Nailing down the perfect flooring for your new home can be challenging for new homeowners. There are different options in the market, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. But among these numerous options, most people go with hardwood flooring.
Hardwood flooring is a popular option for many new homeowners. It’s durable, easy to maintain, and can be installed in nearly any room of your home. There are several different types of hardwood available on the market today. Each hardwood variant differs in terms of how difficult they are to work with, how much they cost, and what they look and feel like.
If you’re considering Brazilian Cherry hardwood flooring, you should take the time to know everything about it before making your decision final. In this article, you will be able to do just that. So take the first step by reading down below!
What Does Brazilian Cherry Look Like?
Hardwood is a common choice for new homeowners. Hardwood flooring lends its elegance to any home that it can be found in. Wood species like mahogany have become some sort of a status symbol among homeowners, especially in wealthy and elite circles.
All kinds of hardwood flooring share a common aesthetic that brings warmth into your home, and the Brazilian Cherry is no exception. It exhibits a deep red color that exudes class and sophistication. Having this hardwood flooring in your home would surely leave a lasting impression on your guests.
Brazilian Cherry saw a spike in interest during the early 2000s but remained a popular choice among homeowners throughout the years. Its salmon-red hues can still be found in the innumerable homes built and renovated during its peak in popularity. As such, some people avoid this hardwood flooring as it might look dated and out of style.
This hardwood flooring comes in different hues and shades, allowing you some flexibility in complementing it with the other elements of your home. For instance, you may use softer color palettes on your walls to complement your floor’s deep red color. Lighter colors can bring out the best from your Brazilian Cherry flooring.
Where Is Brazilian Cherry From?
You might think that the “Brazilian” part of the name is only a marketing ploy, but Brazilian Cherry does come from Brazil. The fruit tree from which this fine and elegant hardwood is harvested grows in several Central and South American regions.
What has become a misnomer, however, is the other half of its name. The scientific name for the Brazilian Cherry species is Hymenaea courbaril which is not a cherry tree species at all. The tree produces a legume that is known for its foul-smelling odor and hard shell enclosure. So it’s not surprising that they chose to market it as “cherry” instead.
The tree usually grows up to 25 to 40 meters tall and, if the conditions are conducive enough for its growth, can reach up to 50 meters. The diameter can be as wide as 2 meters, while its foliage is mainly composed of green leaves that can be anywhere from 3 to 12 centimeters long. Since it’s a fruit tree, it also grows flowers that are cream and white in color.
Other than being harvested for its bark to turn into hardwood material, the tree also found use in other applications. For example, the Hymenaea courbaril produces sap that can be used in making incense, perfume, and varnish.
What Are the Advantages of Using Brazilian Cherry Flooring?
Because there are countless hardwood species in the market, there needs to be a standardized and reliable method for testing their durability. The Janka rating fulfills this need and has been adopted as the industry standard.
Under this method, the hardness of the material is measured by forcing a steel ball into a wooden material until half of its diameter reaches the other side. The applied force, measured in kilonewtons (kN), becomes the Janka rating.
When subjected to the Janka testing method, the hardness of Brazilian Cherry is generally rated at around 2350, which is an impressive score. To put it into perspective, Santos Mahogany has a Janka rating of 2200, while Red Oak is rated at 1290.
But what makes it so durable? Brazilian Cherry owes this amazing Janka rating to its high density, making it resistant to fire and bug infestations. Another benefit of this hardwood species is that its natural oils prevent microbes such as mites and spores from growing deep in its nooks and crannies.
Even vinyl planks and laminate flooring that imitate the hardwood aesthetic can give your home an elegant and sophisticated look. But despite how close they look at first glance, these imitation flooring options can never mimic real hardwood floors’ authentic look and feel. Upon closer inspection, the laminate planks and vinyl flooring reveal their true identity.
Brazilian Cherry, also known as Jatoba, is often described as having a salmon-red to orange-brown color. You can pair a Jatoba flooring with walls painted with lighter and pastel-like colors. If you’re unsure which color to go with, you can consult a color wheel or a color palette to determine which colors work the best for your Brazilian Cherry hardwood floor.
The grain present in the Brazilian Cherry is low-profile and usually in a darker hue. Compared to other hardwood varieties, the Jatoba features a finer grain, making it more exquisite and unique. Today, this aesthetic is most appreciated in luxurious residences and high-end dwellings.
Bang for the Buck
The upfront cost for Brazilian Cherry flooring can be quite steep. Its high Janka rating makes it difficult to work with, making labor costs higher. Having it transported from South American suppliers can accrue logistical costs too.
However, this hardwood flooring can last a long time if maintained properly. Its durability can be both a boon and a bane. Its advantage is that it can last for decades and even add resale value to your home. Hardwood, whichever variety you choose, is always a good investment.
As long as it’s constantly refinished in the entire duration of its lifespan, your Brazilian Cherry hardwood flooring will always look its best no matter how long it’s been since it was installed. Refinishing it can remove the scratches and dents that have accumulated over time, making it look brand new.
Once installed in your home, you’ll get more out of it the longer you keep it maintained and in good shape. It is how you will gain your ROI from your initial investment. If you ever choose to sell your home, it will definitely add to its resale value.
Is Bellawood a Good Brand?
A common source of frustration among homeowners who chose hardwood flooring is how frequently their pets or toddlers can scratch the floor. Depending on the hardwood variant you choose, your flooring could be prone to scratches and dents.
Bellawood addresses this problem by making their hardwood flooring “twice as scratch-resistant” as their competitors. In addition, they incorporate cutting-edge technology and industry-leading techniques to make it possible for their hardwood offerings to beat the competition.
To sweeten the deal even further, Bellawood also offers a 100-year warranty for its customers. The warranty is tied with the flooring itself and can be transferred to the new owner of your home if you ever decide to sell it.
The brand is popular among home improvement neophytes because of its affordable prices. However, it’s exclusively sold by LL Flooring which can pose a problem depending on your location. The company has limited physical store locations but they do have an online store.
How Much Does Brazilian Cherry Flooring Cost?
As with the other hardwood floorings, Brazilian Cherry can be expensive upon installation. The high price of the initial investment for such an elegant and refined flooring is expected as it is authentic hardwood. Importing the raw lumber from South America certainly makes it more expensive due to taxes and logistics.
Besides logical costs, labor can be a bit more costly due to how difficult Brazilian Cherry hardwood is to work with. As mentioned above, this hardwood material has a high Janka rating of 2350. So, if you’re concerned about durability, you don’t have to worry about it. However, contractors can have a harder time laying down your flooring due to this exact reason.
Fortunately, due to the abundance of lumber coming out of the Amazon rainforest, it has driven the prices of Brazilian Cherry hardwood down. As a result, an unfinished Jatoba can cost around $5.00 per square foot. If you want to have it prefinished, it’s going to cost you around $5.50 per square foot.
Engineered Brazilian Cherry hardwood can be both durable and easier to work with compared to its solid hardwood counterpart. However, it comes with a steep price. The engineered hardwood variety may cost around $6.20 per square foot.
Are There Alternatives to Brazilian Cherry Flooring?
If Brazilian Cherry hardwood is too expensive for you, there are numerous alternatives on the market. You can get away with vinyl and laminate flooring if you’re after the signature aesthetic that Jatoba hardwood exhibits.
Laminate flooring is composed of multiple layers that are all made with cheaper materials such as melamine and wood composites. One of those layers is actually a photographic layer that can be printed on with images of Brazilian Cherry hardwood patterns. Unless your guests have a microscope with them, they wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.
However, if you insist on real hardwood, the closest you can get to Brazilian Cherry is Malaccan Cherry hardwood. Malaccan Cherry has a deep reddish color that is almost identical to Jatoba hardwood. Some shades can even be described as having a copper-pink color.
Another advantage of Malaccan Cherry is that it is not as expensive as Brazilian Cherry. It can be purchased for as low as $3.50 per square foot. This low price does come with a trade-off. Compared to Brazilian Cherry, Malaccan Cherry hardwood is less durable with a Janka rating of 1900.
Brazilian Cherry hardwood flooring is a very popular choice among homeowners. Not only does this wood have an exquisite look, but it also has the durability and longevity to ensure that your investment pays off for many years.
In addition to Brazilian Cherry hardwood being stunningly beautiful, it has been rated as having one of the highest Janka ratings in comparison to other types of wood. With regular refinishing and maintenance throughout its lifespan, it will always look in good condition despite its old age.
While there are many benefits associated with Brazilian Cherry flooring, it does have a high upfront cost which may prevent homeowners on a tight budget from choosing this type of flooring for their home. They can get away with imitating hardwood by installing laminate or vinyl planks instead.
What are you waiting for? Give your home the royal treatment with the exquisite deep red color and fine grain of Brazilian Cherry flooring today!