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The Use of Plywood in Construction
Plywood has become one of the most popular building materials, thanks to its useful properties such as ability to withstand moisture and high strength. Despite being robust and versatile, plywood remains affordable and durable for small businesses. A quick glance at the different types of plywood will reveal their importance.
From kitchen cabinets, floorings, and walls to furniture: the entire construction industry revolves around plywood. The use of plywood will only continue to increase as the global market grows because of lack of affordable and reliable alternatives.
Use of Plywood in Construction Engineering
The most prominent use of plywood is in structural applications. Plywood can naturally withstand a lot of stress and full weather exposure. Structural plywood is best used for beams and hoardings, but it is commonly used in crates, bins, internal structures, outdoor furniture, and boxes. Structural plywood is used for wall and roof bracing.
There are several plywood grades in the market, the most common and popular being A-grade which can take some serious beating. It is not uncommon for highly durable boards to withstand continuous boiling without delaminating. However, there is marine plywood which is made with glues that are completely weatherproof and boilproof.
It is also common to use B-bond grade structural plywood. This obviously comes at the cost of durability, but the material is sturdy enough for use in exterior door skins and concrete formwork.
There’s also C-grade plywood, which is un-sanded and likely to have several minor defects that will need to be repaired. C-plywood is used in cases where appearance and durability aren’t that important, such as subfloors and garages. At the very low-end of the spectrum is D-grade plywood, which is un-sanded and guaranteed to have defects that haven’t been repaired. D-grade plywood is identifiable by obvious discoloration and sanding defects.
It is common for manufacturers to pair up different grades of plywood to save on costs. The most popular example is BC-grade, which is a mix of B-grade plywood on one side and C-grade on the other side.
i) Exterior Plywood
As the name suggests, exterior plywood is used outside the house in items that require some serious durability. This type of plywood is bound together using water-resistant glue that doesn’t wear off easily. Some of the most suitable applications for exterior plywood are walls, roof linings, stables, and even outdoor floorings.
ii) Interior Plywood
In this type of construction, aesthetics and appearance take priority. This is because the foundation of the walls and roofs are already laid out, requiring minor aesthetic touch-ups. Interior plywood is not very resistant against outdoor elements and tends to degrade quickly when exposed to moisture and heat.
Some of the popular applications for interior plywood include indoor furniture, interior cladding, and ceilings.