All about wooden flooring

Well informed people are happy people.
That's why we will tell you all there is to know about wooden flooring in general and about the beautiful Lalegno floors in particular. You will not only discover our fine collections and finishes, but also all practical and technical information about wood is explained in full detail.

Exotic flooring

The properties of wood are distinctive for each species, but also within the same tree, no two pieces are completely the same. That is the charm of wood as a raw material and at the same time a challenge to Lalegno’s expertise. Driven by our passion for wood, we work with characterful wood from every corner of the world. From orange brown Doussié to Merbau, blackish Wengé, Teak and Walnut. The world is at your feet.

Why choose for exotic flooring?

Although oak is extremely versatile and often used in the world of wooden floors, we find that more and more people go for more exotic alternatives that deliver extraordinarily brilliant results and do particularly well in the newer design trends. Exotic wood species offer a durability comparable to oak, but are available in a plethora of colours and styles that can meet the aesthetic needs of every homeowner.

Exotic floors are durable and offer a wide variety of possibilities. They give your home a stylish and elegant look. Once installed, they can, with occasional maintenance from time to time, last for generations. The choice of wood species is very important and not always easy. Therefore let's just line up all exotic woods that Lalegno has to offer.

Five precious wood species

Merbau

Merbau (Intsia spp.) is an exotic hardwood species from Southeast Asia. Merbau trees can become five meters high. They thrive in wet environments, such as swamps, flood plains and along river banks. Merbau is very popular because of its high natural resistance and superior hardness.

Traditionally, Germany and Netherlands used a lot of Merbau wood for the manufacture of windows and doors. Today, the wood is used worldwide for making furniture and musical instruments, but of course also for solid and multilayer floors.

One of the most reliable indicators of resistance to wear of a particular wood species is its rating on the Janka-scale. That scale attributes a number to each type of wood, ranging from 0 to 4000, which describes the hardness of the wood. A Janka rating of zero indicates that the wood is too soft to be used successfully for flooring applications, while a rating near 4000 means that the wood is too hard to be used for flooring. The Janka rating of Merbau is 1925, which means that the wood is very flooring friendly. It's harder and more stable than oak wood, and in addition, has excellent dimensional stability. That makes Merbau flooring very suitable for use with underfloor heating.

Finally, the wood also has a very high natural durability. This high durability make Merbau an excellent choice for most indoor applications, but what is true for most hardwood floors, is also true for Merbau. Protect your floor properly and avoid exposure to standing water or moisture.

So, Merbau resists wear better than many other wood floors, but there is still a need for regular maintenance to ensure the continuous beauty of your floor. Lalegno delivers its Merbau floors unfinished. This means that they are not provided with a protective layer, and still need to be finished with a wood oil or a varnish. Depending on the finish you choose for your floor, you can then start up a routine for regular cleaning and maintenance. Helpful hints about finishing, maintenance and cleaning of your floor can be found here.

Although Lalegno’s Merbau floors, with their deep brown-red tones, look stunning in interiors with a more traditional look that show sophistication and elegance, the wood can easily be combined with almost any interior style.

Afzelia Doussié

Afzelia Doussié (Afzelia spp.) is a beautiful African wood species with fine grain and a beautiful colour palette that ranges from golden brown to copper red. By exposure to air and light the wood darkens with time and the mahogany tones become more pronounced.

It is one of the most popular exotic woods in Europe and because of its hardness, it provides a good natural resistance to wear and tear. Doussié wood achieves a score of 1810 on the Janka scale, has a Brinell hardness of 40 and is therefore ideal for flooring applications.

Afzelia Doussié is resistant to fungi and parasitic insects and also to acid. This type of hardwood floors is also resistant to fluctuations in moisture and therefore suitable for use in locations that are subject to that, such as bathrooms, for example. Still, it is advisable to always take the proper precautions and avoid excessive exposure to moisture.

The Lalegno Doussié floors have not been finished. You or your flooring installer therefore have to treat the wood with wood oil or a varnish. After that you can easily clean and maintain your floors. Of course, we don’t mind giving you some useful tips.

The variation in colour shades in Afzelia Doussié is less lively and dominant than in some other red-brown woods. This wood species exudes a warm, friendly and very homely character, which means it can be combined with wood furnishings and other materials. Doussié wooden floors provide a strong sensation of comfort due to their beautiful wood grain and warm tones.

Wengé

Wengé (Millettia laurentii) too comes from Africa. The tree thrives best in the swamp forests of western Congo. Wengé trees can grow about thirty meters tall and have a trunk of up to ten meters long, without branches.

The wood has a straight, coarse grain and delivers beautiful flame drawings. The colour varies from milk chocolate brown to black, but fades under the influence of light. If want to slow down this natural fading, you can finish the floor with an oil or varnish with UV filter. For advice regarding the products that are available, you can contact a specialist.

Wengé wood is durable (Class II) and therefore resistant to attack by living organisms such as fungi and insects. It also scores well in terms of strength and hardness (Janka score in 1620 - Brinell hardness 45), making it ideal for the production of floors. Due to its extreme durability, stability and resistance to denting and heavy traffic, Wengé flooring is perfect for use in the most heavily used rooms of the home, such as the lounge or the hall, but also for public areas.

Wengé is an exotic dark wood that shows a very beautiful, dramatic effect when combined with clean lines and stark white furniture, in order to create the ultimate contemporary space. Its distinctive character and warm ebony tones provide a luxurious and elegant look.

Teak

Teak (Tectona grandis) grows in the monsoon forests of India, Laos, Myanmar and northern Thailand. The wood is very durable (natural durability class I).

It is undoubtedly the most popular of all exotic wood species. Teak is so popular because it is durable, warm and has a fantastic texture. The grain of teak is fairly straight, with occasional light waves. The wood can be somewhat rough and have a uneven feel. Teak has a Janka-score of 1000, and a Brinell hardness of 38, which means that it is a sturdy floor and very long-lasting.

After planing the wood colour differences occur, ranging from brown to light brown to somewhat orange. After exposure to light for about 6 to 8 weeks, the colour becomes solid brown.

One of the greatest advantages of teak is that it has its own natural immune system to termites and other insects, and that, once the wood is air dry, it no longer absorbs water. As a result, teak is the wood of choice for use in bathrooms or other damp areas. In that case, make sure that the timber gets a good finish coating after installation and that the joints between the boards are carefully sealed so that no moisture penetrates under the floor.

Like all exotic Lalegno floors, Lalegno’s teak flooring comes unfinished. After installation, you can oil or varnish the floor, but, unlike other wood, for teak that is not absolutely necessary (except for use in humid areas). You may choose to leave the wood to age naturally, which gives very good results.

To keep your teak flooring as good as new, it is recommended that you clean it regularly with a damp cloth and a mild detergent. Make sure that no wet spots remain on the floor.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of teak floors is that they provide a unique, warm and elegant beauty to your home, even when compared to other woods.

Walnut

The beautiful wood of the Black Walnut (Juglans nigra L.) comes from the eastern part of the United States. It has a straight grain, moderately fine texture and a varied flame drawing. The colour is a deep chocolate that is generally very much appreciated and brings a modern and stylish ambiance in the room. Each board is different and beautiful colour effects often occur because the sapwood that you can find on the side of the boards varies from medium brown to creamy white.

The wood resorts under natural durability class III. Moreover, Lalegno Walnut floors also combine the unique look of walnut with the extra stability and strength of multi-layer flooring.

The Lalegno Walnut is supplied unfinished and should (after installation) still get a finish coating. You can use a wood oil or a flooring varnish. Maintenance after installation depends on the finish that you choose and the intensity with which you use it. Helpful hints about finishing, maintenance and cleaning floor can be found here.

Floors in walnut wood are perhaps less known than oak floors, but they are nevertheless a perfect choice for both renovation and new homes. It is one of the most beautiful and high-end types of flooring, which you will enjoy for many years. Whatever the style of your home is, this floor will ensure that you and your guests feel right at home.