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Choosing Structural Timber For Your Next Project: The Ultimate Guide

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Timber is an excellent choice for buildings and other structures that need to withstand heavy loads. Structural timber is a natural building material that's made from renewable resources. It's strong, durable, and environmentally friendly. However, when choosing structural timber for your project, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Not all timbers are created equal, and each one has its own strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, it's important to choose the right structural timber for your project as the wrong type can lead to problems down the road.

With that in mind, here are a few things to remember when choosing structural timber for your next project.

The Climate

The climate is one of the most critical aspects to consider when choosing structural timber for your building project. Different types of wood react differently to weather and can last longer or shorter in different climates. For instance, if you're building in a cold climate, you'll need timber that can withstand the cold weather without warping or rotting. Cedar is an option worth considering in this regard. It has excellent outdoor durability and can withstand water and other outdoor elements without decaying or chipping. Moreover, it's an excellent heat insulator, perfect for cold climates.


It will also be best to consider the timber's weight in your selection. Generally, lightweight timbers are more workable and easier to handle during installation and transportation than their heavier counterparts. However, they also tend to be less structurally sound than heavy timbers. Therefore, you may be better off with heavier options, especially if strength and durability are a priority.


The timber's strength is another essential aspect to keep in mind when choosing one. Generally, structural timber's strength is measured in terms of its bending strength, shear strength, and crushing strength. It's imperative that you go for the strongest timber in the market for the best performance, especially if you plan to use the timber on structural members like rafters, beams, and joists.

You can determine the timber's strength by assessing other properties like its density. Usually, the denser the timber, the stronger it will be. Denser wood also offers excellent fire resistance to a certain extent, suitable for areas prone to bush fires.


Do you plan to use the timber indoors or outdoors? Answering this question can also go a long way in helping you choose the correct option. For instance, if you plan to use it outdoors, it may be best to select treated timber to prevent insect attacks and fungal decay or rotting.  

For more information about structural timber, contact a local company.