The Pros & Cons of Engineered Wood Flooring: What You Need to Know

Are you thinking about replacing the existing flooring in your home in the near future? If so, then you might be considering engineered wood flooring as a potential material, as it's a very popular option among homeowners these days. Before you make a decision, however, it's good to be aware of the pros & cons of engineered wood flooring. From there, you can make a well informed decision as a homeowner.pros and cons of engineered wood

What is Engineered Wood Flooring?

Begin with a thorough understanding of what engineered wood flooring is and how it differs from traditional wood flooring. Specifically, engineered flooring refers to a type of flooring material that consists of a base layer that's typically made up of plywood, topped off with a hardwood veneer that's glued or otherwise adhered to the surface. Engineered hardwood can be made to mimic the look and feel of just about any type of wood in a cost-effective manner.

Advantages of Engineered Wood Flooring

There are certainly a number of advantages to opting for engineered wood flooring for your home. Perhaps the biggest draw of this flooring material is that it costs significantly less than traditional hardwood, yet still retains the same overall look and feel as the real thing. As a result, engineered hardwood is a great option for homeowners who want the look of real wood without breaking the bank in the process. The monetary savings versus hardwood can make a huge difference in one's total flooring costs, especially when retrofitting a large area with new floors.

Engineered wood flooring is also known to be easier to install than traditional wood flooring. It's also rather flexible in terms of how it can be installed, with options including:

  • nail-down - involves nailing down each engineered wood flooring board
  • glue-down - involves using a special epoxy to secure the boards to the subfloor underneath 
  • floating - involves installing the floor with the piles adhered together, but without attaching it directly to the subfloor below

With the help of a qualified and experienced flooring company, you can have your new engineered wood floors installed in no time. Just be sure to speak with your flooring company about which installation option will be best for your unique needs and budget.

Furthermore, engineered hardwood tends to be more stable over time than solid wood. This means that you'll have less contracting and expanding of the flooring materials themselves in fluctuating temperatures and humidity. As a result, engineered wood flooring is a great choice for those who want reasonably priced flooring that will last for many years to come.

Potential Drawbacks of Engineered Wood Flooring

Like any flooring type, however, engineered hardwood does come with some potential drawbacks. For starters, because it's not made of 100% solid wood and due to the thickness of the veneer layer, engineered wood flooring cannot be refinished like real wood can. Therefore, once you choose a color and finish of your engineered wood and have it installed, you won't be able to change it unless you completely replace the flooring itself. However, for those who are confident in their color and finish, this usually isn't too much of an issue.

Overall, engineered wood flooring can be a viable option for homeowners who want to update their flooring at a reasonable price. Not only is it a durable and beautiful flooring option, but it's also quite affordable when compared to solid wood. Still being aware of the potential drawbacks (including the inability to refinish and stain engineered wood) and weighing those with the advantages is the first step towards making a well informed and confident decision about your next flooring choice.

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