Engineered Vs. Laminate Flooring, which should you choose?

6th January 2018

Engineered Vs. Laminate Flooring, which should you choose?

by Mick Lawton your local Palmers Green DIY Doctor


In my article this month I define the difference between engineered wood flooring and laminate flooring so you can be clear of the pros and cons before making your choice.  


Engineered wood flooring Engineered wood flooring is a man-made product that is made from natural materials. Commonly made up of layers of ply that are bonded together, engineered wood flooring is always topped off with a layer of solid wood, it’s thanks to this solid wood finish that engineered wood looks so convincingly like solid wood. Engineered wood flooring has the advantage over solid wood that its stable structure means that it is much more resistant to expansion and contraction than solid wood. What this means is that it can safely be fitted in rooms where temperature and moisture fluctuations are significant, like bathrooms and kitchens. Engineered wood flooring can also be installed over under floor heating. Laminate flooring Laminate flooring on the other hand is a synthetic, man-made product that is made up of various layers that are fused together using a lamination process. Made up of typically five (or fewer layers), laminate flooring can be made to look like any material the manufacturer wants, because effectively the layer which makes up the image is just that, an image. Cost comparison Laminate flooring is often thought of as a cheaper option than engineered wood flooring however you should take into account the fact that engineered wood flooring is likely to last significantly longer than laminate flooring. It’s also worth remembering that many laminate floors require investment into an additional layer of underlay to make the floor stable and look good and this element can significantly increase what appears to be a low cost floor at the start. Ease of fitting Both engineered and laminate flooring are relatively quick and easy to install. It’s always beneficial to employ a specialist to lay your flooring to avoid problems in the future. Maintenance Each option only needs a regular vacuuming and, in the case of engineered wood flooring a light, moist mopping on a regular basis. With laminate flooring, you can afford be a bit more enthusiastic with your use of water. When it comes to significant maintenance, this is where the differences become really apparent. With engineered wood flooring you can re-sand and re-finish your floor 3-4 times during its lifetime. This simply isn’t possible with laminate flooring. In very general terms when you buy a laminate floor, you can expect a maximum life expectancy of around 10-15 years, whereas a quality engineered wood floor should last twice as long.


If you’d like to discuss which flooring option would suit your project best, please give me a call. I'm both local and affordable. Visit my website to see examples of my work, or contact me on 07985 412 599