Choosing Coving Material

If you are new to refurbishment it is easy to get confused by a lot of things, even such small details as coving. There are many coving materials on the market, each of them has got different characteristics. Coving material, as all other building materials, varies on price depending on its quality.
Before choosing the material, calculate how many meters of coving your property will need. This will allow to budget appropriately and choose the most cost effective material for your coving.

Popular Coving Materials are:
  • - Polystyrene
  • - Paper Covered Plaster
  • - Hardened high density Polyurethane (and rubber)
Polystyrene is the cheapest coving material and could be "grabbed from the shelf" of the local B&Q or Homebase. This option is good if you have a limited budget for your project. Polystyrene coving is lightweight and therefore easy to fit, however some builders complain that it does tend to be quite soft and easy to damage when installing. Even after painting polystyrene coving might look not as neat as more expensive option.

Plaster, which is also sometimes called as gyproc, hessian backed, paper faced etc is a traditional material which the coving was made of before. Plaster is very smooth finish and great for creating an authentic period look to a room and it does lend itself to some incredibly ornate and detailed patterns. If you are restoring an old Victorian or Georgian house this is probably the best coving option for you.
The downside of the plaster coving is its weight. Plaster is quite heavy and requires a team of professional fitters to install it. Plaster coving requires careful cuts and screwing into the wall to support its weight. However, the quality is noticeable. 

Hardened Polyurethane
Hardened Polyurethane is relatively new material on the market. It aims to offer the same visual benefits of plaster coving and yet it is affordable and lightweight. This material is also strong and durable, similar to the light wood. You do not need to organise a team of professionals to fit this type of coving. Many profiles are available in a flexible rubber compound so they can bend around curved walls and bay windows – something that is very difficult to achieve in plaster or wood.

Interiors with coving decoration: