Hardwood vs. Engineered Hardwood Flooring

Comparing real hardwood flooring with engineered hardwood flooring is like comparing apples and oranges. Both are great options with long-lasting charm that are also quite functional. However, they are somewhat different. We’ll go into detail about both floor types with the hope to help you make the decision—real hardwood or engineered hardwood:

Compositionhardwood vs engineered wood

Hardwood: 100% real hardwood. Normally 3.25’’ in width with a plank width ranging from 5-10’’.

Engineered Hardwood: Multiple layers of plywood that are topped with one layer of real hardwood. In terms of dimensions, engineered hardwood is basically the same as real hardwood.


Hardwood: Lasts for quite a while, up to 40 years if maintained properly. Any scratches or blemishes that come about over time can be fixed with a refinishing job. Hardwood flooring can be refinished multiple times, making it a worthy investment for homeowners.

Engineered Hardwood: Can last for just about as long as real hardwood, but only if well maintained. Engineered hardwood flooring can’t be refinished as often as hardwood can. In fact, engineered hardwood can typically only be refinished two or three times. Therefore, there is not as much room for error when it comes to engineered hardwood flooring. If it’s not properly maintained then you are looking at a lifetime of only 20-30 years.

Ease of Installation

Hardwood: Professional installation is required. Planks must either be nailed or stapled down and the process is quite tedious. It’ll take about a day for your hardwood flooring to be installed. Just make sure to hire a reputable installation company to make sure the job is done right.

Engineered hardwood: Not as tedious a task as hardwood installation, but professional assistance is still recommended. Engineered hardwood can be installed via the staple-down, nailing, gluing or lock-and-click methods. The installation process will take less time, but it’s similar overall.


Hardwood: Any kind of wood can be made into a hardwood floor. Options are basically endless. There are more common types to choose from, such as maple, and there are more unique types, like Brazilian Cherry.

Engineered Hardwood: Since engineered wood is topped with real hardwood, the options are basically the same. Some restrictions apply due to width, but many types are still available.

Areas of Use

Hardwood: Great for areas that experience high foot traffic like living rooms, entryways and stairwells. The only places you’d really need to be careful of are those that are vulnerable to moisture. Particularly, kitchens and bathrooms. Moisture that leaks through the seems of a hardwood floor can cause cupping, warping and curling. It takes exposure to moisture for a long time, but you should still be careful with spills and clean them as soon as possible.

Engineered Hardwood: Essentially the same limitations as hardwood. Engineered hardwood flooring is vulnerable to moisture, but not as much as hardwood. The reason for this is that engineered hardwood’s multi-layer composition makes it more difficult for moisture to get all the way through to the core of the plank. So, between real hardwood engineered hardwood, engineered has slightly more versatility of use in a home.

Resale Value

Hardwood: Can help increase a home’s resale value quite a bit. Home buyers are find hardwood flooring very appealing, because they know they’ll get long-lasting, good-looking flooring.

Engineered Hardwood: Because it’s topped with real hardwood, engineered hardwood has pretty much the same affect on home resale value as real hardwood flooring.

Real hardwood vs. Engineered Hardwood: what did you decide?

Honestly, both are great options. They both have some amazing benefits.

For all your flooring needs, rely on Nadine Floor Company. Give us a call at (469) 666-4530 or visit our website—nadinefloors.com. We have a wide variety of flooring choices and styles in our selection and we’ll install your brand-new flooring for you, too! Check out our blog for more useful home remodeling tips.