Choosing among different types of wood for a fence or a deck can be a little tough, simply because of the many different types to choose from. One vital thing that will play a huge part in your decision is aesthetics. If you’re looking for a specific colour or textured look, your options are narrowed down a little bit.
But aesthetics isn’t the only thing you should take into account. There are big practical differences among various kinds of timber that could have huge consequences for your fence or deck. Bear in mind that specific timber types and qualities are a lot of suitable than others.
Here are some of the things to take into account:
Hardwood or Softwood
Hardwoods and softwoods both derive their name from whether trees (such as Mahogany, Jarrah, Merbau, and Spotted Gum) cover their seeds, or simply leave the seeds fall on the ground and uncovered, (like Cypress and Pine).
Balsa, which is one of the softest kinds of wood is a hardwood in reality. It’s one of the very few exceptions to the rule. Generally speaking, softwoods come from evergreens, and hardwoods from deciduous trees.
Hardwoods are denser and grow a lot more slowly than softwoods. Because of this, they are generally more expensive, harder, and tougher. They are also tougher to cut and work with, but will typically wear much longer. They are able to resist weathering a lot more and they do not need much maintenance. There are around 100 times more kinds of hardwoods than there are softwoods. But simply because softwoods grow faster and easier to work with, they’re used more commonly in construction than hardwoods.
Seasoned Timber or New Timber
The age of wood and whether or not it has been seasoned will play a huge part in its longevity. Unseasoned timber will have a great deal of the timber’s original moisture content. As such moisture leaves the wood over time, the timber will twist, shrink, and warp, ruining your fence or deck.
Therefore, it’s important that the timber you’ll go with isn’t just seasoned, but seasoned properly. Often, seasoning is performed in a kiln with sawn wood. Wood that gets dried so fast will shrink on the surface and will compress the moisture-rich timber underneath, which could make the wood unreliable once pressure is released. The timber will also lose its moisture naturally and become seasoned if it is left out to air dry, making older wood a better option.