Unlike solid wood, wood flooring has a top layer made of solid wood that covers the plywood core. The thickness of the top layer and the core will vary depending on the design and manufacturer. The total thickness of these coatings varies from a quarter-inch to three-quarters of an inch. Then join us to acquaint you with the advantages and disadvantages of engineered wood flooring.
Why engineered wood flooring?
Since the invention of wood flooring in the 1960s, wood flooring has improved in appearance and performance, making up 30 percent of the parquet sold in the United States today. Today, with the advanced technology that exists today, this wood flooring gives special effects to different types of wood, such as hand-scratched, glossy, matte, old, burnt, and dozens of other examples.
Engineered wood flooring is designed and built in such a way that it can be used immediately after installation and layout, and you can walk on them easily and confidently.
Another advantage of engineered wood flooring over one-piece SOLID wood flooring is that it can be used in places where it is not possible to use SOLID wood flooring.
Wood flooring consists of two or more layers of wood glued together and forms a complete and single-board panel.
Typically, engineered wood flooring uses a thin layer (veneer) of more expensive wood that is attached to a core made of cheaper wood. More stability of engineered wood is achieved by applying each layer at a 90-degree angle to the above layer. This stability has made it a universal, popular, and popular product, which can be used in various applications.
Laminate flooring and vinyl flooring are often confused with engineered wood flooring (wood parquet), but this is not the case.
Laminate flooring uses the image of wood on its surface, and vinyl flooring (plastic parquet) is a type of plastic that is designed and manufactured like wood lumber.
Engineered wood parquet is the most common wood flooring in Europe and America.
Easy to install
Engineered wood flooring is designed and manufactured in such a way that it can be easily installed and arranged in different models. Some manufacturers use the DIY system (do it yourself).
Some types of this wood flooring can also be installed, both floating and with special glue.
Use the CLICK system or as a GT crotch and tab
The cost of engineered wood flooring may be a bit higher than similar types, but you will reimburse this extra cost during the use of the following.
Easy and cheap installation
No need to paint after installation.
Easy and convenient maintenance.
Easy to replace and repair.
And other cases…
Easy and convenient cleaning
To keep this type of engineered wood flooring clean, it is enough to clean the floor surface with a special cleaner and cleaning fluid recommended by the manufacturer.
Maintenance of engineered wood flooring
Wood flooring is very easy to maintain, as most manufacturers offer a 10 to 30-year warranty for natural wear and a lifetime warranty on their products.
Suitable for underfloor heating system
Unlike solid wood parquet or SOLID, engineered wood flooring can be easily used on underfloor heating systems.
Where engineered wood flooring should not be used
Although engineered wood flooring is in many ways better than SOLID parquet, and has better performance, it has its limitations. This type of natural wood parquet should not be used in the bathroom, or in the washing machine, where there is a possibility of water spills, and in kitchens where there is a lot of washing and water spillage.
Which type of engineered wood flooring is better?
Wood flooring is very diverse so it has different prices. One of the most important factors in determining the quality and price of engineered wood flooring is the quality and thickness of the "wear layer" or the top surface of the wood. The number of layers, the type of veneer, and the number of operations performed on the original veneer all affects the price and warranty of the product. Typically, the more layers, the better.
Good: 3 layers’ construction, 1-2 mm wears layer, 5-step finish coats, 10 to 15 years’ warranty, ¼ inch thick. Options are limited to common species, such as OAK or ASH sparrow wood.
Better: 5 layers, wear layer 2-3 mm, 7-step finish coats, 15 to 25 years’ warranty, ¼ inch thick. Common species such as cherries, beeches, and some other woods.
Best: 7-9 layers or more, abrasion layer greater than 3 mm, which can be sanded two or more times. 9-step finish coats, 25-year warranty, 8.5 inches thick, the widest selection of wood species, which are capable of a variety of products, such as creating different designs on the wood surface.
Why wood hardness is important
The harder the top layer of engineered wood flooring, the greater its resistance to dents, and its appearance will always have a special effect. But the hardness of wood is not the only factor to consider. After several years of use, woods with a simpler design, such as maple, show defects sooner and more often than softer woods with many designs, such as red oak.
Also, wood flooring with low gloss, or without gloss, works better in hiding scratches.
Can engineered wood flooring be repaired?
Yes, floors with an abrasion layer of less than 2 mm can be sanded at least once and repainted. Parquets with a thicker surface can be sanded and painted just like SOLID wood several times, as well as allowing you to remove deeper scratches and dents that have formed over the years. For example, an engineered wood flooring, with a 3 mm plate, can be sanded and painted twice.
How to install this type of wood flooring?
Engineered wood boards can be installed with staples or glue, or you can easily place them on the floor below - no need for fasteners or nails. This means that engineered wood can be installed on a concrete floor or radiant heat. In contrast, solid wood flooring usually needs to be nailed and can not be installed on this type of flooring.
Disadvantages of engineered wood flooring
While many wood products are thick enough to look quite like solid wood, some wood flooring can make a bad noise underfoot.
Wood flooring controls moisture fluctuations better than solid wood flooring. But it may still not be the best choice in bathrooms, laundry rooms, basements, or other places where flooding may be a problem.
Can you remediate the wood flooring?
While solid wood can be reworked many times, engineered wood flooring may be sanded and repaired in less time. The thicker the wear layer, the more sanded wood flooring can be.
If you have pets or children and are worried about scratches, I recommend looking at engineered wood with a thicker layer. Sand the floor if necessary and reshape it.
Advantages of engineered wood flooring
Wood flooring is available in a wide variety of wood species, including oak, maple, emerald, birch, cherry, and walnut, as well as exotic forests such as African mahogany and tiger. Its different widths vary from narrow to wide boards.
All wood products, both solid wood, and engineered wood are prone to damage due to flooding or standing water, they should not be exposed to large amounts of water. However, engineered wood flooring is more stable than solid wood due to having multiple layers in the core. This means that the shrinkage does not change when exposed to moisture and expands.
A century ago, carpenters cut down large trees, making them into boards 10 or 12 inches wide for flooring. But the growing interest in preserving old-growth forests eventually led to a shift in industry sustainability.
Woodcutters these days do not cut trees as large (and wide) as they did 100 years ago. For this reason, solid wood boards are expensive and usually have a maximum width of 5 inches. In contrast, engineered wood flooring is 10 inches or wider.
Wood flooring and made with glue and resin, most of them can create potentially harmful gasses. However, some engineered products are specifically designed to avoid the use of gas.
How to clean engineered wood flooring?
Wood flooring is easy to maintain. Just vacuum daily and wipe with a cloth dampened with water. Avoid ammonia, harsh detergents, and cleaning pads.