Wood Flooring Hardness

Relative Hardness of Selected Wood Flooring Species

The Janka (or side) hardness test measures the force required to embed a .444 inch steel ball to half it's diameter in wood. It is one of the best measures of the ability of a wood species to withstand denting and wear. By the same token, it is also a good indicator of how hard or easy a species is to saw or nail.

For example, White Oak has a Janka hardness of 1360. Brazilian Cherry, with a rating of 2820, is more than twice as hard as White Oak. You can expect that Brazilian Cherry will be much harder to cut and nail, than White Oak.