7 Tips For Matching Hardwood Floors (Wood, Vinyl & Laminate)

Installing hardwood floors is generally one of the most selected options by homeowners, especially those living in mid to high-end houses. However, another trend that has started to fascinate people is matching hardwood floors.

Modern kitchen with wallpaper backsplash white cabinets wood flooring chairs table

Well, matching hardwood floors isn’t that difficult to do. It is a great idea to enhance the appearance of your flooring. However, it also has a few downsides. There are several ways how you can match hardwood floors with new or existing ones. In this article, you’ll learn some of the tips and reminders that will guide you in ascertaining a faultless transition and a well-polished flooring appearance.

How To Match Hardwood Floors

Wood floor sanding

Below are some of the tips you can try to effectively match hardwood floors:

Match The Tones

Diagonal wood floor pattern in living room with windows

When the tones of your current hardwood floors are already fading, you could try to match other floor types with similar tones. Try to look for other samples that are in the same color variation, then start pairing them with your current flooring.

Ensure that you’re selecting the closest color to perfectly match it to your hardwood flooring. The color you’ll select does not necessarily need to be 100% the same as your floors’ tones as your furniture, carpets, and other accessories can conceal those little color dissimilarities.

Custom Staining

Wood staining floor

If your hardwood floors are extended, it is not that advisable to stain and sand both the current and newly concealed parts simultaneously. What’s more logical is to just have a custom-mixed stain that’s matched to the current surface color.

This activity usually involves mixing customized stain colors until the mixture starts to match the faded tones and stains of the current wood flooring.

T-molding Process

Wood floor tile installation

Numerous interior designers and experts aren’t a fan of combining different wood flooring colors as this will make the rooms inside your house feel disordered and directionless. However, one way to fix this issue is by the T-molding process.

This process is normally used to bridge gaps found in hardwood flooring. This is also generally used in doorways to cover up uneven and odd cuts that are caused by 2 different flooring installations. 

The T-molding process highlights a narrow channel that slithers between 2 gaps in the boards. After that, it will conceal the area using a rounded or square trim piece that almost levels to the current floors.

Hide Floor Imperfections Using Stain Pens

Composite flooring with snap together installation

Hardwood floors will start to get scratches and nicks over time. And these would make your surfaces look like they aren’t connected. However, these isolated issues could be concealed by using stain pens. 

Stain pens work almost the same as paint pens. You just need to start pressing the white tip downward to let the stain drench the tip.

Use the stain pen to fill in all the floor blemishes and scratches. Make sure to remove all the excess stains using a slightly wet rug.  Once the stain dries, you can try putting a supplementary coat until all the blemishes go unnoticed.

End-Molding Process

Modern living room with medium wood floors brown accent wall furniture

This process transitions floors with other wood materials or architectural highlights. The end-molding process is generally useful with any surfaces that are filled with grout or mortar. To apply the end-molding, make sure to place it out on gaps. After that, secure the area with glue.

Matching Existing Wood Floors 

Living room with chevron pattern wood floor furniture

Many people are interested in matching new hardwood floors with their existing ones. However, others might think that this is impossible to achieve.

In reality, existing floors can be matched with either old or new wooden surfaces. If the process is done correctly, the transition between the flooring will look faultless. 

When matching existing floors, you might need to consider these few factors:

The Species Of The Hardwood You’re Installing

Modern apartment living room with large tv over wooden cabinet orchid cork floorboards and door to corridor

Although you’re going to combine two types of hardwood floors, they might be different in terms of their species. 2 different species will not match.

Some species, like red oak, can be easy to match, but types like maple can be more challenging to match with others.

Your Existing Floor’s Condition

Modern kitchen with hardwood flooring dining area hanging light

Some floor damages, like huge black spots caused by water, might not be fixed. However, if your existing flooring is already faded, you can just sand it along with the new wood floor, though other homeowners are not fond of this process. 

But other than this, there are no other ways to make matching floor materials easy. Read more about our guide on the cost of wood flooring here.

The Existing Floor’s Age

Bedroom with cherry wood floors white paint

Over time, the color of the wooden flooring will change and fade out. As an example, maple, when new, has a blonde color. But as time goes by, its color starts to appear light beige. 

This will make matching very difficult as new and existing maple wouldn’t look good together.

This is still possible, though. There are several staining processes that might help you match your existing surfaces with new ones.

Matching Vinyl Flooring to Existing Hardwood

Vinyl flooring installation

Matching your existing hardwood with vinyl flooring is possible. You can do this by applying transition strips. A transition strip is an attenuated molding piece that bridges 2 types of flooring that are different in elevation or tone.

It is a board that’s placed between 2 different pieces to provide a seamless and smooth transition. This process is easy if you wish to match vinyl with boards. 

Transition strips can be installed using screws or adhesive construction glue. But remember, you need to make sure that the tones of your vinyl flooring match the color of your existing flooring.

Matching Wood Floors to Laminate 

Living room with dark spc flooring and hanging light

Hardwood floors can also be matched with laminate floors. You just need to make sure that their appearances are highly similar so that the transition will be unnoticeable and seamless. 

To match hardwood with laminate effectively, some experts are also installing transition strips. One other thing that will make the matching process successful is by incorporating the T-molding process.

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  1. Since I had a lot of free time recently, I decided to try fixing any spots on our wood floor using a stain pen. In some areas, it worked well and helped me achieve my goal of covering those spots. For scuffs that can’t be removed using this method, though, I applied a vinegar-based cleaner and wiped it gently using an extra-fine steel wool. It helped me deal with those scuffs on the floor right away.

  2. Hello,

    Thank you for your wonderful article. I have wood like porcelain tiles in my kitchen, bathroom and entry and carpet in the rest of my home. I would like to install hardwood floor and get rid of the carpet. How do I match the hard wood with the wood like porcelain tiles?

    Thank you.

  3. I am trying to match our hardwood floors with a Pergo or similar product. Our hardwood is 2.5” We need to keep the laminate as thin as possible as we cannot remove the underlayment of the floor that will have to get laminate. We will use a transition strip. Our best option would be one that has 2.5” strips or that appearance.

  4. Looking for a solution for best match of 2.5 in hardwood in our hall. Bedrooms are carpeted and I want to replace with laminate and have no idea what to get

  5. Will you share the color and brand of flooring shown in the picture under the words “Your Existing Hardwood Floor’s Condition” ? thank you

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