How to Decide Between Solid Wood and Engineered Wood Flooring

AmbienteIf you cannot decide between solid wood and engineered wood for your new flooring, you’ve come to the right place. There are pros and cons to each type of wood, and ultimately it will be up to you to decide with will work best for your home. But we have some tips to make that decision a little bit easier for you.

Consider Climate. Solid wood will contract and expand as the humidity in the room changes. To keep your flooring from warping, you will need to keep the humidity within your home between 45% and 65%. However, even within this range, the floor will expand and contract slightly. This means solid wood may not be ideal for rooms with constant humidity shifts, like the bathroom or the kitchen, and should always be installed above grade. Additionally, when solid wood is installed, it is best to leave a gap between the wall and the outer board. This will allow for swelling during high humidity.

Solid Superiority? Should solid wood work for the moisture level in your home, there are a few advantages to having it over engineered wood. First, solid wood is made from a single board with three-quarter inch thickness. This allows you to sand and refinish the flooring multiple times, which will extend the life of the floor. Solid wood planks are also available in a wide variety of species allowing you to get just the right look and color.

Engineered Edge. Engineered flooring is made up of thinner layers of wood that consist of a solid wood on top and then cheaper substances like plywood underneath to get it to the proper thickness. During construction, engineered boards can be produced with stone dust to add more stability and durability to the board. Some engineered boards are now being developed with a tongue and groove form to allow the flooring to be floated. You cannot sand this type of board down to refinish it like you could with solid wood, but the engineered wood is less likely to warp or fall victim to humidity due to the different materials it is made with.

What it really comes down to when choosing whether to go with solid wood flooring or engineered wood flooring is the placement in your house and the ability to regulate the humidity within your home. Either way, your hardwood floor will look beautiful and add value to your home once it is properly installed. If you are ready to install your hardwood floors, give Signature Design Center a call today!

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