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WHAT IS THE Difference Between Chipboard, MDF AND Fiberboard?

What is the difference between chipboard, MDF and fiberboard? This question is of interest, perhaps, to everyone who has encountered purchase of furniture and finishing materials, as it directly affects their cost. In this article, we will describe the technical characteristics, as well as the pros and cons of these materials, which will help you make your choice.

Particleboard (CHIPBOARD)

It is produced from shavings and sawdust of any low-value wood, both coniferous and hardwood, and a special binder, mainly synthetic resins (formaldehyde resins), using the hot pressing method.

Chipboard is the most widely used material for economy class furniture and office furniture, as it has a low price. Compared to natural wood, they swell less from moisture and are less combustible, and also have good heat and sound insulation properties. More biostability. However, chipboard is not recommended for use in rooms with high humidity, as it has the lowest moisture resistance property and when used in very humid rooms, chipboard swells and deforms. Chipboard is not a highly environmentally friendly material, since when using furniture made of chipboard, a small amount of formaldehyde is released into the air, which can adversely affect health. But the minimum amount of formaldehyde emitted is completely safe for humans, so you should pay attention to the type of chipboard (E1 or E2). E1 is more environmentally friendly, its formaldehyde emission rate is noticeably lower. Austrian and German chipboards are considered the most environmentally friendly.


Produced from very small particles of wood. With the help of special equipment, small cubes are made from woodworking waste, which are subsequently processed with steam under pressure. After that, the manufactured material is crushed using a grinder. And the resulting small wood particles are held together with a special solution.

MDF is used in the manufacture of doors. Also, this material is used to make durable trims, facades for furniture, canvases for painting, as well as various linings for entrance doors. MDF products are considered the most moisture resistant and can be used in rooms with humidity up to 80%, while for wood products this parameter should not exceed 60%. Also, MDF has the properties of excellent planarity of the web surfaces, surface hardness and impact resistance. MDF is a very environmentally friendly material, since lignin and paraffin are used as a binder. Prices for MDF are quite high, this is due, among other things, to the lack of established production on the territory of Ukraine.

Fibreboard (Fibreboard)

Manufacturing technology is very similar to MDF. It is made by hot pressing evenly ground wood pulp impregnated with synthetic resins, with the inclusion of some additives in the mass that improve its properties, such as moisture resistance and strength, preventing their destruction. The plates themselves are made using the wet pressing method, in connection with which one of the sides of the finished fiberboard is always rough, and the other, smooth, is covered with a film (laminated or laminated).

It is used in the production of finishing works, as the back walls of cabinets, the bottom of drawers, etc. It has a low price with high durability, but the range of use of this material is small. In the most expensive furniture, plywood is used instead of fiberboard, but in terms of its performance properties, it is not much better. Fiberboard is a very moisture resistant and highly environmentally friendly material.

Based on the above, you can choose the most suitable material. But in any case, it will not be superfluous to consult with specialists.

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