Grades of Hardwood

Wood is a natural product that features natural variation in color and knots that reflects the tree’s age and history. Hardwood flooring is classified into “Grades” in order to help the consumer more easily choose the flooring type they prefer.

  • Clear Grade: This is the best grade of hardwood flooring because wood is selected for color uniformity that allows minimal character marks. This combination features minimal distraction from character marks and color variation.
  • Select & Better Grade: This grade is slightly lower than the clear, still presenting uniform color and little to no knots and pinholes. tasteful floor where mild variation is expected.
  • Select Grade: Relatively uniform, with a little color variation in shade. Typically these include such things as slight imperfections such as spots, streaks, slightly open checks, and pin/ holes, small splits.
  • Select Common Grade: This is a blend of select and #1 common grade. The color variation is pronounced, knots, open checks and some non-natural discoloration should be expected.
  • #1 Common Grade: A nice blend of natural color variations of hardwood, all variations are allowed. The wood grain is very visible with its darker color. Unfilled pin-knots and some non-natural discoloration are allowed.
  • #2 Common Grade: A blend of natural color variations of hardwood and, all variations are allowed. The wood grain is very visible with its character marks and contrasting color. Knots up to ¾” filled with putty are allowed and checks and splits filled will be present.
  • #3 Common Grade: Also referred to as Cabin or Tavern Grade. Will have defect characters including knots, open knots, machine burns, checks, splits in the wood. #3 Common Grade flooring will contain significant variation in wood coloration and character. Such imperfections should still provide a serviceable floor.