A hardwood flooring is always a great choice for any homes since it gives it a timeless, natural and classically elegant appeal. But it is also quite expensive and thus only buyers from a certain segment can indulge in this expense. However, engineered hardwood provides an excellent alternative to the same and it is virtually impossible to differentiate between the two, unless someone is a flooring expert. Additionally engineered hardwood has greater dimensional strength and is relatively inexpensive. this accounts for the immense popularity that it enjoys as a flooring option. Of course it also has many other benefits like:
- Looks and feels like real wood: Technological advances have perfected the look and feel of engineered hardwood planks and tiles to the extent that it is difficult to tell them apart. In fact even the toughest of sceptics would find it difficult to differentiate engineered hardwood from real wood.
- Lesser expansion and contraction: Since this is constructed by using adhesives to bind together strands, fibres, particles, veneer or wooden boards, engineered hardwood is less prone to suffering from expansions or contractions due to weather changes or otherwise. Thus they can be installed in places like the kitchen or the laundry room where it is i=almost impossible to use hardwood.
- Durability: It has been statistically proved that this wood has far more durability and longevity than traditional hardwood. This is because the adhesion of plywood planks makes it extra strong and thus it is able to withstand heavy footfall without undergoing any damage.
- Varieties: Hardwood flooring options offer a wide range of varieties. All of these hardwood varieties are available in engineered hardwood since its top layer or lamella can be used to simulate the look of any naturally occurring hardwood. Thus this too comes in as many different varieties as hardwood and can also be differentiated on the basis of the species and grades and also the finish that it later acquires. Different grades of engineered wood are available at different costs and thus are able to cater to people of different budgets. When it comes to the selection of the type of finish one would want in their engineered hardwood, the choices range from lacquered low budget ones to oiled high quality options, from tough to aged etc.
- Better width: The width of hardwood is exclusively dependent on the tree from which it is obtained. But since engineered hardwood is manufactured in factories, it can be made into much wider planks and tiles thereby making them:
- Easier to install because of fewer joints,
- Enhance the appearance of the floor and
- Also be within the planned budget.
- Sanding and refinishing: Hardwood can be sanded and refinished a number of times to ensure that it keeps looking new and polished. Engineered wood can also be sanded and refinished when and if the need arises but the number of times the same can be done depends on the lamella or the top layer that it has. This sanding tends to rid the wooden planks of all scratches and dents while refinishing ensures that it retains its nascent glow for a longer time.
- Structural stability: Engineered wood is said to have better structural stability because of the way in which they are built. The layers of wood joined together using adhesives gives it a greater dimensional stability than hardwood. Thus it finds use in a number of different climate types, weather conditions and even conditions prevalent at home thereby increasing its functionality and utility.
Environment friendly, resistant to wear and tear, easy to maintain etc., are many other points which make it an ideal alternative to hardwood. Additionally it is also very cost-effective since inspite of using layers of wood, it does not have to take into account such factors like cost of sourcing, shipping from its place of origin to its place of finishing, wood fabricator workmanship etc. Since wood has always been the healthy, natural and comfortable first choice for many in terms of its selection as a flooring option, engineered hardwood provides more people the opportunity to opt for wooden flooring. In fact in the past few years, the popularity of engineered hardwood has soared and today it is the first choice for people in different countries across the globe. Thus it would not be wrong to say that engineered hardwood is here to stay.