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Monday, 7 Nov, 2016, 5:58 PM

Cabinet Construction Pressboard vs Plywood

Nina Hackel Dream Kitchens

For many years it was clear that Plywood cabinet construction was better.  In the past, all pressboard was made with sawdust that was pressed and glued together, typically 3/8” thick or less.  Now pressboard can come in MDF – Medium Density fibers which is normally 5/8” or ¾”thick and compressed at a much higher pressure and heat.  These MDF fibers make the construction as strong as Plywood.  In addition, MDF has an added benefit in four season climates.  Wood expands and contracts with different humidity levels which can make plywood warp.  However, small air pockets in MDF construction wood allow it to expand and contract without warping.  Plywood’s main benefit for cabinets is that it is weighs less which makes the cabinets easier to hang.  In summary not all pressboard is bad.  MDF 5/8” constructed kitchen boxes are excellent. In areas that have warm and cold climate changes throughout the year I recommend 5/8” MDF construction over plywood for its stability.  In areas that have less climate changes throughout the year I recommend plywood as it is easier to install.

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