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Solid hardwood flooring panels are a timeless classic, but they’re not always as versatile as many believe. Wood still has its natural limits, and solid planks are limited by them. Fortunately, there are several flooring alternatives that perfectly match the wood aesthetics while providing better performance. We’ll look at a few of our favorites here.

Engineered Hardwood Flooring

Engineered hardwood flooring in a kitchen

Engineered wood is the obvious alternative to traditional solid panels. It’s still composed of authentic wood. However, engineered planks feature a layered design. These layers include a protective surface and a stable core. This helps engineered planks stand up to changes in temperature and humidity. These environmental changes cause traditional solid planks to expand and contract.

Luxury Vinyl Plank

Rustic wood-look LVP flooring in a living room

Luxury vinyl plank (LVP) is an affordable alternative to solid hardwood flooring. It has a lower initial cost and is designed to last much longer. Luxury vinyl flooring is also completely waterproof and requires no acclimation period before or after installation.

It’s not composed of wood, but innovative design techniques are providing more realistic visuals than were previously possible. Luxury vinyl planks can perfectly match the look and texture of any wood species. How does it do this?

Each LVP floor is composed of a photographic layer. This uses a high-resolution image of wood textures to give a realistic visual. A wear layer is then installed over the image to provide a matching texture. In other words, it looks and feels like real hardwood.

Of course, this wear layer does more than make the floor look great. It’s designed to prevent scuffs and scratches. It also works with the WPC or rigid core (depending on the floor) to enhance each plank’s structural integrity.

Porcelain Tile Flooring

Wood-look porcelain flooring in a kitchen

If exceptional performance (or a commercial installation) is needed, it’s hard to beat porcelain tile flooring. Like LVP, porcelain floors can be designed to perfectly match the look and texture of hardwood panels. However, they are more impervious, even compared to other types of stone flooring.

In fact, porcelain tile is so durable and versatile that it’s rated for outdoor use.

Learn More

As you may have noticed, there are more flooring options available now than ever. If you’re ready to make an informed choice for your home, visit Hutchinson’s leading flooring experts at CarpetsPlus today!