Hardwood: Solid or engineered?

If you’re planning on getting new flooring in your home, you need to think about which material is the best for you. Wood is a tried and tested material that is very popular and makes a great addition to any room, but have you thought about whether solid hardwood or engineered hardwood is better? Here are some pros and cons of both.

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Solid hardwood

This is made from a single piece of hardwood which means you can easily refinish it to fit your space and can continue to do so throughout the years. You will need an experienced fitter who will know how much space to leave due to solid hardwoods ability to shrink and expand. You could be left with gaps when the weather turns cold or a floor that buckles in the summer months due to the heat. You can find out how to find a reputable fitter here  http://www.which.co.uk/reviews/wood-flooring/article/how-to-buy-wood-flooring/finding-a-wood-floor-fitter.

Using solid hardwood can also be limited depending on the room. It does not mix well with water and you may end up with mould or water damage if it is fitted in rooms such as your bathroom where there is a lot of moisture.

Engineered wood

If you go for engineered wood flooring, you will be choosing a layered material that is strong and stable. It is able to withstand the humidity better than solid hardwood which makes it more resistant to different temperatures. This means that although it is still not wise to use it in a bathroom, it is more flexible to use in similar conditions, such as a kitchen or cellar. As long as you clean up any spills, its durability means that it won’t cause any damage unless left for a long time.

Engineered wood can be a little more expensive than solid hardwood but it can look just like the real thing. There is a huge variety of styles available, such as those shown here http://www.ukflooringdirect.co.uk/engineered-wood-flooring. It may be more prone to off-gassing than solid hardwood, but rather than the materials used to make the wood, it is the toxins in the finishing coats that tend to be the issue. If you’re worried you can speak to the manufacturer to put your mind at rest.

Both types have their benefits, but choosing the right one really comes down to which room it will be in.