Is Film Face Ply Water Proof?
During the manufacturing process, a layer of membrane is applied to the surface of the building template, providing good waterproof performance and shortening the construction period. Film faced plywood is lightweight, weather resistant, easily integrated with other materials, and simple to clean and cut. Waterproof paint on the margins of the film faced plywood makes it very water and wear-resistant.
What is Film Face Plywood?
Film face plywood, also known as shuttering plywood or marine plywood, is a type of engineered wood product. It consists of several thin layers (or plies) of wood veneer bonded together with adhesive. What sets film face plywood apart is its exterior layer, which is coated with a film made of phenolic resin-impregnated paper. This film provides the plywood with enhanced durability, resistance to wear and tear, and protection against external elements.
Water Resistance of Film Face Plywood
Film face plywood is indeed water-resistant, but it’s essential to clarify what this means in practical terms. The water resistance of film face wood primarily depends on two factors: the quality of the film and the quality of the core material.
- Quality of the Film: The film used on the exterior surface of film face plywood is designed to repel moisture and provide a barrier against water penetration. It is made from phenolic resin-impregnated paper, which is known for its water-resistant properties. This film makes the plywood suitable for use in damp or wet conditions.
- Quality of the Core Material: While the film on the surface of film faced plywood is water-resistant, the core material, which is typically softwood or hardwood, is not inherently waterproof. The core may absorb moisture if exposed to water for extended periods, which can lead to delamination or swelling of the plywood.
Film Faced Plywood vs. Marine Plywood
It’s essential to differentiate between film faced plywood and marine plywood, as they are often confused due to their similar appearances. Marine plywood is specifically designed for marine applications and is engineered to be fully waterproof. It uses a superior quality core material and high-quality adhesive, ensuring that it can withstand prolonged exposure to water without delaminating or deteriorating.
In contrast, film face plywood is water-resistant and suitable for many outdoor applications but may not be the best choice for projects that require complete waterproofing, such as boat building or submerged structures.
Applications of Film Face Plywood
- Concrete Formwork: Film faced plywood is widely used in construction for creating concrete formwork. Its smooth surface, combined with its water-resistant properties, makes it an excellent choice for producing consistently smooth concrete finishes.
- Outdoor Structures: Film face plywood is used in various outdoor structures, such as sheds, garden buildings, and playhouses. Its durability and resistance to moisture make it a suitable option for such applications.
- Flooring and Roofing: In areas where exposure to moisture is a concern, such as bathrooms or kitchens, film face plywood can be used for subflooring or roofing underlayment. However, it’s essential to provide proper waterproofing and sealing measures in these scenarios.
- Furniture and Cabinetry: Some furniture and cabinetry applications use film faced plywood for its durability and visual appeal. However, it may not be the best choice for areas prone to water exposure.
Maintenance and Waterproofing
While film faced plywood is water-resistant, it’s essential to take precautions and perform regular maintenance to extend its lifespan and maintain its performance:
- Sealing Edges: To enhance water resistance, consider sealing the edges of film faced plywood with an appropriate waterproof sealant or edge banding.
- Proper Storage: Store film face plywood in a dry, well-ventilated area to prevent moisture absorption during storage.
- Surface Maintenance: Clean the surface regularly to remove dirt and debris, which can compromise the effectiveness of the film coating.
- Avoid Prolonged Water Exposure: While film faced plywood can withstand short-term exposure to moisture, it is not designed for prolonged submersion or continuous exposure to water. In such cases, marine plywood or other waterproof materials should be used.
Foresmate’s Film face plywood is a versatile and durable construction material with water-resistant properties suitable for a wide range of applications. It is not fully waterproof like marine plywood but offers adequate protection against moisture and damp conditions. Understanding the distinction between water resistance and waterproofing is crucial when deciding whether film faced ply is suitable for your project. When used appropriately and with proper maintenance, film face plywood can provide reliable performance and longevity in various outdoor and construction applications.