The Janka hardness test rates various wood to help when you're buying hardwood flooring. It also explains why some hardwoods are more difficult to work with than others, and how well flooring, cabinets and furniture made from the various woods will hold up to wear and tear.
The Janka hardness scale documents the relative hardness of all hardwoods. It measures how resistant wood is by measuring the force needed to embed an 11.28mm (.444 in) steel ball into the wood half way. See the chart below to learn the Janka hardness of various hardwoods, which fall somewhere on the scale of zero to 4,000 (hardest).
Janka Hardness Testing
Testing is done with hardwood lumber that ranges from one to two inches thick, so the Janka hardness chart below, should be used as a guide to learn relative hardness only. With many engineered flooring products available today, you also need to understand how factors like the core of the flooring, the thickness of the hardwood on top and grain direction affect results.
Chart to Identify Wood Hardness Using the Janka Scale
Here is the chart showing the relative hardness of these common hardwoods, based on the Janka hardness scale. You'll want to do further research to determine the range of hardwoods that works best for common home features like wood flooring, cabinets and built-ins that you want to make sure will hold up to household wear and tear.
Photo credits to AZWood.com.
Planning to install hardwood flooring? Here are a few more articles you may find helpful:
- Tips for Selecting Wood Flooring
- A Simple Guide to Hard-Surface Floor Coverings
- Flooring: Difficult to Pick One