Common Misconceptions About Engineered Hardwood Floors

You may be wondering, why choose engineered wood flooring? For many reasons. Engineered wood floors bring a warm, luxurious feeling to your home. They are also easy to clean and highly durable, making them a great alternative to solid wood flooring.

Engineered hardwood floors come in various finishes, styles, and colours. It can be relatively challenging for newbies to figure out their way around these flooring options. And that’s why it is not surprising that most of our clients still have many questions and, sometimes, misconceptions about engineered hardwood floors.

With over 15 years of experience in engineered wood flooring, we at Wood Flooring Ireland feel it’s our responsibility to debunk the myths and misconceptions about it. Without further ado, let’s get into it.

Top 6 Common Misconceptions About Engineered Hardwood Floors

Engineered Hardwood Floors are Not Real Wood

Due to their better look and higher resistance to warping, engineered hardwoods can sometimes look and feel fake (these are the lower-quality types). However, engineered hardwood is wood! Its stunning appearance and feel are due to the way the flooring material is constructed.

Engineered hardwood flooring is made by gluing and pressing together several layers of plywood to make a strong bond. Typical engineered wood can have between 3 and 12 layers of plywood underneath.

The layers are set up in a way that makes the flooring stronger and more resistant to things like humidity and warping, which can happen to solid wood. A stronger core that’s glued and pressed is the primary differentiator between engineered hardwood and solid wood flooring. For more information, check out: What are the different types of engineered wood flooring?

You Can’t Sand or Refinish Engineered Hardwood Floors

Engineered hardwood floors are made of real wood products. So, you can sand and refinish them just like any other solid wood floor. But before you start sanding your engineered hardwood floors, you need to think about how thick the lamella hardwood layer is.

In most cases, the thickness of the top layer of engineered wood allows you to sand and refinish the floor one or two times in its lifespan. Each time you sand the floor, you lose a little bit of its thickness. So, it is essential to keep track of how often your floor has been sanded. The lamella layer of engineered hardwood floors comes in different thicknesses, which is important to know to avoid sanding right through the hardwood top layer.

The lamella layer of engineered hardwood floors comes in different thicknesses, which is important to know. If your floors have a thin top layer, you should never sand them even once. But it can be hard to figure out the details of engineered hardwood floors, especially if you just moved into the house.

Engineered Wood Floors Offer Limited Designs Options

Engineered hardwood floors offer a great range of grades, colours and designs. That’s just one of the advantages of engineered wood flooring.

Unlike solid wood, engineered wood planks are available to suit all tastes and budgets. In other words, you can get the floor you desire without spending a fortune. Some of the engineered wood flooring designs you can choose from today include:

Whether you desire a classic, contemporary, or antique-styled floor, engineered hardwood flooring has precisely what you need. The best thing is that you don’t have to break the bank to afford it.

Engineered Hardwood Floors are Hard to Clean

It will always be easy to clean an engineered hardwood floor as it is a hard surface. It absorbs less dust and debris compared to carpets and other flooring options. So, you might actually have an easier time keeping an engineered wood floor clean than the majority of other flooring alternatives.

Cleaning an engineered wood floor is one of the easiest ways to maintain its great look and lengthen its lifespan, especially when you follow the right wood floor care tips. However, using the wrong cleaning techniques might ruin it and lower its durability. Here are a few tips on how to clean engineered wood floors the right way.

NOTE: It is easier to clean your engineered wood floors if you’ve taken precautions to prevent them from getting dirty in the first place.

For starters, it is essential to refinish your floors regularly (every 3 or 4 years). Finishes form an impermeable, protective layer over your floors when they are dry and hard. This helps keep spills from getting into the wood and staining it. The coat also ensures dirt settles only on the top of the floor, making it easier to clean with one swipe. 

Engineered Hardwood Floors are Less Stable Than Solid Wood Flooring

The notion that engineered hardwood floors are less stable than solid wood floors is false—it couldn’t be any further from the truth. Because of the way it is constructed, an engineered wood floor is more stable than other types of flooring.  As was already said, engineered wood is made by stacking and glueing together multiple strips of plywood under heat and pressure. The outer layer (topmost layer) is the veneer, which is less than 1/8” thick. However, the rest of the body is made of hardwood, which is even more stable than solid wood.

Manufacturers use a unique technique for layering the multiple layers of plywood that make up the body of engineered wood floors. Since the pieces are stacked in opposite directions, the product won’t get bigger or smaller as the humidity changes. Moisture and humidity resistance make your engineered wood floor more stable and a perfect flooring option for all parts of your home, including the basement and bathrooms. 

Engineered hardwood floors are challenging to install.

Engineered hardwood floors are relatively easier to install than most alternatives – here is why!

Manufacturing engineered hardwood involves joining several layers of plywood together and topping it up with a solid wood top layer. As a result, it is easier to create wider planks than those of solid wood, which are milled directly from a single, thick piece of wood.

Besides that, engineered wood floor planks feature a tongue and grooved design that allows them to fit together seamlessly. That makes installation faster and relatively easier, even for DIY enthusiasts.


Despite all the years on the market, engineered wood is still a relatively new flooring alternative for many individuals. So, unless you are really into wood flooring, you can be forgiven for not knowing enough about the subject.

If you have any more questions or concerns about engineered wood flooring, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us or talk to one of our flooring experts at Wood Flooring Ireland. Call us at 021-462-9913 or fill out our contact form.

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