Veneering is a must for all doors, with the exception of solid wood doors, which only requires protective lacquering. Veneering means to apply a thin layer of material to an object’s surface to improve its appearance and even out the texture.
There are three common types of veneering material: wood, liquid coating and acrylic.
The most natural choice: wood
Wood veneer, basically thin sliced wood, looks the most natural among the three. A door veneered with wood can look just like a solid wood door. There is usually a layer of transparent lacquer applied on the veneer. The lacquer protects the wood against water.
Wood veneer comes in different types: natural wood veneer and engineered wood veneer.
While natural wood veneer goes through minimal processing, engineered wood veneer is dyed, dried and glued together, re-sliced and re-glued in the purpose of achieving a desired wood pattern.
Natural wood veneer only comes in natural wood colours, while engineered wood veneer can be blue, green or even purple.
The most affordable option: liquid coating
Liquid-coated doors mainly come in black and white. The liquid is applied on the door mechanically, and then cured in a kiln. The heat increases the adhesion of the coating liquid.
Liquid coating is an affordable veneering option, but the liquid envelops the whole wooden surface and you cannot see the wood grain hidden under the coating.
The most heavy-duty option: plastic
The most expensive option, plastic paneling, is durable, easy to maintain, and scratch-resistant.
Plastic paneling’s shortcomings have to do with its unnatural appearance; the black borders on the seams might be a potential eyesore. Moreover, plastic panels are quite heavy and over a considerable period of use, the panels might come loose.
The flat surface of plastic panels allows very little variation in style. But in the recent years, new styles like wood and brick textures are available.
The three types of veneer have their own set of strengths and shortcomings, remember to choose the one that best suits your needs.