The Cement Wood boards are a versatile product, with appearance and some characteristics of concrete, and without many of its drawbacks, and can be used both indoors and outdoors.
Its properties include its reduced reaction to fire, its resistance to moisture and its ease of handling. It is often said that they combine the strength of cement and the flexibility and versatility of wood.
It is also common to refer to this type of panel mentioning the most well-known brand or manufacturer, Viroc. They are the pioneers in this field, but they are not the only manufacturers.
The cement wooden boards are mainly composed of cement (mainly Portland) and wood particles, the same ones used to make chipboard.
The percentages revolve around:
- Cement: 30-70%
- Wood: 30-70%
- Water: 10-12%
- Pigments and other compounds: 2-5%.
Given the great variability that exists between the percentages of wood and cement used depending on the type of board and the manufacturer, it is always advisable to consult the technical specifications to confirm that they are suitable for the purpose in question.
- In most cases, it is a material suitable for outdoor use. However, it is always recommended to consult the specifications provided by the manufacturer.
- Flexible. Obviously they do not have the same flexibility as a board made exclusively of wood, but it is worth noting considering the zero flexibility of the cement.
- Impacts Good resistance to shocks and scratches. Of course, it is not the same as a cement or concrete wall, but it is superior to most wooden boards.
- Fire. Some types are considered fireproof. This is one of the great advantages of the material, which makes it a common solution when it is necessary to build fire resistance systems. Between A2-s1-d0 and B-s1-d0 (standard EN 13501-1) depending on the type.
- Moisture. They only have a coefficient of expansion in the presence of moisture of 1.5%. In other words, they have considerable dimensional stability against environmental changes.
- The approximate density of a wooden cement board is 1100-1400 kg / m3.
- High durability. Due to their cement content, these plates are immune to the degrading action of insects and fungi. Externally and in damp areas, it is recommended to apply a finish, paint or varnish, to maintain its characteristics and ensure its durability.
- Thermal and acoustic insulation. In this sense, he inherits these properties from wood. Approximate resistance to aerial sounds of 30 or 37 dB, depending on the thickness.
- Price. Their price is very competitive, we could even say that they are cheap. For example, they are cheaper than many midsize plywood.
- Ease of work, machining and assembly. The fact that can be worked in a similar way to how you work with any other type of board facilitates work and reduces costs and times compared to working with concrete or other products derived from cement.
- They do not contain dangerous volatile compounds.
Disadvantages of cement wood panels
- Derived from cement, which is not an ecological product, no matter how many manufacturers repeat it. It is also not biodegradable.
- Limited number of designs or colors.
- When working with them (cutting, machining, etc.) it is essential to use protection, as it can cause irritation to the eyes and respiratory system. It is highly recommended to have a suction system.
Price of cement wood boards
They present an excellent quality / price ratio. For example, in a thickness of 16mm (the most common) and in gray the price varies between € 17-20 / m2.
Both in greater thicknesses and in different colors the price is higher, although not excessively.
Working with cement wood panels is similar to working with other types of wood panels. The dimensions are usually the usual or very similar.
Usual thicknesses: 10, 12, 16, 19 and 22 millimeters.
Dimensions: 260 × 125, 310 × 125, 125 × 62.5 centimeters. This last measure is the usual in grooved cement wood panels, ready to join to cover surfaces, such as a wall or a roof.
Colors and Textures
The surface is not homogeneous, that is, different shades can be seen with the naked eye.
The most common colors are the typical gray of cement, but we don’t need to limit ourselves to them. Other common colors are black and white and then yellow, ocher or red.
They can be sanded, although it should be clear that if so, the wood fibers will be appreciated.
This appearance makes them ideal for aesthetic industrial environments.
Uses of wood cement panel
Cladding, specially ventilated facades. For its properties as thermal and acoustic insulation and for its resistance to the weather, it is one of the best options for this type of use. When exposed to external agents, it is advisable to protect them with varnishes or paints to ensure their durability.
Interior partition. Although they can be used in any building for this purpose, they are really practical for rooms that require sound insulation (cinemas, hotels, etc.) or in humid environments (swimming pools, changing rooms, bathrooms, etc.).
False ceilings. Its appearance is not incompatible with this type of use. In this case, in order not to overload the structure and because it is no longer needed, reduced thicknesses, for example 10 mm, can be used.
Cases. In this sense, it has the necessary resistance, both mechanically, as well as humidity and heat, to suit this type of use. It can be found as a layer of what is known as a sandwich panel.
Flooring, including those in humid environments, such as kitchens and bathrooms.
As part of furniture or carpentry: benches, stairs, doors …
Its fire resistance makes it ideal for places and / or buildings where fire resistance regulations are more demanding: hotels, fairs, public buildings …