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How to Choose Between Engineered and Solid Wood Flooring – Helpful Suggestions from Peterborough’s Flooring Experts

When remodeling or building a home, the options for materials may seem overwhelming. The goal of most homeowners is to make their house look gorgeous but also to achieve this using high-quality building materials that will last for years, without overextending the budget. One common struggle is having to choose between installing engineered or solid wood. There are advantages to each and many proponents exhorting the value of one over the other. The choice can be very personal and is based on the needs of the home’s occupants, their personal taste and lifestyle requirements.

Understanding the pros and cons of each type of wood flooring can help make the decision easier. At Monaghan Lumber Specialties, our helpful staff is ready to discuss your needs, so you get exactly what you want to make your home both exquisite and functional.

Enhance Your Peterborough Home with Wood Flooring

The look of wood in a home is warm and inviting. It adds a dimension of Mother Nature within the confines of a house. Today’s wood flooring options are not as limited as they used to be. Use this guide to understand the difference between engineered and solid wood so that you can make the best decision for your home:

  • Engineered Wood: This type of flooring is comprised two or more layers, the core and wear layer. The top layer or “wear layer” is the part that is seen and walked on. The core is the platform constructed for the wear layer. It can be plywood, HDF or fillets made from hard or softwood. Unlike Laminate flooring Engineered flooring looks like solid wood because it is real wood with a constructed core or backer added for stability.
  • Solid Wood: As the name suggests, this flooring is made from solid wood, not layers or plys. This type of flooring is available in all varieties of wood and a wide choice of colours & textures.

4 Considerations to Determine the Best Choice of Wood Flooring

Each type of flooring is better suited for specific uses. Consider these factors that can determine the best choice for you:

  • Relative Humidity: Engineered flooring is better suited for rooms where the air’s relative humidity fluctuates significantly; while solid wood typically requires a relative humidity between 30%-50% some engineered floors can tolerate conditions as low as 20% and as high as 80%. Be sure to check with the manufacturers’ guidelines to ensure proper environmental conditions are achievable and maintained throughout the floor life cycle.
  • Plank Width: Wide planks are in! Since engineered flooring is more stable wider boards can be manufactured that are less prone to cupping, checking and excessive dimensional changes than a solid wide plank floor.
  • Sub floor: Wood flooring applied below grade or directly onto concrete should be an engineered product since those spaces are typically harsher on wood products. The cold Ontario winters make radiant heat a welcome feature; for homeowners with a radiant heat system, an engineered floor approved for this application is the best option. The key to radiant heat is gradual changes, even the best engineered floor needs to slowly change in temperature to avoid placing too much stress on the wood fibres.
  • Refinishing: Solid wood flooring can be refinished multiple times over the years, resulting in a service life that can exceed 100 years. Some engineered floors can be refinished, while others cannot. Veneer thickness is one of the biggest differences between a lower quality and a higher quality engineered floor. Since high traffic area’s will wear down faster and require refinishing sooner the veneer thickness should always be carefully considered to ensure the product selected will meet expectations.

Find the Best Choice with the Help of Monaghan Lumber Specialties

Make the best decision for your family and home with help from the experts at Monaghan Lumber. Our staff can discuss the options available to make your home the beautiful haven you want it to be. Stop by our showroom or contact us for more information.

Call us at 705-742-9353 to speak with our team about engineered or solid wood flooring. If you need more information or have questions, you can also contact us online.