If you’ve opted for exterior timber cladding and had it installed; you’ll want your wood lasting as long as possible. Choosing timber cladding for your exterior not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of your building but also requires proper care and attention to ensure its longevity.
In this article, we will highlight common mistakes to avoid when working with timber cladding, enabling you to enjoy its beauty for years to come. By considering these tips and recommendations, you can maximise the lifespan of your cladding and maintain its structural integrity.
Avoid Cladding North and East Facing Surfaces:
England's moderately damp climate can lead to moisture accumulation on certain surfaces. To minimize the risk of moisture-related issues, avoid cladding the north and east-facing surfaces. These areas receive less sunlight and are more prone to retaining moisture, potentially leading to rot or other damage over time.
Consider Timing for Installation:
Timing is crucial when installing timber cladding, particularly to prevent warping and curling. If using green or recently cut timber, aim to apply the cladding between October and April. This timeframe helps ensure balanced drying, preventing one surface from drying faster than the rest. By allowing the timber to acclimate properly, you can minimize the risk of distortion and maintain the cladding's structural integrity.
Avoid Installation During Heatwaves:
Extreme heat can have adverse effects on timber cladding. Avoid installing or undertaking cladding-related activities during or prior to a heatwave. High temperatures and excessive dryness can cause the timber to warp, crack, or shrink, compromising its overall durability and appearance. Opt for milder weather conditions to ensure a successful and long-lasting installation.
Opt for Hardwood Cladding:
When selecting the type of timber for your cladding, opt for hardwood over softwood. Hardwood varieties, such as oak or cedar, offer enhanced durability and resistance to decay, making them better suited for exterior applications. Investing in high-quality hardwood cladding will result in a longer lifespan and reduced maintenance requirements over time. Additionally, choose an experienced installer who understands the specific properties and installation techniques of hardwood cladding.
Adopt a Wood Finish Maintenance Cycle:
To preserve the appearance and protect the timber, it's important to adopt a maintenance cycle for wood finishes. Wood finishes, such as stains or oils, provide a protective layer that enhances the longevity of the cladding. Regularly inspect the cladding for signs of wear and reapply the finish as needed, following the manufacturer's guidelines. This proactive approach will help maintain the beauty and integrity of your timber cladding.
Timber cladding offers a natural and timeless aesthetic, but proper care and attention are essential to ensure its longevity. By avoiding common mistakes and following these guidelines, you can maximize the lifespan of your exterior timber cladding. Remember to avoid cladding certain surfaces, consider timing for installation, choose hardwood over softwood, and enlist the expertise of experienced installers. Additionally, adopting a maintenance cycle for wood finishes will help preserve the appearance and protect the timber from the elements. Embrace the beauty of timber cladding while ensuring its durability, and enjoy the long-lasting benefits it brings to your building.