Solid and engineered are the two versions of hardwood flooring. While they look similar in appearance, their construction is different, making them perform very differently in humid conditions. Engineered wood flooring is taking a significant share of the wood flooring industry because they appeal to those who want beauty and practicality. Read on for a detailed breakdown of their differences and similarities.

A crosswise flooring composition

Solid is, as the name implies, one thickness throughout, while engineered is layered. At the top is the veneer layer, your species-of-choice; the most popular choices are oak, maple, ash, hickory, cherry, and walnut. This structure gives it the same gorgeous undertones and quirky knots, swirls, and grains of any hardwood installation. The planks are often a little wider and shorter, but more manufacturers offer more plank size variations.

However, underneath are at least three, but preferably more, layers of genuine wood combined with a little resin and placed in a crisscross position. This gives the floor stability and a better ability to handle water and can be set in some higher-than-normal moisture areas where solid isn’t recommended. It also needs no acclimation since the floor won’t shrink or contract to adjust to the weather. Like solid, it adds value to a property and can be refinished. While these floors can be finished on-site, they are most often factory finished.

Flooring installation: another big difference

With a solid hardwood installation, it’s always tongue and groove. Engineered offers an additional option: the floating floor. This technique, which is fast, uncomplicated, and less expensive than solid, has a locking mechanism. The pieces click together, mat, and then hover over the subfloor with no nails or glue needed. Subfloor preparation is simple. It needs to be clean, dry, and level and installed over almost anything, including concrete.

We’re passionate about flooring, and it shows in our work! For information about wood floors, come into the 55 Flooring showroom in Anaheim, CA. We work with homeowners in Orange County including, Anaheim, Newport Beach, Irvine, Tustin Ranch, and surrounds.