Finishing materials are essential not just for the improvement of the appearance of buildings but also for the protection of the structure from external, natural variables. According to The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979), the ones that are commonly used for this purpose are the natural and artificial masonry materials, ceramics, varnishes, mortars, and decorative concrete.
Depending on the type of building project, the methods of finishes varies to consider the applicable interior and exterior design. Some finishes are grouped according to its functions: covering floors, acoustic materials for sound-absorbing coatings, and fire suppression features.
A group of finishing materials, known for its superb architectural qualities, includes different facing materials in forms of tiles, slabs, and sheets, ceramic-based, and decorative laminated-paper plastic. It is easier, in the meantime, in modern industrial construction conditions for these facings to be manufactured and directly used for the assembly.
Natural stone, with its durable and appealing form, is considered the traditional finishing material. These facing products are usually made out of syenite, limestone, gabbro, and granite. Moreover, it is intendedly used mostly for interior and exterior design (floor and wall coverings) as we can see in subway stations, theaters, hotels, and the sort.
On the other hand, the most used artificial stone finishing materials are decorative ceramics, which are not unusual in residential and public buildings for exterior finishing — facing brick, facade slabs and tiles, ornamental inserts — and interior finishings — glazed facing and floor tiles.
Glass finishing materials, meanwhile, are widely used for exterior finishing of public establishments. It is the window glass, marbled glass, mosaic glass, and much more. Having excellent strength qualities, these finishing materials are also mainly used as surfacing floors in buildings/ structures like railroad and shops in chemical-building plants.
The decorative effect of concrete and mortars as finishing materials result from the use of colored cements collected from crushing different types of natural stones and by “texturing the front surfaces of products during molding or after the concrete has hardened.”, as described by the Great Soviet Encyclopedia. Given its efficiency, concrete and mortars are used extensively in the factory finishing of structural parts for fully prefabricated establishments; the use of decorative mortar mixtures for the exterior and interior plastering during construction is unlikely unlimited, since the operation requires a great amount of time and workforce.
Considering its higher cost than the other finishing materials, metals are specifically used for modern construction which complements with its beautifying characteristics. The work-referent site further signifies this as, “Sheets and shaped products made of copper and its alloys, stainless steel, and titanium are used as finishing materials; aluminum alloys, including those with a colored (anodized) surface, are particularly promising.” These metals are also the best choice for creating accessories, entrances and interiors.
The wood finishing materials, on the other note, are recognized for their service qualities and excellent materials; in construction, these are the veneer, chipboard, parquet, railings, plinths, and decorative woods. Aside from its usual natural source to manufacture facing products — like beech, oak, and walnut — it can also be pulled out from unlikely uncommon species, such as pine and birch. Wood finishing materials need wood preservative chemicals, paint and varnish coatings, to increase their service life.
For low-cost and labor requirements, wallpaper is the best choice for it can also be an effective decorative interior finishing material.
According to the same Encyclopedia, plastics are a promising type of finishing equipment. This type of materials offer a great range of product shapes, sanitary and hygienic qualities, and modest corrosion resistance. Due to its substantially shorter life compared to other finishing materials, it is more often used for interior entities than exterior. This may come in products of washable wallpaper, decorative laminated-paper plastic, fabric base, railings (from polyvinyl laths), finish casings, plastic sheets, and polymeric films. It is also worth mentioning, plastics as finishing materials, the efficient use of this for floor coverings.
Paint and varnishes, mainly synthetic kinds, are commonly used in painting operations in modern construction. These finishing materials are known to diminish the labor-intensiveness of the operations for the improvement of properties and structures protection and decoration.
“The main trend in the development of the finishing-materials industry is toward expansion of the assortment of materials,” the work-referent site underscored, “ as well as toward improvement of their quality and an increase in the degree of factory preparation of materials and products.”
The list below consists four main building components finishes that are frequently used by building contractors, as identified by Construction Tuts, an online organization of hardware and architectural content creators, Editorialteam (2017):
- Floor Finishes
- Bricks / Pavers
- Tiling (ceramic, porcelain, granite, marble)
- Wood floor covering (laminated flooring, wood parquet, engineered wood)
- Linoleum sheet
- Glass floor covering
- Concrete floor covering
- Mosaic floor covering
- Cork floor covering
- Magnesite floor covering
- Vinyl asbestos tiles
- Wall Finishes
- Dry Linings
- Natural stone
- Aluminum cladding
- Ceiling Finishes
- Gypsum board
- Steel Lathing
- Ceiling linings
- Ceiling tiles
- Spray plaster
- Ceiling papers
- Wood/ Timber Cladding
- Expanded Polystyrene Tiles
- PVC Cladding
- Ceiling Painting
- Roof Finishes Types
- Corrugated steel
- Profiled light aluminum
- Stone coated steel
- Wood shingles
- Concrete tiles
- Clay tiles
- Lightweight metallics
- Synthetic slates/tiles
- Natural slates
- Artificial mineral fiber
- Cement slates
- Titanium-cladding panels
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