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Solid Hardwood vs. Engineered Hardwood

A hardwood floored conference hallIf you are ready to redo your floors, nothing beats the elegance, warmth and beauty of hardwood. As you shop, you will notice two distinct types of flooring: engineered and solid hardwood. Both types are wood and offer numerous looks and colors, but there are some distinct differences between the two that you will want to consider.

Robar Flooring offers solid and engineered hardwood flooring for residential customers. If you want to install new hardwood, our experts can help you pick out the perfect style today.

Understanding Solid Hardwood

Solid hardwood is milled from a single piece of real hardwood - oak, cherry, etc. It is then covered with a protective layer that keeps its sheen and helps make it more water resistant. The wood is typically three-quarters of an inch in thickness, which allows it to be refinished numerous times throughout its lifespan. Some benefits to using solid hardwood in your home include:

  • Durability - As long as it is well-maintained, solid hardwood floors can last your home for decades. Some historic homes still have their original hardwood floors.
  • Refinishing - Solid hardwood floors can be refinished and restained to a variety of colors.
  • Value - When it comes to resale value, hardwood floors definitely offer exceptional value and can make a home more aesthetically pleasing than tile or carpet.
  • Species - Solid hardwood comes in a variety of wood species.

There are some drawbacks to solid hardwood floors as well, which include:

  • They cannot hold up to high moisture, which makes them unsuitable for most basements, bathrooms or other high-moisture areas.
  • Can scratch and dent easily - especially if heavy objects are dropped or pulled across the surface.

Understanding Engineered Hardwood

Samples of engineered hardwood floors

Engineered hardwood is constructed from multiple layers of real wood and have a solid wood layer on top. Below the top layer there is an inner core made up of high-density fiberboard layers and the bottom features a hardwood backing. Engineered floors offer numerous advantages including:

  • Types - While not as many varieties as solid wood, engineered hardwood can be found in popular woods like oak, hickory and cherry. You can also find beautiful finishes, including matt or a hand-scraped look which really makes your floors look gorgeous.
  • Easier Installation - Engineered hardwood floors can come in quick click boards for a floating floor installation.
  • Value - Just like solid hardwood, engineered hardwood floors offer your home exceptional value.
  • Durability - Engineered hardwood floors are extremely durable and withstand moisture slightly better than solid hardwood.

There are some drawbacks to engineered hardwood flooring as well, including:

  • They cannot be re-sanded and resurfaced as often as solid hardwood floors.
  • They can chip or become delaminated if heavily stressed.

Robar Flooring carries both engineered and solid hardwood flooring. Both offer exceptional beauty and value for your home and can be installed by our professional installers.

For more advice or to inquire about our flooring services, call us today at 416.822.6184 now.

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Samples of hardwood flooring installation

There are many options and possibilities when it comes to hardwood flooring installation. Few of the most common types include:

All of the above are either nailed or glued down on top of existing sub-floor. In condominiums or commercial properties where sub-floor consists of concrete, plywood is applied on top of the slab in order to allow for nailing of the floor. All glued down floors can be directly applied on top of the concrete. See diagrams below outlining different floor types, installation techniques as well as examples of transition and finishing trims commonly used.