With the use of modern tooling and materials, more baseboard types are available now than ever before, and they can really help to make any room in your home much more attractive.
Most baseboard is constructed by milling out wood to the desired shape. Fiberwood (ground up wood shavings mixed with a binder) is very commonly used, as it has almost a zero chance of warping, and is easily formed. Polyurethane foam moldings are quickly gaining in popularity, though, since they are mildew and insect resistant and will not warp. The traditional Poplar wood baseboard is still a favorite, and really the only way to go if you want to stain the wood after installation.
You can also purchase pre-stained baseboard material, along with the correct color of putty to fill in the nail holes after the installation, this is usually made from the plastic polyurethane foam.
The pros and cons of different baseboard materials are as follows:
Fiberwood: Easy to install, durable, paintable. On the downside, if it exposed to excessive water, will swell up and crumble.
Polyurethane: Prefinished, easy to install, handles moist conditions well. Unfortunately, it is extremely easy to dent or even severely damage.
Solid Wood: Takes stain well, and is incredibly tough. It’s too bad that it is so hard to cut and install, but if you take your time, it is by far the best product for the long run.