Oak cabinets are a popular choice for homes, kitchens, and bathrooms. Oak hardwood offers characteristics that are desirable for carpenters and designers, alike, because of its unique aesthetic and physical qualities. So, if you’re choosing a type of wood for your kitchen cabinets, oak is a tried-and-true species of hardwood to consider.
Learn everything you need to know about choosing oak cabinets for the kitchen, bathroom, and office in your home or business. Find out about the pros and cons of choosing oak wood cabinets, and see how the unique aesthetics and grain structure of oak compare to other popular hardwood species. And, discover the reason why oak is and has been, arguably, the most widely used wood species across North America for casework.
Everything You Need to Know About Oak Cabinets: Home and Business 2020
Oak cabinets are a popular hardwood choice for homeowners and businesses that are designing or remodeling a property. For hundreds of years, inhabitants across North America have used oak for myriad applications. Oak is heavy, dense, and durable, which gives the species longevity.
Many old homes might come with kitchen cabinets that have seen a few generations of owners. Oak lasts longer than you will, thanks to its strong, dense grain structure. Incidentally, oak features tightly packed, open grain structures that reflect light and offer a beautiful aesthetic.
But, the biggest reason why oak is so popular in North America is that it grows so widely and abundantly across the hemisphere. If you’re looking at cabinets for your home or business, here are the pros and cons of choosing oak cabinets.
Pros and Cons of Oak Wood Cabinets for Home or Business
The biggest benefit to choosing oak hardwood cabinets is that it is affordable and high-quality. Apart from that, oak is a beautiful species of hardwood and comes in a wide range of natural color variations. Oak with a reddish-brown color is common and lends well to a natural finish.
Oak is very durable, dense, and strong. This is why the species lasts so long but also plays a role in keeping your cabinets in good condition. Oak is resistant to dings and dents, as well as features naturally moisture-resistant properties.
As mentioned above, oak lends well to a natural finish, like polyurethane, instead of stain. Stain can sometimes soak into oak unevenly. The result sometimes is an inconsistent color, with patches of darker stain next to patches of lighter stain.
The biggest drawback of oak wood is the weight of the wood, itself. Oak is heavy and hard to work with, depending on the variety of oak you choose. White oak is denser than red oak, however, custom casework of oak lasts for so long because it is so dense.
Oak vs Other Wood: Comparing Oak Wood to Maple and Cherry Cabinets
Maple is often more expensive than oak cabinets, but it offers unique qualities. Maple has a reddish hue and is light in color – especially in comparison to the deeper, darker hue of oak wood. Maple produces a more optically smooth finish than that of oak, because of a much finer and more even grain structure in the fibers of the wood.
Compared to the rustic and earthy aesthetic of oak, maple features a clean and crisp aesthetic that is well-suited to contemporary design trends. Like oak, maple is very dense, heavy, and durable. And, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, maple is often just as abundant, faster-growing, and less expensive than oak.
Maple changes in color as it ages, from a light reddish hue to a yellowish tone. It is especially supple to looking more worn out and aged if it is in direct sunlight for long periods. Oak has a benefit over maple, in this sense, because sunlight contact does not degrade the color of the wood.
Cherry is another popular wood for cabinets in an office, kitchen, or bathroom. Unlike maple and oak, cherry is not as heavy or dense, making it easier to work with. The drawback of cherry, however, is that it is more likely to damage and dent with continued use.
The biggest benefit of cherry wood is the aesthetic beauty of cherry cabinets. Cherry features a reddish-brown hue, with subtle natural variations throughout the grain. Cherry is a popular choice for adding an earthy, smooth, warm, and inviting atmosphere to the room. Oakwood remains a mainstay for cabinet makers because of its high-quality attributes and longevity.
Unlike cherry and maple woods, oak is strong enough to last multiple generations, and it offers a rustic, earthy, and warm aesthetic. Talk to a cabinet specialist about the varieties of oak cabinets and other custom oak casework available for your home or business.