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One of the most common questions asked when people are thinking about wood floors is the difference between solid wood and engineered wood flooring.

At Floor Coverings International in Western NC and Asheville, we love the look and unique benefits of both styles. We’ve put together a quick list of the key benefits and drawbacks of both flooring options. Be sure to check it out before deciding on the right type of wood for your home!

Solid Hardwood


  • The classic hardwood option, solid hardwood boasts an unrivaled level of durability. This is primarily due to its thickness, which is around three quarters of an inch.
  • Hardwood flooring can be sanded numerous times throughout its long life.
  • You can choose from virtually every species of wood.
  • It has an excellent resale value.


  • Hardwood floor can be expensive.
  • The total installation and finishing process can take multiple months and cause some inconvenience to you and your family.
  • It does not hold up well to moisture and shouldn’t be used in rooms like the bathroom or basement where humidity and moisture are common.

Engineered Hardwood


  • It’s more affordable than solid hardwood. Engineered wood is made with two thin layers of solid wood that sandwich a thick center that’s made of medium-density fiberboard or something similar.
  • It holds up to moisture marginally better than solid wood.
  • Excellent resale value if the floors are still in good condition.
  • Installation can be done in a few days, especially if the boards come pre-finished, which is very common.


  • You can only sand engineered wood a couple of times during its life.
  • Due to its construction, engineered wood has a slightly shorter life than solid wood. The thin top layer can become chipped or delaminated over time.
  • Generally your wood choices are limited to hardwoods like birch, walnut and maple. Softwoods are rarely used for engineered wood.

Ready for your new wood floors? Call Floor Coverings International in the Asheville area today for a free in-home consultation.

Photo Credit: Santiago Cornejo