Solid hardwood needs to be installed at or above grade level and is nailed to a plywood subfloor. It’s more susceptible to temperature and humidity causing either cupping or gaping, if not maintained properly. Solid hardwood is highly durable and can be sanded and refinished many times. Also, it is easy to clean and maintain and adds to value of your home.
Engineered hardwood is a great alternative to traditional hardwood floors. Typically, top layer is made of real wood, meaning it can be sanded and refinished later. Can be installed in a number of ways. Works well where humidity conditions could affect solid hardwood (basements, kitchens, bathrooms etc.)
Laminate’s top layer is a printed photograph of wood, so it doesn’t look as realistic, but it’s more affordable than solid and engineered hardwood. It’s available in a broader range of colors, it’s easy to wipe clean (good option for dog and cat owners), doesn’t trap dust (good for people with allergies) and it won’t scratch as easily as natural materials. Laminate provides moderate protection from moisture if installed properly and is less likely to grow mold.
Vinyl floor is a great option if you are looking for extreme durability. Usually, vinyl floor is waterproof, which means that it can be installed in any area of your home. Also, it’s warm, quiet and resistant to wear and tear.
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