What is the difference between solid and engineered wood flooring?

When it comes to buying a wooden floor, the question "what is the difference between solid wood flooring and engineered wood flooring?" always comes up! Here we'll help you make an educated choice between the two.

Solid Wood Flooring Solid Wood Flooring Boards

Facts about solid wood flooring

  • Made of 100% natural wood, solid wood boards are refined from one piece of hardwood and then treated with a protective coating.
  • The usually thick boards mean they can be re-sanded and re-finished numerous times without any damage – Giving you a quality floor which will last a lifetime. Be sure to read more about sanding a wood floor.
  • At the back of a solid wood board you will find carved grooves. This is to stop the boards from cupping.
  • Solid wood provides authenticity of a classic wooden floor.


Engineered Wood Flooring Engineered Wood Flooring Boards

Facts about engineered wood flooring

  • Engineered wood is constructed with a plywood or HDF base and a solid wood top (which varies in thickness from 2mm-6mm).
  • The layers are bonded together in different directions with extreme pressure and glue, reinforcing the wood and adding extra stability.
  • As wood is a natural product it can be affected by humidity and temperature, naturally expanding and contracting throughout the year. The construction of engineered wood makes it less reactive to these changes, vastly reducing these fluctuations - making it structurally solid and much less likely to damage or warp.
  • Can be sanded once for every 1mm of solid wood top thickness so long as 1mm thickness remains.
  • Can be installed as a floating floor, meaning the floor isn’t stuck to the subfloor. If you moved home, you could take the flooring with you!
  • Engineered wood is more suitable for higher moisture areas and rooms with environments with varying humidity levels. E.g. kitchens and conservatories (not bathrooms).


The Beautiful & Authentic Wood Floor Finish! The Beautiful & Authentic Wood Floor Finish!

What should I think about when choosing between the two?

Both solid and engineered wood flooring is available in a number of different shades, grades, woods and finishes, so whatever you decide on, there is plenty of choice to choose from. However, no matter your choice, you will still get that highly sought-after authentic and beautiful look that only a wood floor can offer!

If you are trying to choose between solid and engineered wood flooring there are a couple of considerations:

  • How are you wanting to lay your wood floor and what is your subfloor made of?
  • Are you laying your wood floor in a kitchen or conservatory? If so you will need to choose an engineered wood.
  • Are you wanting to lay underfloor heating under your wood flooring? If so, you will need to choose engineered wood.

If there is nothing tying you to one type of wood flooring, find your favourite and go with that. It is simply a matter of personal preference!