Achieve the Hardwood Flooring Look Without the Hassle
Hardwood flooring can transform the look of any space and can complement almost any design style. It has a long tradition of luxury and a truly timeless beauty, but beauty is only skin deep. Hardwood flooring is also very expensive and challenging to install. So, if you want the look and feel of hardwood flooring, without the headache, you might want to consider engineered hardwood flooring.
Engineered hardwood is more complex than conventional hardwood, which comes straight from Mother Nature to your home. It consists of several layers, the outermost layer being a hardwood veneer of whatever wood species you desire. The inner layers are made of plywood, high-density fiberboard, or hardwood. The inner layers make the product more stable and durable, while the outer veneer gives the product the classic look of beautiful hardwood flooring. Engineered hardwood is different than laminate due the outer layer of engineered wood being actual real-wood, where laminate is manmade material. With all flooring options, there are pros and cons. Here are a few to consider when choosing the right flooring materials for your home.
Engineered Hardwood Flooring Pros
- It is designed to reduce the moisture problems associated with conventional hardwood. Its layers block moisture and provide added stability to your floor.
- Engineered flooring will not swell or warp, making it very low maintenance.
- It is a cost efficient alternative to solid real-wood flooring. In addition to reducing upkeep costs, engineered flooring is less expensive from the start. Rare hardwood is very expensive. Since engineered hardwood flooring requires only a thin slice of the desired wood, the overall cost may be less than a solid, real-wood product.
- Engineered hardwood is more environmentally friendly than solid hardwood.
Because the veneer is sliced rather than cut with a saw, the process produces no sawdust, which means that all of the tree’s wood can be used.
Hardwood trees grow much more slowly than the trees used to make engineered flooring cores. Because less surface area is produced making the veneer, installing traditional solid hardwoods uses much more of the wood for the same amount of square feet
Engineered Hardwood Flooring Cons
- Engineered hardwood floors can be more expensive than laminate, tile, and carpet. The biggest concern as a homeowner should be avoiding shoddy or inferior engineered manufacturers and products that may not meet EPA standards. If the veneers are too thin, it will prevent sanding and refinishing opportunities that may double the lifetime of the floor and could cause warping or fading.
- The core layers must still be fashioned from high-quality wood. Some manufacturers try to “cut corners” by using fiberboard or oriented strand board that may compromise the stability of your floor and, at the very least, will result in an inferior flooring product.
Is Engineered Flooring Easier and Less Expensive to Install?
Engineered flooring is definitively easier to install, in fact, some handy homeowners are even enticed to install their own engineered floors. If the homeowner does decide to use a contractor for the project, they will still save on the installation costs compared to installing solid hardwood floors. High-quality engineered floors will usually cost somewhere between $8 and $15 per square foot to install. Saving money with engineered hardwood flooring depends on the type of wood you’re choosing and the cost of installation. With an exotic or even highly coveted hardwood, such as hickory, engineered flooring is likely to be less expensive overall. Costs will vary depending on your local market and availability of your selected wood.
Thinking of installing hardwood floors in your home? Call Texas Home and Floors today or stop by our showroom for a consultation.