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Surface Finish Testing

Surface Finish Testing

The exposed surfaces of furniture such as cabinets, kitchens, desks and worktops need to be able to withstand the rigours of day to day use.

Furniture surfaces that stain or mark easily, perhaps due to spills or white ring marks from drinks, will potentially lead to customer dissatisfaction, complaints and returns.

The results of the use of inadequate or inappropriate surface finishes are instantly visible. This not only has a negative aesthetic impact but can also affect the performance of the item concerned.

Tests we carry out include:

  • Mechanical damage, for example abrasion, impact, scrape and scratch resistance.
  • Resistance to wet and dry heat, typically over the range of 55°c - 160°c depending on service use.
  • Chemical resistance, for example oils, acids, bleaches, tea and coffee.

Performance Levels

The level of performance of finishes depends upon the end use of the furniture concerned. The most severe performance criteria are designated for items such as kitchen tops, desk tops and living room tables. The minimum requirements for kitchen cabinets and horizontal surfaces tend to be lower than the above and performance criteria for vertical surfaces of items such as bookshelves and bedroom furniture are even lower.


  • FIRA 6250
  • BS 6222-3:1999. Domestic kitchen equipment. Performance requirements for durability of surface finish and adhesion of surfacing and edging materials. Specification
  • BS EN 438-1:2005. High-pressure decorative laminates (HPL). Sheets based on thermosetting resins (usually called laminates). Introduction and general information

Actual test requirements vary depending upon the Standards being specified.

Speak to a FIRA International expert to find out the tests required for your product.