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What Are The Pros And Cons Of Engineered Hardwood Floors?

Engineered hardwood flooring is becoming more and more popular, but what are the pros and cons of engineered hardwood floors and are they actually worth it?

Let’s take a look at all of the pros and cons so you can make the right flooring decision.

What Is Engineered Hardwood Flooring Made From?

Before we jump into the pros and cons, it makes sense to get a good understanding of what engineered hardwood flooring actually is. If you understand what it’s made from and how it’s made, then the pros and cons will make a lot more sense, so what is it?

Engineered hardwood flooring is made from layers of hardwood, plywood and sometimes high-density fiberboard arranged in different directions to support structural stability. It is made during a process where the layers are glued together, with the plywood or high-density fiberboard below and real hardwood on the top level.

The plywood piles are stacked below in different directions with more piles meaning more structural stability. High-density fiberboard can be used in the place of plywood with the benefit of even greater structural stability.

Now that you understand the basics of what engineered hardwood flooring is and how it is made, let’s see what benefits and drawbacks it has to offer when compared to other traditional flooring options.

Pros Of Engineered Hardwood Floors

There are quite a few benefits to engineered hardwood floors, so let’s see what they are.


Engineered hardwood can easily last over 15 years, with an average of between 20 and 30 years. This long lifespan comes from the fact that the top layer is hardwood, so as long as you maintain the floor properly it will last like a traditional hardwood floor (for the most part).

This is of course limited by the layers below and how long they will last, which is why an engineered hardwood floor won’t last exactly the same as just a hardwood floor.

Structural Stability

The added layers of plywood or high-density fiberboard mean that engineered hardwood is less likely to change shape due to moisture, which is a key advantage over traditional hardwood floors that can sometimes swell or change shape due to moisture.

Less Expensive Than Hardwood

Engineered hardwood can look essentially the same as a hardwood floor, but can often be found for a lower price tag. Although not as cheap as laminate or vinyl options, engineered hardwood is the cheapest flooring that you can get that contains real hardwood.

Easy To Install On A Variety Of Floors

The layers below the top hardwood layer not only add stability but also open up engineered hardwood to being installed on a variety of different types of flooring.

Engineering hardwood can be installed not only on concrete subfloors but also in-floor heating systems as well. It’s also installed with a protective moisture barrier that will keep any liquid from getting into it.

Cons Of Engineered Hardwood Floors

The reality is that like any type of flooring engineered hardwood does also have a few drawbacks, a few of which are shared directly with hardwood floors.

More Expensive Than Laminate And Vinyl Plank

Engineered hardwood is similar to laminate and vinyl plank in that they are all types of flooring designed to imitate hardwood, with the difference that engineered hardwood has a top layer made from genuine hardwood.

Due to this difference, laminate and vinyl plank can be made from other materials that cost less than genuine hardwood but look similar. This means that they are cheaper options than engineered hardwood.

Susceptible To Scratches

Due to the top layer being hardwood, engineered hardwood is just as susceptible to scratches as a hardwood floor. You can also follow some of our techniques to keep the floor from getting scratched in day-t0-day life.

This can be minimised by choosing a hardwood that is more resistant to scratches, or by choosing an engineered hardwood floor with a scratch-resistant coating.

Frequently Asked Questions About Engineered Hardwood

Due to how much confusion there is around engineered hardwood and what it is actually made from, we’ve rounded up some of the most common questions around this topic to help clear up any other concerns you may have.

If you want to see any more added to this list then please do message us here.

Is Engineered Hardwood The Same As Laminate?

Laminate is often confused for engineered hardwood, but they are not actually the same thing. Engineered hardwood contains real hardwood as the top layer whereas laminate is made from resin typically comprising of formaldehyde.

The similarity is clear to see between the two though, as laminate is designed to look like real hardwood and engineered hardwood is actually made from the real stuff.

Do Dogs Scratch Engineered Wood Floors?

Just as we mentioned below about engineered floors being susceptible to scratches, it should come as no surprise that dogs are a prime reason why an engineered floor could become scratched. A protective coating can reduce the likelihood of this happening, however.