How to Waterproof Wood: The What, How & Benefits

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Have you ever heard the saying that goes “a tree’s wood is also its memoir”? No truer words have ever been spoken about this natural material that we use to build structures and decorate our homes. The durability of the structures we make or the furniture we make will depend on the wood we use. Natural as it is, wood can also succumb to other natural elements like sun and rain.

In this article, we will explore what wood waterproofing is, the types and benefits that make waterproofing wood such a common practice.

What is Wood Waterproofing?

Wood waterproofing is the process of applying a protective barrier over the natural wood in order to make it waterproof.

This barrier is capable of resisting water penetration by forming an effective seal that prevents the harmful effects of humidity, rain, and snow on your wood posts, decks, or fences.

Benefits of Waterproofing Wood

Having a good reason to waterproof your wooden structures is important, especially because we want to build structures to last. Seasons change, but our wooden furniture or structures don’t have to. You can protect your wooden structures from the harsh weather and save a lot of money by using wood waterproofing on them.

Here are some good reasons to waterproof your wooden posts, decks fences, and other wooden things.

Protect the wood from warping and expansion

  • Wood expands and contracts in response to changes in humidity or moisture content, causing it to crack and split over time. Waterproofing wood prolongs the life of the wood by reducing cracking and warping caused by handling, foot traffic, and weather conditions.

Protection of wood against Insect Infestation

  • Waterproofing wood reduces the chance of rot, mold, or mildew from forming. This is achieved by creating a barrier that keeps water away from the wood’s surface, restricting moisture and humidity from penetrating deep inside

Improves appearance

  • By sealing the pores of the wood, waterproofing seals out dirt and grime, letting the natural beauty shine through.

Lowers Maintenance Costs

  • Wood that is not waterproofed can rot or develop structural defects resulting in costly repairs over time. Waterproofing prolongs the life of wooden structures by protecting them against mold, mildew, water seepage, and other factors that cause damage.

Types of Wood Waterproofing

There are a lot of types of waterproofing depending on the kind of wood. They are divided into three main types:

Use Linseed or tug oil

  • Using linseed oil or any type of oil is one way of waterproofing wood.
  • Some people prefer using linseed oil on their wooden structures for different reasons such as giving it a natural look.
  • Lin seed has a less environmental impact since its made from a plant.
  • Using linseed oil gives your wooden structure a protective barrier that helps it weather the elements for years, making it more durable.

Using a stain-sealant combo

Using finish and stain on wooden structures has been a very common practice because it:

  • Waterproofs the wood and while making it look shiny at the same time.
  • Protects from moisture either in liquid or vapour form
  • Also protects from scratches, dirt, and wear

But if there is a chance that your wood stain will wear off then you might want to add another layer of protection on top of your structure. The thicker the finish, the more protection.

Use a coating of varnish or lacquer

Using waterproofing lacquer or coating is another way of protecting wooden structures. Here are some benefits:

  • Cures to a hard and durable finish
  • It does not get cloudy or yellow as it ages
  • Offers protection from water and any other liquids
  • It is very low maintenance

Coating Improves the Durability and life of Wood

Waterproofing wood helps protect it from cracks, water seepage and other effects of moisture. The moisture protection offered by waterproofing preserves the wood’s natural beauty by keeping dirt, grime, and mildew away.

Waterproofing wooden structures save you time, effort, and money in the long run because it makes your wood more durable, longer-lasting, and easier to repair. By taking this first step of protecting your wooden structures with a protective layer, you are taking protecting them from the forces of nature. If you’re unsure of how to protect your wood or what sealant to use, reach out to your local timber merchant for more information.

Otherwise, go on to make it a DIY project or hire someone to do it, either way, you are sure to have wood that has a unique, beautiful, and long-lasting memoire.

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