Engineered wood floors are available in tongue and groove strips that can be stapled and/or glued to the subfloor. Due to new technology, “long plank ” veneers are designed for use in “floating” installations below grade or over concrete, where boards are glued to each other and not attached to the subfloor. This type installation allows shifting to protect against moisture and humidity.
Engineered wood floor finishes are plentiful, available in just about every domestic hardwood and softwood as well as in most exotic woods, where fabulous savings can be captured. Unless specially ordered, all engineered wood floors arrive prefinished.
The thickness of the outer layer and the quality of the plies or substrate is usually reflected in the length of the warranty. The specifics of the veneer should be a consideration. Engineered wood floors with veneer thickness of 1/12 inch cannot and should not be sanded and/or refinished. On the other hand, if the top layer is ¼ inch or more, the floor can accommodate three or more sanding and refinishing treatments during the life span.
This means the stain can be changed or preserved and will add years of life to the floor. It is strongly recommended that the engineered floor of choice have at least three layers of cross-stacked substrate. Five plies will be that much more stable, even if the wear layer is not thick.
Remember that the top layer or “wear layer” is all about achieving the look, feel and warmth you desire. The substrate is about stability and preservation.
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