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5 Reasons It’s Worth the Premium Product: Plywood

When it comes to building your dream home, a long awaited addition, or a beautiful outdoor deck with cascading stairs to the yard, you want to use the best possible materials to ensure durability, reliability, and ultimately–longevity. 

Durability, reliability, and longevity start from the inside out. In this case–with plywood. This material is used as a foundational element to finish the frame of a project; from an entire home, to an addition, to a staircase, and everything in between. Plywood is the layer that’s applied directly to the framing and is the layer on which finish materials, such as siding or flooring, are applied. Plywood is typically used as sheathing or roof sheathing.

Plywood is a strong thin wooden board consisting of two or more layers glued and pressed together with the direction of the grain alternating, and usually sold in sheets of four by eight feet. It’s used for various types of projects and intentions. Most widely, plywood is used for wall sheathing, roof sheathing, and stair risers. The product is measured by grade, which is determined by the quality of the wood used and what type of glue is used to bond the layers. 

Plywood seems like a product that’s relatively simple to choose and a way to save money on the project. However, the structure of the project is arguably the most important aspect of the durability, reliability, and longevity of it. So, here’s 5 reasons why it’s worth the premium plywood:

1. Grade 

Contractors in the US typically use domestic CDX grade plywood for framing. CDX means it has a C grade front, a D grade back, and is bonded together with exterior glue and typically is 4-ply (4 layers glued together). CCX, a slightly better grade plywood means that it has both a C grade face and back and is bonded together with exterior glue – great for its intended purpose of exterior sheathing. CCX typically is made in 5- or 6-ply, which inherently makes the product stronger. Ultimately, a CCX is overall a better grade than the standard sheathing product, CDX.

CDX PlywoodCCX Plywood

(photos above: left = CDX, right = CCX)

2. Durability and Stability 

A CCX grade typically comes in either a 5-ply or 6-ply product, which inherently makes it stronger than the typically used 4-ply product. Creating a stronger and more durable foundation for the finish trades to be adhered to will in turn make a stronger, more stable, and more durable home, addition, deck, staircase, etc. We don’t have to convince you as to why you’d want a stronger foundation for any of the projects plywood would be used. 

3. More surface area for fasteners

Like we mentioned, a CCX sheet of plywood has two fair grades for both the face and the back. Which means a contractor can use either side of the sheet as the face or the back, since they’re the same. Because both sides are face-grade, the sheet will have less blemishes, and no severe knots, allowing the contractor to fasten into virtually any part of the board. Additionally, because the sheet has less blemishes, it’s a flatter surface area for the next trade to apply their work to, making the entire project run smoother and more efficient. 

4. Less Waste

Because CCX grade plywood has less blemishes and is a more uniform product all over, contractors don’t have to put an entire sheet aside because it’s simply not good enough to be used on the project. Being able to measure the project, purchase the amount of product that’s needed, and apply the material not only saves money on supplies, but saves money in labor time. 

5. Accessibility

Typically, contractors use domestic CDX when going to sheath a house frame or build stair risers. Therefore, when the construction industry is booming and demand is high, it’s difficult to find CDX. CCX is available whenever the project is ready to start. 

The structure of the project, no matter what it is, is of the utmost importance. When shopping for plywood, the premium product is well worth the extra dollars. CDX, while being well-known and widely used, is not the best option for discerning and high-end projects. CCX, with it being a higher grade, between a 5- and 6-ply product, free of major knots, and less known, makes it the better option for any project you’re working on. 

Here at CCL, we prefer working with the best material out there to ensure the quality of the projects we work on for our deserving clients. Our sales team and yard staff go through product training to ensure they know their products from the inside out. Reach out to CCL today to inquire about the stock of CCX the yard currently has (anywhere between ⅜” and ¾” of 5- and 6-ply) for your next project.