Hardwood Buying Guide

Types Of Hardwood


Solid wood flooring is made from solid planks of wood. The tongues and grooves lock the flooring together, but does require either a nail down or glue down installation for best results. Solid hardwood is not recommended for installation below ground level or in bathrooms.


Engineered wood flooring is 3 to 5 layers of wood, laminated together in a cross-grain construction. This makes it more stable and will not expand or contract like a solid wood floor. Engineered wood can be installed below ground level making it a great choice for finished basements. The installation method for engineered is different for each product, some have tongue and groove that simply lock together and others require to be either glued or nailed/stapled down.


Cork flooring is a product made from the bark of the cork oak tree that is turned into flooring after being ground, formed into sheets and then baked in a kiln. Cork flooring is highly resilient to pressure and impact due to the millions of tiny air pockets it contains. In fact, cork floors are able to take on their original shape after foot traffic or the high pressure and weight from furniture legs. Depending on the particular product most cork floors are either glued down or installed using the click and lock method.


Bamboo is a type of grass that is steamed, flattened and bonded together to create flooring with a unique appearance. It has many of the properties of hardwood flooring, including long-lasting durability and easy maintenance. Bamboo has a natural resistance to moisture making it an option for kitchens and bathrooms. In addition, bamboo’s high sustainability makes it attractive to consumers seeking environmentally friendly options in flooring. There are 3 types of bamboo flooring:

Solid Bamboo – Solid bamboo floors are strips of bamboo adhered together, running the entire thickness of the plank. Solid bamboo or “tongue and groove bamboo” can either be nailed down or a glued down to a wood subfloor, but is not recommended to be installed over concrete subfloors.

Engineered Bamboo – engineered bamboo is made up of a bamboo top layer laminated to multiple layers of fiberboard. Bamboo floors are very durable and can be installed directly over concrete in either by gluing down or floating.

Strand Woven – Strand woven bamboo is created by shredding bamboo into strips. The strips are then woven together using resins creating a very durable floor.