Solid Wood vs. Engineered wood
This is one of the most common points of confusion in the world of wood flooring. We often have customers that make statements such as, “I want real wood.” Here’s our quick response. If you are looking down at wood grain, and that grain used to be part of a tree, then it is real wood. That’s usually followed up with, “you know what I mean, the solid stuff.”
In this situation, we seek to find out why. While we don’t want to win an argument at the expense of losing a customer, we do like to get to the heart of the matter. We often discover that a consumer’s position is based on outdated or misinformation. For example, we’ve had several customers use engineered wood and laminate flooring interchangeably; which is definitely not accurate.
Engineers make things better. Cars are safer, our phones are smarter, and we can put objects into orbit; all thanks to engineers. Granted, engineered wood floors may not rank as high on the list of engineering achievements of the last century, but they certainly deserve your consideration.
Once installed, unless you can expose an edge of the wood, there's no visual way to tell if the floor is solid or engineered. Furthermore, engineered wood floors were not designed to be less expensive, that just happens sometimes; usually when the raw material cost is higher like with most exotic woods. Also, because of choices a manufacturer can make, there are "value engineered" products that will be lower price and quality.
Engineered floors also tend to be more dimensionally stable than their solid counterparts. This is a great quality in parts of the country that experience shifts in temperature and humidity throughout the year. It also allows engineered floors to be installed in lower levels of homes (below grade) where solid floors cannot be installed.