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What is Melamine?

What You Need To Know About Melamine


While the average person might not be able to recognize a Melamine cabinet simply by looking at it, they've likely seen plenty of examples in the past. Melamine is similar to a plastic laminate, in that it is a resin-soaked paper that's bonded to the wood underneath. Typically used to cover particle board, it was introduced in the 1980s and quickly became a popular choice for builders.Melamine veneer

There are some advantages to using Melamine cabinets in a project. They are less expensive than other options and that's led to them being used in entry-level homes. Due to the way they are constructed, they also have a uniformity in color and grain, which is one of the reasons they are often used in commercial applications. The Melamine surface is also very durable and is easy to clean. That's especially important in areas where there is a lot of potential for dirt.

But there are some definite downsides to using Melamine cabinetry. They are not suitable for areas that might get wet, because moisture will be absorbed by the particleboard surface underneath. The cabinets also have a tendency to pick up and retain odors, so they wouldn't be the best choice for a storage area such as a vegetable pantry. The Melamine panels are also more likely to be damaged than solid wood cabinets, which is why you will often see chipped areas on Melamine cabinets that have been installed in high-traffic areas.

So is Melamine cabinetry a good choice? For some applications, but it depends on what effect you are looking for from the cabinets. Melamine cabinets don't look like "real" wood, which might be an issue. But they are perfect for a lot of uses, especially in areas where cost and practicality are more important than high-end looks. 

Melamine cabinets remain a popular choice for builders and home improvement specialists. Whether it works for your project depends almost entirely on your plans for the space. 

There is one last factor to consider. If you do go with Melamine cabinets, you'll want to get them professionally built and installed. The Melamine veneer can chip or crack easily if not properly handled and your local professional is the best person to handle that tricky job.