The next time you drive through your neighborhood, pay attention to the fences, decks, and siding. Chances are you’ll see a lot of cedar. Even commercial properties use a lot of cedar wood. Ever wondered why cedar wood is so popular?
To put it simply, it has all the qualities you would want in a wood, especially for outdoor applications. Let’s explore why cedar wood is so well-loved.
The History of Cedar
The name “cedar” can be rather confusing. A quick Internet search about cedar trees will pop up all sorts of results and information. If you are the type of person that likes to research your options before beginning a home project, then you might find yourself confused and overwhelmed by the amount of information available about cedar wood and where it comes from.
Cedar trees grow all over the world in a variety of climates and regions. Amongst cedar wood options, there are “true cedars” and “false cedars.” This means that some cedar wood is sourced from a different species of trees, like a Juniper or Cypress. Without getting into the scientific names and botanical terms behind this argument, let’s just point out that there is indeed a difference between the various species of cedar trees and different types of wood with the term cedar included in the name.
There are several kinds of cedar wood, such as western red cedar, eastern red cedar, northern white cedar, eastern white cedar, Japanese cedar, Spanish cedar, Lebanon cedar, Alaskan yellow cedar, and the list goes on and on. With that said, don’t let the labeling of cedar wood scare you away. The most popular species of cedar sold for fencing, decking, and siding projects is western red cedar. This well-loved wood is what your contractor is likely to source for your project.
Advantages of Cedar Wood
Cedar wood has proven itself time and time again to be an excellent choice for a wide range of construction projects. Homeowners love cedar compared to other wood options for a variety of reasons:
Workability – Because it is a relatively soft wood, cedar wood is easy to work with. It cuts well. It holds nails. It screws easily. Glue, paint, and polish adhere to it too.
Durability – Some woods will shrink, swell, crack, or warp with severe weather changes. Cedar holds up against inclement weather and temperature shifts due to its inherent moisture content.
Insect-resistant – Bugs do not like the natural oils produced by cedar wood. Cedar oil acts as a deterrent to insects like cockroaches, moths, and mosquitoes. Damage-causing pests like termites and ants do not like cedar oil either.
Rot-resistant – Those natural oils mentioned above protect cedar wood against rot and decay. The oils create a sort of water-resistant barrier, making it hard for fungus to thrive on cedar.
Aroma – The smell of cedar wood is one more reason why those natural oils are great. While the aroma repels pests that can hurt your wood (and cost you money in expensive repairs), homeowners love it.
Appearance – Cedar has a beautiful grain pattern. The grain pattern is consistent and uniform with fewer knots and holes than other wood options.
Color – From a gorgeous white to a warm red to a light brown, cedar comes in different tones and shades. Cedar wood can also be painted or stained to illuminate those colors.
Longevity – Cedar wood can hold up for years upon years. Plus, regular maintenance can extend the life of your wood. For example, staining or finishing the wood will keep it from turning a sliver, gray color.
Affordability – Cedar is very affordable to those working on a budget. The price of cedar wood ranges from one type to another, but many of the species are still less expensive than other wood options.
Cedar Wood is a Wise Investment
The beauty of cedar wood is its versatility. It compliments any home and can be used to complete an array of home projects.
- Privacy cedar fence
- Exterior siding
- Accent wall
Cedar is a stable and secure wood option that delivers amazing results. Even though the label “cedar” covers a wide spectrum of wood choices, true cedar is an outstanding option for interior and exterior home renovations. With several different species of cedar, you are sure to find one that meets your needs and expectations and matches your preferences and style.