Almost all construction projects require the use of timber in one way or another. Timber/wood is used, for example, to construct scaffolding, secure concrete when it is curing, construct roof trusses, build furniture like chairs, desks, tables, cabinets and wardrobes and build timber floorboards. Here are some important things you need to note about timber products:
Different Types of Timber
Timber comes from trees that can either be hardwood or softwood trees. The most common hardwood timber used is from an oak tree; this is because oak trees are easily available in different climatic regions. When it comes to softwood timber, you may mostly come across pine because pine it's easy to bend, easily available and it stains better than most wood.
Timber from hardwood trees is used when you expect it to be subjected to harsh activities because hardwood timber has longevity and durability properties. On the other hand, timber from softwood trees might be used to make plywood, interior mouldings, fibreboard and construction framing; this is mostly because softwood timber has a shorter service life.
The properties mentioned above also make softwood timber cheaper than hardwood timber. Additionally, the fact that hardwood trees take longer to grow contributes to the high price tag.
Before using timber for various applications like building cabinets, chairs, desks, tables, wardrobes, timber trusses, etc., it is usually treated to make it resistant to insects, moisture and other timber damaging elements. This is an important thing to note, especially if you are handy and love DIY home timber projects. What you want is to ensure that you purchase treated timber, which you might require to seal and finish based on your timber needs.
Timber for Floor Use
When considering timber flooring, you have two options: solid hardwood flooring and engineered hardwood flooring. Here's a closer look at these options.
Solid hardwood flooring: These are thick timber planks cut from a hardwood tree and have been treated, sealed and finished. You only need to install them professionally on your subfloor. Keep in mind that moisture damages solid hardwood flooring, meaning you should not install it in high humidity or high moisture areas or rooms. Additionally, when installing solid hardwood flooring, you should leave some gaps to cater for expansion and contraction during hot and cold temperatures.
Engineered hardwood flooring: These are thinner timber planks cut from hardwood trees that are thickened by adding layers of plywood. They are manufactured to make timber flooring affordable and to overcome the challenges faced by solid hardwood flooring (e.g. damage from moisture and expansion and contraction during hot and cold temperatures).