Odd Lots Flooring
Going with odd lots wood flooring is one option for saving on purchasing and installing hardwood. "Odd lots," on the other hand, pertains to one of three types of products: discount, discontinued, or about-to-be-discontinued hardwood. How do you go about finding any of these products?
As discount flooring, odd lots may be easier to come by. Not meeting a manufacturer's standards, the flooring is sold at a significant discount – $0.89 to $1.19 – and does not compromise quality. As grading for unfinished hardwood is based on appearance, odd lots wood flooring is unique and rustic. Characterized by an abundance of knots, color variation, and mineral streaks, odd lots flooring does not have a unified look but gives a space a distinct character.
In some cases, the hardwood was discounted because of poor milling, and if you decide to go with odd lots wood flooring for your space, find out why the shipment was given such a grade. Poor milling often comes in the form of wind shake in the face, splits, checks, voids, tree bark edges, and missing tongues. Many of these features pose problems in installation, as boards may not connect or align.
On a similar note, odd lots may include flooring shorts, which, however their appearance, are considered "scraps" and sold as #3 common. While possibly coming from higher-grade hardwood, thus fewer character marks, such odd lots wood flooring is typically 12-inches long or shorter.
Grading and appearance aside, some "odd lots" labels indicate a product is discontinued or is marked as a closeout or liquidation because the flooring will soon disappear for good. In this instance, discontinued or about-to-be-discontinued flooring is difficult to find and may pose problems in maintaining or repairing a floor later on.
About-to-be-discontinued flooring may clearly be labeled "closeout" or "liquidation" by a distributor, but discontinued products are already off shelves. If you want to take this approach, know the brand and product number before you start searching. This way, you will be able to contact a manufacturer or distributor to inquire about the product. Although the item is considered discontinued, manufacturers and distributors may keep the flooring in their warehouses for up to a year.
Regardless of the odd lots wood flooring purchased, think about long-term maintenance of your floor. Ideally, if one or more planks need to be replaced, the same type of hardwood needs to be used. While the same type may be difficult to obtain in the future, contacting distributors like WoodFloorsDiscount.com or manufacturers for discount or discontinued product lines may the necessary approach for finding the right replacement hardwood.