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    Looks / Grades

    The grade of a hardwood floor describes the visual aspects of a floor. Because each board is unique, we have grouped them together based on the color variations and character marks that are naturally present in your wood floor. The choice of a grade is simply a question of look. It has no impact on its quality, its resistance, or its durability.

    Do you prefer floors with a contrasting or uniform appearance, or somewhere in between?

    Here are the different grades available and the character marks you can find in a wood floor.
    Examples of Select & Better wood

    Select & Better

    Clear and uniform

    Light and even in appearance, the Select & Better grade shows a slight tonal variation between the boards. This grade is composed of natural sapwood coloration. Boards with marked color contrasts areĀ  not accepted in this grade.

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    Examples of Dinstinction wood


    Moderately contrasting colorations

    The rich, contrasting appearance of the Distinction grade is the result of a moderate selection of natural tones of the species. There are light to pronounced variations among boards.

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    Examples of Authentic wood


    Contrasting mix of natural colorations

    The constrasting appearance of the Authentic grade is the result of a mixture of all the natural shades of the species dominated by full-bodied tones. There are moderate to pronounced variations among boards.

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    Examples of Rift & Quarter Sawn wood

    Rift & Quarter Sawn

    Slight variations of natural hue

    Uniform and with slight contrasts, the R&Q grade features a linear single grain, which is distinctive to quarter sawn wood. The coloration is a balanced blend, ranging from cream to golden brown, with only light variations between boards. This grade is offered in White Oak only.

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    Character marks


    Knots are a portion of a branch, contained in the wood. Although their features are unique, they can be classified by their shape and size. At Mercier Wood Flooring, we arrange them in three categories:

    • Pin knots, i.e. minuscule knots
    • Sound knots; that are perfectly interlaced with the wood grain
    • Knots filled with wood putty

    Mineral streaks

    They are dark brown to black streaks or lines, which follow the wood grain.

    Splits and checks

    They are fine openings or cracks; present on the floor surface, showing us wood really is alive.