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Difference Between MDF and Particle Boards

MDF vs Particle Boards

Due to the rapid depletion of the solid woods and the difficulty in getting large flat panels, man learned to create wood products to suit his needs; these are called engineered woods, which MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) and particle boards are just two examples of. The main difference between MDF and particle board is density as the former is a much denser product than the latter. The difference in density stems from how they are created. Particle board comes from wood waste like chips, shavings, and even sawdust, which are then applied with resin and compressed. Although MDF goes through the same process, it is only the wood fibers that are used. The fibers, extracted via a defibrator, are much stronger and result in a more even board composition.

For the end-user, the main difference between particle boards and MDF is strength. The higher density of MDF makes it stronger and more resistant to breaking when under heavy loads. This is very important in making shelves that are going to hold heavy objects like cans. Over extended periods of time, particle boards can begin to sag due to the consistent weight. MDF is also prone to sagging but is more resistant compared to particle boards. With MDF, you can build slightly larger surfaces and not suffer as much sag than if you built the same surface with particle board.

One area where MDF can be slightly worse than particle boards is in tolerating screws. Because of the orientation of the fibers, it is often necessary to drill a pilot hole prior to screwing an MDF board. Or else, the screw can push the fibers apart enough to begin a crack.

As always, with greater strength comes a greater price. In general, MDF boards cost more than particle boards. But it still depends on the company that makes them and the quality of their work. A shabbily built MDF may cost less than a high quality particle board but it would also have less strength.


1.MDF is denser than particle boards
2.MDF is stronger than particle boards
3.MDF would not sag as much as particle boards
4.MDF is more prone to splitting than particle boards
5.MDF can be more expensive than particle boards

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