Although both materials come in different colors and styles, engineered hardwood has … Because it is solid wood, this flooring can be sanded down and refinished several times over its life. One of the many benefits of solid wood flooring is it can be sanded and refinished many times. Engineered hardwood can still be glued down directly to the concrete subfloor without placing the barrier and the adhesive glue will still act as a barrier to moisture and water. Solid hardwood is available in both pre-finished and unfinished boards. Get quick and easy access to your home value, neighborhood activity and financial possibilites. Engineered hardwood flooring is generally thinner than solid hardwood. Quality: Ove… Is there a better pick to ensure you get "real" hardwood floors? However, the “wear layer” of an engineered hardwood floor is comparable to the solid wood counterparts and both will need to be properly maintained with a regular polyurethane or wax sealant … Hardwood Vs. Solid Hardwood. Typically three quarters of an inch, the thickness of solid wood planking enables it to be sanded and refinished many times throughout the life of the floor. The feature that defines engineered hardwood as engineered is that it is composed of multiple layers of different woods, known as ply layers. People are always asking me which one is better, but both have their pros… Solid hardwood generally has very tight seams between boards, and there is a great range of colors and species than is found with engineered hardwood flooring. Hardwood vs Engineered Wood Flooring Knowing the difference between hardwood and engineered wood flooring will give you the advantage of choosing the best flooring option for you. The top layer is a hardwood veneer and then beneath that, there are layers (or plies) of wood. A solid hardwood floor is permanently nailed to the subfloor. Solid hardwood flooring holds the edge here since it can be sanded and refinished several times over the course of its lifespan. Even though, it would seem that … Engineered Hardwood Vs. Engineered hardwood comes in two different types of cores, one is a plywood core, which has traditionally been used to make engineered hardwood and the other is newer option known as high density fiberboard (HDF) core. Because of the way engineered hardwood is processed, it is not as affected by humidity as solid wood planks are. The market also sometimes offers exotic species of hardwood from Brazil, Africa and elsewhere. Engineered hardwood is different than a hardwood laminate because the surface is made of real wood. Moisture in the air is the relative humidity in the air. Both types of flooring are relatively easy to care for, requiring simple sweeping and cleaning with an approved wood cleaner. Updated from an earlier version on realtor.com®. 2. While laminate has a core of high density fiberboard, its surface is basically a picture of wood (or any other material, for that matter). Engineered hardwood can be refinished once, or at most twice, before the surface hardwood layer is exhausted. Absolutely the best choice for here. However, homeowners also have the option to install raw wood floors for on-site finishing. Prefinished hardwood will also be more expensive than unfinished hardwood.Hardwood flooring usually runs between $8 and $15 per square foot. Solid hardwood is slightly superior here, since it can be sanded down and refinished several times over its lifespan. Both materials mimic a natural wood floor beautifully, but if you’re all about natural beauty, you might prefer the solid wood top of an engineered hardwood floor. There is no clear advantage to one form of wood flooring over the other; your choice depends on how much you value the relative merits of each. Engineered hardwood flooring is almost always sold pre-finished, and there is a narrower range of available colors and species than with solid hardwood. Engineered hardwood flooring runs $3 to $10 per square foot. You're still getting real hardwood floors; they're just made differently. Solid hardwood boards are milled from a thick piece of lumber, so its thickness varies from ¾-inch to 7/16-inch. They will have oil, wax, or varnish. The price of solid hardwood flooring is slightly higher than engineered flooring, though both start at $2 to $3 per square foot. Ever wonder what engineered hardwood actually means? Some engineered wood flooring is also installed with the same nail-down methods used for solid hardwood, but there are also forms with "click-lock" edges that can be installed as a "floating floor." Pricing often comes down to plank thickness, the type of derivative wood products used in an engineered plank, and the species of hardwood used throughout a plank or for an engineered plank's veneer. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the, Sorry, we were unable to share this article. As the name implies, solid hardwood is solid wood, all the way through. The layers typically include a top veneer of hardwood backed by less expensive layers of plywood—although some manufacturers use substrates made from recycled wood fibers mixed with stone dust for improved durability and stability. Although laminate may win the laminate vs. engineered hardwood toughness challenge, engineered hardwood can be refinished two or three times over its lifespan. It looks like Cookies are disabled in your browser. One of the greatest benefits that engineered flooring provides over solid hardwood flooring is that it is the most durable option. Engineered wood flooring was once regarded as a pale imitation of solid hardwood, but improvements in the product quality have eliminated this perception. Both are made of wood. The most widely used profile is tongue-and-groove (T&G). Because of the expansion and contraction issues, installers will normally leave a gap between the wall and the floor to accommodate swelling.This type of hardwood flooring should only be installed in parts of the home above grade and only over plywood, wood or oriented strand board (OSB) subfloors. Engineered wood flooring can also be glued down against a concrete subfloor. Engineered hardwood flooring consists of the wear layer and base layer or core. The hardwood parts of the engineered … Click Follow Search to get alerts on new listings. 3. 35%-55% is the desirable RH for hardwood flooring. Don't Neglect These 6 Maintenance Tasks—or Else, Debunked! Lee has over two decades of hands-on experience remodeling, fixing, and improving homes, and has been providing home improvement advice for over 12 years. In comparison, hardwood up to 10. Both types of hardwood have good resistance to heat. The biggest debate is between solid hardwood and engineered hardwood. Engineered wood flooring looks very similar on the surface, but it is made from a relatively thin layer of hardwood bonded over a substrate of high-quality plywood. Engineered Hardwood: At 3/8” to 1/2″, engineered wood is slightly thinner than solid hardwood.Thicker woods are usually available in premium collections. ©1995-2020 National Association of REALTORS® and Move, Inc. All rights reserved.realtor.com® is the official site of the National Association of REALTORS® and is operated by Move, Inc., a subsidiary of News Corp. Cicely Wedgeworth is the managing editor of realtor.com. Engineered hardwood floors are a relatively new option, compared to hardwood. Solid hardwood flooring is installed with a tongue-and-groove system, in which each board is blind-nailed to the subfloor down through tongues at the edges of the boards. When searching for attractive, durable, one-of-a-kind wood flooring to increase the value of your home, there are two great products to consider: hardwood vs. engineered hardwood. Solid hardwood offers more flexibility, longevity, and durability, while stable engineered floors are more suitable for humid locations and installations against concrete slabs. It is always nailed down to the subfloor, a process that requires some skill. All solid hardwoods scratch or dent easier than their engineered hardwood counterparts because the wood composite inside an engineered flooring plank is designed to withstand additional wear. Hardwood flooring and engineered wood flooring are two popular options when it comes to flooring. Engineered wood flooring looks very much like solid hardwood, but its construction features a relatively thin layer of hardwood bonded over a premium-quality plywood layer that gives the flooring very good stability. The top layer, the one you see, is a veneer of hardwood … Because the plank is a solid piece of wood, it will expand and contract in accordance with the home’s relative humidity. Solid Hardwood vs. However, you may find it's worth it to invest in hardwood for its longer durability. When it comes to hardwood flooring, there’s solid hardwood and engineered hardwood. Engineered flooring is a sandwich of layers, called “plies,” of hardwood and plywood bonded together via a heating and pressing process. 8 Myths About Renting You Should Stop Believing Immediately, 6 Ways Home Buyers Mess Up Getting a Mortgage, 6 Reasons You Should Never Buy or Sell a Home Without an Agent, Difference Between Agent, Broker & REALTOR, Real Estate Agents Reveal the Toughest Home Buyers They’ve Ever Met, The 5 Maintenance Skills All Homeowners Should Know, Click for complete coronavirus coverage from realtor.com, I Hate the Open-Plan Kitchen—and Amazingly, I'm No Longer the Only One, How to Clean a Living Room So You Don't Gross Out Your Guests, 7 Family Heirlooms People Hate Having in Their Homes, 5 Festive Foyer Looks We Stole From Instagram That’ll Instantly Put You in the Holiday Spirit, Shaun White Takes a Rare Loss With $8M Sale of Malibu Beach Pad, ‘Flipping Across America’ Reveals 5 Smart Upgrades To Do Before You Sell, Have You Served? Installation of hardwood is much more complicated than installing engineered, adding to the cost. If installation against a concrete subfloor is necessary, engineered hardwood is the choice. Engineered hardwood is typically less expensive than hardwood flooring as ranges in price from about $2.50 to $10 per square foot, while hardwood typically averages about $4 to $12 per square foot. 1. Engineered wood contains a slice of natural wood on top while laminate uses a photographic layer that is coated with a protective layer. Solid hardwood is much more expensive than engineered . Humidity: Engineered hardwood performs much better under high humidity. Solid hardwood may have the edge here, since it lasts longer than engineered hardwood flooring. Engineered Wood Flooring, Buying and Installing Solid Hardwood Floor, Best for Water and Heat Resistance: Engineered Hardwood, Best for Durability and Maintenance: Solid Hardwood, Best for Installation: Engineered Hardwood, Laminate Flooring vs. Hardwood flooring is available in two major variety; solid and engineered. There’s a lot to love about both of these options. Engineered boards, on the other hand, are constructed by joining multiple high-density fiberboard layers sandwiched inside a solid wood top layer and hardwood backing, making it extremely tough. Because its solid wood construction allows it to be sanded and refinished several times, solid hardwood flooring comes out on top when it comes to longevity. The two appear identical once installed and function much the same way. Floorboards tend to be wider with engineered hardwood flooring. Some pre-finished engineered hardwood flooring has slightly beveled edges, which creates slight grooves between boards, while solid hardwood flooring generally has very tight seams between boards. Technically, both of these options qualify as "real" hardwood flooring, but they’re surprisingly different from each other. In addition, it can create a timeless impression to any room. Further, engineered wood uses less hardwood, a fact that appeals to environmentally conscious consumers. Engineered Wood Flooring Comparison Guide, Hardwood Flooring in Bedrooms Review: Pros and Cons, Laminate vs. Budget anywhere from $4 to $10 per square foot for materials, depending on quality. Engineered hardwood flooring is slightly less expensive than solid hardwood. You can opt-out at any time. Hardwood flooring is a great hard surface flooring. Ask an expert about using wood flooring in moisture-prone areas. Looking at the two different options side by side, here are some things to consider: 1. That means it can be used in many remodeling projects where a solid 3/4 inch solid floor would create a height problem. Engineered flooring is somewhat less expensive than solid hardwood, but most types can be sanded and refinished only once since the surface hardwood layer is relatively thin. Neither material is recommended installation for truly wet locations. Avoid using water or steam to clean any wood floor. EPIC Plus Engineered Hardwood Styles Shaw Engineered Hardwood Flooring Shaw's Engineered hardwood core is made up of multiple layers of wood stacked in a cross-grain configuration which minimizes expanding and shrinking. Solid hardwood would be the best, however, you must take into mind that it is thick (from 3/4" to 1+ "), so the adjoining floors, if any, would have to be propped up. Engineered hardwood comes in two different types of cores, one is a plywood core, which has traditionally been used to make engineered hardwood and the other is newer option known as high density fiberboard (HDF) core. Engineered hardwood also provides a better value point if you should decide to sell your house. Depending on how thick you go with the engineered, you will have the ability to refinish 2-5 times. Solid hardwood boards are milled from a thick piece of lumber, so its thickness varies from ¾-inch to 7/16-inch. Engineered Hardwood. Engineered hardwood flooring is slightly less expensive than solid hardwood. Laminate is also much thinner than engineered wood, averaging around 12mm, whereas engineered wood tends to be thicker like hardwoods. Engineered hardwood is often sold in much wider boards, up to 7 inches, and the lengths typically run 12 to 60 inches. When relative humidity is less than 45%, this may cause gaps in the floor between the floor boards. They are also better suited for installing over in-floor heating systems. Engineered Wood Vs. Composite Wood? Deane Biermeier is a contractor with 27 years experience in home repair, maintenance, and remodeling. The typical range engineered hardwood flooring is $2.50 to $10 per square foot, with most types falling in the $4 to $7 per square foot range. These ply layers can be as few as 3 or as many as 12. Hardwood planks classified as “engineered” feature multiple layers (typically three to five) bonded together under extreme heat and pressure. The exception to this would be comparing a basic solid hardwood against a rarer engineered hardwood. But for most people, engineered hardwood flooring is expensive — it can be more expensive than hardwood. For both types of flooring, installation labor can add $3 to $10 per square foot, depending on prevailing labor costs in your area and the complexity of the room layout. Engineered hardwood flooring is a fantastic option for companies looking to recreate the aesthetics of solid wood flooring., but there are other hard flooring options. Engineered Hardwood: Engineered hardwood is more forgiving with moisture as its more stable. The top layer, the one you see, is a veneer of hardwood … These floorboards have a thin veneer of wood on the surface (1/12 – ⅙ inches thick). Both are strong, durable floors that are less expensive than natural wood, but laminate flooring typically costs less. (Still, avoid bathrooms and laundry rooms.) Expansion and contraction Solid hardwood floors are very susceptible to moisture changes in the substrate, whether it is wood or concrete and in the air. She has worked as a writer and editor at Yahoo, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsday. Engineered hardwood flooring comes out the winner here, since its plywood base is less susceptible to warping caused by moisture. 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