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How to Dry & Treat Wet Wood

Most wood sold for deck building is considered wet and has a moisture content of over 30 percent water weight. Wet wood will shrink as it dries out and is less stable, which can cause it to check and warp. It also provides an environment where fungi and bacteria produce rot and insects thrive. Dry wood is lighter, easier to work with and less likely to split. You can buy lumber that has been kiln dried, but this will cost you a premium price. If you have purchased green or wet lumber, you should dry it out as best you can before working with it by stacking it on spacers and storing it in a shaded, dry and well ventilated area so the air can circulate evenly. You can check the moisture content by using a moisture meter at your lumberyard or cross cutting a board and examining the interior wood. Wood shrinks in all dimensions as it dries, but most problems are caused in how the boards handle the shrinkage in width and thickness.


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Create a free account and get instant & exclusive access to all that Decks.com has to offer:

Checkmark 1,000+ How-To articles
Checkmark 80+ Free Deck Plans
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Wood Materials

How to Dry & Treat Wet Wood

Most wood sold for deck building is considered wet and has a moisture content of over 30 percent water weight. Wet wood will shrink as it dries out and is less stable, which can cause it to check and warp. It also provides an environment where fungi and bacteria produce rot and insects thrive. Dry wood is lighter, easier to work with and less likely to split. You can buy lumber that has been kiln dried, but this will cost you a premium price. If you have purchased green or wet lumber, you should dry it out as best you can before working with it by stacking it on spacers and storing it in a shaded, dry and well ventilated area so the air can circulate evenly. You can check the moisture content by using a moisture meter at your lumberyard or cross cutting a board and examining the interior wood. Wood shrinks in all dimensions as it dries, but most problems are caused in how the boards handle the shrinkage in width and thickness.


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Composite Decking

Capped Composite Decking

What is capped composite decking? It's a great option if you like the look of wood but not the maintenance. Learn about capped composite at Decks.com.

Wood Materials

How to Dry & Treat Wet Wood

Wet wood shrinks as it dries out and becomes less stable, which can cause it to check and warp. Learn how to dry out and treat wet wood at Decks.com.

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Eon

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