Sometimes it is hard to know your LVT from your laminate or your off-cut from a roll, but something that could be really hard to tell the difference between is engineered wood and hardwood.
Both have different properties, and both are used in different circumstances, so let’s have a quick look at each and work out what type of wood flooring is best for you.
As you can imagine, engineered wood is an artificial wood – while hardwood is “natural” (we’ll get in this further down), engineered wood has been created with a purpose. It didn’t grow naturally in its current format and was cut down to size; it is human-made.
Engineered wood contains two sections, a core board and a top layer for decoration. The core board provides a sturdy base for the top layer to be bonded. The core also helps with the flooring’s overall strength and stability, and such needs to be hardwearing and solid.
The top layer, the decorative layer, can be any thickness – a nice thick layer can help with overall longevity. This layer is made from real wood and will have a similar finish to hardwood flooring. To the untrained eye, you might not even be able to tell the difference!
Engineered wood shouldn’t be mistaken for laminate wood flooring as the top layer of engineered flooring is made from actual hardwood flooring. In contrast, laminate flooring is a high quality “picture” of a wooden style top layered onto a high-density fibreboard. Many laminate flooring can emulate engineering wood flooring in looks alone but does not yield a higher quality board and longevity.
Engineered Hardwood Advantages
- Compared to traditional hardwood flooring, you’ll find engineered hardwood to be more cost-effective, which can be a little bit better on your wallet.
- When professionally laid, it is tough to tell the difference between the more expensive hardwood flooring, meaning you get the same look for less!
- It’s not just a cheap alternative. The top hardwood layer makes it different from laminates.
- Engineered hardwood is more resilient to temperature changes compared to hardwood flooring.
- If done right, it can be quick and easy to install
- Engineered hardwood comes in a wide variety of colours, styles and plank sizes, meaning you have a wide selection to choose from
- If you ever fancy a change, you can sand the top layer and refinish the flooring in a different varnish or lacker.
So, if engineered wood is man-made, you’ve guessed it, solid hardwood is o’natural. Solid hardwood comes directly from the source, a tree! Obviously, it is cut to shape and made into a plank, but it is as close to natural as it gets. Solid wood can add a luxurious feel to your home, with various finishes and plank sizes available; it can even be installed unfinished so you can match an exact colour to your decor. Unlike engineered flooring, hardwood flooring cannot be installed over an underlay and needs to be fitted into position for stability.
Hardwood flooring is strong, durable and hardwearing. If the flooring is properly cared for, it can last for decades which is why it can be a popular option for people looking for a longterm, luxurious flooring solution.
Solid Hardwood Advantages
- Solid hardwood is tough and hardwearing and can last decades.
- The planks are made from one solid piece of wood, meaning there is less risk of layers peeling off.
- The wood’s top-level can be sanded down and retreated, giving the flooring a new lease of life.
- Solid wood comes in a variety of woods, colours and grains.
- Planks can be found in different sizes and widths, giving you more variety.
- Solid hardwood flooring is stunning and can fit in many different rooms.
Wood Flooring From Frank’s
Whether you’re in the market for engineered flooring or are really splashing the cash and purchasing hardwood, you can always make sure you are getting the best price at Frank’s, guaranteed. Backed by our price promise, we have a wide range of solid and engineered flooring in stock at our branches. Why not visit your local store today and check out the quality wood flooring we have in stock? Talk to a member of our customer support team who’ll work out what flooring will work best for your needs and budget.