Drop-in luxury

When launched less than two years ago, the WoodTrac Ceiling System resonated so well with local home show visitors, the manufacturer took the product nationwide. Now, it’s the affordable way to provide a high-end look for any space with a drop-in ceiling.

The product is not complicated; it works with any 2x2 or 2x4 ceiling grid in which the width of the ceiling track is either 1516 or 1-in. wide. “A clip is needed to attach our track to the existing track, and our mouldings are routed on the outside and they snap into the clips. The panels are flat panels that are simply dropped into place,” says Jonathan Zublena, director of sales and marketing, Sauder Woodworking, Archbold, Ohio.

WoodTrac is available in two finishes: a dark finish called abbey oak, and a lighter option called bank alder. In addition, a paintable white version is offered, which can remain white or painted with primer if needed. “These finishes have been well received,” Zublena says. “But, we might bring out a lighter maple or cherry as well.”

When first developed, Sauder envisioned the system as a DIY product with simple installation. However, after attending numerous home shows and analyzing sales, the company noticed more installed sales than DIY. “So, we made some product changes, and now we’re seeing even more growth in the installed side than with DIY,” Zublena says.

Sauder does not make the track or the lighting, only the panels and mouldings to fit into and cover the track. The system is designed for either new construction or remodeling. System components are no more susceptible to mold than any other organic material in a typical room in which they would be installed, he adds.

One big selling point, Zublena says, is its price point. “Similar products are in the range of $20 per sq. ft., and we’re closer to $3 or $4 a sq. ft. in retail dollars. Couples walk by and the wife gets excited, but then thinks, ‘Don’t ask how much it costs.’ But they’re always surprised at the affordability.” WoodTrac is made of MDF covered with paper laminate simulating solid wood.

For more information, circle 24 or visit woodtrac.com. — Rob Heselbarth