Building furniture is a herculean task. While we know aesthetics matter, it's not enough. What if the chair you built appeals to the eye, but turns out to be lumpy and not durable and sturdy? Or the strikingly proportioned and fancy cupboard that houses your favourite outfits is slowly getting reduced to mounds of dust owing to gnawing termites. With the proliferation of plywood brands in India, homeowners are lost in a complex maze of choices. And due to lack of knowledge and misinformation, buyers usually end up purchasing cheap grade plywood at very exorbitant prices. In fact, only a miniscule 30% of homeowners get the best quality plywood. Hence, familiarising yourself with the features of a good quality plywood beforehand can result in making a wise fruitful investment for your home and future. The best quality plywood not only bears the legacy of a trusted brand but also takes into consideration factors like looks, affordability and ergonomics.
What Attributes Should You Look for in a Good Quality Plywood?
Warren Buffet once said that “Only buy something that you would be perfectly happy to hold if the market shuts down for 10 years.” This is why plywood shopping should be backed by substantial research because be it scaling your old furniture or making new ones, good-quality plywood can definitely increase the longevity of your furniture.
Spot the Areas Where You Want to Use Them -
Bathrooms and kitchens are areas that expect higher chances of water content. If you are making cabinets for kitchens or cupboards for bathrooms, opt for the BWP (Boiling Water Proof Plywood) or the Marine Grade Plywood. The plywood is known for resisting high moisture and water content and can be dimensionally stable in wet and dry weather conditions. When it comes to external use, BWP can be used for wall cladding, staircases, etc. If you want to know where to buy the best quality Marine Grade Plywood, you can check out Greenply as it has a wide choice of BWP plywood available at different prices - and is not only water proof, borer proof but comes with a warranty to ensure your furniture lasts long.
Watch Out for the Thickness of the Plywood -
The ply determines the thickness of the sheet. More plies will form a thicker and stronger board. You will come across plies that start up from 4mm and extend upto 25 mm. This is usually the standardised thickness available in the market. Trust a branded plywood as it comes with calibration to ensure uniform thickness.
Know the Plywood Grades Well -
Just like how we look for grades while buying food and cosmetic products, similarly you should also check the grades for the best quality plywood. The grades help assess the different applications for the different types of plywood that are needed.
- MR grade: MR Grade plywood is used to resist humidity and moisture. Remember, Moisture Resistant Grade Plywood is not waterproof
- BWR grade: BWR stands for Boiling Water Resistant. BWR Plywood can resist water better than MR grade, it is also waterproof however not 100% like BWP
- BWP: BWP stands for Boiling Water Proof Plywood. It is popularly known as Marine Grade plywood. It is a superior grade of plywood higher in quality and strength as compared to MR and BWR plywood, suitable for application that has prolonged exposure to water like wood work for ships and boats
- Flexi Ply: Flexiply is not stiff and can be rolled up hence being ideal for creating rounded shapes in furniture
- Fire-Retardant: Fire-Retardant Plywood is used in homes, offices, where the risks of fire are high. They are best in withstanding fire and delaying the spread of fire.
- Zero Emission: Zero Emission Plywood leads to negligible formaldehyde emission thus proving to be safe for homes
- Calibrated: Calibrated plywood helps to impart uniform evenness and thickness that is suitable for making modular furniture.
The Edges of the Plywood Matters -
Best quality plywood usually has a uniform edge with minimal gaps and voids. Avoid buying plywood that has inconsistent or unsynchronised edges as they are not long lasting and are difficult in cutting.
ISI Marks for Authenticity -
There are dealers and retailers out there who claim they offer genuine products but are actually fake and are of very poor quality. To save yourself from getting cheated and duped, the best way to know whether the plywood is credible or not is to check if it has an ISI mark. ISI marks sets a standardisation.
External Quality Should be Factored In -
There are some easy and reliable ways of checking plywood from outside.
- Plywood should be smooth with no unnecessary bumps.
- The four corners of the plywood does not have thickness variations.
- Lift one side of the plywood to assess their density. Heavyweight plywood usually have more density.
- Knock at the centre to check if it is hollow or not. Otherwise, you will hear sounds on the surfaces of the plywood.
Whether you want your home to exude the essence of ribbon wooden Parisian apartments or replicate the vibes of wooden summer Scottish cottages, all these architectural marvels have mastered the right application of plywood. The best quality plywood can add to the strength of your furniture. whilst also offering the opportunity and flexibility to experiment with different interior design trends.
To know more about plywood and its range, visit the Greenply website.