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What is the difference between Solid and Engineered Flooring?


Whilst solid timber flooring is made from harvested trees, JEDA engineered boards are a man-made product built from gluing or pressing plywood together to form a base layer, with a real timber veneer top layer. Unlike solid timber which is made from solid dimensional lumbers, manufactured or engineered flooring can be made from smaller trees. Because of the base layer, engineered flooring is the superior product when it comes to dimensional stability - solid timber is far more likely to warp and cup.

It also means that engineered wood is ‘green’ and helps our prized forests conserve. Engineered boards are designed and manufactured in a way to resist humidity and thermal changes. Therefore, they can be installed everywhere a solid board is usually installed plus somewhere using a solid timber is not practical. For example, a solid flooring should not be used in an underground floor or laundry room, whereas an engineered floor can be installed on any floor level including basement and underground. Since they better tolerate humidity and temperature fluctuations.

Engineered boards are cheaper than solid timber. A high-quality manufactured board is covered with a high-quality solid wood skin called veneer or wear layer, making it difficult to distinguish from a solid board. A protective coat (polyurethane or oil) is applied on top of the veneer layer to reduce wear and tear.

A manufactured floorboard is lighter than a solid board. Manufactured floorboards are very versatile and available in a variety of colours, patterns, and species. Most manufactured boards are prefinished in the factory and designed with a click-lock or tongue and groove system at the outer edge. Hence, they can be installed easily and quickly with minimal tools. Although both solid and manufactured floorings can be installed over radiant heat, because manufactured boards are thinner and transmit the heat better, manufactured boards are a better choice in this case.