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Wide vs Narrow Plank Floors: Which Should You Choose?

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From the rustic allure of a countryside cottage to the sleek finish of a modern loft, flooring sets the stage for your home's overall aesthetic. It's not just about choosing between hardwood floors and luxury vinyl flooring, or settling on a colour palette. Another crucial decision that homeowners often overlook is the width of the flooring planks. It may seem like a minor detail, but the choice between wide and narrow plank floors can drastically impact your space's look and feel.

Whether it's the cozy charm of narrow planks, reminiscent of vintage hardwood, or the contemporary appeal of wide luxury vinyl plank or engineered hardwood floors, each brings unique benefits and potential drawbacks. Your decision could influence everything from the installation process and durability to the cost and your home's resale value.

So, how do you make the right choice? This guide aims to demystify the process, offering insights into the world of wide and narrow plank floors. By delving into their characteristics, comparing costs and durability, and considering factors like room size and house style, we'll help you determine which plank width best suits your home.

The Classic Charm of Narrow Plank Floors

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A Step Back in Time

When it comes to enduring appeal, nothing quite matches the allure of narrow plank hardwood floors. These slender beauties, typically three inches or less in width, evoke the charm of bygone eras, lending an air of warmth and history to any room they grace.

Picture a quaint Parisian apartment, its narrow, polished hardwood floorboards reflecting the glow of morning sunlight. This intimate, cozy atmosphere is the distinctive character of narrow planks. They're an embodiment of tradition, a nod to the craftsmanship of yesteryears that never falls out of style.

The Fine Detail of Narrow Plank

But narrow planks aren't merely about nostalgia. The beauty of these floors lies in their unique visual texture. The increased number of seams creates a rhythmic pattern of lines, a dance of light and shadow that adds depth and richness to any space. In smaller rooms, this intricacy works wonders, enhancing the perception of space and drawing the eye across the length and breadth of the area.

Now that we've delved into the timeless appeal of narrow plank floors, why not come and see them for yourself? Visit your nearest Floors Plus and discover our wide range of hardwood floor options perfect for bringing that classic charm into your home.

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The Modern Appeal of Wide Plank Floors

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The Bold and the Beautiful

On the other end of the spectrum, wide plank floors exude a bold, modern aesthetic that's hard to ignore. Wide planks, measuring anywhere from five to ten inches in width, speak the language of luxury, sophistication, and style.

The expansiveness of wide planks offers a clean, seamless look, an unbroken expanse that accentuates the natural grain and beauty of the wood. It's a statement piece, transforming an ordinary room into a canvas of elegance and modernity.

Seamless Simplicity

And it's not just about the size. The magic of wide planks lies in their simplicity. With fewer seams to break the visual flow, these floors give a sense of openness, creating the illusion of a larger, more airy space. It's a design choice that's especially suited to minimalist or Scandinavian styles, but with the right finish and stain, it can also lend a rustic, old-world charm to your interiors.

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Factors to Consider When Choosing Plank Width

Deciding between wide and narrow plank floors goes beyond aesthetic preferences. Multiple factors come into play that can influence your final choice. Let's discuss these considerations in detail.

Room Size

One of the main considerations is the size of the room. In general, wide planks can make a space seem larger due to fewer seams breaking up the floor. On the other hand, narrow planks can provide an illusion of space in smaller rooms due to the increased number of lines and movement.

Style of the House

The overall style of your home can also guide your decision. Narrow planks, with their traditional charm, might fit better in a home with classic, vintage, or rustic design elements. Conversely, wide planks, with their sleek and modern aesthetic, would complement contemporary, minimalist, or Scandinavian designs beautifully.

Installation Process

The installation process for both options differs significantly. Installing narrow planks can be more time-consuming because of the greater number of planks, while wide planks require careful handling to prevent problems like cupping or gapping.

Choosing between wide and narrow plank floors involves more than just looks. There are several practical considerations to bear in mind, and our knowledgeable staff at Floors Plus are more than ready to help guide you through this decision. Visit us today and get answers to all your flooring questions.

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Comparison of Durability Between Wide and Narrow Plank Floors

When it comes to durability, both wide and narrow planks of hardwood floor offer their strengths and drawbacks.

Narrow planks, because of their size, tend to be less susceptible to warping and bowing. Their multiple seams can provide extra stability, reducing the risk of movement caused by humidity and temperature fluctuations.

Wide hardwood floor planks, however, while more vulnerable to environmental changes, are often cut from the heart of the tree, which can increase their longevity. Still, the right installation and proper maintenance are crucial to ensure the durability of wide plank hardwood floors.

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Cost Comparison: Wide vs Narrow Plank Floors

It's essential to consider both upfront and long-term costs when choosing between wide and narrow plank floors.

Over time, maintenance costs can vary. Wide plank floors, with their fewer seams, might be easier and cheaper to maintain, while narrow planks, with more gaps, might need more frequent cleaning and care.

Ultimately, the decision should balance your budget, the look you want to achieve, and the practicality of your choice in the context of your lifestyle and home environment.

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Final Thoughts

Choosing between wide and narrow plank floors extends beyond simple aesthetics. It's a calculated blend of your personal style aspirations, practical considerations, and budget constraints. Both options possess their unique charm, capable of completely transforming your living space to mirror your distinct personality.

Narrow planks, with their classic allure, infuse warmth and nostalgia, crafting spaces that resonate with the echoes of history. In contrast, wide planks narrate a story of modern elegance, adding a robust, luxury touch to your interiors.

Are you prepared to make that decision? Take that transformative step. Breathe new life into your home. Introduce a touch of warmth with narrow plank hardwood flooring, or embrace the contemporary appeal of wide engineered hardwood. Regardless of your decision, both paths lead to a dwelling that's unmistakably you.

Ready to see these options for yourself? Visit a Floors Plus location near you to browse our showrooms and find the perfect flooring to suit your style. Happy flooring!


What are the primary differences between wide and narrow plank floors?

Wide and narrow plank floors primarily differ in terms of aesthetics and installation process. Wide plank floors offer a modern, spacious look and have fewer seams, while narrow planks offer a classic, detailed appearance.

Does plank width affect the perception of room size?

Yes, the width of your planks can affect the perceived size of a room. Wide planks can make a room appear larger due to fewer seams, while narrow planks can create a sense of space in smaller rooms due to the increased number of lines.

What style of homes do wide plank floors best suit?

Wide plank floors, with their sleek and modern aesthetic, beautifully complement contemporary, minimalist, or Scandinavian home designs.

How do narrow plank floors fit into home design?

Narrow planks, with their traditional charm, might fit better in a home with classic, vintage, or rustic design elements.

How do I choose between wide and narrow plank floors?

Your choice depends on several factors, including your aesthetic preference, the size of your room, your home style, your budget, and the durability you require.

What type of hardwood is used for wide plank floors?

Wide plank floors are often cut from high-quality timber. They can be made from a variety of wood species, including oak, maple, and pine.

What type of hardwood is used for narrow plank floors?

Like wide plank floors, narrow plank floors can also be made from a variety of wood species. The type of hardwood used often influences the final look and feel of the floor.

Are wide or narrow planks more durable?

Narrow planks, due to their size, tend to be less susceptible to warping and bowing, while wide planks, cut from the heart of the tree, may offer increased longevity. However, durability also depends on proper installation and maintenance.

Can I use both wide and narrow plank floors in my home?

Yes, it is possible to use both in your home, depending on the design and style of each room. However, for consistency, it's usually recommended to choose one width for the main areas.

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