do our floors... just noooo more wood floors in our kitchen ever many appliance nightmares... matching the wood ends up expensive esp...when its 8wide Booo.
  • PRO

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  • PRO
    Kitchen Ideas, LLC

    Wood for sure. However, if you're concerned about wear on a wood floor, luxury vinyl flooring is incredible today. You can't even tell the difference if you go with a solid brand. It holds up to virtually anything.

  • No Name

    I like wood for the living room and bedrooms (where a life expectancy of over 100 years is realistic), but it looks out of place to me in a kitchen or bathroom. And there is good reason for that; it's only a matter of time before something leaks and makes a mess of it. My tile floors have handled some formidable, but not overwhelming leaks; they are dished just enough that water has never leaked into the space below; if they had been wood, I'd have spent a lot of time and/or money sanding them back into shape and refinishing them. Even then, they would have lost a lot of thickness in some places, potentially shortening their life expectancy. Of the people I know who have put wood floors in their kitchens, about half have already had to make major repairs from things like leaky ice makers and even wet foot traffic. "cozy" just isn't worth that kind of hassle.

  • Emilie Bova

    No name, I have had tile kitchen floors and wood kitchen floors. The most beautiful and comfortable floor by far is the wood floor. I have horrid memories of sealing and cleaning grout lines every few months! I have spilled water, wine, grease on the wood and just wipe it up. No problem, no staining and so much more relaxing to stand on.

  • Kristel Quintana

    Love wood, there's nothing like it. But I won't have it in the kitchen. All it takes is one leak. They don't make refrigerators like they used to. My inlaws had a leak in the middle of the night that warped their hardwood floor and they couldn't afford to fix it. I know many people that have had their ice cube/water dispensers leak. I even had a friend who's dog decided one day that pushing the ice cube dispenser (covering the floor in ice cubes) was the best thing ever. I think it's not a matter of if something will leak, it's when. If you love hardwood and have enough disposable cash to repair the inevitable then go for it. I know I would.

  • elevenarrows13

    Always YES to the wood floors and NO to an ice maker/water dispenser! lol

  • Jean Sutton

    When we bought our spec house it came with a red oak floor. It did okay in the kitchen, but from day one was showing scratches and dings. We upgraded eventually to Mirage Santo Mahogany flooring. Now, 4 years in, we still have beautiful flooring. So, my advice is, if you're going to have wood floors, go as hard and high quality as possible to make living on it stress free.

  • PRO
    Jim Reif Builders Inc.

    We love the look that hardwood floors provide, but for durability purposes LVP (laminate vinyl planks) is what we see becoming more popular in our area. It offers the wood floor appearance people are looking for, as well as being a bit warmer on the feet than what you would find with tile or stone.

  • rupertthecat

    I have wood floors in my kitchen, and the water spots drive me insane. I just don't think it's a great idea for the kitchen....

  • Amber Webb

    We are on our 3rd home reno and were considering putting wood in the kitchen and dining are in order to create that beautiful continuity. We did tile in the first and vinyl in the second reno we did. I loved the tile because it seemed indestructible when moving appliances around and large dogs had no effect. The vinyl was inexpensive, but I will never do it again due to puncture and rips. As much as I love the look of wood, I think I will stick with tile in the kitchen and dining. Tile appeals to my sensibilities for many reasons. We do the installs ourselves and there is nothing more frustrating than spending days of work and a lot of money to make something look perfect just to have it ruined within a few years. I used to clean houses when I was younger and every kitchen wood floor was damaged.

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