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One big advantage to building (or having a contractor build) exterior wood structures from scratch is that the surfaces can be prepped correctly right from the start. Taking a few simple steps now can give your new wood the protection it needs to stay virtually maintenance free for years.
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The basics of choosing wood for siding Wood grade: You get the most value from buying “clear all heart vertical grain siding.” This wood is usually hung smooth side out, and it accepts solid color stains and paints well. Lesser grades such as “Aye or better” and rustic grades can also be used, but they usually contain knots.
Wood types: Siding is available in redwood, western red cedar, cypress, treated pine and—more recently—mahogany and other imported hardwood species. Western red cedar is often considered the best choice for siding.
Siding styles or patterns: Siding can be installed in a variety of patterns, including the common “bevel” pattern, also known as “clapboard.” Other patterns are tongue and groove, channel rustic and ship lap. Take a look at each of these styles before making your decision.
Tips for a successful installation of siding
Keep wood dry. Once youíve chosen your siding, make sure the wood has low
moisture content and is dry when delivered. Store the wood indoors, if possible,
or off the ground on blocks. Cover the wood loosely to protect it from the rain.
Lightly sand. If you have new trim boards, a light scratch sanding can help the primer or stain adhere better.
Caulk all joints. Use a 100% acrylic compound, a paintable, siliconized acrylic blend, or a polyurethane sealant to fill larger joints. Donít overlook the roof-siding joint. If you have loose or missing caulking, replace it.
Use flashing over all windows and doors. And remember, exterior T1-11 plywood and hardboard panels require a special flashing between the panels.
Provide good ventilation in all living spaces, crawl spaces and attics. This will help keep the humidity level down.
Tips for decks
It doesnít take much extra effort to ensure a longer-lasting finish on your new wood structures. But that small investment of time will be paid off with professional-looking results that last longer.
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This long-lasting, 100% acrylic finish is also water repellent and fade resistant.
Choose the right stain color for your fence. Consider various opacities.
A premium one-step interior wood finish that makes wood finishing beautifully simple.