Panelia Woods is a family-owned company with history dating back to 1959. In the beginning, the company operated in the metals sector, but changed to wood in the '70s.
Panelia Woods observed that there was a market need for moisture-resistant waterproofed thresholds that meet the size requirements and recommendations. Ari Lehtiniemi began to design such a concept and the patent application was filed on 11 April 2013.
It was clear that the new product would be tested by an external party
The company considered it clear that the new product would be tested at VTT Expert Services Ltd. Furthermore, a product certificate granted by an external party gives it a significant amount of credibility. At first, Panelia Woods called VTT Expert Services' Lina Markelin-Rantala, who acts as Product Manager of Certification. Markelin-Rantala explained how the project would proceed and drew up a schedule.
Purpose of use affects the testing methods
The first stage of testing is type approval, which proves the product's functionality in its intended use in a wet room environment. Such construction is heavily controlled by construction regulations and other guidelines within the sector. The certification process can be launched after testing, including evaluation of the test results and inspection of the production and the production quality control. Hannu Hyttinen, Product Manager for Construction Services and Products, continued with the practical measures. The testing methods and the delivery of the materials to be tested were agreed with Hyttinen. After this, a test pool for waterproofed thresholds was built and the testing could begin. The targets of testing were the water tightness and moisture resistance of the thresholds. After testing, Panelia Woods applied for a certificate for the product.
A VTT certificate gives a significant marketing benefit
Panelia Woods has been using the VTT certificate in its marketing. It is visibly highlighted on the company website and in its brochures. The certificate is an essential part of the information package that is sent to designers, property developers, construction companies, contractors, the retail sector and educational institutions providing training in waterproofing installation. The Chair of the Panelia Woods' board of directors summarises this as follows: "We have been highly satisfied with the VTT certificate. It has helped us tremendously in the marketing of our waterproofed threshold."
The cooperation between VTT Expert Services and Panelia Woods has lasted for more than two years and will continue with a new product. At the moment, the partners are negotiating about the testing of wooden door frames for internal doors, coated with a 2 mm PVC layer, and applying for a certificate for it.
The door frames are extremely tolerant of wet room moisture, but they are suited for other rooms as well thanks to their high shock resistance. The purpose of the new door frames is to bring about a major improvement in the basic weaknesses of present internal door frames, including the peeling of coating that even minor amounts of splash water may cause, and the loss of paint visible in almost all door frames in use due to blows. The goal is that the new internal door frames would remain as good as new for several decades.