Oiled or Lacquered
An important aspect which if correctly decided may add beauty and value to your wooden floor.
But first, there is an adjacent question which I was asked many times: the new wooden floor should be supplied already sealed (oil / lacquer) or it should be sealed after the installation process?
Durability - highly durable, usually, if supplied by reputable show-room which sources the wood from certified importers or manufacturers. When buying it is recommended to ask these details;
Colour - most of the time the desired colour may be found in one of the chosen show-rooms;
Variations (dark / light boards) - occur most of the time as each board is sealed individually. Site finished
Durability - guaranteed as you are in control of choosing the best for your floor. We use the best existing oil at this moment made by Osmo;
Colour - you have the freedom to choose the preferred one as well as the tone and shade;
Variations (dark / light boards) - minimum, having the floor sealed as a whole; minor one may occur due to grains variations;
Now, about oil and lacquer the next comparison chart was made to help you deciding the best. As a mention when referring to lacquer also the varnish is meant too as it has similar caracteristics.Oil
Appearance - Oil finishes will be soaked into the grains leaving visible the natural feel and look of the wood;
Durability - high for the normal wear in your home but not recommended in commercial or high traffic areas;
Scratches - the area should be re-oiled with a clean lint free cloth (have a spare one to wipe the surplus in case of applying to much). So in minutes the scratches are gone and the sanding is postponed;
Maintenance - once 1.5 - 2 years the oil has to be replenished. Prior to this the floor has to be properly cleaned / vacuumed. This is a simple DIY job, done with lint free cloths. No sanding should be required unless there are highly visible dents or damages;
Life span - more than 50 years for a wooden floor with 6mm ware layer (or above the tongue level), having in mind the maintenance process and the possibility of sanding every 10 years or more;
Conclusion - We definitely recommend oiled finishes for your home. Lacquer
Appearance - Lacquer finishes will remain over the grains acting as a screen which covers the natural look of the wood;
Durability - high for the normal wear in your home. Highly recommended in commercial or high traffic areas;
Scratches - This is the huge downside of the lacquer: there aren't viable solutions for this cases as the lacquer chips off and any attempt to repair the area will show. The floor has to be sanded, all.
Maintenance - usually every 5 years the lacquer should be renewed and for this a deep sanding is required. This shortens the life span of your floor as with each strong sanding you loose board thickness.
Life span - less than 20 years for a wooden floor with 6mm ware layer (or above the tongue level), having in mind the maintenance process;
Conclusion - We definitely recommend lacquered finishes for commercial area.