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Choosing a hardwood floor for your home is undoubtedly a big decision. Many of us are unaware of the vast range of woods available in the market. When you dig in for your hardwood floor search, the most popular and best option is Oak timber. Oak wood has been used for centuries and is known for its durability and beautiful appearance. Unlike fancy floors and low-quality hardwoods, Oak flooring requires less attention and lasts longer.

Once you’ve decided to go for oak flooring there is another task to do- either to opt for White Oak or Red Oak? The choice is yours as both are variants of the same plant. There are some differences in the appearance and properties of  White Oak and Red Oak, but they are equally durable and oak wooden floors

For your convenience, the following are the key differences between the two types of Oak so it will be easier for you to select between the two:


Red Oak gets its name from the red color leaves of the tree in the fall season. The unfinished wood has a slight pinkish undertone and is a bit lighter in color than White Oak.

White Oak has brownish hues and a tan undertone and is darker than Red Oak.

As both Red and White Oak look the same after staining, it is hard to distinguish between them once a stain is applied.

Grain Pattern

Another difference between Red and White Oak, which can only evaluated by a professional, is the grain pattern. Red Oak has a prominent and visible grain pattern. The grain lines run in a swirly or zigzag pattern, forming a wild grain pattern.

In White Oak, the grains are in the form of fine lines and are tightly closed together. The grains are not prominent and give a smooth finish to the floor.

Hardness And Durability

Oak flooring of any kind is known for its exceptional durability and hardness. As wood hardness is measured by the Janka scale, White Oak lies at 1360 while Red Oak is at 1290. Although the difference in hardness is clear, this slight difference does not mean that Red Oak is not hard enough. Both are durable and effective for outdoor and high-traffic areas flooring.

Water Resistance

Hardwood flooring is always susceptible to water damage. It is important to have flooring with a protective water resistance coating. The tighter grain pattern in White Oak makes it the best choice for use in flooring areas where water exposure is more.

Red Oak has a wide grain pattern which absorbs more water and spills, leading to floor damage. That is why White Oak is preferred in outdoor areas for flooring.


Cost is an important factor in choosing hardwood flooring. White Oak is slightly more expensive than Red Oak. This is because of the properties of the White Oak. The cost of the wood also depends upon the plank size and availability of the wood.

We hope that the above discussion is beneficial to make your concepts clear about the White and the Red Oak flooring and their differences. For a piece of professional advice and a quote, you can always contact Budget Floor Sanding Brisbane. We have the solutions to all your flooring issues and give our best to make your floors beautiful and long-lasting.

Call us now to get a free quote at 0418 882 678.

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