Solid wood is often seen as a sign of quality and even luxury in household items such as flooring, doors, and furniture. But, that’s not necessarily the case when it comes to cabinets. Let’s take a closer look at solid wood vs engineered wood and help you understand how each is used in the cabinet industry.

Cabinet Doors, Drawer Faces, and Face Frame

Aka, the visual elements of cabinets. You’re typically going to have two choices of wood material when it comes to these components, and that choice will be dictated by whether you want a stained or painted finish.

For stained cabinets, solid wood is the way to go because it’s strong and takes stains better than engineered woods. And, if you want a stained finish, chances are you’re looking to highlight the natural beauty of the wood. It’s best to go with the real thing if that’s your goal.

For painted cabinets, high density fiberboard (HDF), a type of engineered wood, is the preferred choice. HDF is a strong composite material that is created by combining wood fibers and glue under extreme pressure and heat. It offers the same strength and look (when painted) as solid wood, but without the higher expense, and is also environmentally friendly.

Cabinet Doors, Drawer Faces, and Face Frame

Image and Cabinetry by Dura Supreme

Cabinet Box

Even if you opt for the solid wood elements mentioned above, you’ll still find engineered wood in the structural piece of your cabinet construction. Furniture board—another type of engineered wood—is the preferred choice for cabinet boxes because it has no directional movement, making it significantly more stable than any of the other options, especially solid wood that expands and contracts. Plus, it just doesn’t make sense to carry the extra cost of solid wood when it’s not the optimum material for the job.

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Hopefully, you’re walking away from this article with a better understanding of the materials you’ll find in your bathroom and kitchen cabinetry. But, if you have any questions or want more information, please contact us and one of our design experts will be happy to help!

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