How to Know Which Wood Flooring Type Is Right for You Hardwood or engineered? Reclaimed or new? Cherry or oak?


Know Which Wood Flooring Type Is Right for You

If you’ve ever watched an episode of home renovation TV, you know the allure of wood flooring—and maybe even have pulled up some old carpet in your own home, furtively hoping for the glimpse of hardwood beneath. No matter which wood flooring type you have in your home, the look is classic and works with virtually every interior style. But not all wood flooring is the same! The type you choose—solid versus engineered, finished versus unfinished, oak versus pine—will have a huge effect not just on how the look but also how it wears, and how much you’ll have to maintain it over time.

Solid vs. Engineered

The first decision to make: Do you want solid wood floors or engineered? It’s an aesthetic decision, sure, but also a practical one. Here’s the difference.


Solid wood floorboards, as their name suggests, are made from solid planks of hardwood. They’re common in older houses and can be sanded and re-stained many times. The biggest downside? They may warp in a humid environment.



Engineered floorboards are made up of layers of wood veneer (thin sheets of real wood). They often come pre-finished and are actually more durable than solid wood boards when it comes to warping and gaping. However, given that these boards are made up of thin layers, they likely can’t be refinished. So, if you think you might want to switch floorboard colors in a few years, they probably aren’t for you.

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