Okay, this one's a tad silly, but I really need to know:

If plywood sheets are being used as a temporary surface, and have roughly 20 ounces of a liquid spilled on them, can you assume that no damage (warping, etc.) will occur if the spill is quickly wiped up (in less than a minute, say)?

Assume the liquid is not water, but I don't care about staining since we're painting it next week - I'm only concerned with warping, rot risk, etc.

(Okay if you must know, I need to use a beer pong table today, but haven't had time to paint and seal the wood yet. So, I'm trying to confirm that spilling two beers on a flat plywood sheet before it's treated won't cause any real damage if it's immediately wiped up.)

EDIT: One of the answers mentions support as a relevant consideration, so I should add that most of the wood (~80% will be supported by a smaller flat surface (a table).

  • 3
    You really shouldn't do that to your beer. Apr 30, 2013 at 18:56

1 Answer 1


Yes it can warp from liquid. Will it in the case you mentioned - probably not. Plywood will warp if you just let the board sit with moisture/humidity/gravity. Until it is attached to something to give it shape (keep it straight) and it is coated, it will warp. Get some bracing under your beer pong top to the plywood so it can't buckle, twist, or warp.

  • By support I mean a permanent attaching of a fixture. A simple example would be to screw it into the table in question - but since it only covers 80% it could warp on edges although it would probably take a while or involve a lot of moisture. Also you could screw a couple 2x4s under it lengthwise and maybe a few going across. Just sitting your playwood on a table that covers 80% might be one of the worst ideas. Plywood tends to bow up when you do this. I don't see an issue with playing beer pong on it. Play, get drunk, and then throw it on a flat floor (maybe put table on top of it).
    – DMoore
    Apr 30, 2013 at 21:10

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