It’s the environmental solution to solid wood flooring that is considerably cheaper and more stable. Engineered flooring works by taking a thin slice of natural wood and fixing it to a highly durable plywood core offering you an identical, 100% wooden flooring finish. You really won’t be able to tell the difference between engineered flooring and solid wood flooring, yet it’s less prone to warping, can be even stronger in terms of stability and durability and best of all, engineered flooring usually costs around a third less than its solid wood equivalent. What’s not to like?
Engineered Flooring Information
Engineered flooring might not be the first flooring type that comes to mind when you think of wooden flooring, and indeed the revelation in hardwood flooring does go under the radar for a lot of people during their search for new flooring for their home, but this essentially hybrid flooring brings a lot to the table and can make the perfect new addition to your home. One of the main reasons that engineered flooring isn’t as well known as solid wood or laminate flooring is that it falls somewhere in between these other two.
Just as with solid wood flooring, engineered flooring is also made entirely of 100% wood. The surface of the flooring will be real wood with graining, knots, summer growth rings and the like and can be finished in a number of ways such as with a brushed finish, a matt lacquer or oil. This wood surface can be of a number of common species used in floorings such as oak, walnut, ash or indeed beech and these timbers can have various quality grades from a feature-filled nature or rustic through family and right up to high-quality select grade timber.
However with engineered flooring, typically only the top 4.0mm or so is made of a desirable wood such as oak or walnut, the rest of the flooring plank will be made up of layers of highly durable plywood. This is where the connection to laminate flooring occurs but while laminate flooring just features a printed image of wood stuck to an HDF board, engineered flooring is made up of a layer of real, graded timber such as rustic oak with a distinctive finish applied that is fixed to layers of highly durable plywood that is in many cases even stronger and certainly more stable (less susceptible to warping) than solid wood flooring.
Engineered Flooring FAQ
How Do I Decide Which Type Of Engineered Flooring?
Choosing your engineered flooring comes down to personal taste so we review a wide range of flooring options and break them down into categories such as shade, finish, colour and species.
How Thick Should My Engineered Flooring Be?
Thickness is a key factor in engineered flooring and is measured in millimetres. Flooring between 8mm-14mm can be considered thin and 14mm and over as thick. Thin flooring is generally cheaper but can be essential if you have to work around kitchen units or height levels.
What Do Engineered Flooring Grades Mean?
Grade in reference to hardwood flooring refers to the quality of timber used. Select and Family grades can be considered high-quality timber with few flaws such as splitting or large knots while nature or rustic grade engineered flooring is feature-filled with graining, mineral streaks, and knots. Rustic and nature grade flooring is usually cheaper but is great if you want that country cottage farmhouse feel.
What Are The Best Engineered Flooring Brands?
There’s already a wide range of engineered wooden flooring on the market. However, we recommend the brands City, Florence, Galleria and Tastes of Life as they’re of high quality and offer great value.
What Do Different Construction Methods Mean?
Engineered flooring is wood flooring that features a thin layer of the surface wood such as oak that is fixed to layers of more stable plywood. 3 ply engineered flooring contains a surface layer fixed to two plywood layers usually made of pine or spruce. Multi-ply engineered flooring is usually fixed to 11 layers of birch plywood and is very stable.
What Is 3 Strip Engineered Flooring?
In 3 strip engineered flooring, each plank is made up of 3 rows of thinner strips known technically as staves. These run parallel to each other and fit together in a brick wall pattern. 3 strip engineered flooring gives a contemporary feel and can give the illusion of a room being larger than it actually is.
What Is A Good Finish For Engineered Flooring?
The finish of engineered flooring refers to how the surface of the floor has been treated. Popular finishes include brushed, oiled, hand scraped, fumed and either a matt or satin lacquer.
What Is Bevelled Edge Engineered Flooring?
Engineered flooring with bevelled edges has had all four edges of each plank chamfered, usually at a 45-degree angle. This creates V-shaped grooves once laid that add character to the floor, particularly in rustic flooring with a country cottage/farmhouse feel. Flooring without bevelled edges is known as square edge flooring.
Where Should I Buy Engineered Flooring From?
Within each of our engineered flooring reviews, we include a link to the site where we managed to find that particular cheap wood flooring at the cheapest price.