Solid Hardwood vs Engineered Hardwood

Learn about the differences between solid hardwood and engineered hardwood flooring.

Hardwood Options

There are two main hardwood options available: solid and engineered. These hardwood options look exactly the same, but they feature different constructions. Let’s take a closer look at each:

Solid hardwood is the more traditional option, as it is made from single strips of real wood and nothing else. Solid wood planks are typically ¾” thick, so they can be refinished multiple times. We recommend choosing solid hardwood if you need to install on plywood.

Nowadays, many homeowners opt for engineered hardwood flooring. Unlike solid hardwood, engineered hardwood has a special layered construction. With this construction, engineered hardwood is stable enough for below, on, or above ground settings. Engineered hardwood can be installed on concrete subfloors, but it isn’t the best option for plywood. Most hand-scraped hardwood floors have engineered constructions.

What about installation? Most solid hardwood planks need to be nailed or stapled to the subfloor, but engineered planks can be glued and floated. Floated planks can be attached together to “float” on top of the subfloor.