Should You Choose Engineered Wood or Hardwood Flooring?

choose engineered or hardwood floors

Although both engineered wood and hardwood flooring offer the advantage of being able to refinish them, they aren’t quite the same. There are differences that you should consider before you choose one or the other. Let’s look at some key differences and why they may make a difference in what you ultimately choose.


Of course, solid hardwood flooring is only wood with stain and a finish. Engineered wood floors have layers including plywood and hardwood, and depending on the brand, perhaps a moisture barrier or other backing. Most engineered flooring comes pre-finished, which can mean it has a more durable finish. Some homeowners find that the sound when walked on differs significantly between the two and prefer the more solid sound of genuine hardwood flooring.


We recommend dry mopping or sweeping regularly with only occasional damp mopping both hardwood and engineered wood floors. When either product begins to look dull or has imperfections, one benefit is that they can generally be refinished in most cases. However, with engineered floors, the wear layer (top layer of hardwood) ultimately determines whether it can be refinished and how many times. Almost all hardwood flooring can be refinished countless times.


Hardwood flooring averages about twice the price of engineered wood floors. If budget is an issue, you may want to look at engineered wood flooring. Hardwood floors generally have at least twice the lifespan of an engineered product. So, if you compare the cost per year of expected life, they end up costing about the same.


You can purchase both products either pre-finished or finish them on site. Ultimately whether you will need to be out of your home for a few days or weeks for the stain and finish to cure depends on your choices. However, the actual installation can be the same or different. Most hardwood flooring is installed by nailing it to the subfloor. The boards stay together through a tongue-and-grove system. Depending on the brand of engineered product, it may be installed the same way as hardwood or it may “float” or sit on top of your subfloor. The proper installation is determined by the manufacturer.

Seer Flooring Can Help You Choose

We’re a leading flooring installation company with offices in both the Tampa Bay and Sarasota Bay areas. Call us to schedule your free in-home consultation and estimate for whatever you’re considering for your new floors. Reach us at either (727) 469-7963 or (941) 242-7337 today. You can also fill out our contact form and we’ll call you.