Average Length of Hardwood Flooring



Standard - Most flooring is sold in lengths of 1' to 7' with an average of 3'. What does this mean? The box will contain boards no shorter than 1 foot and no longer than 7 feet. If you average out your entire order, the boards will average approximately 3'. This is the industry standardThe NWFA is the national governing body of hardwood flooring, and their standard for average lengths applies to a minimum order of 1000 square feet. In other words, to properly receive the average of 3' lengths, your sample size needs to be 1000 square feet.

If your order is less than 1000 square feet, the average of all of your boards may not reach the stated average length. It's all about sample size with regard to stated average.

1' to 4' average 18" - This means that the box will have boards no less than 1 foot long and no longer than 4 feet. The average of your order will be approximately 18", also known as "shorts" or shorter-than-average lengths. 

What’s the average length of hardwood flooring?

It’s a pretty common question for property owners purchasing hardwood flooring for their homes and businesses: What’s the average length of hardwood boards?
Why is the length of hardwood flooring a concern, you ask?

There are several reasons:




When it comes to style, the length of board you use can make all the difference.

The length to choose depends on the type of look you’re going for.

If clean and elegant is your thing, longer boards will help pull it off, as shorter boards can create a choppy look. Shorter lengths laid throughout the room create more transition lines, creating a busier appearance. 


All woods have character marks, like knots and mineral streaks.

To create a higher grade of flooring, manufacturers remove those marks, and in the process, create shorter length boards.

It can be quite the challenge to find longer lengths of high grade wood--unless you’re willing to part with the money it takes to get them.


As previously mentioned, the longer the boards, the greater the price. So if you desire boards more than 7’ feet long, prepare to part with more pretty pennies.

In the hardwood flooring industry, boards on the shorter side have a special name--shorts. Clever, right?

Shorts are hardwood boards that are very short, about one to two feet in length. They should be sold at discount rates.

So what’s the average length of hardwood flooring boards? Manufacturers generally do not package boxes with boards of all the same size, nor do they specify how many boards are of a particular size.

Instead, when you buy and receive a box of wood, what you’ll find are boards in a range of sizes. There’s no set length; it’s all random.

You should have pieces no longer than 7 feet, and no shorter than 1 foot. The average length is between 3 and 3.5 feet.  

If you are willing to pay a greater price, you can request longer boards, or a set number of boards of specific lengths.  

If you’re paying retail, be sure the average length is what the manufacturer said it would be. Unscrupulous sellers may package a box full of shorts. If that’s not what you ordered, that’s considered a ripoff.

Speaking of ripoff, you want to know the wood you receive is the grade and length you’re paying for.

As an example, here are some guidelines for oak.

According to the National Wood Flooring Manufacturing Association, for clear oak, the average length for packages up to 7 feet long is 3.5 feet.

For select oak, the average is 3 feet.

No. 1 common oak is 2.5 feet.

No. 2 common oak is 2 feet.

For 1.25 feet shorts oak, the average lengths are 1.25 feet, but pieces 9 inches to 14 inches are bundled together.

Know the average length of hardwood flooring to help plan for hardwood flooring installations and avoid being taken advantage of when making your hardwood flooring purchases.