Solid wood floors were once only seen in the houses of the affluent and wealthy, popular in manor houses and stately homes. Over the years, they gained in popularity as the flooring became more widely accessible and affordable. This resulted in solid wood flooring being installed in most homes by the 1920’s. It’s easy to see why homeowners were attracted to this trend in flooring. Woods natural beauty is not only aesthetically pleasing but adds warmth to a space.
Back then the hardwood flooring was installed by nailing into a wood subfloor – this was long before engineered wood flooring and the option of a click and lock mechanism had started to be developed or manufactured.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood floorboards are made up of anything between 3 and 12 layers of ply, which creates the strong and stable core. The top veneer is solid hardwood which is finished with oil or lacquer for extra protection, this layer is also called the wear layer. Its thickness varies depending on the quality you decide to go for. A supporting layer adds stability to the engineered wood flooring making it resistant to expansion and contraction which can occur due to fluctuation in temperature.
It is the fact that the top layer is real wood that gives engineered oak flooring the same appearance and texture as a solid wood floor but at a much lower cost as well as host of other benefits.
The Invention of Engineered Wood
Engineered wood flooring was developed after the second world war, with the veterans returning home and the damage the war had caused to properties creating a huge increase in demand for housing. This urgency in constructing houses fast meant that the wood subfloors were soon replaced by concrete subfloors, as an inexpensive and time efficient substitute. It was soon discovered that solid wood floors were difficult to install on top of the concrete subfloors which resulted in the need to find a different type of flooring – leading to the invention of engineered wood flooring.
Present Day Engineered Floors
Engineered flooring has all the same characteristics as the solid wood floor. As its exceedingly difficult to spot the difference between solid wood and engineered wood flooring its popularity has grown over the years. With the technological advances and development of the click and lock mechanism and floorboards are easier than ever to install.
Earlier, the boards were available in only one thickness but now boards of different thicknesses are manufactured. The thicker the board the higher the quality.
Modern day floorboards are versatile and can be installed anywhere in the home, be it kitchens, halls or living rooms. Being a cost-effective option and easy to install, many people renovating their homes now choose engineered wood flooring. In fact, it is now a major competitor to solid wood floors.
Interior designers often favor engineered wood flooring because of its many options of colours, finishes and textures.
Advantages of Engineered Floors
There are many benefits ofengineered wood flooring UKover solid wood.A few of them are mentioned below:
- It can be installed over concrete subfloor as opposed to solid wood timber.
- It is less prone to damages caused due to moisture and temperature changes.
- It is easy and quick to install.
- The top veneer is available in numerous woods and finishes.
- More effects and textures can be created to improve its aesthetics.
- The core of the engineered floors can expand and contract easily without being warped, unlike solid wood.
- It comes pre-finished at the factory and saves drying time which is not the case with timber floors.
- The factory finish lasts longer than that of the on-site finish on solid wood flooring.
- It can be installed anywhere in the home and, unlike solid wood, engineered wood flooring is suitable for bathrooms and kitchens.
- It can be installed with underfloor heating.
- It is easy to maintain – wear and tear can be taken care of as it can be refinished.
- It can be effortlessly removed and re-installed without damage to the boards.
If you are looking for premium quality flooring for your home or office, One Step Beyond can be your go-to online destination. They offer bespoke flooring options in an array of colours and textures to complement your interiors. You can discuss your requirements in detail with them and seek expert advice.