When it comes to renovating your home, the flooring you choose can have a huge impact on the end result. Prevailing trends in modern interior design suggest timber floorboards are the go-to option – they’re easy to clean, they last well and they look great. But the decision-making doesn’t stop there. Dark timber or light timber, gloss finish or matt finish – and the critical question you may not even be aware of, solid timber floorboards or engineered timber flooring?
While solid timber floorboards tend to win by being the classic route to go down, using engineered timber to lay down the foundations of your living space has a number of benefits that tip the scales in its favour. Read on to discover if engineered timber is the right solution for your home’s rejuvenation.
What is engineered timber flooring?
Engineered timber is made up of multiple layers of plywood and unfinished white wood. It usually ranges from 1-2cm, with a top veneer, the high-quality timber finish you select, of just 2-6 mm that can be refinished multiple times.
One benefit of opting for engineered timber is that it tends to be more sustainable and environmentally-friendly. This is especially true if you’re considering an exotic wood. The exotic trees that need to be harvested to make a rosewood floor, for example, go a lot further if only a 6-millimetre-thick veneer is applied to each board. If sustainability is a major concern, look out for FSC logos before buying.
Because of the way it is made, engineered timber can be more resistant to moisture and can, therefore, be more stable than solid wood planks. This makes it a more favourable choice, particularly in humid areas where wood can be prone to expansion or warping.
Choosing high-quality engineered timber flooring
Engineered timber can be bought at a more favourable price than standard solid timber floorboards. This makes it a great selection if you don’t wish to blow your entire renovation budget on your floors, important though they may be.
Do be mindful, however, of a deal that seems overly affordable – engineered timber is available in varying quality. Installing a high-quality, long-lasting engineered timber floor will mean it can last for up to 100 years and certainly won’t negatively affect your resale value – but using a cheap one will. When selecting the material, pay special attention to the quality of the layers and veneer. The wood used and the number of layers determine the size of the finished product as well as the quality. The characteristics of the wood that ends up on the top layer will always affect the longevity and resilience of an engineered timber floor.
Another thing to bear in mind is to ensure you are selecting the appropriate thickness for a smooth transition between rooms in your home. For example, where your tiled bathroom meets your wooden living room, or where your carpeted bedroom meets your wooden hallway, the floor thicknesses should align for seamlessly married-up floors.
Installing engineered timber flooring
Engineered timber floorboards were originally designed for use over concrete slabs, but thicker versions can be nailed down over wood subfloor the same way plank floorboards can.
The newest, thinnest engineered floors, coined ‘floating floors’, can be set in an innovative tongue-and-groove method that locks them into place quickly and with ease. This system can be used over a cork underlayer or directly over an older floor, making it ideal for fast-paced renovations.
The big decision
If you’re footing the bill for a huge home renovation, using engineered timber flooring will certainly help you save without compromising on quality. In fact, you’ll be hard pressed to find anyone who can even tell the difference between solid timber floorboards and engineered timber, except, perhaps, a timber expert.
If engineered timber is the route for you, give us a call on 1300 662 838 to learn how we can help. We pride ourselves on our reputation for crafting engineered timber flooring that is, well, flawless.