What Is MDF And Why Use It For Skirting Boards?

Posted by Skirting World on 12th Apr 2016

Choosing a design for your skirting can be pretty hard these days due to the variety available on the internet.

Choosing the material to use can be an even harder choice due to the pros and cons of each material.

We use MDF for almost all of the skirting we manufacture, but...

What is MDF?

Believe it or not, we get quite a few customers who will ask the question - 'what is MDF?'. We start by saying that MDF stands for Medium Density Fibreboard.

It is a man-made material and is often found in products like furniture for your home.

MDF is manufactured using wood fibres that are gathered from hardwoods and softwoods that have been broken down. High temperatures and pressures are used along with waxes and resins to bind the wood fibres together and make the sheets of MDF that we use to create our MDF skirting boards.

How MDF Is Made

So, you're no longer asking the question 'what is MDF?'. Now you want to know...

Why Use MDF Over Softwoods Like Pine Or Hardwoods Like Oak?

When our customers ask us what material we recommend they use for their skirting and architrave, we always tell them that MDF is the best option for many reasons (we also recommend HDF, but that's for another post!):

  • MDF is cheaper than almost every other common material used to create skirting boards.
  • MDF is made to last and will generally last for as long as the property it is used within.
  • The surface of MDF is smooth making the final paint finish smooth also. This is a benefit of not having a grain and imperfections such as knots and holes commonly found in materials like Pine.
  • MDF won't expand and contract like wood
  • Our MDF is made with 100% softwood fibres which keeps the density of the material consistent throughout the board (a lot of MDF consists of hardwood and softwood fibres leading to irregularities within the board).
  • We use the densest MDF available on the market.
  • Our MDF is also moisture resistant making it suitable for almost any area within the home.

If you need extra protection against moisture (issues with damp, bathrooms, etc.), HDF is the material we would recommend (we call ours moisture resistant HDF) but generally MDF should be perfect for most households.

All of our products are available in MDF - this includes skirting, architraves, window boards and door frames.

Our MDF is now all moisture resistant

We now use the densest MDF available on the market (hence why we call it HDF - High Density Fibreboard).

As well as being the most premium product available, it's moisture resistant too.

If you mop the area often, our skirting will be ideal. It won't soak up water and swell unlike other woods and standard MDF.

If It's Moisture Resistant, Why Isn't The Board Green?

We get asked this question a lot. All MDF suppliers used to add a green dye to the material to highlight that it is a moisture resistant board.

However, this is not the case any more. Some suppliers still do it but to cut costs even further, a lot of suppliers have now done away with the dye.

I've Heard That MDF Has A Furry Texture Once It Has Been Machined - Is This True?

Unfortunately, it is true - but only if a low quality MDF is being used. Also, blunt cutters can be a contributing factor to furry MDF.

With the MDF that we use, we don't have this problem.

Because the material is as dense as it can be (from the outside in to the core), the furriness is minimal.

We also keep on top of grinding our cutters when needed to keep them as sharp as possible. This also helps to keep the machining clean and produce a smooth finish.