Hickory vs. Oak Flooring (4 Basic Differences)

hickory vs. oak flooring

This article will take you on a journey of Hickory vs. Oak Flooring and what you should know before you decide the one to use for your flooring. The first thing you should know is that these two types of hardwood flooring are great choices.

However, we understand that making the right choices regarding personal desires or wants can be quite challenging.

We will be outlining the durability, cost, toughness, maintenance, and nature and grain of both hickory and oak flooring to give you all the knowledge you require.

Having double options might sound great, but picking the one that works best for you can come as a big task.

If you’re having a hard time finding the hardwood best for your flooring, do not worry.

Detailed information on the pros and cons and differences between Hickory and Oak will help you make the best decision.

Related: Hickory Flooring Pros And Cons

What Is Hickory Flooring?

The hickory wood is the toughest of all domestic hardwoods, and it has a ranking of 1820 on the Janka scale. For this reason, most people trust it for their home flooring.

Hickory may not be as popular as Oak or other wood flooring choices, but it will add a uniqueness to your home.

It is known for its affluence color differences, astonishing nature marks, and complicated grain models.

The blackish character marks bring an original look, putting Hickory in a position and making it a better choice for people yearning for a refined feel in their home.

Hickory also accepts staining very well, which means you’ll have an easy job picking your desired color for your home.

What Is Oak Flooring?

Oak has always been a good choice for homeowners and builders. This fanciful known craving provides a wide diversity and tones, making it easy to complement any style you pick for your home.

There are many types of Oak, but hardwood flooring manufacturers mostly use red and White Oak.

Red Oak has a Janka toughness rating of 1220, while white Oak has a rating of 1350. Red oak flooring comes with red to pink tones that give your home a warmish, comfy look and feel.

White Oak constructed flooring, on the other hand, has impartial clues starting from light brown to a slightly gray color.

Hickory vs. Oak Flooring: What Are the Differences?

At this point, you should be puzzled about the difference between Hickory vs. Oak Flooring. First, you should know that even though they are fantastic choices when we come to hardwood flooring, they have some notable differences that require your attention.

Knowing the differences will help you make the best decision on which will suit you.

 Here are some of the notable differences:

Read: What is the Most Durable Hardwood Floor

1. Toughness and Durability

One of the most distinct differences between hickory and oak hardwood flooring is the toughness of the wood.

Hickory outclasses both red and white Oak as the toughest domestic wood in terms of durability and how long it lasts.

Oak flooring may blemish below neglectful steppings, but Hickory has a very high possibility to defy the abuse. This makes it an excellent option for homes with so much activity and traffic.

Unlike Oak flooring, Hickory withstands the scampering of pet claws like dogs, cats, etc., or the hammering feet of children running around the home.

That’s why it works well in hallways, living rooms, or anywhere in homes that warrants seeing a lot of foot traffic through the years.

When it comes to any other places in the room that don’t require foot traffic mean there would be no need for a harder floor.

 2. Cost

The cost of both flooring types is an important difference that cannot be neglected. Of course, you have to consider the price when comparing the different wood species. Both red and white Oak is less expensive choices than Hickory.

However, prices will differ, ranging on elements like finishes, board width, and installation method. It would be best if you also remembered that being less expensive isn’t always the most important factor.

A long-lasting floor that suits your home’s style is better than flooring, which saves you little money quickly.

 3. Nature and Grain

As stated above, Hickory’s blackish grain and emboldened nature marks make it special among other hardwood flooring types.

Hickory’s distinctiveness can make it good for some particular designs and decor. However, it might end up looking out of place in some homes.

Whereas Oak Flooring is considerably a dependable choice. You can stain oak floors to make them more appealing and suit your choice of design.

But if you decide to choose Hickory, we would advise you to use wide floor planks. Slender boards make the feel of Hickory look active and distracting in a room.

4. Cleaning and Durability

All hardwood types need a careful form of cleaning and a routine that suits it. Generally, if you avoid water damage and use a broom to remove dirt and other debris every day, your flooring will last longer.

Aside from that, there are some differences between Oak and Hickory regarding preservation. Due to its lower Janka rating, Oak Flooring is more vulnerable to dents and scratches than Hickory.

Its vulnerability makes it open to insects and heartwood rot. Hickory is more easily exposed to rot than Oak is when you’re deciding on which wood to use in your flooring, but consider the environmental elements of your home and try to choose a type that will best suit your home.

Hickory vs. Oak Flooring: What Are the Similarities?

Like most hardwood flooring, Oak and Hickory Flooring have little things in common. Here are some of these similarities

1. Both can be beautiful and exclusive when added to your home, especially when the best stain that suits your particular design in mind is found. 

2. Additionally, both Hickory and Oak can skyrocket the value of your home. Even though Hickory is a bold, pricier choice, both Flooring types will make your home stand out.

3. For the duration, Oak is long-established and a reliable choice that attracts the attention of budding homeowners.

Lastly, even though they vary slightly in durability, both Hickory and Oak last for a long time.

Read: How to Tell the Difference Between Red and White Oak Flooring


We wrote this article about Hickory vs. Oak flooring, and the similarities, and differences to help give you guidance when faced with making a choice between both. 

We hope you found it helpful and informative. If you did, please share it across your entire social media pages.

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