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The Flooring Dilemma: Engineered Wood vs. Solid - Which Suits Your Lifestyle?

The Flooring Dilemma: Engineered Wood vs. Solid - Which Suits Your Lifestyle?

Choosing Between Engineered and Solid Wood Flooring: What You Need to Know

When it comes to flooring options, the debate between engineered and solid wood flooring often arises. In this article, we'll explore the differences between the two and help you determine which one is the better choice for your home.

Firstly, let's clear up a common misconception: engineered wood flooring is not the same as laminate flooring. Laminate flooring typically consists of an HDF core and a printed wood-effect paper on top to mimic real wood. On the other hand, engineered wood flooring features a real wood top layer and a central core of cross-layered plywood or softwood, with a veneer layer for balance.

Solid wood flooring, also known as hardwood flooring, is crafted from a single plank of wood, offering a genuine wood experience in look, feel, and performance.

Solid wood flooring tends to expand and contract more with temperature changes, whereas engineered wood is more stable and resistant to such fluctuations. While engineered floors are not completely waterproof, they offer better resistance to temperature changes and are suitable for modern living, including underfloor heating. Solid wood floors, however, are not recommended for use with underfloor heating systems.

In terms of durability, both solid and engineered wood flooring have their merits. Solid wood flooring can be refinished multiple times, but the wear layer of engineered flooring determines its durability. A thicker wear layer allows for more refinishing opportunities, with options ranging from 1mm to 6mm.

In terms of sustainability, engineered wood flooring utilizes the tree more efficiently, making it a more sustainable option despite requiring additional processing.

Visually, solid wood planks are often shorter and random in length, while engineered wood planks are generally longer and more uniform. Engineered flooring offers a variety of plank sizes and styles, catering to contemporary tastes.

In terms of cost, pre-finished engineered flooring tends to be more expensive than solid wood flooring. However, factors such as production techniques, grading, wear layer thickness, and plank size influence the overall cost.

Installation methods vary between solid and engineered wood flooring. Solid wood is typically glued or nailed down, while engineered wood can be glued, nailed, or floated. Both require consideration of expansion gaps and a level subfloor for proper installation.

In conclusion, both solid and engineered wood flooring are excellent choices, each with its own advantages and limitations. While solid wood offers authenticity and charm, engineered wood provides enhanced durability, versatility, and suitability for modern living. Ultimately, the choice depends on your preferences and requirements, however we would always sway towards selling an engineered floor to our customers. We recommend ordering samples of each to compare and determine the best fit for your home.

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