Plywood Cabinets Vs. Particle Board Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets are an important part of your kitchen. Suitable cabinets help to enhance the overall beauty of your cooking space, They are also functional additions that allow you to tuck away and hide items in the kitchen, such as dishes, appliances, food and spices. Kitchen cabinets are usually made of plywood or particle board. These two materials have very different characteristics, so knowing the pros and cons of each material before choosing  kitchen cabinets will help you find the right cabinet for you.

 

Plywood

Plywood is usually preferred by manufactures that want to offer a higher end cabinet and still offer them at an affordable price. Plywood is much more durable than particle board and also much more water resistant. Instead of being made from wood chips, it consists of wood sheets that are compressed together and then veneered. Plywood is also much easier to drill and screw into making the assemble much easier.

plywood

COST

Plywood tends to cost more than particle board and is considered a higher-end material, often used in more expensive cabinets. It can come in a variety of price levels but is generally higher quality and more attractive than particle board.

Strength

Plywood is a very durable material that stands up well over time to stress and movement. This makes it a great option for kitchens that get a lot of use or cabinets that you’d like to maintain for a long period of time.

Construction

Plywood can generally hold nails, screws and other fasteners very well and is also great for holding glued joints together. Because it is a higher-quality material, it is usually employed in glued-joints applications.

Moisture

Plywood is generally very moisture resistant. It doesn’t stand up well to long-term exposure to water, but it will maintain structural integrity for a long period of time with minimal water exposure.

Pros:

Strong and durable

High quality

Moisture Resistant

Holds nails and glue well

Cons:

Expensive

When to Use

Plywood is an excellent option in almost all kitchen cabinetry situations if you are not concerned with cost and if you want cabinets that will stand the test of time.

  

Particle board

Particle board is commonly used for the sides and backs of cheaper cabinets with a lower quality of construction. Particle board is made up of tiny little wood chips that have been compressed and adhered together with some type of glue. Particle board does not have the strength that plywood does and over time will chip more easily during normal wear and tear. Particle board will also tend to swell up if it sits in water for a period of time. Cheaper particle board is made with a very low quality glue that you would use for home projects, however some particle board is made with an industrial style glue and will hold up much better. One of the pros with particle board is that its easier to mill and form more consistently. A lot of manufactures will use a higher end particle board for the cabinet shelves since the precision is better than plywood.

Particle board

Cost

Particle board is a very affordable material because it’s composite parts are less expensive than solid wood. The process is easier than making plywood, and the materials used are very cheap.

Strength

Particle board isn’t as strong as plywood, but if you purchase a higher-quality line, it can still be durable. However, it is more likely that it will get more dents and scratches than plywood.

Construction

Particle board is smooth and less likely to warp than plywood. However, it doesn’t hold nails and glue as well as plywood; glue and screws tend to come loose over time. It’s a good option if you are considering outfitting a kitchen for a short time or replacing the cabinets with higher quality material after some time has passed.

Moisture

Particle board is very susceptible to damage from moisture and will swell if it is sitting in water for an extended period of time. This means it makes a good short-term solution but won’t stand up well in areas that experience a lot of standing water.

Pros:

Affordable

Doesn’t warp

Durable

Easy to install

Cons:

Doesn’t handle moisture well

Not long lasting

Doesn’t hold nails and glue well

When to Use

Particle board makes a great quick fix for kitchens and is very low cost so it’s a good solution for when you are trying to keep costs down.

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