Best Whiteboards

Updated October 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

24 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
352 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best whiteboards

Last Updated October 2019

Imagine you’re in a classroom or conference room with a captive audience. Students or colleagues are engaged, and you need to get your point across before the end of the session. A whiteboard is a trusted way to quickly get your point across and allow for easy note-taking.

With a whiteboard, you can translate your ideas into words, diagrams, and charts. While the tabula rasa element of whiteboards is their signature feature, some whiteboards are more advanced to suit a variety of needs. Boards with integrated cork sections or magnetic backing allow you to hang papers. Calendar boards are ideal for meticulous planners, and personal whiteboards are ideal for kids doing homework.

If you’re an educator, professional, or student, then you know whiteboards are essential to the exchange of information. We assembled this buying guide to help you choose the right one to share all your great ideas and host the perfect meeting.

Whiteboards are eco-friendly alternatives to note pads, scrap paper, and posters.

Types of whiteboards

Regular whiteboards

The most common whiteboards are traditional ones, hung in classrooms landscape-style. They typically have aluminum frames and come with mounting brackets. Sizes vary quite a bit with these, so you’ll find options as small as 24 x 36 inches or as large as 40 x 60 inches. Some of them are magnetized, and occasionally they come with accessory shelves to hold markers and erasers.

Calendar whiteboards

Calendar whiteboards are popular for home and office use. They’re printed with a blank calendar that you can personalize monthly. Smaller ones measure around 17 x 23 inches and are often used for household organization. If you work in an office and have to balance schedules or responsibilities for multiple colleagues, look at larger calendar whiteboards closer to 24 x 36 inches.

Cork whiteboards

Whiteboards with a cork section are ideal if you need a spot to hang announcements or flyers. The cork section could be half the size of the board, or it could be in the form of a small strip or column along one side. Cork is most commonly seen in medium-size whiteboards, such as those around 24 x 36 inches.

Personal whiteboards

Personal whiteboards are as versatile as it gets and are usually about 8 1/2 x 11 inches in size. Use them at home or in the office in lieu of notepads or turn them into a daily affirmations board. Children also enjoy using whiteboards, especially when there’s a lot of trial and error in handwriting, math, and spelling practice. They’re essential learning tools for tutors, especially those who work onsite in your home and want to mimic the classroom atmosphere on a smaller scale.

Portable whiteboards

Portable whiteboards are often used in education and office settings when more space is needed but installation of another whiteboard isn’t in the cards. These whiteboards are mounted in frames attached to wheels for easy transport. Some whiteboards can alternate between landscape and portrait orientations.

EXPERT TIP

Not all whiteboards are equipped with accessory shelving. You could attach a shelf, or if the board is magnetic, you could attach a magnetic cup holder.


Staff  | BestReviews

Key considerations

Dry erase markers

You’ll be writing on whiteboards with dry erase markers, the ink of which has a special formula that lets you write and wipe in seconds. Not all dry erase markers are made to the same quality, though, so it’s worth investing in a set that works with your needs. Smaller whiteboards do well with fine-tip markers since they cover a small area, but you need chisel or round-tip markers to create thicker, well-defined lines on larger boards.

Board maintenance

Regardless of the marker you choose, you’ll also need a dry eraser for basic maintenance, which is specially designed to smoothly wipe away the ink and dust from the board. Its soft velour fibers absorb the ink, but be careful when you’re wiping down the board — if you drop it on clothing, you’ll end up with an unpleasant stain.

Whiteboards also require occasional deep cleanings to minimize wear and tear, especially the phenomenon known as ghosting. On some porous whiteboards, like melamine, ghosting occurs when ink bleeds into the surface. To keep it to a minimum, wipe the board with an alcohol-dampened cloth. While it’s not a permanent solution, this can extend the lifespan of the whiteboard.

Installation

Installing a white board is relatively simple and can be done by one person, though larger whiteboards will probably require and extra pair of hands. Some whiteboards have magnetic backs and just stick to refrigerators, whereas most other boards come with full mounting sets. For these, there’s hardware that goes at the top and bottom corners of the whiteboard to secure it to a wall. Accurate measurements and the use of a level are necessary if you want a straight whiteboard — and having an extra pair of hands make the task much easier.

Surface materials

Whiteboards are made up of a layer of plywood or particle board, sometimes a magnetic sheet, and then the surface material. The surface materials vary the most, and they affect writing on and cleaning the board.

Laminate

  • Pros: Laminate isn’t as porous as other materials and is highly resistant to staining. Since it’s relatively inexpensive, it keeps the price of the whiteboard down.
  • Cons: If you scratch it, there’s no way of repairing it, and it requires regular deep cleaning since its somewhat porous.
     

Melamine

  • Pros: Quality melamine is manufactured to prevent ghosting by minimizing porosity. (Note: melamine is, by nature, very porous.) These are the most popular and least-expensive material options for whiteboards.
  • Cons: Melamine is susceptible to ghosting since it’s porous, so after a while, you’d need to replace the board if you don’t want it to look perpetually dirty.


Porcelain

  • Pros: Porcelain boards are ideal for heavy use since they’re not porous and therefore won’t ghost. They’re easy to clean and tend to outlast whiteboards of other materials.
  • Cons: Given the long lifespan of porcelain whiteboards, you’ll be paying top dollar for them.
     

Glass

  • Pros: Like porcelain boards, glass whiteboards are non-porous and easy to maintain. They come in a variety of colors, and some of them are frameless.
  • Cons: Since they’re made from tempered glass and the manufacturing process is quite involved, these can cost three or four times as much as boards made from other materials.
EXPERT TIP

Calendar whiteboards are ideal household organizers. Display yours in a place your whole family can see so everyone is aware of activity schedules and chore responsibilities.


Staff  | BestReviews

Accessories

Your whiteboard is only as useful as its tools. Here are a few items to get you started and help you organize your thoughts.

Dry erase marker set: Expo Original Dry Erase 6-Piece Set
A quality dry erase marker set will carry you through dozens of presentations. We like this set by Expo, which includes the eraser, four bold markers, and whiteboard cleaner. The chisel tips of the markers offer more than one line thickness, and the spray cleaner is ideal to minimize ink buildup.

Whiteboard tape: Cridoz 15 Rolls 1/8-inch Whiteboard Thin Tape
If you’re highly organized, you may want to subdivide your whiteboard. We like these tape rolls by Cridoz, which come in nine colors to create colorful, creative designs on your whiteboard. When you need to change the location of the tape, simply peel it off and enjoy a clean, residue-free surface again.

Whiteboard prices

Whiteboards cost between $10 and $250, depending on their construction and size.

  • Small whiteboards for limited personal use are available for less than $25. They’re easy to carry and hang, but the surface might chip or cause ghosting.
  • If you spend between $25 and $60, you’ll find mid-size boards well-suited for daily office use. They’re often magnetic and may have integrated corkboards.
  • Premium whiteboards are priced between $60 and $125 and feature high-quality construction. Some are almost as large as classroom whiteboards, though others are portable.
  • If you need a full-size whiteboard (such as one between 5 and 9 feet long), expect to spend $150 or more.
EXPERT TIP

Personal whiteboards are helpful learning tools for young children as they build their basic math and spelling skills.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Vary the spot where you write. To avoid excessive wear and tear to high-traffic areas of your whiteboard, alternate the spots on which you write.
  • Hang whiteboards lower to the ground for kids. If you’re an elementary school educator, hang your whiteboard closer to the ground so students can reach it when they write on the board.
  • Add a portable whiteboard to your office. Even if there’s a whiteboard in every room, sometimes you need extra space to take notes.
  • Opt for a calendar whiteboard on the refrigerator. If you’re planning meals, alternating who cooks, and scheduling grocery shopping, maintaining a food calendar is helpful.

Other products we considered

There are a few products outside of our top choices that are worth highlighting briefly.

We like the Quarter Combination Magnetic Whiteboard Calendar and Corkboard. This three-in-one board handles your schedule, announcements, and everything in between. The espresso frame adds a touch of office elegance to a normally utilitarian design. You’re ready to roll when you open the box, as this set comes with a dry erase marker as well as magnets.

If you need to use a whiteboard in multiple locations, consider the Maxtek Mobile Dry Erase Board. Its round base has a small footprint, and with swivel wheels, it’s easy to roll between rooms. In addition to its unique portrait orientation, the board is equipped with a paper pad that fits over it. Best of all, the three-layer surface coating provides a smooth writing platform so markers glide across it with ease.

Some whiteboards have removable frames. This comes in handy if you’d like to achieve a larger writing surface by installing multiple boards next to one another with a seamless finish.

FAQ

Q. Is there any way to repair a chipped whiteboard?
A.
Not really, and the surface will continue to chip. You can continue using your board, however, if you’re willing to get creative. Use some whiteboard tape to cover the chip and create new divisions to categorize notes or information. If the chip is toward an edge or corner and won’t get in the way, cover it with a sticker or banner.
 

Q. I don’t like the aluminum frame on my whiteboard. Can I change it?
A.
It’s unlikely that you’ll find a replacement in other colors, so consider decorating it instead. Cover the aluminum with printed duct tape, or spray paint it in a more attractive color. You could also minimize the appearance of the aluminum by creating an eye-catching border around its edges. In some whiteboards, these frames are removable, in which case you can simply take them off to achieve a minimalist look.
 

Q. What color markers should I use on my whiteboard so my notes are visible to everyone in the room?
A.
Black and dark blue are popular choices, and other dark colors like green or red can work as well. That said, if the markers aren’t highly pigmented to achieve dark colors, the ink falls flat and will be difficult to see by those in the farthest corners of the room. If you don’t have highly pigmented markers, use the newest ones you can find, as older, faded markers often result in streaky, hard-to-see lines.

The team that worked on this review
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Peter
    Peter
    Writer
  • Sian
    Sian
    Writer

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