Wood moldings are the most extensively used decorative element for adding character to a room against the floors and ceilings. However, plastic molding is being used more and more because of its cheap costs, flexibility, and prefinished appearance. Here are a few things you should know about interior plastic moldings.
Raw Plastic Moldings
Raw plastic moldings are sold dyed white and have no differentiation between the outside layer of plastic and the inside layer of plastic as this type of molding is constructed as one solid piece of molded plastic. These moldings are typically reminiscent of large classic crown and base moldings 5 inches are larger. These moldings would normally have to be custom made if they were made out of wood because of the extremely large shaper bits needed to create such moldings. This is where plastic moldings have an advantage as they can mimic these large crown moldings that may be up to three different pieces, in one large piece, cutting down on installation time and saving a significant dollar amount on material.
Laminated Plastic Moldings
Laminated plastic moldings have a veneer layer over the molded plastic that is heat bonded to the plastic in the factory, to give the molding a pre-colored wood grain or a stainable/paintable wood grain surface. These molding are slightly more expensive, but do not offer the same flexibility as the raw plastic moldings as the laminated surface will crack with too much flexing and bending. Caution must also be taken when cutting these moldings as surface chips will reveal the raw plastic below the laminated surface. Use a high quality finish trim blade on a miter saw when cutting these types of trim.
Composite Wood/Plastic Molding
These types of moldings incorporate both compressed wood grain fibers and plastic molded into one solid piece of trim. These types of moldings are typically dyed through the material and are just as flexible as the all raw plastic moldings. These types of moldings do not have as much twist-ability as the raw plastic, however, and is a better window casement molding than a crown molding.
These plastic moldings are good options if you want the high end look or decorative wood trim, without the wood price. If you already have painted trim, this is a great way to incorporate fantastic ceiling, window, door, and wall details that will inspire and awe your guests.