Real wood flooring could easily be forgotten in this day and age with a flooring market that is constantly being flooded with exciting new authentic looking imitations, but as we all know, there’s nothing quite like the real thing. Be it for adding natural beauty to your home or providing a robust solution to a commercial situation we’re confident we’ve got it covered.
solid wood flooring is as the name implies, a solid plank from top to bottom. Being solid it can be sanded when needed. The ability to sand a solid plank numerous time is one of solid wood’s main strengths as it’s life will surely be longer than an engineered plank.
Solid wood comes either finished or unfinished. A finished plank is ready to go as soon as it is installed while an unfinished board will require additional work before it’s fully ready to be walked upon. The advantage of an unfinished plank, should you choose one, is that it is can be stained and sealed to your own specifications. While an unfinished board will usually end up being cheaper you may recur the expense through the additional finishing.
Engineered wood is usually the cheaper option and while solid planks are one solid block of wood engineered planks have a top layer of solid wood which is backed by layers of plywood. The plywood usually comprises 80-90% of the plank with the finished wood usually being between 1/16″ to 1/8″ thick. It’s the plywood and not the finished wood that provides the distinction between solid and engineered planks. The layers of plywood run perpendicular to it’s adjacent ply adding dimensional strength to the sandwich of solid wood and plywood. This means that engineered planks stand up well in areas of light moisture such as kitchens and bathrooms.
The other advantage of engineered planks is depending on the thickness of the plank there may be a variety of fitting options available. Thinner planks may be nailed straight to the floor while thicker planks may be installed as a floating floor negating the need for complicated fitting as long as the floor is reasonably level. The weakness of Engineered wood is naturally that as it is only 10-20% solid wood it can only be sanded one or two times and as such has a shorter life expectancy than solid wood.
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