Solid Hardwood Vs. Engineered Hardwood in Vancouver

As providers of hardwood flooring in Vancouver, the team members at BC Floors know that the debate surrounding engineered hardwood vs. solid hardwood is still ongoing. For purists, solid hardwood flooring is the only true flooring. Engineered alternatives were often seen as a more affordable but not entirely worthy substitute, but times have changed.

To understand the debate, it’s necessary to understand each product. Solid hardwood is typically a ¾ inch plank cut from a solid piece of wood. It comes in many different wood types and finishes, which range of sleek high gloss to modern mattes. By contrast, engineered hardwood is a thin slice of hardwood on top of plywood. It’s easier to install and works especially well for high traffic areas where durability is key.

Off hand, solid hardwood flooring seems to be the more desirable choice, but in the flooring market, engineered wood flooring now takes up the majority of the market share. Why? Because it has its own compelling points when compared to genuine hardwood.



As previously mentioned, both solid hardwood flooring and engineered hardwood come in a variety of colours and finishes. Sometimes hardwood flooring can be bought unfinished and treated on-site for a more customized look, but most people like to see what they’re getting beforehand. As far as design, engineered flooring offers a wider spectrum. This flooring comes in a stunning spectrum of finishes, textures and colours, highlighting the stunning blend of nature and technology.


Engineered hardwood is resilient, especially compared to the real stuff, which is often notorious for scratching and scuffing. However, when it comes to dealing with scratches, real hardwood can be sanded down (as it’s a thick plank) and refinished. Engineered hardwood can only be sanded once or twice. Moreover, as thin strips of wood, it’s easier to become delaminated or chipped, which means replacing the plank or floor. With proper maintenance, solid hardwood flooring can keep your home beautiful for decades.


Another difference between solid hardwood flooring and its engineered counterpart is installation costs. Genuine hardwood must be nailed or stapled down, unlike engineered wood which may be installed in a variety of ways, including stapling or nailing, fold-and-lock, or glue. This makes the latter much more economical to purchase and install. It’s also easier to replace a section or plank if damage occurs.


Solid hardwood should not be installed in bathrooms, basements, or anywhere that moisture is prevalent. The plywood core of engineered wood is much better for dealing with moisture unlike the genuine stuff, which has a tendency to warp. While there are some types of hardwood that are more resistant to moisture, pushing your luck is not recommended.


In terms of cost, engineered hardwood floors are a terrific option for those who gravitate to the look of wood, but need a durable option for their home and work spaces. It can be installed affordably in all spaces, enhancing the flow of the office or home. Solid hardwood is terrific for people who love the aesthetic and feel. In return for the maintenance and upkeep, it’s a beautiful option that will last decades.

BC Floors in Vancouver has a great selection of solid hardwood and engineered hardwood flooring that offers comfort and style. From narrow to wide plank hardwood flooring, there’s an assortment of styles to suit every taste and budget. Our team of experienced and highly skilled installers can provide floor installation services such as old floor removal and disposal, as well as subfloor levelling and preparation.

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