Engineered Hardwood Flooring is real hardwood — the word “engineered” just refers to the way in which it’s made. The benefit of choosing an engineered product over a solid product is that it delivers the look, feel and character of solid wood, while providing a stronger, more resilient flooring.
Engineered hardwoods are made of several layers, or ‘plies’ that are glued together in a cross-grain construction. This type of construction is far stronger than a single piece of solid wood; and it’s also more structurally sound, so it won’t buckle, gap, cup or twist. Engineered hardwoods can be installed below grade and direct to concrete; solid wood floors cannot, making installation of engineered flooring easier and less expensive. The top face is crafted from the finest natural wood veneers, an industry term for ‘top layer’.
This type of construction provides the most uniform color and the most resistance to seasonal expansion, while offering exceptional value over solid hardwood flooring. Engineered hard floors use half as many trees as solid hardwood floors, and faster growing, renewable wood used for inner plies. Engineered hardwood floors will pro-vide you the elegance of hardwood floors with superior performance and value.
Engineered wood flooring is produced with three to nine layers of hardwood. Each layer is stacked in a cross-grain configuration and bonded together under heat and pressure. As a result, engineered wood flooring is less likely to be affected by changes in humidity and can be installed at all levels of the home.
Before deciding on Solid or Engineered hardwood flooring, consider these factors: Location, Location, Location. The location of your hardwood flooring basically falls into three categories:
- On Grade – at ground level – Slab
- Above Grade – any second level or higher
- Below Grade – any floor below ground level, including basements or sunken living rooms.
Engineered wood flooring is ideally suited for all installations and really the only option in below-grade installations, because of the possibility of moisture issues. The construction of an engineered hardwood gives it enhanced structural stability that allows it to be installed at any grade level when a moisture barrier insulating underlayment 3 in 1 glue is used during installation.
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