Why Does Engineered Wood Flooring Beat Solid Timber in the Bathroom?

In most cases, solid timber is preferred over engineered wood, but this isn’t always the case. For example, those who want to add a wood floor to their bathroom will almost certainly benefit from opting for engineered wood instead of genuine timber, and here are just a few reasons why.

Engineered Wood Can Handle Moisture

It should go without saying that any flooring used in your bathroom is going to meet more than its fair share of dampness. Whether you are building a regular shower or a luxury home sauna, the floor must be moisture-friendly. Unfortunately, moisture is essentially the kryptonite of natural timber. When it becomes wet, it tends to swell, which can damage or permanently warp the boards and necessitate an expensive refit. Additionally, genuine timber floorboards aren’t watertight, so any water that drips onto your bathroom floor could penetrate through to the subfloor. Engineered wood flooring doesn’t suffer from such issues.

Engineered Wood Is Relatively Light

If you’ve ever handled both a timber floorboard and a piece of engineered wood flooring, you’ll already know that the genuine article is markedly heavier. This often impacts the placement of timber flooring in bathrooms because bathrooms tend to be on the first floor. In general, upper floors are not designed to take much weight. If you want genuine timber flooring in your upstairs bathroom, you may find that work must be done to the structure to handle the weight. That shouldn’t be the case with engineered wood flooring.

Engineered Wood Offers Versatility and Design Options

Engineered wood comes in various forms, including laminated veneer lumber (LVL), plywood, particleboard, and medium-density fiberboard (MDF). You could look at all or a lot of these options by visiting simple flooring chicago or similar providers near you. This diversity of options allows for a wide range of designs and applications. Engineered wood products can also be tailored to specific requirements, offering flexibility in terms of size, shape, and performance characteristics.

Engineered Wood Works with Underfloor Heating

Maybe you don’t have underfloor heating right now, but you might want it in the future, especially in the bathroom. Timber doesn’t work very well with underfloor heating. Its density and thickness prevent heat from rising effectively, and it generally takes up too much space to have anything else fitted beneath. If you want to leave your bathroom open to underfloor heating, go with engineered wood instead of genuine timber.

Engineered Wood in the Bathroom Doesn’t Need to be Tough

A central advantage held by genuine timber over engineered wood is its toughness and durability, and that’s a real benefit in areas like the kitchen, where people are frequently going to be walking with shoes on or carrying heavy items that could be dropped. But people rarely wear shoes, especially heavy boots or high heels, in the bathroom, and there aren’t many heavy items to drop. At the end of the day, one of timber’s most fundamental advantages just isn’t relevant in the bathroom.


In conclusion, while solid timber is often preferred in various applications, opting for engineered wood in the bathroom proves to be a practical and advantageous choice. The unique challenges posed by bathroom environments, such as high moisture levels, weight considerations, and the potential for underfloor heating, make engineered wood a more suitable option. Engineered wood’s ability to handle moisture without warping, its relatively lighter weight, and compatibility with underfloor heating systems contribute to its popularity in bathroom flooring. Additionally, the versatility and design options offered by various forms of engineered wood provide homeowners with the flexibility to achieve both aesthetic and functional goals in bathroom design. In this context, the specific qualities of engineered wood address the distinct requirements of bathroom spaces, showcasing that the best choice often depends on the specific needs and conditions of each area within a home.