Which Timber is Best for Wooden Gates?

When choosing which kind of timber your wooden gates will be crafted from, there are a number of criteria that need to be considered. From the look and feel of the wood to its durability and resilience, each factor combines to give you the perfect gate system. While there is a huge choice of wood to be used, a little known fact is that each wood only differs in approximately 12% of their content.

This article will detail the different elements that you need to consider when choosing which type of wood to use for your new gates.

Softwood or hardwood?

These two types of wood offer varying benefits, from the strength of the material to the way it looks and how those looks last over time. Softwood is used across a variety of trades, and it is typically very durable, making it a very popular choice for both domestic and commercial gates. Redwood is the most commonly used of the softwoods, as it is the cheapest option, but for a little more expenditure, the fantastic durability of Siberian Larch or Western Red Cedar can prove to be invaluable against knocks, bumps and even insect damage.

The benefits of hardwood stems from the tightness of the grain, which gives it great resistance against UV rays and moisture. In terms of aesthetics, hardwood can be painted or stained to match the design of your property. The two main types of hardwood used for gates are Iroko and European Oak. Iroko is a long lasting, stable and attractive wood that offers a fantastic lifespan, and European Oak is a denser wood that is very resistant to fungal and insect attacks, thanks to its high tannin content.

Kiln Dried Oak

Kiln dried oak is a technique that means the finished product may require considerable aftercare, as the wood will be very susceptible to moisture damage – the moisture can infiltrate the wood, causing it to swell up, which will require a plane to ease the swelling. Using a micro-porous stain to colour your wood can prevent this weathering from occurring as they often contain UV filters.

Air Dried Oak

This too will need some sort of moisture protection, as will any dried timber. It will, however, need less protection than its kiln-dried counterpart.

Green Oak

Green oak means that the timber has not been subjected to any drying procedure and is still wet, so it weathers naturally. As the timber is already wet, its absorption levels are much lower, meaning that it will not be subjected to the same risks as dried timber.

Here at Strand Systems, we are proud to offer our expert services in the design, installation and maintenance of gates to commercial and domestic customers alike. If you would like to know more about us, please get in touch with us today.