Faqs Center

Engineered Hardwood Floors

Number of visits: Date:2017-09-07 00:20:04

What Are Engineered Floors?

Engineered hardwood floors are constructed similar to that of basic plywood with the top surface being the actual hardwood. Products come in two to ten ply construction depending on the manufacturer. On the right is a general overview of three strip engineered hardwood, common with original floating floors.

But They All Look The Same!

Engineered hardwoods have been given a bad rap over the years because they all looked basically similar. Earlier versions had one boring looking appearance in that all were rotary peeled. Rotary peeled hardwoods offer a plywood surface appearance. Some like it, others don't.

Several high quality manufacturers have been offering solid sawn engineered hardwoods. Solid sawn exhibits the appearance of traditional 3/4" solid hardwoods many of us are accustomed to.

My Builder Says It's Junk!

Ask any craftsman, builder, or installer from the old school what they think about engineered flooring and the answers will likely be the same. Sure, there are many low priced engineered floors out there sold in places like Carpet One, Lowe's, and smaller retail stores. They have their place and people buy the stuff in droves.

Times Have Changed With Quality

Times have changed with engineered flooring. Many manufacturers have increased the surface (also known as veneer or wear layer) layer that will result in some engineered floors lasting just as long as more traditional solid 3/4 inch flooring. One of the most important factors contributing to the longevity of any hardwood floor is the amount of refinish able material.

Solid 3/4" hardwoods have approximately 1/4 of an inch above the tongue and groove construction. Once it is sanded to that level, nails or staples begin to appear and should be replaced. The better and thicker engineered hardwoods have 1/8 to 3/16" of an inch above the tongue and groove. Illustration right.

More Stable Than Traditional Hardwood

Engineered floors are the ideal solution for hardwood flooring on concrete, and there are other benefits. Most recognized is the dimensional stability of the way they are constructed. Each ply layer is pressure glued and set in the opposite direction. For those that are concerned with high humidity, engineered hardwoods expand and contract little if any, opposed to solid hardwoods.

How Are They Installed?

Most engineered hardwoods are installed by the glue down or floating floor method. It's important to note; not all engineered products have the same type of installation specifications. In other words, some may be floating, glue direct, or staple only. Manufacturers specify installation applications for a reason, and we suggest following them.

The Length Factor...Long  or Short?

Unfortunately many who purchase engineered hardwoods don't know what they're getting until the floor is being installed. The majority of prefinished engineered hardwoods have limits on lengths at 42 to 48 inches, opposed to most solid hardwoods at 72 to 84 inches.

Longer lengths are preferred as they offer a more appealing look on completion.

Engineered Thickness

Choosing which thickness of engineered flooring is often a confusing one for consumers. Overall thickness of engineered floors will vary from 1/4" to 9/16" depending on what brand or manufacturer. The most common thickness seems to be 3/8" or 1/2" Which one to choose? As we've already mentioned the wear layer should be given priority in some situations. Other factors that can come into play would include adjoining types of floor covering. Ceramic tile usually finishes at 3/8" in vertical height after thin set is applied under the tiles. For engineered hardwoods over 1/2" in thickness prefinished trim moldings or thresholds can create problems in this scenario.

How Many Plies?

In general the more ply layers in construction the more stable the product will be. However, this should not be a determining factor in your selection unless you're using the product over radiant in floor heat. You'll find ply layers vary from two to ten with manufacturers across the board. We find the actual wear layer thickness should be given priority if you plan on living in the home for an extended period of time. On the other hand, if you don't plan to live in the residence for more than five or ten years others can be chosen at lower costs.

Other Thoughts

Unusually thick wear layers may sound attractive if presented to you. Engineered flooring too needs stability in that the underlying ply construction should be equal to or greater than the thickness of the veneer. While engineered floors expand minimally, a force exists between the top and bottom during changes in relative humidity within the environment. Thick wear layers accompanied with a thinner form of ply construction underneath have been known to cause cupping and or crowning issues.

TypeInfo: FAQS

Keywords for the information:Array

Copyright © 2012 Guangzhou Panyu Kangda Board Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved 粤ICP备11101948号-2 | Power by 300.cn Go to simplified Chinese websites