How to Choose Your Engineered Hardwood Flooring
If you are thinking about hardwood floors for your home you are probably exploring options and prices. Engineered hardwood flooring may be the perfect choice for your needs.
What Is Engineered Hardwood Flooring?
Engineered Hardwood Flooring is a type of wood floor with a few characteristics that make it different from traditional wood. Engineered wood flooring is constructed from wood particles that remain after the wood has been cut.
Instead of wooden planks for flooring, engineered hardwood flooring is made of the leftover wood particles, shavings, and dust. The result is a highly durable product that is much less expensive.
Why Use Engineered Hardwood When You Can Get Traditional Wood?
One of the main driving factors in choosing engineered hardwood flooring is the difference in price. It is an economical option with other benefits over traditional wood floors as well.
Engineered hardwood flooring is easy to install. It is easier to install than traditional wood and usually comes together with a tongue and groove feature like laminate. Instead of using glue and nails for installation, you slide the pieces of the flooring together.
Wood If the cost of traditional wood flooring is prohibitive, engineered hardwood flooring is probably the solution you need. It is not an actual genuine plank of wood, but nobody looking at your floor will know the difference because engineered hardwood flooring looks and feels like a floor made of traditional wood planks.
Other Factors to Consider When Choosing Engineered Hardwood Flooring
If you are installing your floor over concrete, you will need to take some measures to ensure structural integrity. You can install it over an existing wood floor or over plywood. Check on specific requirements or have a professional install your flooring. Engineered hardwood flooring is generally not recommended for bathrooms or places with moisture and water.
Engineered hardwood flooring is easy to care for and maintain. Because it is built in layers it is less likely than traditional wood to bow or warp. A veneer gives engineered hardwood a look similar to traditional wooden floors at an attractive price.
Benefits Of Buying Engineered Hardwood Flooring
Engineered hardwood flooring is more economical than hardwood but will not compromise your home’s aesthetics. It is made by bonding layers of wooden materials like plywood and a top layer of solid wood veneer. The thicker the top layer, the better the quality of the engineered wood.
The following are the benefits of engineered hardwood flooring that make it a coveted choice among homeowners:
- It is extremely durable and with proper maintenance can last up to 30 years.
- Unlike solid wood, engineered variants are not as susceptible to temperature and humidity.
- It is more economical than hardwood.
- Engineered wood comes in a variety of styles and textures.
Laminate Or Engineered Hardwood Flooring: Which To Choose?
One choice a Carmel homeowner may need to make when buying new floors is whether they want laminate flooring or engineered hardwood flooring. Initially, it may seem like there are more similarities between the two than there are differences, especially as new modernized laminate has become more popular. Read on to learn the differences between laminate and engineered hardwood flooring and to find out which is best for your home.
What Is Laminate?
Laminate flooring is made up of multiple layers of synthetic materials. It is able to closely mimic the look of genuine hardwood (as well as other materials). The core support layer of laminate is made mainly of resin and fiberboard, while the uppermost layer has a printed and textured layer with the desired look of hardwood, natural stone, or another pattern.
What Is Engineered Hardwood?
Engineered hardwood is made of multiple layers of wood. The bottom and middle layer is typically made of plywood, while the top layer is made of genuine wood. Engineered hardwood flooring is made from real hardwood, at least on the top layer. Laminate only imitates real hardwood and is made of all synthetic materials.
Which Option Looks Better?
In addition to their structural differences, there is an aesthetic difference between laminate and engineered hardwood. While laminate can be a great imitation at first glance, it cannot fully replicate the look of genuine hardwood upon close inspection. Engineered hardwood floors show the vast amount of variance found in natural hardwoods while laminate flooring will repeat a pattern every five boards or so.
What About Durability?
Durability can depend on the home. Flooring in high-traffic Carmel homes will have shorter lifespans, regardless of whether they are laminate or engineered hardwood. However, proper care and maintenance of either kind of flooring can allow homeowners to reach the maximum lifespan possible. Generally, laminate flooring will last anywhere from 10 years up to 25 years, and it often comes with a warranty. Engineered hardwood flooring can last for a person’s entire lifetime, but it will sometimes require spot plank replacement or sanding down to repair any damaged areas. However, engineered hardwood can only be refinished once or twice before it needs to be replaced.
How Much Maintenance Does Each Require?
Both laminate and engineered hardwood flooring are easy to care for. Laminate needs to be swept or dust mopped on a regular basis. Spot cleaning as needed with a damp cloth is usually sufficient to remove spills and stains. Engineered hardwood floors also need regular sweeping, and they will usually do best if they are periodically treated with a special hardwood floor finish.
Types of Hardwood Flooring
Hardwood floors are a beautiful addition to any home. Whether you’re looking for the perfect touch of charm or want to add warmth in your design, hardwood floors are an excellent choice. But how do you know which is better, solid hardwood or engineered hardwood? There are many differences between solid and engineered hardwood, and we’ll help you understand the pros and cons of each to determine which one is best for your space.
Solid Hardwood Floors
Solid hardwood have been around for many years, and while solid hardwood has changed over time, the natural look and beauty of solid wood floors continue to offer a touch of warmth in any home design. Solid wood differs from engineered wood, particularly in its construction. Solid hardwood floors are milled from one piece of wood, while engineered wood floors feature a unique, layered construction. The unique construction of both solid and engineered floor make for many differences between their features, durability, and more.
Engineered Hardwood Floors
Engineered wood floors are another type of wood floor that are ideal for many homes. Engineered hardwood floors are constructed from genuine wood. However, when creating engineered wood planks, multiple plies of wood are glued together in a cross-grain pattern. On top of the cross-grain wood pattern, a genuine piece of wood is placed on top, which gives engineered hardwood its natural, genuine wood beauty. Then, the layers are bonded under high heat and pressure. Unlike solid hardwood, this construction makes engineered wood more dimensionally stable, which means less expansion and contraction with changes in moisture and humidity levels.
Water and Heat Resistance
Solid hardwood floors are not water-resistant. In fact, because this type of flooring is made from real wood, water spills and accidents can cause significant damage to solid hardwood. Cupping and buckling are two types of issues that can occur with high levels of moisture on the subfloor or other changes that involve water and moisture. Solid hardwood also expands and contracts as changes in moisture and humidity levels change over time, which is completely normal and natural. Solid wood floors should not be installed in areas where moisture is prevalent, like bathrooms or kitchens, and spills should be picked up as soon as possible to avoid water damage.
While engineered hardwood is also constructed using genuine wood, its surface and layers below make most engineered hardwood water-resistant. Keep in mind, engineered hardwood is water-resistant, not waterproof, which means that it cannot tolerate every spill or liquid accident. It’s just as important to clean up mishaps when they happen to keep damages from occurring with engineered hardwood floors. Unlike solid wood floors, engineered wood floors can be installed in areas like kitchens, laundry rooms, bathrooms, and even below-grade rooms like basements.
Care and Cleaning of Hardwood Floors
Maintaining solid hardwood floors will extend your floor’s life and keep them looking amazing for years to come. Solid hardwood floors can be swept or vacuumed with the beater bar turned off on a bare floor setting to remove dust and debris. It’s crucial that you turn the beater bar off, as it can damage the wood floors.
Engineered hardwood floors are relatively easy to maintain, as dirt, dust, and debris sit on the surface. Sweeping engineered hardwood or vacuuming it with the bare floor setting turned on, and the beater bar off will remove loose dirt and dust. When cleaning engineered floors, always check with your manufacturer for approved cleaning products and solutions to ensure that you are not causing irreversible damages.