You might think of suspended ceilings as part of a commercial or retail fit-out. But could it be a savvy choice for your business? What are the benefits of this type of ceiling, and why should you consider one for your premises?
What is a suspended ceiling?
A suspended ceiling is installed using a metal grid and your choice of ceiling tiles or plasterboard which can be noise regulating and fire retardant. These conceal pipes, wiring and other utilities.
This type of ceiling is common in retail spaces, commercial buildings and offices. It’s a versatile system that gives plenty of flexibility for your next fit-out design.
Is a suspended ceiling right for your business?
Suspended or dropped ceilings are typical in retail and commercial buildings. But is this type of ceiling the right fit for your business? Let’s look at the benefits:
- A suspended ceiling creates a space to conceal wiring, pipes and cables. Because the ceiling panels can be easy to remove, those utilities remain accessible. Meanwhile, the ceiling itself has a clean, smooth finish.
- Installing a suspended ceiling means that there’s less volume of space to heat or keep cool. And while a suspended ceiling could add over 4% to your build costs, you’ll make energy savings of around 9%. When we’re all more aware of sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint, those savings can be significant.
- High-quality ceiling panels can be highly fire retardant, helping your business meet fire safety standards.
- Modern dropped ceilings are resistant to mould and moisture, so they can be used everywhere, from kitchens to bathrooms.
- A suspended ceiling provides high levels of soundproofing and insulation, helpful in meeting government standards on noise pollution and carbon emissions. A dropped ceiling will also eliminate the ambient noise of HVAC, supporting safety by improving acoustics.
- False ceilings are available in a wide range of colours, designs and finishes to match any interior. You can also adapt grids to account for ceiling features, including beams and changes of level.
A suspended ceiling grid usually requires a drop of at least 2 feet, so it might not be an option if you have restricted ceiling height. It’s essential that any suspended ceiling is professionally fitted and maintained to keep it looking its best.
Which type of suspended ceiling is best for your business?
Lay in grid
Best for: offices, retail, education, leisure and a wide range of uses.
Most suspended ceilings that you see in commercial and retail settings are lay-in grid ceilings. This system uses a metal grid to support individual ceiling tiles. These are easy to mount and demount, allowing access to utilities hidden in the ceiling space. Easy to move and replace during a commercial fit-out, tiles come in a wide range of colours and finishes for the desired finish.
Best for: hospitals, food preparation areas, industry, transport hubs
Clip-in ceilings have tiles that clip firmly into the grid. They’re easy to clean and can be hosed down without damaging or moving the tiles, making them ideal for use where cleanliness is essential. Access to the ceiling void is more restricted but it gives a sleek and polished appearance.
Best for: high levels of fire and acoustic performance, offices and warehouses
Also known as a drywall grid system, M/F suspended ceilings have a seamless monolithic look. Plasterboard is taped and skimmed in place, quickly creating a traditional jointless ceiling for new builds and refurbishments.