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Pros and Cons of Solid, Engineered and Parquet Flooring

With the variety of wood flooring on the market these days, people are getting confused about what to choose for their homes. Solid wood flooring is amongst the strongest, most durable and expensive ones but still, there are other factors to be taken into account. If you would like to go for engineered flooring, the cost of fitting will go down but underlay will be required. Underlays help with dealing with subfloor levels to a certain extent, so the chances we may need to ply before laying new floors decreases with engineered flooring. Parquet flooring is also an option to consider, it comes in blocks that can be laid in different patterns, depending on your taste. Thus your wood floors can turn into a piece of art.

Let’s look deeper into the pros and cons of these three different wood floorings.

Parquet Flooring

Parquet flooring fitted in a school

Parquet flooring is considered to be the first type of real wood flooring ever installed in the world. This flooring option is available for centuries now and despite the fact that at first, it was a luxury reserved for the royal and wealthy families only, nowadays everyone can enjoy the beauty and elegance of parquet flooring in their home or office space.

Parquet flooring pros

When it comes to style and appearance, parquet flooring for sure offers the most intriguing and attractive appearance out of all real wood flooring options. Parquet flooring is an encompassing term for all floors made out of real wood blocks that are fitted as a mosaic in different patterns. The variety of different patterns is really impressive and a parquet floor will quickly become the statement piece of your home. Far beyond simply a functional, convenient, and durable flooring option, parquet flooring is a real piece of art under your feet and allows you to play around with different patterns, colours, and textures for achieving a really unique interior for your home.

Parquet flooring cons

Besides being the most beautiful of all types of wood flooring, parquet is also the most challenging them when it comes to maintenance and renovation. Due to the fact that wooden blocks are laid in different directions for achieving a certain pattern, sanding against the grain is a common mistake inexperienced wood floor sanders do and this can easily damage your favourite parquet floor.

Therefore, a highly professional sanding service delivered by an experienced and reliable company is a necessity every time you want to have your parquet floor renovated. In addition, parquet flooring needs a good level when it comes to parquet floor fitting so the pattern could be structured properly. Therefore, good and thorough subfloor preparation is more than essential for achieving optimal results and a strong and durable floor. This may include additional investment in the underlayment.

Solid Wood Flooring

Solid wood floor installation

Solid wood flooring is among the most classic choices when it comes to real wood flooring. Solid wood floorboards are cut from a single piece of timber with minimal, which makes it the less man-made product out of the three real wood flooring options.

Solid wood flooring pros

Solid wood flooring comes in a really great variety of wood species, which also encompasses a great variety of natural colours, grains, textures, and patterns you can choose from. Add to this the fact that solid wood floorboards come in a variety of sizes and can be treated professionally for a dramatic transformation of the appearance and you can practically have the floor of your dreams that fits the rest of the interior perfectly. Solid wood flooring is naturally beautiful and can easily become the statement piece of every room and interior.

It is also naturally durable and hard-wearing, if maintained regularly and properly, your solid wood floor is designed to remain intact and survive up to a whole century and beyond. Out of the three real wood floor options, solid wood has the best sandable depth because the wooden floorboards are thick and solid and can be re-sanded and refinished up to six times in their lifetime. In a nutshell, solid wood flooring makes durable, solid, sturdy and particularly attractive floors that can complement every home or office space and create an atmosphere of warmth, cosiness, and elegance.

Solid wood flooring cons

One of the main downsides of solid wood flooring is that it is more prone to water damage compared to engineered wood, for example. Therefore, solid wood floors cannot be installed in areas such as the bathroom, basement, and often the kitchen due to the high risk of moisture damage. Since solid wood floors are sensitive to humidity and moisture, the best way to have them installed is over a wooden or plywood subfloor, which limits your option if you have another type of subfloor or will make you invest additionally into underlayment in accordance with the specific requirements for solid wood floor fitting.

In addition, with solid wood floor installation, you don't have that much flexibility and options and this type of real wood flooring can only be nailed down or rarely glued down to the subfloor. In case the subfloor cannot be levelled for some reason, it is recommended to reconsider your choice of solid wood flooring. Finally, solid wood flooring is not the best option for an underfloor heating system as temperature fluctuations can easily damage the sensitive wooden material in the long term.

Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring installation

Engineered wood flooring is the most advanced product available in the real wood floor market nowadays. It has an innovative structure of layers glued together and crisscrossed. The top layer called lamella is available in a great variety of wood species and colours, grains, and textures. The specific structure of engineered wood makes it significantly less prone to moisture compared to solid wood flooring.

Engineered wood flooring pros

The advanced structure of the engineered wood floor planks allows them to experience less of the impact of moisture, humidity and temperature fluctuations. The natural contraction of the floorboards that is a result of changes in the floor's environment is less likely to cause some serious issues with the condition of the floor and its structural integrity of the floor to the more flexible core of the engineered wood floorboards.

Thanks to that, engineered wood floors can be installed in areas that are subject to increased moisture such as the bathroom, basement, and kitchen. When it comes to installation, engineered wood is always the easiest material to work with because it can be installed either by nailing or glueing the floorboards down or by following the floating installation method that allows the floor to be installed over different types of subfloors, subfloors that cannot be perfectly levelled and even over underfloor heating system.

Engineered wood flooring has a higher resistance to temperature and moisture, which makes it the better choice for fitting over concrete subfloors. Engineered wood floor fitting can also be made over different types of underlays, which means you can enjoy improved soundproofing and thermal insulation in your home.

Engineered wood flooring cons

Despite the fact that engineered wood is available in a great variety of designs, solid wood flooring still offers more variety and choice style-wise. However, it is still possible to find the exact style and look you are going for on the engineered wood flooring market. Certainly, one of the main cons of engineered wood flooring is the fact it cannot be sanded as much as a solid wood floor. Since the top lamella layer of engineered wood is not that thick compared to solid wood, engineered wood floors can be sanded up to three times in the case of really high-quality engineered wood floors.


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