Plywood Types in India: Everything You Need to Know About Plywood

plywood types in india

Thin layers of wood veneer stuck together using glue, with 90-degree rotation of their wood grain to one another, forms plywood. We can call this an engineered wood belonging to the family of medium-density fibreboard and particleboard.

Different Grades of Plywood:

There are different grades of plywood based on their appearance and quality, as mentioned below:

  1. A – Grade: These have a smoother surface and are suitable for making cabinets and furniture.
  2. B – Grade: It resembles the A grade with defects that can be 1 inch across the ply.
  3. C – Grade: It is an unsanded type with some defects, suitable for building structures in which appearance is not very important.
  4. D – Grade: It resembles a C-grade type with unrepaired knots.

Plywood Thickness:

In plywood, each layer is known as ply. There can be 3, 5, or more layers. The more the number of plies, the higher the thickness. The 3-ply type has 2-3 mm thickness and is generally used for interior work. Similarly, 5 ply is 4 mm thick, suitable for indoor as well as outdoor furniture and decorative purposes. When the number of layers is excess 7, it is known as multi-ply that has maximum strength and is hence used for structures like roofing.

Plywood Types in India: All You Need to Know

It is of the following types:

1. Commercial MR Grade:

  • It is moisture-resistant(MR) and suitable for use in the interiors.
  • A combination of softwood and hardwood timber or just some species of softwood timber is used for creating this ply.
  • It is the least expensive.

2. BWR or BWP Grade:

  • BWR is boiling water resistance and BWP is the boiling waterproof type that is usually meant for exterior use. BWP type has a core made of softwood and BWP is external grade plywood. Phenolic resins are used in both variants.

3. Marine Plywood:

  • Its quality is better with respect to commercial ply and is expensive too. Common uses include building ships and boats, industrial uses involving prolonged exposure to water. Its water resistance is the highest.

4. Softwood Plywood:

  • This type of plywood is manufactured using cedar, redwood, or pine wood. All these have low strength and are generally used for sheathing frames, roofs, sub flooring, shelves, and others.

5. Hardwood Plywood:

  • This type of plywood has 3-7 layers glued to one another at right angles for better strength.
  • Some examples of this type are poplar, maple, oak, birch, and walnut plywood.
  • These can be used to make musical instruments, cases for packaging, sports equipment, and other products that need strong frames.

6. Overlaid Plywood:

  • It can be of high density(HDO) or medium-density type(MDO). They have a finished appearance and a durable surface.
  • The coating resists water, dust, and scratches during construction and movement.
  • The exterior veneers are bonded to the remaining veneers using heat and pressure.

7. Structural or Sheathing Plywood:

  • These are known for their strength and hence used for framing and constructing structures where the wood will be eventually covered.
  • Strong adhesive is needed for keeping the plies together.
  • They are inexpensive, generally have a C or D grade, and are not resistant to weather.

Benefits of Using Plywood:

  • It is convenient to use because of availability in different sizes. Using nails or screws on it can be done easily without damaging the plank.
  • Since temperature variations don’t cause it to shrink or warp, and it has good durability, it is preferred for interior works.
  • Least wastage is ensured during its production and it is recyclable and economic too.


  • Wood can have classy grooves but the plywood cant.
  • Chances of chipping make it mandatory to carefully seal the veneer sheets along the edges. Also, laminating, polishing and painting is necessary for enhancing its look.
  • MR sheets can be damaged on exposure to water.
  • Quality of the plywood cant is accessed through its appearance.

Plywoods are quite a versatile option when it comes to doing interior works. As discussed, there are variants that are treated for resisting water damage. So based on the requirement, we can select the right type of plywood for indoor decors and outdoor works too.


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