Practical tips on false ceilings for new home buyers
The ceiling is also called the fifth wall. Your false ceiling(s) must simple bring you happiness! A false ceiling can create the aesthetic feel, mood and aura around your spaces to speak of your tastes and preferences. With the right expression to your tastes and preferences, you can create the perfect ambience for yourself and your loved ones.
The materials of false ceiling are usually the conventionally used plasterboards or gypsum boards, Plaster of Paris (PoP). One can even go for wood, glass, metal, fibre, PVC, fibre-cement, synthetic leather, cloth and so on. However, the most commonly used false ceilings are made with Gypsum boards or plasterboards.
In this article we shall discuss the following-
Ceilings come in an array of designs, and can broadly be classified into: i) conventional ceiling, ii) suspended ceiling, iii) coffered ceiling, iv) tray ceiling, v) coved ceiling, vi) cathedral ceiling, vii) shed ceiling, viii) beam ceiling. The intent of this article is to give you a head start when you toy with the idea of choosing the one that works for you!
- Practical tips on false ceilings for new home buyers
- 1. Parts of a false ceiling
- 2. Things to check while planning on false ceiling
- 3. Advantages and Disadvantages of false ceiling
- 4. Tips to create a stunning false ceiling design
1. Parts of a false ceiling
A false ceiling is suspended by the actual-ceiling, and the blocks of gypsum board (or other materials) are usually attached to the frame attached to the actual ceiling. The layer of this false ceiling is hung from the actual ceiling at a certain ‘drop’, in effect reducing the available height of the room. This is done so that the frame can not only have adequate space to create the insulation effect, but also have some space to fit the electrical, air-conditioning or other equipment.
The false ceiling does the job of hiding the electrical, air-conditioning / HVAC and other elements attached to the ceiling so that the unkempt elements can be concealed efficiently.
2. Things to check while planning on false ceiling
The gorgeous looks and glam that comes with false ceiling gives is irresistible. The functional utility of hiding the wiring, protruding beams, electrical/lighting accessories and hardware is a given! The way one can accentuate the overall aura and mood of a setting with lighting embedded in the false ceiling is nothing short of an artistic delight!
Having said that, there are Do’s & Don’ts while planning on a false ceiling. This planning needs to be done meticulously and wisely to get what you are looking for in the long run.
1. Check the height of your room– A false ceiling needs a few inches of ‘drop’ from the actual ceiling to take effect. If the available height from the floor to ceiling is less than 9 feet, then it poses some challenges. Height of less than 9 feet gets problematic. It gets too stuffy and suffocating to have the ceiling being too close to your head. Plus, hanging a fan is dangerous, because tall people can just stretch their hands and touch the fan.
2. Pre-plan– A lighting plan and actual accessories need to be procured well in advance to know the actual dimensions prior to fitting. The provisions for lighting and concealing also can be done very well with a well-planned design layout. Design need to fulfil the purpose of both aesthetics as well as other requirements that integrate with other elements like air-conditioning (or HVAC), ducts, fans, other accessories that need to blend in with the false ceiling
3. Keep it simple in smaller spaces– We must not complicate and try to achieve too many design or decorative elements in smaller spaces. Clean, minimal designs create the best effect, and are soothing to the eyes. The design element needs to done with a long term view, where the members of the home should feel relaxed looking at the same ceiling for years or decades to come. Simple is usually more soothing over a long period of time. However, this is simply an advice, and one can choose to break or bend the rules to find expression in what one is looking for!
4. More possibilities with larger spaces- The amount of complexities or design strokes may be more for large areas where we can create double layered ceilings, artistic shapes, different textures and finishing touches that a large space can hold very well. Large spaces can give you the flexibilities to experiment more, and have a higher luxurious feel to the spaces under the false ceilings
5. Solution for short height rooms is to opt for an ‘L-Box shaped’ border– Lesser height is not an issue with L-Box shaped false ceilings that run along the perimeter of the room. It serves three purposes- i) gives you a fabulous look and feel with corner lighting to enhance desirable moods, ii) costs much less since the central area is not fully covered, iii) ability to fit fans and other ceiling lights/fixtures since the height in the central area is NOT reduced
6. Space is well-utilized and maximized by hiding/concealing unpleasant elements-
Try and maximise the space between the slab and false ceiling by concealing all electrical wires, AC ducts, copper piping etc. within them
7. Have adequate support for the false ceiling- The boards suspended through the frame are normally light-weight. They are NOT as strong as the actual false ceiling, hence one must be careful in hanging additional accessories using the ceiling. One needs to identify areas in advance for hanging items, so that additional provisions and support can be added by the false-ceiling contractors to lend extra strength to the identified areas/spots
8. Provision for Fan hanging pipe- The fan cannot be hung over with the support of false ceiling, and needs to be attached to the actual ceiling well in advance. The fan is fitted only after the false ceiling is completed
9. Extra insulation to reduce heat- This can be done to further reduce the onslaught of heat seeping through the terrace. Additional sheets of thermocol are padded inside the false ceiling to give extra insulation for cooler effect, and this enhances the efficiency of air-conditioning as well
3. Advantages and Disadvantages of false ceiling
|Advantages of a False Ceiling|
|Gives a smooth, elegant, consistent surface to the ceiling with a touch of class|
|The space between engulfed between the false ceiling and the actual ceiling creates an added fire-insulation|
|False ceiling helps reduce unnecessary sound, and prevents sound from echoing, thereby creating an effective acoustics solution. It makes human and other sounds more neutral and sonically pleasing|
|A false ceiling helps hide the clutter, and conceals wiring, air-conditioning ducts etc. in it which is visually unpleasant|
|Similarly, the plumbing and electrical elements also get hidden in the background|
|The ease of installation, the design flexibilities and the aesthetics a false ceiling can create is beyond compare. It adds an extremely stunning luxury feel to your home spaces|
|Disadvantages of a False Ceiling|
|False ceiling not sealed properly can wreck a havoc, since pests and rodents can sneak through the gaps and holes and make it their nest. This leads to health issues for human inhabitants. It can even harm the building structure|
|False ceilings are suspended in the air with the help of actual ceiling. Hence, it is comparatively weaker, and NOT much can be hung once the false ceiling is in place. This creates design issues. Of course, to add anything, one can easily tear down a patch of false ceiling, but that is inconvenient and also a costly affair. Hence, planning well in advance is very important|
|Without a decently good ceiling height, a false ceiling can actually create a stifling environment. It can get claustrophobic instead of causing relaxation. Lower ceiling height homes cannot have fans and other elements hung out with ease|
|Unless the workers are skilled, installing a false ceiling can sometimes go wrong. Especially, the hidden part, since we wouldn’t know the quality of workmanship behind the exteriors|
4. Tips to create a stunning false ceiling design
False ceiling is so much ‘NOT false’ when it comes to adding a TRUE Midas-touch to your home. Ceilings can give a very warm, inviting and mood-building effect on those residing in a home. It gives you a feeling of clean décor and multitudes of emotions depending on what you seek.
False Ceilings complement both rich and plain interiors, and adds to the personality of you home spaces. Lighting and air-conditioning can be integrated well with a false ceiling to enhance it’s look and uplift the environs of your home spaces.
Depending on your preferences, tastes and persona, you can play on the design element of a false ceiling of different rooms.
Given below are a few tips that one could consider while thinking about false ceilings:
A. Every room to resonate with your story
This simply means every room needs to stand for what you are. A false ceiling needs to go with your persona. Some indicative thoughts are:
- Bedrooms– Normally considered to be quiet, sublime, and a place of relaxation. If you seek peace, tranquillity, light moods, relaxing spaces, then the ceiling also needs to complement that
- Living room– Again, usually, a living space is usually about social connect, family time, entertaining guests, making them feel welcome, giving them a soothing space to sit-back, and talk comfortably. Here, ceilings can add very relaxing to very imposing impression. You could play with minimal designs or go for more luxurious designs depending on your willingness to showcase, impress or simple express. There are no rules. Innovations in shapes, sizes, colours, textures, accessories, lighting etc. possible to transform the spaces as per your desire
- Bathroom– Normally, these are simpler, and more focus in on lighting, But, again, you can vary the moods of your washroom depending on your persona and lifestyle
- Kitchen– Normally, the focus in kitchen is on lighting. However, you can again experiment with the kind of look and feel you seek
In a nutshell– the spaces and the false ceiling in every room has to speak of your story.
B. Efficient Use of light
Lighting, when matched with your taste can cast a magical spell in the room which is nothing short of mesmerizing! Be it suspended false ceilings, cove ceilings, L-Box ceilings or other formats of ceilings, the role of lighting is supreme in lending expression to each room. With LED lights of different sizes and illumination, you could create contrasts and brightness of differing levels. The variations and possibilities range from very tine LEDs, running lights to grand chandeliers. It depends on how much of voice you want to lend to your ceilings.
For instance, the dining space look stunning with hanging/suspended pendant lights or lanterns that light up the dishes without being on the face. The moods could vary between very bright to very subtle. The options of dimmers further allow you to change the moods depending on the theme you choose.
Another wonderful possibility with homes that do not have adequate natural light is to opt for skylights embedded in the false ceiling that more than adequately give you a day effect.
C. Use of colours in false ceiling
Although white is the most preferred colour for ceilings, there is no stopping experimenting. Wooden, glass, PVC, fibre, bamboo and many other formats of false ceilings come in different colours. Sometimes living rooms are made with shades of yellow or beige to allow the spaces with the moods. One can experiment with darker shades in bedrooms, ranging from hues of grey, browns, blues, purples and so on.
Wooden colours, for instance, give a beautiful natural and rustic appeal to your space. Metallic ceilings give a more modern and forward looking youthful appeal.
D. Experimenting with differing design patterns
One can play with various geometrical designs and patterns to create a work of art in the ceiling. With use of different materials, lighting, and colours, the interplay can be a visual treat for you. There is no limit to the possibilities with designs. One has to simply choose what you want to achieve with each room, or your entire home.
E. Free flowing designs and curves
One can take a break from the usual and go for free flowing designs, curves, arcs, circles and many other patterns that are a complete departure from regular geometric designs. The possibilities can as abstract as one can possibly imagine.
Breaking or bending the rules of symmetry in false ceiling can be a very elevating and exciting. One need not go by the book. Instead, one can listen to one’s heart and a false ceiling can find expression to your inner feelings and voice this way!
F. Creativity and Novelty
One can break the rules, and actually go all out to be creative. There are simply no limits to it! For example, for your kid’s room, you could go make a moon-lit or star-lit ceiling for nights. For your own bedroom, you could choose textures that you relate with. It could even be cloth of a certain texture, colour or pattern, or a combination of these. For the living room, you could add elements of party-fever or create a very soothing Zen-like environment. It all depends on which direction of thought you wish to take.
The false ceilings can be experimented with in many ways to create the right mood and give an expression to your personality! They bear your unique signature, and with ideas ranging from minimalistic to highly exploratory, sky is the limit to brighten-up your living spaces with beautiful false ceilings!!
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