There are two main types of real wood flooring: multilayer and solid wood floorings. These differ from each other through their construction.
Multi-layer or 'engineered' wood floors comprise either two or three layers of wood, which are laid at right angles. The top layer is hardwood and the layers below are also wood-based products, for example, high-density fibreboard and pine.
These floors are available in a wide range of formats and thicknesses, including 20mm self supporting floors, 13 or 15mm standard floors and 7mm 'veneered' floors, which offer a low-cost real wood alternative to laminate.
According the the thickness of the real wood wear layer a distinction is made between:
Veneer floorings < 0.7 mm
Wood floorings < 2.5 mm
Parquet > 2.5 mm
All species of wood are affected by climate change and the criss-cross construction of multi-layer floors provides stability, reducing natural wood movement by up to 70%. In addition, the use of wood-based products below the joint, rather than solid wood, has environmental as well as cost benefits.
Solid wood floors are made up of one solid plank of wood, which is removed as a block right from the tree. They are then processed into flooring planks with tongue and grooves edges and are either pre-finished or finished on site.
According to the standards a distinction is made between
Mosaic parquet 8 mm
Lamparquet 6 - 13 mm
Solid parquet > 13 mm
Laminate floors are made from fibres, which are pressed together, and the 'wood effect' surface is a printed image with a wear resistant finishing top layer. Laminate floors are not made of real wood and they don't have a real wood surface layer. Laminates and wood-effect floors should not be confused with real wood floors.