Long considered to be the standard in wood flooring, solid hardwood has many features and benefits. Solid wood is natural and non-allergenic, available in varying board widths and lengths, as well as thicknesses. Solid wood will react to changes in humidity and is recommended only in above grade installations over a wood subfloor. Most wood floors are pre-finished which makes for a quick installation that is less messy than a site finished wood floor. These products are also more durable and wear resistant than a site finished product. Because of the ability to be refinished many times, solid wood is an investment that can last a lifetime.
Engineered Hardwood consists of 3 to 9 plies of wood that are glued & laminated together. The benefit to this process is that the look is the same as a solid wood, but the product is less susceptible to humidity changes and they can be glued, stapled, nailed or floated over wood subfloors or dry concrete floors. In addition, engineered woods typically cost less than their solid counterparts. Some can even be refinished a limited number of times depending on the thickness of the top layer.
Made of plywood or fiberboard, laminate flooring gives the look of wood floors, but is extremely durable and stain resistant. Laminate flooring will not fade in sunlight and never requires waxing or polishing. It can also be glued, stapled, nailed or floated over wood subfloors or dry concrete floors, but should not be used in basements or excessively wet areas, as moisture can affect its core and overall performance. Laminate flooring offers additional cost savings over solid or engineered wood.
Luxury Vinyl simulates natural materials and is cut into plank shapes with beveled edges and ends, giving it a more realistic look than sheet vinyl. Featuring a protective wear layer, LVP is easy to clean and scratch and scuff resistant. It is strong a durable and a great option for wet spaces like bathrooms and can be installed in any level. Cost is typically between laminate flooring and engineered wood.
The newest trend in flooring is wood look porcelain tile. As you would expect with a porcelain tile, these products are scratch and stain resistant and extremely hygienic. Tile sizes vary by collection, widths vary from 4-12 inches with lengths of 24-48 inches. Installed with a tight grout joint, these tiles can be very convincing and a great option for bathrooms, basements and laundry rooms, where wood would not hold up.
If you are thinking about wood flooring for your home, stop in to look at the many options that are available to you!