What is Stronger – Wood Beam or Faux Wood Beams?

Written by Milan Jara on 12th Aug 2021

Faux Wood Beams – Espresso

Having wooden beams for a decorative purpose always adds charm and sophistication to a room, whether you’ve installed real wood or Faux wood beams. Faux wood beams are a great addition to your home when you cannot invest in the real thing. They emulate the look of wood and so abundantly well. In this article, we focus on which of the two is stronger. There are many ceilings out there that cannot handle tough features, so knowing which one is lighter may go a long way for you and your home’s ceiling.

Wood beam vs Faux Beam: Which is the Strongest?

If you’re keen to know which one weighs more, then the answer is real wooden beams. They weigh a significant amount more, and this comes with issues during installation. Because they are heavier, installing them can be problematic, putting many decorators off from purchasing them. It is recommended that you hire a team of professionals to carry out the installation for you – so you can already tell that the project will cost you a lot of money.

When it comes to faux wood ceiling beams, they are so light that they can be installed by one or two people, depending on how experienced the one person is. Not only will this provide an easier task, but you’ll manage to save a ton of money in the process when compared to a real wood beam.

Now that you know which one weighs more, you may also be eager to know which is the better investment. Most people look to faux wood beams because of the lighter work, the amount of time and money saved, and the versatility that they bring. They also come without many flaws, unlike real wooden beams – which we explain below.

What Makes Real Wooden Beams Less of an Option?

We’ve already touched on their weight and how it can become a problem during installation. However, there are other issues that real wooden beams bring to the table. These include:

Faux Wood Beams – Dark Walnut

  • May Require Extra Maintenance:

    Real wood needs more maintenance, which may be tasks like having it re-stained or re-painted now and again.

  • Vulnerable to Wood Eating Pests:

    Wood-eating pests have been a huge issue for many homeowners who had opted for real wooden beams. Wood-eating pests are, of course, attracted to wood, making a new set of wooden beams a breeding zone for this to take place. This problem should be avoided, especially if you plan on having your wooden beams provide structural support for your ceiling. If your beams are being gnawed away by pests, eventually, the wood will erode, and this could cause the beams and part of the ceiling to fall.

Reasons Why Real Wooden Beams Can Work Well

There are potential issues with installing a solid wood beam, but they have many upsides, too. When it comes to their heavy weight, you could spin that and see it as a positive. The bulk of a real wooden beam provides enough support to stabilize a wall or even a foundation.

Another reason why real wooden beams work well is that they come with natural beauty, which faux wood does not. Despite being able to mimic the look of real wood so well, faux wood cannot offer the true character as its counterpart. With real wood beams, they are beautiful to see and certainty to admire.

What Makes Faux Wood Beams an Excellent Investment?

Faux Wood Monolithic Beam – Doug Fir

Although we have established that real lumber beams are stronger, we must acknowledge that faux wood ceiling beams can withstand a lot of weight and potential complications themselves. One of the biggest factors that make them a worthwhile investment is their durability. Many experts feel that faux wooden beams can withstand the elements even better than real wood. You can use them either inside or outside and not have to worry about problems occurring, especially with the aesthetic side of things.

There’s no doubt that the reason why real wooden beams are stronger is that they’re solid lumps of wood. In contrast, faux wood beams are hollow, making them light and easy to carry. However, there are also other benefits to them being hollow. For instance, you’ll have the opportunity to place them over existing pipes or I-beams, or even run electrical wires through them. Installing lighting in them is even easier, too.

It’s clear that faux wooden beams are not as strong or sturdy as real wooden beams, and as you have learned, there is a range of benefits to this. One other reason you should consider them over real wooden beams is that they are eco-friendly. As they typically use polyurethane, they are not responsible for cutting trees down. Moreover, their manufacturing process also doesn’t dampen the environment either. They use no formaldehyde or chlorofluorocarbons, and the stains and finishes of the beams are 100% water-based.

When deciding whether or not to invest in faux wood, there aren't many downsides to consider. But one aspect where they fail to match real wood beams is holding an extreme weight (act as structural support). However, if your home is already built, then this shouldn’t even be an issue anyway.

Overall, when it comes to which one is stronger, there is no doubt that real wooden beams take this accolade. However, despite being the strongest, they may not be the best solution. Faux wooden beams come with an abundance of pros, and this makes them a worthwhile investment for your home.

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