What’s the difference between solid and engineered timber flooring?

A question that we’re commonly asked is ‘What’s the difference between solid timber flooring and engineered hardwood?’ We’re here to give you a few differentiations between the two products. Although solid and engineered flooring are both made out of hard timber, the composition and installation process of the board types is where the subtle differences appear.


While solid hardwood planks are made out of a single solid piece of timber, engineered floors are constructed from thin layers of hardwood bonded over a premium-quality plywood layer that gives the flooring very good stability. 

Engineered hardwood is available in a wide variety of colours and boards vary in size to suit your individual requirements. Solid timber retains its character with it’s unique tones and grains.

A recent project installing Havwoods engineered hardwood at a home in Mosman, Sydney.


Solid timber flooring is installed with a tongue-and-groove system, in which each board is top-nailed to the subfloor on battens or plywood. While engineered hardwood is directly glued to the subfloor and can even be glued to concrete subfloors providing it has been levelled using a levelling compound.


As solid timber flooring is made up of solid pieces of timber, it means that it can be resanded and repolished several times to breathe a new life into them. You can alter the appearance of solid timber flooring by lightening or darkening the colour with stains and hardwax oils.

Engineered flooring does not warp and flex upon contact with moisture like solid timber flooring does, however, it cannot usually be refinished as many times as solid hardwood due to its thin layer of actual hardwood over plywood. Therefore, after a few times of refinishing, it must be replaced.


Solid timber flooring costs more to purchase than engineered flooring. The cost of engineered flooring depends on the plank thickness and quality of the flooring brand and range.

Solid blackbutt flooring was installed throughout this home and finished with a water-based finish.

Related Blog Posts

Solid Wood Vs Engineered Wood Flooring – Which Should You Choose?

Solid Wood Flooring Typically crafted from a hardwood species, such as oak, maple, or walnut, solid wood flooring, as the name suggests, is made completely from a single, solid piece of wood. Solid wood flooring can be sanded and refinished several times over its life, however it is prone to warping in humid or damp conditions.Engineered Wood FlooringSimilar in appearance to solid wood, the construction of these boards features multiple sheets of thin hardwood bonded together over a premium base material. This construction provides excellent resistance to warping and a long lifespan of around 25 to 30 years with proper care and maintenance.

Read More


About 'DIY' InstallationWhen people consider DIY floating floor installation, it is usually due to budget restraints. While they don’t necessarily save on the cost of materials, they believe they are saving a significant amount on labour costs. These days, you can quite easily search for tutorial videos online about anything, and floorboard installation is no different. The problem with these videos is that they often make the task look easier than it really is, advise incorrect techniques or use improper adhesives and tools that will result in an extremely inferior finish. What may seem to be a relatively easy, cost effective and self-rewarding task, usually ends up more time consuming and more expensive in the long run.

Read More


Q: What is my best option; am l better off buying a 14mm (Overlay) or 19mm (Traditional) hardwood floor?A. It is obviously personal preference and each job has different requirement; a 14mm floor board in our (Overlay Range) can be sanded the same amount of time as a 19mm floorboard it comes in a shorter random spread which is easier to manage on the job site and has been designed to go over a flat solid surface which is classified as a non-structural floor and in most cases is a better option than 19mm due to less core moisture in the product, therefore a more stable option. On the other hand, a 19mm floor board (Traditional Range) has been designed to go over floor joist which is classified as a structural floor. A 19mm floor board has the same ware layer as a 14mm floor board; it also has a longer average length spread however dependent on your circumstances the choice is yours.

Read More

Whether you are building a new home or renovating, we can help you create your dream living space.

Contact Us today