Waterproof Plywood: The plywood that is built to provide better resistance to water than other natural wood products or commercial plywood is known as waterproof plywood sheets. The waterproofing is obtained when the sheets of the plywood are glued together with phenolic resin, a synthetic plastic resin, making the plywood waterproof.
Ways to Waterproof the Plywood:
- The best way by which one can waterproof the plywood is to use waterproof paint, sealant on top or stain the panel.
- Before applying paint one must thoroughly clean and sand the plywood, filling the cracks, removal of other non-waterproof paints or stains and other defects must be checked.
- Thus, depending on the intended use of the plywood, one can apply several layers of the paint or stain to make the plywood waterproof.
- Generally, two or three layers of paint is sufficient for waterproofing and for general purpose such as for kitchen cabinets.
- Further, depending on the end use one needs to repaint the surface after few years or sometimes more than once in a year for longer shelf life of the furniture.
- To check the quality testing of the marine or waterproof plywood, one can submerge the plywood sample piece in boiling water for about 72 hours and then once can interpret the strength and various properties of the plywood.
Characteristics and Uses of the Plywood:
- The stability of the plywood is high even when it is laminated.
- The plywood can accommodate and bear the overload and thus can be used as construction flooring as the tensile strength is reduced and the load is distributed over the larger surface area.
- The plywood has a cross laminated structure and thus these are relatively stable when there is a change in temperature and moisture or humidity level.
- The plywood has high strength and stiffness to weight ratio. The plywood is cost effective and thus has applications in structural constructions such as flooring, formwork, webbed beams and shear walls.
- The plywood is resistant to corrosion and thus used for chemical works and cooling towers.
- The ply that has BWP (Boiling Water Proof) grade is resistant to moisture and water and thus can be used for the marine purpose and is waterproof. BWR grade i.e. Waterproof grade is different from BWP grade plywood.
- The waterproof plywood sheets are also known as exterior grade plywood as they are exposed to natural weather conditions. The BWR and EXT grade plywood are suitable for exterior use.
- The BWR i.e. waterproof plywood should be used for furniture that is exposed to moisture and water such as kitchen cabinets and other furniture that are required in the kitchen. However, all the plywood used in home furniture should be moisture resistant, that is capable of withstanding moisture and humidity. Thus, this type of plywood furniture is easy to clean and maintain.
- However, as these are stronger and are made of high-quality waterproof plywood sheets, the cost of the furniture is high compared to only moisture resistant plywood.
- Waterproof plywood sheets are available in all the different sizes. The common size which is mostly used is 8 x 4 feet with a thickness of 18 mm.
- The waterproof plywood is also resistant to microbial decay.
- The tenacity strength of the plywood is high due to the thicker face of the plywood.
- The waterproof plywood sheets are used where the furniture is exposed to difficult and harsh weather conditions.
- The panels that are used on a boat, ships or furniture that are kept outdoors, etc require waterproof plywood sheets.
However, one must note that waterproof plywood indicates that the glue used for adhesion between the plywood is waterproof rather than the plywood itself.
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