Engineered wood floors have a floating presence in any wood flooring arrangement, making installation easy and cost-effective.
Engineered wood floors are not quite what they seem. Engineered flooring may look incredibly beautiful and expensive but it only has a thin layer of wood at the surface and underneath this is plywood. The only real wood here is the veneer. However, it floating hardwood flooring like this is ideal for use in places where it is not possible to put solid wood flooring.
Engineered wood floors can be installed directly onto a concrete floor or even on top of an old floor because the engineered wood flooring is only about half an inch thick. Floating wood flooring usually comes in strips with tongue and groove edges that have to be fixed to the floor with pins, staples, or glue. Long panels of wood used for engineered wood floors are more likely to be used to build what is called a floating hardwood floor. This simply means that the strips are not glued or pinned to the floor beneath them and each one is fixed to those around it. This gives the floor movement.
All Engineered wood floors come in packs of long lengths of prefinished material. Each engineered wood flooring strip has a veneer which looks like real wood and there is a lot of choice of finishes available, ranging from oak, elm, pine and a number of other woods. It is essential to give some thought to quality here because very thin hardwood veneers will not last very long. If the area is likely to get a lot of traffic, the veneer needs to be able to stand up to it. Kahrs flooring is the best example for engineered wood floors.
Most prefinished engineered wood floors will not cope with being sanded and refinished more than once, although if you buy really good quality you may be lucky enough to get two chances to do this. What this means is that once the engineered wood floor gets scuffed and marked, it can be sanded down to give a fresh surface to work with.
One good tip to follow when buying engineered wood floors is to examine the end of one of the planks carefully. Check for at least three layers running in different directions under the veneer and if possibly insist on five layers so that you get good strong floating hardwood flooring. Of course, five layers will cost more than three layers but it will be worth it in the finish.
The look of the top veneered layer of wood is what gives engineered wood floors a pleasing appearance. Some are not very convincing, so study the finish carefully before deciding which ones to buy. What you do not want is a floating hardwood floor that looks like you made it from plywood.
Engineered wood flooring can be laid over existing floors and there is a wide range of choice in color and wood effect, but the pattern of the wood grain may vary and not look like real wood. Some Engineered wood floors can only be sanded and refinished a second time and after that, they become too thin to sand down.