Date: 08.03.2024
Author: ian
Category: Buying Guide

What are the Different Types of Wood Flooring?

If you’re planning on renovating your interiors, you’ve likely found yourself wondering what the different types of wood flooring there are to choose from. 



Wood flooring comes in many varieties, ranging from budget-friendly laminate to solid hardwood. However, engineered wood flooring is the way to go if you’re looking to shop sustainably and invest in a durable product. Engineered flooring is far more resilient to daily wear and tear, moisture damage, and temperature extremes than other materials. It’s also available in a wide range of colour options and styles that can be readily adapted to any space.  

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves, let us explain the various types of wooden flooring and some factors for each that could influence your choice.


What Types of Wood Flooring are There? 

1. Engineered Wood Flooring 

Engineered wood flooring is an eco-friendly product is made up of several distinct layers, with a plywood core providing exceptional levels of stability and durability. The outer layers of engineered flooring are made from high-quality wood, providing you with the rich aesthetics of conventional hardwood floors. The thickness of veneer layers vary between products, but most will allow for sanding of your wood flooring 4 to 5 times should you need to refinish your floor. 

Engineered wood flooring is also more versatile. Because the robust construction makes it hard-wearing and resistant to warping, you can install it in spaces that would normally wreak havoc on solid wood floors. If you’re eager to install oak wood flooring in a kitchen or bathroom but are worried about moisture, engineered wood flooring provides the perfect alternative to hardwood.  


2. Solid Wood Flooring 

If you’re looking for a rustic aesthetic, you’ve probably considered solid wood flooring. As the name suggests, this flooring is made entirely from wood, with oak, ash, and walnut being some of the most popular choices. Solid wood flooring tends to be sourced from a single piece of hardwood, producing a consistent grain and textured finish. 

Provided it’s not exposed to temperature extremes and moisture, solid wood flooring can prove incredibly durable. Because of its solid construction, it can also be sanded many times should you need to apply new layers of finish. However, solid wood flooring isn’t the most eco-friendly option if the material comes from unsustainable sources. The raw materials are also expensive, making it an impractical choice for larger spaces. 


3. Reclaimed Wood Flooring 

Reclaimed wood flooring is a good compromise for those who want the aesthetic of solid wood floor, but don’t have a limitless budget to play with. Reclaimed flooring is usually made from repurposed timber that has been sourced from old structures and masonry. 

It can be hard to find sufficient reclaimed materials to resurface larger spaces, although many people are prepared to embrace this rustic and uneven aesthetic.  This type of flooring also often requires considerable resizing and refinishing. If you’re able to carry out this work yourself, you can cut down on manual labour costs. However, if you’re purchasing reclaimed flooring directly from a supplier, these costs will be factored into the overall price.  


4. Laminate Flooring  

Laminate flooring readily available flooring material usually consists of several layers, with a high-density fibreboard core and a balancing sheet at the base. The visible surface of laminate flooring includes a decorative veneer sheet, which itself is encased with a layer of laminate. Once these layers have been bonded together, individual tiles or panels are cut to size.  
Most laminate flooring is relatively affordable and easy to install, and remove and also includes self-adhesive bases. There’s also an impressive range of finishes and colours to choose from. However, while laminate surfaces are easy to maintain, they’re not particularly durable. Should your laminate flooring become superficially damaged, you won’t be able to sand and refinish the upper layer. Many laminate flooring products also contain VOCs and harmful chemicals.   


Why Engineered Wood Flooring is the Best Type of Wood Flooring

So, we’ve explored a great variety of different types of wood flooring, now it’s time to make the right choice. We may be biased, but assuming your budget can be stretched a little and you are looking for a durable yet sustainable option that still gives the authentic wood look and feel, engineered wood flooring is your number one choice. Here’s why:

It is a sustainable product 

Nowadays, considering sustainability when making buying decisions is crucial. Unlike solid hardwood flooring, engineered flooring has very little impact on the environment. Because of its multi-ply construction and plywood core, engineered flooring uses very little virgin wood. Only the veneer layer requires newly harvested wood, putting minimal strain on forests. 

It Has a Superior Construction and Durable Design 

The overall durability of engineered wood flooring is comparable to that of solid hardwood flooring. Although solid wood is often considered the most robust option for flooring, engineered wood can prove just as sturdy. Because of its multi-ply construction and dense plywood core, engineered wood flooring won’t warp when exposed to high temperatures. It also copes well with daily wear and tears. Eventually, you may decide that your flooring needs sanding and refinishing. When you invest in premium engineered wood flooring, you’re free to carry out this occasional maintenance without worrying about damaging the integrity of the material.  


It is Resistant to Moisture 

Moisture resistance is one area where engineered wood flooring excels. Even the best solid hardwoods can become damaged when exposed to water, making them unsuited to rooms like bathrooms and kitchens. With engineered wood, you can be confident that your flooring will cope with regular spills and occasional leaks. Premium engineered wood flooring can even withstand flood damage.  


There are Multiple Design Options 

Even though engineered wood flooring is a relatively new product; you’re not limited when it comes to style and colour options. At Wood Flooring Ireland, you’ll find a complete range of engineered wood products available for your home: 

  • Plank wood flooring is the preferred choice for many people. Because planks can be purchased in a variety of widths, they can be used in just about any interior. Long planks are particularly good for larger spaces, creating clean lines and a minimal aesthetic.  
  • Herringbone flooring and it’s distinctive zigzag pattern is the way to go if you’re looking to transform your interiors with a timeless touch of character. This flooring style has been around for centuries but works equally well in a contemporary apartment or traditional country home. 
  • Chevron flooring is similar in style to herringbone flooring, but the key difference here is that planks are cut at a 45-degree angle. When installed, chevron flooring panels produce a V-shape or arrow-inspired motif.  


You Have a Choice Colour Options 

It’s easy to keep things simple when choosing oak wood flooring. However, you’re not exclusively limited to natural hues.  Medium wood flooring is ideal if you’re keen to keep things muted in kitchens or more contemporary spaces. If you’re eager to maximise your square footage and give the illusion of space, light wood flooring is also worth considering. Dark wood flooring is also an exceptional choice if you want to make a statement and provide a stark contrast to a light interior design.


Overhaul Your Interiors with Bespoke Wood Flooring 

Rethinking your flooring is one of the easiest ways to instantly transform your home. If your existing floors are overdue an overhaul, it only makes sense to replace them with engineered wood flooring. Premium engineered wood flooring is a long-lasting alternative to laminate and is also far more robust than many traditional hardwoods. 

Here at Wood Flooring Ireland, we can help you realise your home renovation dreams, so browse our selection and order a free sample today! 

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