What are HPL panels? HPL panels, compact laminates or high pressure laminates are materials obtained by pressing cellulose impregnated with thermosetting resins together with several layers of decorative paper.
In this case, thermal condensation of resins occurs, making the HPL laminate monolithic and reducing the likelihood of delamination.
And the surface of the HPL laminate (so called because of the similar structure to the fiberboard flooring) is additionally protected from abrasion and fading by means of a special acrylic layer.
Characteristics and properties of HPL panels
If we compare HPL panels with materials like MDF, similar in production method, we can note the increased density of the product - at the level of 1350-1550 kg / m3.
Weight 1 sq. m of the middle panel with a thickness of 6 mm is 8.7 kg, for 12 mm facade slabs - up to 14 kg. The standard panel formats depend on the manufacturer.
As a rule, the dimensions of interior elements are 1.3 x 2.8 m, 1.3 x 3.05 m, 1.54 x 3.66 m. Facade panels are produced with a length of 3050 mm and a width of 1300/1600 mm. The thickness of the materials ranges from 0.6 to 25 mm.
The side finishing of the panels depends on their purpose. So, when making an HPL facade, the edge does not match the color of the main cladding, it is black. The edge of the panel is rusticated and darkened, so the use of the universal black color is optimal and justified.
But if the material is used for interior decoration of enclosing structures, there are options with a tongue-and-groove connection.
Classification of paper laminates
HPL panels are divided into two main types:
- for facades;
- for interiors.
The former are distinguished by their smaller thickness (from 0.6 cm) and density (1400 g / m3). These parameters provide interior wall panels with HPL and 20-25% lower cost of materials in comparison with facade elements.
The outer ones have a high density (from 1450 g / m3) and a thickness from 6 mm to 30 mm. At the same time, HPL panels for facades are resistant to atmospheric precipitation and sunlight.
The main advantage of HPL panels is that they are shockproof. If you throw a stone into a porcelain stoneware facade, the tiles will break. Under the same conditions, no dent or chipping will appear on the HPL panel.
Basic use of panels
The most popular use of HPL plastic is for the facades of private and public buildings. Primarily for offices, hotels, cafes and restaurants.
The characteristics of the material make it possible to obtain an aesthetically pleasing and durable surface. At the same time, all HPL facades are ventilated, that is, they are mounted on a metal frame and allow air to circulate inside the free space. This removes condensation and maintains optimal humidity in the building.
HPL facade panels can also be used for cladding balconies, loggias, terraces and garden furniture.
The second type of materials, interior LSU panels, are most often used for:
- partitions for sanitary cabins in offices and entertainment centers;
- lockers in changing rooms in swimming pools, water parks and sports clubs;
- interior wall cladding in medical institutions and laboratories.
Panels with a thickness of 10 mm and more are considered self-supporting and can be used for the manufacture of doors and cabinet furniture intended for use in public places.
And also for decorating residential and domestic premises. Resistance to moisture allows the panels to be installed even in rooms with high humidity.
Pros and cons of hpl facade panels
The main advantages of the panels include:
- increased strength and resistance to mechanical damage;
- minimal moisture absorption. The amount of water absorption of the material by weight does not exceed 1 percent;
- resistance to aggressive environments and organic solvents, which makes it easier to clean the panels;
- high density, which prevents dirt and even paint from entering the structure of the material, as well as the development of microorganisms inside the panels;
- a wide range of sizes, colors and thicknesses.
In addition, the panels are easy to assemble. And they noticeably improve both the interior and the exterior of the building. And the service life of the material exceeds 50 years.
The disadvantages of HPL panels include the need for a special crate for their installation. The second disadvantage is the relatively high cost, which is offset by the high durability of the material.
Types of panel decors
Materials are made in a wide range of colors, which allows you to choose a suitable finish from more than a hundred options:
- single-color decors of HPL-plastics, the most profitable in price and quite effectively looking on any surface;
- wood decors of HPL-plastics, allowing to imitate different types of wood;
- HPL metal decors, which make the walls look like they are covered with sheet metal;
- stone decors that imitate natural and artificial stone;
- various fantasy decors of HPL-plastics - fashionable and modern colors, developed by renowned designers.
At the request of the customer, almost any image can be printed on materials - from patterns to photographs. There are also panels with porous structure and 3D effects.
And such an option as perforated facades made of HPL plastic presupposes the presence of round, triangular and practically any other shape holes in the panels.
Fastening methods for facade laminate
The following technologies are used for attaching HPL panels to facades:
- Visible fastening - an option in which rivets are visible on the surface of materials, rivets are painted in the color of the panel;
- Concealed mechanical fastening, which requires a counter-cut Keil collet type anchor with a pullout force of about 100 kg;
- DuroPT concealed anchor mechanism;
- Concealed fixing with adhesive sealant.
Subsystems for HPL panels
To fix materials on the enclosing structures, special subsystems made of wood or metal are used.
At the same time, wooden crate for private houses is used only in cases where the probability of water ingress on it is minimal. For example, for interior decoration.
Using a timber frame outside can lead to mold and mildew growth.
When installing panels on a metal subsystem for buildings, a frame made of aluminum or stainless steel and rivets from the same material are used.
When using a floating point, the heads of the fasteners must cover the entire holes. And for a fixed attachment, special mouth pieces are used to obtain a technological gap.
Regardless of the material chosen for the subsystem, the panels should only be vented and installed vertically. The ventilation gap must be at least 30 mm wide. And the height of the frame profiles should not exceed 3 meters.
Formation of turnkey installation cost
The average cost of facades made of turnkey HPL panels is about 6,000 rubles. per sq. m. This price includes the design of the facade and the preparation of its layout, the development of solutions for the thermal insulation of the building and 3D visualization of the resulting structure.
The next stage is the purchase and delivery of materials to the facility, preparatory work and building insulation. And finally, the installation of the panels themselves completes the process, which do not require further finishing.