A furring strip is basically a long, thin strip that is typically made from wood or metal. A furring strip is generally used to level a surface in order to finish it. Due to the structural nature of both wood and metal, the strips or rods are often arranged to provide a support skeleton that serves as an easy application base for another layer of material, such as paneling, masonry, insulation, plaster, or wood.
Furring strips even come in a fire-resistant material, to ensure that you can employ them while still adhering to building codes.
To get a better idea of how, when, or why to use a furring strip, check out the information contained in this article.
Needed Air Space
When applying wood finish to a project, it's important to leave an air space between any masonry walls and the actual finish layer. Installing furring strips is a stable technique used to hold the wood, or other finish material, away from the wall. To create this type of air space, furring strips need to be nailed or otherwise affixed to the masonry walls before adding the finish.
Furring strips are also commonly used for insulating the inside of masonry walls in homes and buildings. Typically they are installed on the masonry walls and the insulation fits in between them. Much of the time, especially when you are working with drywall, gypsum board is nailed or attached over the insulation onto the strips. To ensure that this method of insulation is effective, flat furring strips are commonly used. This type of furring does not penetrate or move past the layer of insulation and helps to avoid thermal shorts. The method of applying furring strips is not just for heating though. This technique also helps to keep moisture out and away from the inside walls.
Provide Supportive Structure
The most common purpose these items serve is providing a level and supported structure when finishing ceilings and walls. The furring strips used on ceilings are there to even out the surface and provide a structure to attach or clip ceiling tiles to. For walls, they are nailed or screwed securely to the masonry providing a stable layer over which you can add the next layer of paneling.
In both cases, the furring strips provide a level surface that you can attach the finish to. This way, if you have trouble with uneven studs or surfaces, a furring strip can be added to level it out a little bit.
Showers are another great place to use furring strips. If you have a shower with a shower pan that you are remodeling or doing work on, strips may come in handy for the backer board. Similar to masonry walls, furring strips can be used when the studs do not form an even plane and you need to make up for it. Then the backer board can be installed over a level surface.