Solid vs Engineered Hardwood Flooring

One of the most important decisions you’ll make in your home is flooring. Whatever you choose, it will have to hold up to wear and tear, and will be the heart of your home. Have you ever noticed how much you use your floor? Every single day, you walk across it countless times. It’s the floor your kids will play on, your pets will run across, and you will entertain guests on. So naturally, the flooring you choose matters. But which is best: solid hardwood flooring or engineered hardwood flooring?

What is engineered hardwood flooring?

Engineered hardwood flooring is an alternative to solid hardwood and is made up of several layers of wood. The top layer is genuine solid hardwood, but underneath are layers of crisscrossing plywood. These layers create a solid, stable core, and are the secret to engineered flooring’s success.

Because of the layers, engineered hardwood flooring is often more durable than solid flooring. It is easy to maintain and still looks just as good as solid hardwood. Can you tell which picture has solid hardwood and which is engineered?

The bottom picture is engineered hardwood. Looks solid!

Across America

Historically, solid hardwood has been the most popular flooring choice across America. But recently, that changed. In early 2019, Houzz released a Kitchen Trends Report. This report reveals which features are trending in U.S. kitchen remodels. For the first time ever, solid hardwood flooring is not #1.

Engineered hardwood flooring took the lead in this year’s report. Houzz cites two main reasons for its success:

  • Engineered wood is easier to install than hardwood
    • Often, you can skip a plywood subfloor when you install engineered. You also have the choice of more installation methods with engineered than solid.
  • Engineered wood planks don’t expand and contract as much as solid hardwood planks do
    • This means that the wood won’t change as much when the heat and humidity changes, which is an important feature with Chicago’s weather.
    • However, this doesn’t mean the flooring won’t change at all, and we still recommend using a humidifier to make sure your wood stays pristine.


There is a common myth that solid hardwood allows you to refinish the floor more times than engineered hardwood. For some lower quality engineered flooring this might be true, but PurezaWood is a premium engineered hardwood flooring brand.

Engineered hardwood flooring (left) has a larger wear layer than the solid hardwood flooring (right)

Our flooring uses a high-quality hardwood top layer, which can be refinished 5-7 times, as much as standard solid hardwood. So feel free to change your flooring style along with your lifestyle–engineered hardwood flooring will gladly change with you.

Where to buy your flooring

At PurezaWood, we specialize in engineered hardwood flooring. Our flooring is high quality, reputable, and durable. Because we sell direct from the manufacturer, we cut out brokers and stores, and are able to offer you our product at a better price.

We understand that building and renovations are stressful and expensive. Let us help you cut down the cost without sacrificing quality with our premium engineered hardwood flooring.

Are you ready to buy your new engineered hardwood? We specialize in French White Oak and American Walnut species. Check out our Instagram and Facebook pages for a behind-the-scenes look at our warehouse, plenty of hardwood floor inspiration, and home advice. Schedule an appointment at our Chicago showroom or contact us today.

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