Why You Should Pay Attention to the Moisture Content of Roof Timber

Posted on: 26 August 2016

Timber is one of the most durable construction materials available today. However, the strength of the timber can only be taken advantage of if the timber was properly dried before it was used in a building. This article discusses some of the reasons why you should choose properly dried timber when shopping for roofing timber for your new house.

Impact on Decay Organisms

Wood decay organisms, such as fungi, digest moist wood until it decomposes. It would therefore be risky for you to use green wood (harvested wood that hasn't been dried) to support the roofing materials on your house. Such wood will have a high moisture content that will be conducive to the decay organisms that can attack it. Properly dried timber (with about 20% moisture content) does not allow decay organisms to thrive. Dried or seasoned timber is therefore more likely to last long since it will hardly experience the effects of decay organisms. 

Insulation Properties

Roof timber with high moisture content can easily absorb heat from the surrounding. This is because the free water (water trapped in its tissues due to capillary action) in it helps to transmit the heat through the timber. Consequently, it will become harder for you to realise energy savings in your home in case you used timber that wasn't dried properly.

Effectiveness of Preservatives

Properly dried timber usually absorbs more wood preservatives when compared to green timber. This is because the low moisture content of seasoned timber makes that timber to absorb the preservatives quickly because of an imbalance between the low pressure inside the dry core and the high pressure on the surface where the preservatives have been placed. Thus, properly dried timber will be easier to treat when compared to timber with high moisture content. The moisture inside the green timber prevents the preservatives from penetrating that timber effectively.

Structural Strength

Dried timber is usually stronger than green timber. This is because the particles that make up the dried timber are densely packed together. The particles in green timber are loosely held together because the free water in the timber occupies the spaces between the wood particles. Consequently, green timber is more likely to break when a heavy load is placed upon it.

As you can see, the extent to which the roof timber that you use was dried plays a major role in determining how well the timber will serve its role. You should therefore ask roof timber suppliers to give you timber with the lowest moisture content so that you get the best performance and service life from that timber.


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Hello, my name is Bobby and this is my business blog. I am by no means a professional businessman, but I do like to take ideas and try to develop them. Even though I have taught myself everything I know, I have had a little success. I got interested in developing different forms of business when I visited my Uncle who runs a large company which buys and sells and provides many different services. He was a real inspiration. He encouraged me to start a power washing business, then I started cleaning cars for a living and now I am thinking about getting into the technology sector. I hope you enjoy my blog.