Engineered hardwood flooring is made up of three to 12 cross layers of plywood that are glued and pressed together. Then, the desired wood species is placed on top of the cross layers to give your flooring the look you want. This top layer is also known as the wear layer. The wear layer comes in several different thicknesses. The 4mm wear layer is a thickness used with high quality engineered hardwood flooring.
Engineered flooring's wear layer can be as thin as 1mm and gets as thick as 5mm. A very popular thickness for a high quality engineered hardwood floor is 4mm. The 4mm wear layer is able to be sanded and refinished several times over its lifespan. On average, a 4mm wear layer can be sanded and refinished three to four times over its 50 to 80 year lifespan. This makes engineered floors with a 4mm wear layer very desirable. With proper maintenance, an engineered floor with a 4mm wear layer will see the higher end of the lifespan, giving you a great return on your money.
When the engineered floor starts to show scratches and dents, you can have it sanded and refinished. Every time you do this, a small portion of the wear level is removed to eliminate the scratches and dents. This process normally needs to be done between every 15 to 20 years. This is why an engineered floor with a 4mm wear layer can last up to 80 years. After a small part of the wear layer is removed from sanding, a coat of finish is applied to maintain the floor's sheen.
Thicker wear layers are usually cut by being sliced out of a log and have a natural look with fine grain. It can also be rotary cut by a knife blade to show a more dramatic grain, but is usually thinner. If you want your engineered hardwood floor to have a long lifespan, a 4mm thick wear layer should be your choice.
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