Homeowners looking to place their property on the market often result to various home improvement work to turn back the clock on wear and tear as well as to make the property standout. Replacing an old flooring solution is a common practice and homeowners are truly spoilt for choice from carpet to stone and many other options. Those who venture in the direction of wood, often find the process nerve-racking due to the confusion between the options. In this post we look closer at your wood flooring options as a homeowner.
Solid and Engineered Wood Flooring Explained:
The two most common types of flooring made from real wood are the solid wood type and the engineered wood type. The difference between the two as well as the suitability of one over the other is long been a confusing subject for many homeowners.
Solid Wood Flooring– The name ‘solid’ comes from the structure of the planks as they are made entirely of real wood. The wood will commonly originate from European markets in the form of Oak or Walnut, but may also originate from exotic markets in South America in the foam of Teak or Iroko. Each plank of solid wood is covered in a layer of protection commonly referred to as the finish of the floor.
Engineered Wood Flooring– You will come across this alternative wood flooring under the variations of ‘semi solid’, ‘laminated wood flooring’ and ‘machined wood flooring’. It is in fact wood flooring that is made from a top layer of solid wood, supported by artificial backing of MDF, Plywood and even Softwood. The use of a solid layer above the artificial backing means that it looks identical to solid wood. Similarly to solid wood, each plank is covered in a protection layer made on the basis of oil or lacquered material.
Deciding Between Solid or Engineered Wood Flooring:
In most cases, homeowners can fit either of the two types. In such eventuality, the decision will likely revolve around budget and opportunity, so really a question of finding a suitable offer on either solid or engineered wood. However, it is important to note down the difference between the two types when cases are more unusual.
Warm Conditions – Natural wood will react to changes in temperature by expanding (hot temperature) and contracting (cold temperature). It means that fitting wood in the form of solid wood flooring over under floor heating will cause this unwanted reaction. On the other hand, engineered wood due to its manmade backing will not expand nor will it contract making it the clear winner.
Wet Conditions– Most natural woods lack enough natural oils to repel water over time. Such conditions can originate from humidly and moisture in the air, a common occurrence in the kitchen and bathroom areas. Solid wood flooring should not be fitted in these areas and even fitting engineered wood requires the use of a thick waterproof coating based on lacquer.
If the above conditions are not present in your home, you can safely choose the solid wood option. The use of complete wood means that it is the stronger of the two resulting in long service life.
Thanks for reading
Written by wood n beyond for the Hausman and Holmes Estate Agency blog. Wood and Beyond Ltd
220 The Vale NW11 8SR, London