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The Features of Smoked Floors

Smoked flooring is becoming an increasingly popular wood flooring choice due to its ability to withstand more damage than a non-smoked floor and the unique colours fuming can create. Let’s take a look at the unique features of smoked floors. 

Fumed or smoked wood flooring has been treated in an enclosed environment to change its colour. This process involves introducing ammonia (ammonium hydroxide solution) into the atmosphere by placing a container with the solution on the floor of the chamber. The ammonia in the atmosphere causes the tannins in the wood to be brought to the surface changing the wood’s appearance. The concentration of tannic acid within the wood determines the final colour and appearance of the oak. 


Variation is a feature of smoked floors, each plank responds differently to the smoking process resulting in a wide range of colours displayed on each plank of flooring. Not every tree, or even every board contains the same quantity of tannic acid, therefore the colour and appearance can vary significantly from board to board and throughout the finished floor. The smoking process gives the floor a varied range of complimentary tones which give a completely unique finish and unlimited design options, as no two boards will be exactly the same colour. 

Smoking typically creates a rich brown colour. By changing the temperature of the enclosed chamber, the tones in the flooring can be altered. Hotter temperatures can result in red tones, while cooler temperatures typically introduces green tones into the oak. The varying colours between each board allows for them be laid in creative beautiful patterns that become a unique feature of your home adding a real wow factor. 

Smoked Through Veneer

A unique feature that occurs due to the fuming process is that that the colour displayed on the face of the board is the colour that runs through the whole veneer (wear layer). This allows for the board to be sanded and refinished while retaining the original colour of the board. As the colour extends throughout the oak, any scratches will not result in a removal of the colour. The colour extends throughout the oak top layer so any scratches will not result in a removal of the colour.

This also means that any scratches in the board won’t show up as much as they would with a stained or natural oak board. When scratches occur in stained and natural boards they can remove some colour, requiring extra maintenance and the sourcing of an oil that matches the original colour. Smoked floors are extremely popular in high traffic areas due to this. 

Around 1600m2 of our popular Ness Smoked Oak was selected for the Eden Locke aparthotel developments in Edinburgh. The unique features of a smoked floor means that the floor will remain in pristine condition for many years to come, even in the busy hotel setting. 


Smoked boards typically cost more than a stained or natural floor, however the saving made on maintenance costs for scratches and sourcing a matching dye means that the initial cost can be higher, but overall the costs tend to match up later on due to the additional maintenance costs of a non-smoked floor. 

Expert tip: Fuming and smoking both refer to the same process, both ‘smoked’ floors and ‘fumed’ floors have gone through the same process.

Smoked boards have a unique range of complimentary tones and a whole host of benefits making smoked boards an attractive flooring option. See our full range of smoked floors here

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