If you're designing your home, and you want an old-world feel, it's time to choose reclaimed wood. You might think that newer wood is better, since it's freshly milled. But that's not the case. Reclaimed wood comes from structures that were built hundreds of years ago. During that time, most lumber was milled from old growth, which provided a higher quality wood for construction. That same quality follows through today, especially if you choose the right reclaimed wood. Here are four things to look for when choosing reclaimed wood.
If you're going to be using reclaimed wood for your project, make sure you check for damage. Reclaimed wood has been exposed to the elements for many years. During that time, cracks could have formed. Small cracks and blemishes can be repaired using epoxy. But large cracks can be difficult to repair. If you're going to be using reclaimed wood for large projects such as hardwood flooring or cabinets, you need to avoid the big cracks.
When you're shopping for reclaimed wood, pay attention to strength. You don't want to choose wood that may have weakened over the years. You can test strength by feeling for soft spots in the wood. Also, look for areas that might be rotting. It's also important that you inspect the surface of the wood. If you see, or feel, a thin layer of sawdust on the wood, choose another piece. The sawdust could be a sign of wood-eating insects, which can undermine the strength and stability of the wood.
Now that you're looking for reclaimed wood, you want to check for dryness. Reclaimed wood is usually much drier than newly milled wood. This is due to the fact that reclaimed wood has had hundreds of years to dry out. But, if the wood was exposed to the elements prior to reclamation, it might not be as dry as it should be. You can check for dryness by inspecting for signs of mold, or moisture rot. If you find signs of either issue, choose a different wood.
Finally, if you're going to use reclaimed wood in your new home, spend some time looking at the grain. In most cases, reclaimed wood came from old-growth trees. That means the wood had a chance to develop unique grain lines. Take advantage of the maturity. Choose grain markings that will give your home a distinctive appearance.
Choose the right wood. Get the look and feel you want for your new home. Use the tips provided here to choose reclaimed wood for your home project. Talk to a lumber company, like Old World Lumber Company, to get started with your reclaimed wood project.