About False Ceilings

Written by walter johnson
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About False Ceilings
In this false, or dropped, ceilling, the designer used "cells" set off by beams to create a striking aesthetic effect. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Too often, ceilings are boring. It can be the most ignored part of a room, and yet, it has so much potential. A "false" or "dropped" ceiling is a design concept in which the "top" of the room is actually higher than the visual ceiling would suggest. It is usually a raised ceiling with a "dropped" wall all the way around the room. It has many uses, both practical and aesthetic, and can serve to heighten a low ceiling or drop a high one.

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The idea of a dropped ceiling is to improve the look or acoustics of a room. If your ceiling is too low, you can raise it, while keeping the borders of the old ceiling, giving that "dropped" look. What you do with the centre is important. Many people add a light with stained glass in the centre portion, creating a false ceiling. Some use classical designs in the middle part of the ceiling, often at the centre of a hanging light. There is now more room due to the "drop," as well as a new canvas for you to place your ideas upon.


A ceiling that is too low can cause a room to seem cramped and noisy. A dropped, or false, ceiling can change that, either by adding more height to the room or creating a space between the false ceiling and the actual top of the room. This area can then absorb the sound that otherwise would be directed back at your guests. If a ceiling is too high, a false ceiling is a perfect solution, since it can create a smaller, more cosy environment for family or dining room areas.


An Indian building company, Indian Housing, stresses the practical aspects of the false ceiling. A home in a hot area could use a false ceiling, since it creates a space where the heat can go, leaving the remainder of the room cooler. If you use air conditioning, a false ceiling can make the room smaller, meaning you have less room to cool.


Most institutional and commercial ceilings are false. This is because the ceiling itself has many things that have to be covered such as speakers, ducts, vents and piping. The false ceiling is most often the familiar white, soft panelling that reflects light and absorbs sound. It creates a "pocket" for heat to travel, making a fresher and cooler working environment.

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