Types of Hardwood Flooring
Solid flooring is just as it sounds, a solid piece of wood milled from a single piece of timber. Solid floors are 3/4″ thick and come in widths ranging from 1 1/2″ to 5″. Because of it’s thickness, a solid floor can be refinished several times over generations of use. Solid floors are nailed down to either a plywood or OSB subfloor on or above grade.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood is produced with 3-5 layers of hardwood that are cross stacked and bonded together under heat and pressure. As a result, engineered flooring is less likely to be affected by changes in humidity so it can be installed in any level of the home including over a concrete subfloors. Engineered floors can be stapled, glued, or floated.
Unfinished floors come direct from the mill. No finishes or sealers are added by the manufacturer. Unfinished floors are sanded and finished onsite.. Most clients prefer unfinished because the floors become one uniform surface. Whereas most prefinished floors have a micro bevel on all sides of each plank. A more uniform surface makes the floor easier to clean and easier to restore in the future. Sealing and finishing floors onsite also provides a better overall seal for the floors.
Prefinished floors come direct from the factory sealed and finished. These floors only need to be installed. Pre finished floors are typically more expensive to buy than unfinished. However, the labor is a bit less since no sanding and finishing needs to be done on site. The main benefit of prefinished floors is projects can be done faster than with site finished. Prefinished floors will be more difficult to refinish in the future due to the micro bevel and the sealers and finishes used by the manufacturer. Prefinished floors are also more susceptible to water damage in the event of a leak because water can seep into the bevels where the wood is not sealed.