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Flooring Dilemma: Solid Wood or Engineered Wood Floors?

Posted on July 30, 2021 by fivestarwood

Selecting the most suitable flooring option for your home can be more complex than you think. Furthermore, the importance of quality flooring is also undervalued by many homeowners. The floor is the base around which all design choices are made. Quality flooring not only provides a structural foundation for your home’s integrity but also the basis for your home design choices.

In 2019, hardwood flooring sales amounted to $3.57 billion in the United States. Hardwood floors remain one of the most popular choices for homeowners. However, this raises a dilemma for many homeowners as hardwood flooring can comprise solid wood or engineered wood, two fantastic options with their own set of advantages.

Solid Wood Flooring

Many homeowners consider solid wood the gold standard in wood flooring. Solid wood flooring is made entirely from solid wood. This flooring option often uses hardwood species such as oak, maple, or walnut.

One of the main advantages solid wood offers is that homeowners can refinish it multiple times. Solid wood typically also has a longer lifespan than engineered wood, lasting between 30 to 100 years.

Planks of solid wood


Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring looks similar to solid wood flooring. However, engineered wood typically undergoes a different development process. The top and bottom layers of engineered wood are comprised of solid wood. Still, the middle section features a thin layer of premium-quality plywood, which gives engineered wood stability. A premium quality engineered wood will generally last 25-30 years. Unfortunately, homeowners can only refinish engineered wood once or twice.

How to Choose the Right Wood for Your Home?

As evidence suggests, both options have their advantages, making it more complicated for homeowners to choose. We recommend differentiating between the two options by developing a criterion to assess which may be the best option for your home.


Engineered hardwood typically averages around $5-6 per square foot, which is lower than the $8 average cost for solid wood. Homeowners on a budget may choose to go for engineered hardwood flooring, given its affordability. However, it’s essential to remember that solid wood flooring lasts longer and can be refinished numerous times.


Solid hardwood floors are typically installed via a tongue-and-groove system. This system involves nails being hammered down through tongues at the end of each board.  On the other hand, installing engineered hardwood floors can be done in a variety of ways. They can be installed with the same method as solid hardwood floors, or they can also be installed with adhesives, making them a more flexible option for ease of installation.

Durability and Maintenance

Solid hardwood floors are more durable and have a longer lifespan. Its ability to be sanded and refinished multiple times also makes it a superior option to engineered hardwood floors, which can only be refinished once or twice.

Stability and Resistance

Solid hardwood performs best in above-ground spaces, making it a poor option for basements, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. Engineered hardwood is slightly more adaptable and can be outfitted in basements, although it is still not recommended in bathrooms or laundry rooms. Solid hardwood also warps in humid conditions, whereas engineered wood has strong resistance to warping.


Selecting the Right Flooring for Your Home

If you’re a homeowner looking to choose and install hardwood flooring in your home, you will require a flooring contractor. Five Star Hardwood Floors is a flooring contractor based in Seattle. We offer numerous services ranging from hardwood floor installation to floor repairs.Contact us today to get the flooring you need.