Sustainable materials are the future of construction, green furniture and cabinetry. Wood as a material is synonymous with sustainability and natural aesthetics. However, it’s still important to consider what it means to use sustainable cabinet materials. This article will explore the sustainability of wood cabinets, as well as popular types of woods used in cabinetry and their longevity.
The Stability of Wood as Cabinet Material
From a practical point of view, wood is a more environmentally friendly material for cabinets than most other options. When looking at what wood offers as a material, there is a lot of evidence to suggest it is a highly sustainable option for your cabinets. These are the major features of wood that make it a reliable and environmentally conscious choice:
- Long lasting: Typically, wood cabinets are lightweight while still being hardy, durable and strong. Depending on the treatment applied to it, wood cabinets can last for generations and outlast most modern plastic alternatives. A sustainable material must be environmentally friendly to produce and have a long life span to reduce waste and require less mass production.
- Renewable: Wood is a renewable material, which means that as manufacturers harvest trees for timber, they can plant new trees to replace them. Choosing wood over plastic products reduces your carbon footprint and can actually have a positive impact on the environment.
- Biodegradable: Wood is also completely biodegradable, meaning it won’t produce long-lasting waste at the end of its lifecycle. You can also recycle old wood products, which can be transformed into things like wood pellets and paper or even burnt for energy.
- Heat retention: On a cellular level, wood is better at naturally retaining heat. This means wood cabinets can conserve heat in rooms, reducing your energy bills.
- Health benefits: Studies have shown that having fewer man-made materials in your home and using natural variants is able to reduce anxiety levels and lower stress. They have a soothing effect on one’s mental health and inspire more positive emotions.
Types of Wood Used for Cabinets
When looking for the most sustainable wood to use for your cabinets, it’s necessary to understand what different types of wood do best. Wood is a versatile material to work with and these different types of wood can add special features to your cabinets:
Pine is an extremely popular wood for cabinetry for a few reasons. It has a closed grain and is a softer wood variety, so it’s easy to work with and cut to the desired shapes and measurements. Pine is also a lightweight wood, making it attractive for large wood furniture pieces like wardrobes and hanging cabinets. In terms of coloring, pine is generally a light beige color, making it easy to stain or paint to a homeowner’s desired shade.
Maple has a simple and subtle grain that offers a unique design element. The surface of maple wood tends to be smoother and shinier than woods like birch, and it’s a hard, durable choice for products like wood cabinets. From a price perspective, maple wood is slightly more expensive than other options. However, the cost is usually worth the investment because of the strength, durability and longevity of maple cabinets.
Red oak or oak is characterized by light to medium brown coloring and a reddish hue. This coloration complements the natural straight-grain pattern of oak wood, making it a distinctive feature. Oak timber is strong and sturdy and makes some of the best solid wood furniture. However, the prominent wood grain does impact its versatility, as it tends to be a tough wood to paint.
Cherry wood’s coloration ranges from light blonde to a reddish brown. The color of cherry wood varies from tree to tree, creating a wider variety in cherry wood furniture. While it is one of the “softer” hardwoods, it is still strong. Cherry wood cabinets are strong and reliable but are usually more expensive and tend to be best suited to low-traffic areas of the home.
Birch cabinets are often compared to maple cabinets. They share a similar coloration and grain, but birch’s grain is made up of straight lines. Birch is a strong type of wood with a texture that is coarser and rougher than maple wood. It is best to use a professional service when working with birch, as dark, blotchy stains can appear with DIY finishes and varnishing.
The Longevity of Wood Cabinets
An important part of a product’s sustainability is how long it can last. Wood is a sustainable material for many reasons, including its life span. A quality wooden cabinet can last up to 50 years, or even longer, if you choose the right wood manufacturer and take the proper maintenance and care precautions. While the life span of most things depends on how they are used, wood cabinets should last a long time compared to other parts of your house.
Compared to materials like particle board and plastic, wood’s life span is a key factor in the longevity of wooden cabinetry. Its durability and natural strength make it strong enough to reliably store a lot of items, particularly heavy tableware. It is also resistant to moisture and corrosion, it can be repaired and refurbished easily and its finishes can protect it from fading, dents, scratches and other damage.
Another factor that contributes to the longevity of wood is how easy it is to decorate with. Many short-lived trends use cheaper materials that can be swapped and replaced when the next trend comes along. Wood is a timeless material for your cabinets. It is a versatile styling material that can achieve rustic, contemporary, traditional and many other looks. If you’d like to change the look of your cabinets, you can also have them refinished or painted to match a new design. Wood cabinets are a worthwhile investment in terms of durability, price and aesthetics.
Get Sustainable Wood Cabinets With WG Wood Products
Trust WG Wood Products to provide you with sustainable, reliable and gorgeous wooden cabinets that will last for decades. We offer high-quality natural finished solid wood cabinets that will enhance your home for years to come. With our expertise and materials we can provide you with unique cabinetry that can greatly enhance the aesthetics of your home while being functional and durable.
To find out more about our offerings, contact us today and a WG Wood Products representative can help you find the cabinets you’ve been dreaming about.