what you can do to reduce heating costs

what you can do to reduce heating costs

OSB VS. Plywood

by Mia Kuhn

Whether you are employed in the construction industry or you are just an avid do-it-yourself homeowner who enjoys working on projects around the house, you may be wondering what the difference is between common plywood and oriented strand board (OSB). This guide will provide you with the pros of each building material.

What Is OSB?

Oriented strand board is engineered lumber that is made from strands of wood mixed with adhesives and compressed. It is similar to particle board, but is much stronger and is approved as a structural panel that meets local and national building codes.

What Is Plywood?

Plywood is formed from very thin plies, or layers of wood, that are glued together until the desired thickness is reached and then compressed. Each layer is rotated, which adds to its strength by having the wood grain run in different directions.

What Are The Advantages Of OSB?

  • Versatility. OSB manufactures can pretty much tweak their "recipe" to fit the intended application or climate. For example, the Pacific Northwest is quite rainy. OSB headed for Seattle builders can be sealed with a different resin to give it extra protections from the humidity.
  • Larger Sizes. Because OSB is made from small strands of wood, the size of the finished panel is limited only by their manufacturing facility and engineering standards. For example, a piece of OSB sheathing can be made in 8x16 sheets. Plywood is limited to the size of the tree bolt, generally 8-feet.
  • Consistency. The small strands of wood allow for a finished product that has the same density and strength all the way through the board. This gives it greater shear strength, the strength of its thickness, than plywood.
  • Environmentally Friendly. OSB doesn't require felling 100-year-old trees to manufacture it. Rather, fast-growing and smaller diameter trees are used.
  • Affordable. Because old-growth trees aren't being used, OSB is considerably less expensive.

What Are The Advantages Of Plywood?

  • Reliable Reputation. Even though OSB has been around for forty years and has the same or better structural strength depending on application, plywood has a loyal fan base with building contractors.
  • Moisture Resistant. Major plywood manufacturers have been working hard to increase the edge that plywood has over OSB when it comes to resisting moisture damage.
  • Preferred Underlayment. While both plywood and OSB have the same engineered strength rating, many flooring manufactures still recommend that plywood be used for the flooring underlayment rather than OSB. For example, tile manufactures, which is a heavy flooring with seams, believe plywood with be less likely to expand if the floor becomes compromised by moisture.


About Me

what you can do to reduce heating costs

Does your heating bill send you into a state of shock? If so, now is the time for you to begin making changes to your home to bring the cost of heating your home down. In years past, my heating bill was actually more than my mortgage was. It really made getting through the winter difficult for my family. I decided to do something about the high bills. I started with insulation, then invested in some new windows, and I also changed the way that we used our utilities. You can learn everything that I did to reduce my heating bill so that you can cut your heating bill as well.