Refinishing and Reusing Engineered Hardwood Floors

Charlotte Miller

At a glance or even touch engineered hardwood floors can look indistinguishable from their solid counterparts. But beyond their exterior, these floors offer a wealth of practical features:

Moisture resistance: Your engineered hardwood can be moisture resistant depending on the core material. This makes it a good choice for kitchens, laundry rooms, and basements.


Refinishing is one of the most common wood flooring services available. It can revitalize old floors, boost color, and provide a fresh new look for rooms that are starting to feel outdated or tired. However, refinishing engineered hardwood flooring is more complicated than renting a floor sander and getting to work. The process involves special considerations due to the layered nature of the wood flooring.

The key difference is that engineered hardwood flooring relies on a core of plywood instead of solid wood. This creates a more stable structure and helps the wood resist moisture damage and warping. Additionally, engineered wood floors are typically installed using a floating system rather than being nailed down. This allows the planks to be moved around, which can be helpful for those who want to renovate a room without tearing up the existing floors.

This means that refinishing an engineered wood floor requires extra care to ensure the integrity of the veneer layer. Most manufacturers utilize regular-grade plywood veneers, which can have flaws and voids that could compromise the integrity of the finished product. Higher-quality veneers, on the other hand, offer greater stability and strength.

A good rule of thumb is to only refinish your engineered hardwood floors up to two times. Any more than that, and the veneer layer may become too thin to withstand the refinishing process. If you have an older floor with thinner veneers, replacing it may be the best option for your home.

To start, you should clear out the area and gather your tools. You will need a circular saw to cut the floors into manageable pieces, a pry bar, a hammer, and a scraper. These will be used to loosen the glued sections and remove any adhesive left behind. Be sure to wear a dust mask during removal to avoid inhaling any hazardous chemicals.

Next, you will need to sand the surface of the floors to remove any old finish and prepare it for staining. You can use an orbital sander or a manual sanding tool, but avoid sanding through the veneer layer. It is important to follow the grain of the wood when sanding to avoid creating any uneven areas. Once the sanding is complete, you can vacuum or sweep the floor to remove any dust and residue. Then, you can apply your desired stain.


Engineered wood floors are one of the most durable flooring options on the market, thanks to their moisture-resistant core and sturdy hardwood veneer. But that doesn’t mean that they won’t wear down over time. If your engineered hardwood is showing signs of wear and tear, you can sand it down and refinish it to restore its beauty.

Engineered hardwood has a plywood core and a thin layer of real wood, which offers a more cost-effective alternative to traditional solid wood flooring. However, a few common problems can occur in this type of flooring, including squeaks and warping. The squeaking in engineered wood is often caused by plywood that separates over time. It can also be caused by excessive moisture or high temperatures, which can damage the wood and cause it to warp.

Like solid wood floors, engineered hardwood is easy to clean and maintain. Sweeping and vacuuming regularly will keep it looking new, and occasional mopping with a wood floor cleaner will remove any dirt and stains. You should avoid using water or steam cleaners on engineered wood, as this can damage the flooring and dull the finish.

When refinishing your engineered wood flooring, you should use a hardwood sanding machine with 120-grit sandpaper to get the best results. Following the manufacturer’s instructions for proper sanding and finishing is important. A good sanding will ensure that your engineered wood flooring lasts for years to come.

Protecting your engineered wood floors with a protective seal is also important. This will keep them from getting damaged by spills and water leaks and make it easier to refinish if needed.

You can find a sealant that matches your engineered wood floors at your local home improvement store. It’s usually sold alongside other hardwood floor care products, so you should be able to find it easily. To apply the sealant, simply follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application. If you’re uncomfortable working with flooring adhesives and power tools, hiring a professional to handle this job is a good idea. They’ll have the right equipment to complete the job quickly and efficiently.


Engineered wood flooring is growing in popularity for its realistic hardwood looks and eco-friendliness. It is less expensive than solid hardwood and can be used in many of the same rooms. It is also easy to install as it is available in glued or interlocking planks. Some manufacturers even offer pre-attached underlayment for increased ease of installation.

Engineered hardwood is made from real hardwood layered over a base layer of plywood or OSB (oriented strand board). The core layer can also be made from a combination of materials such as stone-plastic composite, high-density fiberboard, and engineered plywood. The real hardwood layer consists of a top veneer and a solid layer which can be made from either oak, cherry, maple, or hickory. Each type of wood has its unique color and grain patterns incorporated into the flooring design.

Hardwood floors can increase the value of your home significantly. They also provide excellent acoustic properties. In addition, they are a very durable flooring option and can withstand the rigors of everyday life. However, both solid and engineered hardwoods are susceptible to moisture and humidity, which can cause warping, buckling, and other damage. Engineered hardwood, on the other hand, is more moisture-resistant and can be installed in places such as basements.

When caring for your engineered hardwood, it is important to sweep often to remove any dirt and debris that can cause damage over time. Sweeping also helps to keep the floors looking beautiful. You should always use a damp mop when cleaning your floor, and be sure to wring the mop out thoroughly to prevent excess water from damaging the subfloor or warping the boards.

To ensure that your engineered hardwood flooring stays in good condition, choosing the right underlayment for your project is important. For instance, if you are concerned about moisture damage to the subfloor, then you should select an underlayment with an attached vapor barrier. On the other hand, if you are looking for better sound control and acoustics, then you should opt for an underlayment with a cork or foam core.


Hardwood flooring is a popular and sustainable choice for homes. It’s long-lasting, reduces the need for frequent replacements or repairs, and looks great in any space. However, when replacing your old hardwood, it’s important to consider how you’ll dispose of it. Toxic landfill waste is bad for the environment, and burning wood isn’t the best option either. Fortunately, there are several ways to recycle your hardwood floors.

Many contractors offer to take care of old engineered and traditional hardwood floors when they’re removed from homes or commercial spaces for remodeling and renovations. You can also find companies that specialize in reclaimed wood, which is recycled from existing wood. These companies mill reclaimed oak, hickory, elm, maple, and ash into new floor planks for customers who want the look of traditional hardwood but need a more eco-friendly flooring option.

Another way to recycle your old hardwood is by turning it into furniture or other home accents. You can even use it to make countertops or backsplashes. Many websites feature ideas for repurposing old hardwood floors, and you can also check local recycling centers for options. You should know that not all of your old wood will be suitable for upcycling, though. Pieces that are severely damaged or rotted will likely be unusable.

Engineered wood flooring is a more sustainable option than solid wood because it uses less traditional wood. The core of an engineered wood plank consists of plywood or high-density fiberboard, while the veneer is made from real wood. This combination creates a strong and durable flooring solution that can withstand environmental changes in temperature, humidity, and moisture better than traditional hardwood.

In addition to reducing the need to cut down more trees, the manufacturing process of engineered hardwood requires much less energy than other types of floors. This is because natural products require minimal processing to produce, and they don’t need to be treated with toxic chemicals.

As a result, the manufacturing process of engineered hardwood is a more eco-friendly option for homeowners and businesses alike. The hardwood industry is making significant strides in sustainability, including using recycled wood in its production processes and limiting the amount of water used during production.