Engineered Wood Flooring vs Laminate Flooring: A Quick Comparison

Engineered Wood Flooring vs Laminate Flooring

When choosing flooring materials, people usually look for something different nowadays. Gone are the days when they only had a single thing in mind which was trending then.

Now there are more options available to them than ever before. Two such popular options are engineered wood flooring and laminate flooring.

Both laminate and engineered wood flooring are made of a few layers of material that have some semblance of naturality in them.

While engineered wood flooring’s topmost layer is made of wood, the core layer of laminate flooring is made of wood byproducts which are then bonded with resins. Both of them have some similarities but have a few differences that can not be ignored.

Let’s take a look at a comparative analysis of engineered wood flooring vs laminate flooring to find out what suits your needs better.

Engineered Wood Flooring

If you are looking for flooring that looks and somewhat feels like wood but isn’t as expensive, then engineered wood flooring is just the thing for you. Made from a core layer of plywood and the top layer of natural wood, the engineered wood flooring gives you the look and feel of natural wood.

There are quite a few advantages of engineered hardwood flooring, due to its natural wooden layer at the top. Also, this comes with some drawbacks as well. Let’s take a look at them.

Pros Of Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring’s composition gives it an edge over a lot of similar floorings of its kind. They are:

1. Stylish Looking

Since more and more people are looking to get wooden flooring, the top layer of engineered wood flooring certainly helps them achieve that. It looks more stylish than nonwood floorings in all honesty. Also, engineered wood floorings are available in various finishes, which means you get to choose what wood your floor is going to resemble without having to install that particular flooring.

2. Moisture And Temperature Resistant

Only the uppermost layer of the engineered wood flooring is made of natural wood, not the whole thing. As a result, heat and moisture don’t damage it like they would in the case of natural wood floorings. It doesn’t change its shape and size due to the temperature change, nor does it rot away after coming in contact with moisture. This makes it suitable flooring for places such as the kitchen and basement.

3. Durable

Since engineered wood floorings aren’t susceptible to damage done due to moisture and heat, they last a long time and are very durable. So it saves the owners quite a lot of time and money because of not having to replace them often.

4. Installation Is Easy And Cheap

Another reason engineered wood floorings are quite high up the preference list of people aside from their aesthetics is their low price and easy installation process. You can easily install the flooring yourselves and so don’t have to take help from professionals.

On the other hand, engineered wood flooring cost is also quite low compared to natural wooden flooring, which plays a big role in influencing homeowners. According to our research, A high-end engineered floor costs $8 to $13, a midrange floor costs $5 to $10, and a low-end floor costs $3 to $5 per square foot.

Cons Of Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood floors have a few noticeable disadvantages of engineered wood flooring. They are:

1. Unsuitable For Children And Pets

Children and pets scratch the flooring very often. As a result, the aesthetic of the flooring is damaged, which mind you, doesn’t have anything to do with its durability. So it’s better not to have them in your home if you have children or pets. Or install them in such a place which is unreachable by them.

2. Difficult To Clean

Performing regular cleaning on engineered wood flooring is quite easy, as you can just broom and vacuum them. The problem arises when you have to perform heavy cleaning. You can’t use a mop on them, rather you have to use a special cleaner and damp cloth to clean them, especially the more traditional floorings.

3. Can’t Refinish Them At Will

The natural wood layer is quite thin. So when its finishing is damaged, you will not be able to sand and refinish it according to your wish. In that case, you’ll need to replace that flooring.

Laminate Flooring

There are quite a few common things between laminate flooring and vinyl flooring. But the main difference between these two is that laminate flooring’s core layer is made of natural things such as byproducts of wood which then bond with resins while vinyl flooring is made of entirely synthetic products. The uppermost layer of laminate flooring is made of plastic.

Laminate flooring has quite a few advantages as well as disadvantages to them. They are as follows.

Pros Of Laminate Flooring

Because of the natural core layer, laminate flooring has an upper hand over a lot of its contemporaries. These are:

1. Gorgeous Appearance

It isn’t a must that your floor has to be or at least has to look like wooden floors. Laminate flooring’s various embossing and designs allow you to have floors that look like they are made of things like wood, stone, ceramic, etc without actually having to buy those floorings. So not only will you be able to have floors that look stunning and stylish, but you don’t have to spend a lot on them either.

2. Eco Friendly

As times have changed, so have people’s priorities. Almost everything people do nowadays, keep an eye out for what is good for the environment. So if there’s anything eco-friendly, it immediately gets bumped up towards the top of the list. The natural core layer makes sure that it doesn’t release toxins when it’s burned or damaged. Yes, when you compare it to wood or other floorings that are completely natural, it might not seem like such a big deal, but compared to others of its kind, it’s pretty friendly to the environment.

3. Resistant To Stains

Most laminate floorings’ topmost layer is made of a colorless layer of aluminum oxide. As a result, it becomes resistant to a variety of stains, which preserves the aesthetic of the flooring.

4. Quiet And Comfy

You will feel quite comfortable when walking on laminate flooring. If a premium underlayment is laid underneath the flooring, it gets even better as the feeling is very warm and cozy. This comes in quite handy in winter when the floor is usually freezing.

Also, you don’t want your floor to creak and make hollow wooden noises every time you walk on them. Laminate flooring isn’t susceptible to these problems as long as there is an underlayment of foam.

Cons Of Laminate Flooring

Like everything else, there are some disadvantages to installing laminate flooring. They are:

1. Not Very Durable

One thing laminate floorings are not known for, it’s their durability. On average, laminate flooring lasts about 10 years before you need to replace them.

2. Costs More In The Long Run

Although they are primarily quite cheap, due to their lack of durability, you need to spend quite a sum of money replacing them every few years.

Read: Luxury Vinyl Plank Vs Engineered Hardwood Flooring

Ending Note

From the above comparative analysis of engineered wood flooring vs laminate flooring, it can be deduced that between two floorings that have natural elements to them, laminate flooring has an edge when it comes to aesthetics while engineered wood floorings provide durability.

So installing engineered wood floorings in the basement and kitchen and laminate floorings in areas that have fewer appliances might be a good idea.

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