Attaching some form of cladding to your home's exterior walls is rarely a bad idea, and can provide a range of benefits to your building, such as extra protection from wind and rain and improved heat insulation. However, to truly get the most from a wall cladding project, you must ensure that your cladding is created from suitable materials, and there are some more unusual materials to choose from beyond the typical vinyl and aluminium offerings.
Choosing reclaimed timber for your wall cladding gives some of the most unique and visually and striking results, but this option is far from all style and no substance. Here are just some of the advantages of using this unusual and thoroughly environmentally friendly material to protect your home's exterior walls:
You might assume that, because reclaimed wood is both older and more well-used than the timber used from brand new timber siding, it is commensurately weaker. However, much of the reclaimed timber found at your average timber salvage yard is old growth wood, taken and used long before modern environmental regulations mandating the use of more environmentally friendly, plantation grown woods.
These pieces of old growth timber may be aged, but they tend to be significant stronger, more durable and more rigid than equivalent woods taken from younger plantation trees. Consequently, reclaimed timber siding can actually be more durable than newly manufactured timber siding. Because reclaimed wood has has so long to properly dry, it is particularly resistant to warping and fungal rot, and the denser wood makes old growth cladding a more difficult proposition for termites and woodworm.
When correctly chosen, reclaimed timbers can be enormously resistant to wind, rain and other forms of inclement weather, creating a thoroughly protective cladding for your exterior walls. Some varities of reclaimed timber, such as reclaimed railway sleepers, are particularly weather-resistant, and are impregnated with powerful waterproofing chemicals; this can save you the job of treating and oiling your cladding yourself.
Depending on the look you're going for, reclaimed timber cladding can be make from unmarred, barely-used structural timbers or more characterful, well worn timbers. This gives you a wide variety of choices when it comes to how you want your cladding to look. 'Fresher' pieces of reclaimed timber can be used to create more modern looks, and can be easily painted and stained, while more aged timbers create a distinctively rustic look ideal for countryside properties.
Because reclaimed timber cladding is made almost entirely from recycled and reused materials (barring the screws and nails used to attach it), it presents a very environmentally friendly option for your wall cladding, and has a significantly lower carbon footprint associated with its use compared to using new siding made of timber, metal or vinyl. Taking your timbers from local salvage yards and properties can further minimise the environmental impact of your cladding project.Share