Solid vs. Engineered Harwdood

What is the difference?

What is the Difference Between Solid and Engineered Hardwood?

Picking out a floor for your home may bring about many questions. The Rug Mart Carpet One Floor & Home is here through every step of the process. However, to make things easier for you, we are breaking down the difference between solid and engineered hardwood. 

Some hardwood brands will just offer engineered hardwood, while others will offer both. What is the difference? 

What is Solid Hardwood Flooring?

Solid hardwood is a solid piece of wood that can be nailed or stapled down. This type of flooring will be available in multiple widths and will usually be ¾” thick. Board length will vary by product. Pieces may be 6” to 72” long. Smaller width boards will be referred to as “Strip” whereas wider boards will be referred to as “Plank”.

What is Engineered Hardwood? 

Engineered hardwood flooring is constructed utilizing multiple layers of wood for increased durability and stability. This type of flooring will be more resistant to changes in structure due to variation in temperature and humidity. The top layer is a thin piece of wood (veneer) which is then sanded and coated with multiple coatings of a durable, protective finish. The remaining layers may either be made up of cross layers of compatible woods or other materials such as fiberboard. These layers are laminated together. Engineered hardwood can be installed several ways. They may be glued, stapled or in some cases floated.  Pieces of engineered flooring will generally be wider and longer than solid hardwood flooring.

Solid Hardwood vs. Engineered Hardwood

  • Engineered hardwood, due to of its increased dimensional stability may be installed below, on, or above grade while solid hardwood may only be installed on a suspended subfloor above grade. Whichever type of floor you choose we will need to confirm that your home environmental conditions are within manufacturer’s recommendations.  

  • Engineered hardwood does provide the same look as solid hardwood for both are hardwood floors, simply the constructions are different.

  • Most solid hardwood flooring can be sanded, re-stained, and finished multiple times. If you purchase a prefinished distressed or hand scraped floor, aggressive refinishing and sanding may very well remove the existing surface texture.  Engineered hardwood flooring may be able to be refinished but how many time will depend on the thickness of the top wood layer or veneer. 

To learn more about our solid and engineered hardwood products, contact The Rug Mart today or visit our showroom in Flemington, NJ.