Solid hardwood refers to planks that are cut from trees in one solid piece from top to bottom. The thickness varies from ¾" to 5/16″. Solid wood flooring can ONLY be installed above or on grade, and can be sanded and refinished several times during its service life. Solid hardwood is known for its strength because it is solid through and through and it holds up well over time. Solid hardwoods durability mostly comes down to the wood species and wear-resistance of its protective finish. Harder woods such as Hickory and Oak are more dent resistant, and those with more resilient finishes will perform best against scratches.
Solid hardwood showcases all of wood's natural beauty but is slightly more delicate. It requires gentle treatment and care to look its best, but for some buyers the look is worth it.
Special considerations should be taken when selecting Solid or Engineered hardwood flooring. Direct sunlight can affect the color of hardwood stains, therefore closing curtains or shades during peak periods will reduce damage. Area rugs left in place for extended periods of time may expose a shading difference once they are removed from the remainder of the floor. Large pets with sharp toenails can also damage even the best finishes.