Advances in engineered wood have resulted in hardwearing floor coverings that have a thin layer of real wood. It is less expensive than solid wood and it has become a popular alternative to hardwood flooring.
People love the natural look of solid wood, but the thing that prevents many people from installing wood flooring is its high cost. Another disadvantage of solid hardwood is that it can warp in extreme temperatures and if flooded. Solid wood flooring in Chester’s flood risk areas is not advisable.
Engineered wood is available in wide planks. The vice president of Divine Flooring engineered wood says that engineered wood has:
“…really opened up the market. You don’t have to worry about dimensional stability and so we are now seeing five-inch, seven-inch, nine-inch and even twelve-inch wide planks.”
Though the favourite engineered wood is traditional natural brown oak, many people want a more contemporary look. This can be achieved with white or grey wash oak or maple. There is also a trend away from highly polished woods that have a high gloss finish. Grey or white wood with a matt finish is preferred.
A thick underlay provides acoustic properties. This is particularly important for upstairs rooms where sound can disturb people below. A further advantage is that engineered wood clicks together making it quicker and easier to install than solid wood.
Although engineered wood makes a good substitute for solid hardwood, some people still prefer the natural qualities of real wood.