False ceilings are one of the best inventions in the era of architecture. They make the room look stylish and spacious if designed well. The most important thing to be considered about the false ceiling is choosing the right material. This choice is essential for the false ceiling’s durability and quality.
Some Commonly Used False Ceiling Boards
Besides giving an elegant look to the buildings, false ceilings also keep you off the excess heat and noise from outside. Before getting to know how these boards can do all this work, let me first tell you what they are made up of. The commonly used false ceiling materials are thermocol, gypsum, aerolite, PVC and wood.
Thermocol boards are made up of polystyrene. Styrene is an unsaturated liquid hydrocarbon obtained as a petroleum by-product. It is polymerized to form a compound called polystyrene which is blended with CO 2 to form a foam (Styrofoam). Styrofoam eventually solidifies to form thermocol. The voids with trapped air filled in results in low thermal conductivity.
Pros & cons
Thermocole boards are less expensive but they have the disadvantage of releasing poisonous gases into the environment on disintegration. Lest you use thermocol plates when the food is hot, it’s deadly.
Gypsum is hydrated calcium sulphate. Plasters are mostly used for the interior decoration of buildings. The similar ones used for exteriors are called renders. Plasters are made up of lime, cement, gypsum etc. The plaster made up of gypsum is called plaster of Paris (POP).
Pros & cons
Despite possessing properties like thermal insulation, sound insulation and fire resistance, gypsum boards suffer from their likeliness to easy damage.
Read Gypsum Vs. POP Which False Ceiling Material is Best for Home? to help you make your decision.
PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. It is a synthetic polymer. The polymer is a huge molecule made up of several small molecules. PVC is made up of carbon, hydrogen and chlorine molecules. It is the world’s third most-produced synthetic polymer. The first two are polyethylene and polypropylene. PVC is available in both rigid and flexible forms.
Pros & cons
PVC despite being thermal resistant and waterproof, it contains carcinogens that cause liver cancer and releases a toxic substance called dioxin when burnt.
You can also check out the 7 Most Popular False Ceiling Materials You Must
Wooden boards are manufactured by binding the wooden chips with appropriate adhesives. Wooden boards are available in a variety of forms such as strong, light, stiff and flexible. This variety in forms leads to a variety of applications.
Pros & cons
Wood is organic so one need not worry about toxins and chemical disintegration. But the major disadvantage of wooden boards is that they are vulnerable to the attack of termites and they are expensive.
You must take a read to the Clever Design Hacks to Decorate the Low Ceilings
Aerolite (do not be confused with the aerolite adhesive made up of urea-formaldehyde) is a lightweight calcium silicate. Aerolite boards are the best false ceiling material as they adapt to many environments compared to the other materials. They are available in the market in form of tiles.
Pros & cons
It is 100% humidity resistant, non-combustible, fire-resistant, sound absorbent, light-reflecting and durable. It is made up of inorganic materials that are immune to termite attacks.
Image credit: Flickr
What do false ceilings do to your home?
Besides bringing a classic look to the buildings, false ceilings provide a decent number of benefits like thermal insulation, acoustic absorption, room height reduction, platform provision to mount LEDs and CCTV cameras, concealing the duct wiring etc.
The bumps and dents seen in the false ceiling boards are completely responsible for the acoustic proofing property of the false ceiling boards. The sound waves bouncing into the rooms create some acoustic vibrations that are absorbed by the uneven surface of the false ceilings. This is the reason why the surface of false ceilings is porous rather than being even.
Thermal insulation is provided by the air voids between the layers of the false ceiling boards that absorb the excess heat, thus making the room cooler and helping us reduce the usage of air conditioners.
Image credit: Flickr/[email protected]
Resistance to Fungus
Another big advantage of the inorganic (not obtained from a living organism) boards is microbial resistance that prevents the ugly fungal molds from growing on the ceilings. Certain species like the Aspergillus niger grow on the wooden boards are a serious threat to health as their molds get into our respiratory tract through the air we breathe. They grow inside the lungs spreading their toxic enzymes in the bloodstream that can cause cancer. So it is very important to be cautious when choosing false ceiling boards.
How to Select the Right Material?
All the materials discussed above are good only up to a limited extent as the pros and cons balance each other so well. The selection of material depends on several factors such as the climatic condition, the ambiance, affordability and the tastes of the owner. The climatic conditions are one of the important factors to be considered when choosing the material of false ceiling boards.
Wooden boards are good for dry areas, but aerolite boards and PVC are the right choices in humid regions. Comparatively aerolite boards seem to be the best choice for most of the applications despite the high cost. The safety, strength and durability make the boards worth their price. False ceilings are cool, only when chosen and designed properly as they say “good work is a result of good planning”.
Lastly, take a read of the most important Ceiling Guide- Everything about False Ceiling, Materials and Costing
And an example of a video uploaded to our Youtube channel
Types of False Ceilings False Ceiling material False Ceiling Material Guide Popular False Ceiling Materials False Ceiling Types
Article Category Bedroom Design Ideas Home Decor Interior Design Lighting Living Room
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