Prefinished vs. Unfinished Hardwood

Learn about Unfinished and Prefinished hardwood as well as Engineered vs. Solid Hardwood.

Prefinished vs. Site Finished Hardwood

Finding a hardwood floor for your home brings up many questions, such as: “Should I get prefinished or site finished floor?” And “What is better, solid or engineered hardwood?” At Bradford Carpet One Floor & Home, we are the flooring experts, and we are here every step of the way through the buying and installation process. With that said, here is our insights on finishes and engineered vs. solid hardwood. 

What Does Prefinished Hardwood Mean?

When deciding whether you want prefinished or site finished hardwood, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Prefinished hardwood means you won’t have the smell of the stains and polyurethane lingering throughout your house. If you add Site-Finish during colder months of the year, it may be harder to get the smell to go away due to the inability to keep windows open for a long period.

  • Site-finished hardwood can cause more of a mess due to the sanding process. 

  • Prefinished hardwood is available in hand scraped styles, so you don’t have to worry about sanding in your home.

  • Site-Finish can cause variations in finish, whereas Pre-finish doesn’t

  • Installation is faster with prefinished floors because you are able to go about your day once they are installed. With On Site-Finish, you have installation, multiple days of sanding, and multiple coats of finish. 

Benefits of Prefinished Floors

Prefinished floors are more durable because of the aluminum oxide finish. Overall, a prefinished floor allows you to enjoy your floors right away and for a longer period of time. 

Engineered vs. Solid Hardwood

When you hear the terms engineered and solid hardwood, you may not know the difference and the benefits of each. Here are the top features to keep in mind when deciding between engineered and solid hardwood: 

  • Engineered hardwood provides the same look as solid hardwood

  • Engineered hardwood is considered to be more dimensionally stable, which in New England, is a huge benefit.

  • The nicer and lower end engineered hardwood floors can be sanded, re-stained, and finished multiple times.

  • Engineered hardwood allows you to have more choices in board sizes. You are able to choose from wider and longer board sizes. 

  • Solid hardwood cannot be installed on or below grade, unlike engineered hardwood, which can.

Engineered Hardwood Pros and Cons

Overall, engineered vs. solid hardwood comes down to preference and needs. Solid hardwood floors are created with solid and genuine wood, while engineered hardwood is made with hardwood or plywood core and then with a layer of hardwood veneer. However, it is important to keep in mind that hardwood brands provide different features and benefits to solid and engineered hardwood. 

To learn more about Prefinished and Site-Finished hardwood, as well as Engineered and Solid hardwood, contact Bradford Carpet One Floor & Home, or visit our showroom in Saugus, MA.