Saturday, January 18, 2020

Engineered Floor Review: Owens PlankFloor

By Crystal Hosking, Hosking Hardwood Flooring

Owens Unfinished and Prefinished Engineered PlankFloor

Owens Engineered Flooring is one of the most prominent of hardwood flooring brands available in the consumer market today. The construction of Owens Engineered Flooring stands out from competitors and Owens products are praised on a global scale in both residential and commercial settings.

The Owens Flooring brand is a part of a larger conglomerate, Quanex Building Products Corporation. Quanex is a global brand, offering engineered and aluminum building materials to builders all over the world. Their engineered products include vinyl window & door parts, glass sealant systems, engineered wood flooring (Owens Wood Flooring), wood moldings and custom screen products. Quanex also produces aluminum sheet products for a multitude of implementations.


When Owens perfected their engineered wood floor construction, they coined the term PlankFloor. Their PlankFloor features a Limited Lifetime Structural Warranty, and for good reason: the construction of Owens Engineered Flooring is nothing short of perfect. Using the highest quality baltic birch plywood, Owens fuses 9 layers together using their PUR Glue, creating an incredibly stable core.

On top of the core is one of the thickest wear layers in the industry. Owens uses a 3/16 IN. thick (4.7mm) sawn wear layer of wood. This superior wear layer not only offers a highly realistic solid wood appearance, but also allows for Owens engineered flooring to be sanded and refinished multiple times over the lifetime of the floor. With a core so strong and a wear layer so thick, it’s not surprising that Owens Engineered Flooring can last as long as 3/4 IN. thick solid hardwood flooring in residential settings.


Owens Engineered Flooring is available both Unfinished and Factory Finished. Owens uses an Aluminum Oxide UV Finish on their factory finished products and this is guaranteed with a 35 Year Residential Wear Through Finish Warranty (5 Year Commercial Finish Warranty). Their Factory Finished Engineered Flooring also comes with the same Limited Lifetime Structural Warranty as their Unfinished Engineered Flooring.

Environmental Aspects of Owens Engineered Flooring

Owens gets all of the raw material for their engineered products from legal and regulated sources, complying to all Lacey Act practices. Additionally, Owens is Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, which means all of the raw materials they use are harvested in a safe manner that is most beneficial for the environment and surrounding communities. Engineered flooring is known for being a bit more environmentally friendly than standard 3/4 IN. thick solid hardwood flooring simply because of the amount of raw material it takes to produce a single plank. Manufacturers can typically make up to 4 planks of engineered flooring with the same amount of material that it would take to make a single solid wood plank.

Aside from using less raw material, Owens Engineered Floors also takes steps in a “greener” direction with their PUR Glue, which is a formaldehyde free formula while still being water resistant. The plywood used to make their engineered flooring is all CARB Phase II compliant, with ultra low emissions, keeping the air inside your home pollutant free and healthy.

Compared to Other Engineered Brands

As previously mentioned, Owens Engineered Flooring has one of the thickest wear layers in the industry. A thicker wear layer means that an engineered floor can be sanded and refinished more times, therefore extending the life of the hardwood floor.

When choosing the perfect engineered flooring, durability is key; and Owens has got it covered. A bit different than other engineered flooring manufacturers, Owens covers the entire surface of the birch cross layers with adhesive, to ensure a tight bond. This also helps to minimize expansion and contraction due to moisture changes in the air. Additionally, Owens performs a slew of glue bond tests, ensuring that their engineered core isn’t going to delaminate or fall apart during use. These tests involve everything from submerging the engineered cores in water to putting them in ovens at harsh temperatures. Owens has even submerged their products in beer, to ensure these premium engineered floors will stand up to commercial settings, like restaurants and bars.

Installation of Owens Engineered Floors

Owens Engineered Flooring is suitable for virtually any room of your home. It can be installed at any grade level and over plywood subfloors, concrete subfloors and even over radiant heating systems. Owens PlankFloor can be nailed, stapled, glued or floated and is perfect for both residential and commercial settings. Quanex Building Products also has a complete line of transition pieces and moldings which match their Owens PlankFloor perfectly finishing an Owens room.

Plainsawn vs. Quartersawn vs. Riftsawn

From traditional domestic wood species to unique exotics, Owens Plank Flooring has it all. Owens even has a wide variety of Rift and Quartersawn Oak products, which can be harder to find in the marketplace. Quartersawn products are known for being naturally more stable no matter the environment that they are put in and are less susceptible to warping when there are moisture changes in the air. Additionally, grain patters are slightly different with quartersawn products because the logs are first quartered and then the individual planks are cut on a diagonal from the core out to the bark. Quartersawn Oak graining can typically be a lot straighter and finer than plainsawn flooring, with occasional flecks, representing the medullary rays of the tree. Riftsawn planks are similar to quartersawn, but are focused to be cut at a more narrow degree to the tree rings, creating a tighter, more narrow grain pattern without the ray flecks prominent in quartersawn. Riftsawn planks create the most waste (unusable tree pieces) from the log.

Customizable Styles from Owens Engineered Floors

Bevel Options available on Owens PlankFloor

Bevel Options available for Owens PlankFloor

Although their standard products are pretty impressive as is, Owens also offers a lot of different specifics, including customizable options. This ensures their end consumer is getting exactly what they want in their new engineered floor.

Widths range from 2-1/4 IN. to 8 IN. The standard in the industry pretty much only goes up to about 5 IN. wide.

Standard lengths are already on the longer side (at 1′ to 8′ random lengths) when compared to other engineered manufacturers’ 1′ to 48′ random lengths. Customized length options from Owens include 3′ to 10′, 4′ to 10′, 5′ to 10′ and 6′ to 10′, allowing you to really create a specific look with your hardwood flooring.

The standard thickness for Owens Egnineered, both Unfinished and Prefinished is 5/8 IN. For those looking for a thinner or thicker board option, Owens does offer a variety of custom board thicknessed with a variety of wear layer thicknesses. Available is: a 1/2 IN. thickness with either a 3.5mm wear layer or a 2.6mm wear layer, a 5/8 IN. thickness with a 4.7mm wear layer (standard), or a 3/4 IN. thickness (same as a typical solid hardwood plank) with a 4.7mm wear layer.

The standard edge profile for Owens Unfinished PlankFloor is a Square Edge (for a seamless appearance). The standard edge profile for their Factory Finished PlankFloor is a Micro-Bevel. Owens offers three additional custom bevels for those looking for something a little different: Chamfer Bevel, Grand Bevel and Radius Bevel.

With standard Owens PlankFloor you’re going to encounter a smooth surface, but due to accelerated demand in the market for flooring with a little more texture, Owens is now offering handscraped options for their Unfinished flooring.

Lead Times for Owens PlankFloor

With all of the processes involved in creating Owens PlankFloor from the original tree to the finished product, it’s no surprise that lead times can be a little longer than other engineered products on the market. Standard lead times as of right now can run anywhere from 2 weeks to 6 weeks. Specific Rift and Quartersawn products have potential to take even longer (up to 10 weeks). Therefore, it’s important to plan ahead if you’re considering an Owens PlankFloor, as it might not be as readily available as the competition’s products.

Ultimately, Owens PlankFloor is an engineered floor that just give end users a bit more than their competition. From their warranties to their super strong structural bonding techniques to all of their customizable options, Owens is doing an exceptional job of giving homeowners and business owners the floor that they both want and need.


Tags: buying hardwood, CARB, Engineered Hardwood Flooring, Formaldehyde, Owens PlankFloor

Comments: 20

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  • Betsy Foppe

    Who in Atlanta Georgia carries the Owen factory finished plank flooring?

  • Hi Betsy,

    You can find Owens hardwood flooring here on our site: Owens Floors. We ship nationwide and offer samples of all Owens products, which you can order right online.

  • Bobbi

    I saw a news article saying Owens Flooring went out of business in 2009. Did someone else take over the business?

  • Owens is actually owned by a larger corporation named Quanex Building Products. The Owens brand is their wood flooring division. They are still in business and doing well. They manufacture their engineered flooring at their Wisconsin mill.

  • Nicole Prinzi

    I have a client that is looking for Owen’s Flooring, Plankfloor in a 4″ White Oak. She is wanting to install it on her ceiling. Would you recommend this or not?

  • Hi Nicole,

    Hardwood flooring is being used more and more these days on walls. Ceiling installations are definitely more rare, though. With installations on walls, we recommend using a thinner engineered floor and hardwood flooring adhesive to keep it in place. For thicker engineered floors or solid planks on walls, since the boards are a little heavier, we recommend using hardwood adhesive and then also using nails or screws to secure to the wall joists. For ceiling installations, you’re definitely going to want to make the planks as secure as possible, so use adhesive as well as nailing or screwing into ceiling joists. Is it a standard installation for Owens flooring? Of course not. You’re going to void the warranty, of course, but installation on the ceiling shouldn’t be a problem if that what she wants to do and if it’s done correctly.

    Additionally, it may be more cost effective to go with a custom milled product, thinner solid or thinner engineered. It makes sense that she’d be interested in the longer lengths that Owens offers. However, one of the huge cost factors with Owens is due to their thick wear layer. And, since the flooring will be on the ceiling, the wear layer thickness won’t matter and the Owens 4.7mm wear layer would be overkill. Thinner engineered products do tend to have shorter lengths, but you might be able to find a mill that can custom make longer lengths in the white oak grade you’re looking for.

  • Dorothy Tello

    Hi Jeff,

    What are the advantages and disadvantages to getting the owens prefinished floor versus a sand in place version that would that would get 3 coats of polyurethane? I would like the option of refinishing it in the future as we have doggies.


  • Hi Dorothy,

    This article on our site goes over the advantages and disadvantages of both unfinished and prefinished hardwood flooring: Unfinished vs. Prefinished Both the prefinished and the unfinished (site finished) from Owens can be sanded and refinished multiple times over the lifetime of the floor because it has that super thick 4.7mm wear layer.

  • Jack Morrison

    Hi Jeff.
    I need 450 sq. Ft. Of RedOak engineered flooring and glue to install on a slab floor.
    We have Red Oak hard wood in the rest of the house and want to match it as close as possible.
    How reliable are you as a pruducts supplier in standing behind your products. It seems the most consistent complaints I hear or read about is when there is a “wear” issue the supplier is on immediate DEFENSE Mideast and not in a quality of product concern frame of mind?
    Do you have retailers near me (02066)? I’ll be doing this within 3 to 5 weeks.

    Jack Morrison

    Thank You

  • Hi Jack,

    Owens is a great manufacturer. Lead times can get pretty long, though. We would recommend taking a look at Somerset: They have a lot of different engineered options in Red Oak.

    Somerset offers a 50 Year Residential Finish Warranty and a Lifetime Structural Warranty. Finish warranties basically say that for 50 years, with normal residential traffic, the finish is not going to wear off the floor. Finish warranties do not extend to denting or scratching of the hardwood. Hardwood flooring is a natural product and if you drop something heavy enough or drag something across the floor, it will end up denting or scratching. Warranties are completely up to the specific manufacturer of the flooring. If a warranty issue comes up, we only act as a liaison between you and the manufacturer. Usually, they accept photos of the defect to file a warranty claim. Sometimes, they need more specific information in regards to room temps, RH %, moisture readings, etc. and will ask that you have an independent inspector come in to do a full report. They would compensate you for the inspector if the warranty claim is valid.

    Hosking Hardwood offers no additional warranties with any of the products we sell. Any warranty listed on our site is solely that of the manufacturer. You can find specific warranty information on any brand’s own website.

    We do work with a couple showrooms in MA called Payless Floors. Visit their site to find locations and hours:

  • Lois A Johnson

    We are remodeling a condo. We are having to purchase engineered wood flooring as the sub floor is cement, therefore, it need to be glued. I’m not fond of oak, prefer, maple, hickory and walnut if there is not too much variation. I would prefer a 5′ or 6′ and hoping to get some random lengths, 6′ to 8′ . I do not care for the wavy look of the hand scraped, however, I do like to see some character in the wood. In our home, we have Carlisle wood floors, NH, which I have enjoyed. I notice you also do various beveling which also gives the engineered floors more character. Do you have samples? Appreciate any help you can give me. Thank you

  • Hi Lois,

    You should be able to order samples of Owens plank flooring here on our site: Just click on the wood species you’re interested in seeing and click the “Add Sample to Cart” button.

  • building a home on the water in SC but live in NY
    Is there any way to view Owen/sommerset products in a local showroom without ordering samples online?

  • Hi Bonnie,

    You should be able to find a local showroom in your area by contacting the brands directly.
    Owens –
    Somerset –

  • Jim

    I live in Columbus Ohio. Is Owens engineered flooring only available on line? Are there any brochures available.. How much does it cost to order samples?

  • Hi Jim,

    You can visit the Owens website to find more information on their products, including online brochures:

    You can order samples via our site at: Our samples are $3 each with a flat fee of $8 for shipping. If you order a floor from us in the future, just let us know and we can refund sample costs up to $30.

  • Anna Richards

    Are all of these Owens engineered pre-finished plank floorings done in satin or is a matte finish available ?

  • Hi Anna,

    The Satin is the standard finish, but Owens offers their prefinished products special order in Matte. For more custom options:

  • Steve

    Anyone I could send a image to, I have owens being installed right not and where some of the board butt up end to end getting big gaps, I will bring this up to the installer tomorrow but to me it looks terrible.

  • Hi Steve,

    We would recommend contacting Owens directly: They should be able to provide installation information specific to their product. Owens prefinished flooring does have micro-beveled edges and ends but these should not result in gapping between boards.

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