Whether you’re upgrading your existing floor or building a new home, there is an almost mind-boggling number of options to choose from. One popular option is hardwood flooring. There seems to be a fair amount of confusion about the difference between hardwood, engineered hardwood, and laminate flooring, and the following should help you in understanding engineered hardwood.

People hear “engineered hardwood” and tend to think “artificial” or something similar. Engineered wood is in fact real wood. A veneer of hardwood is applied to backing layers of varying types, providing greater stability in fluctuating levels moisture and temperature. And unlike solid hardwood, engineered hardwood can be used in basements, are more resistant to wear-and-tear in homes with kids and pets, and less likely to buckle and warp.

In addition to being more durable and tolerant to moisture and temperature than solid hardwood floors, engineered hardwood is also more affordable. Engineered hardwood flooring is typically easier to install, too, than solid hardwood, which needs to be nailed or glued in place. The average DIY-er, however, can install most engineered flooring—especially the floating type— with relative ease in most circumstances.

With real wood’s better durability, ease of installation, basement installation, and lower cost, you might be asking yourself if there’s a downside. If there’s one at all, it’s that an engineered hardwood floor can only be refinished once, maybe twice, whereas a solid wood floor might be refinished as many as 10 times. Even that isn’t much of a drawback, though, when you consider the cost and mess of refinishing hardwood and compare that to installing new engineered hardwood, should need to arise someday.

Whether looking for the most affordable real-wood option, or exotic wood at traditional solid-wood prices, engineered-hardwood flooring makes a great choice. Contact the Floor Store at the Carpet Company to see and feel the different types available to you.