Reclaimed Timber: The Benefits of Recycled Materials
By Kacey Bradley | Apr 18, 2019
Throughout your life, you will likely undertake many different projects. You may need to install a drainage system in your yard for excess stormwater or pave your own driveway to add property value. Many of these projects will require wood material to get the job done, and there are many choices out there.
You can go to your local hardware store and see what it sells, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get the best option for your project. Many stores don’t provide reclaimed timber, for example.
Not sure what reclaimed timber is? Read on to learn more about this fantastic material and discover all the ways it can be used. Whether you’re building a garden or installing new floors in your home, reclaimed timber could be just what you’re looking for.
1. It Cleans the Earth
The bonus of recycling anything is that you’re helping keep the Earth clean. When it comes to reclaimed wood, you’re preventing extra gases from being released into the atmosphere. When wood is left to decompose on its own, it releases methane. You may not think a few trees or pieces of wood could do much environmental damage, but landfills emit 12 percent of the world’s total.
There’s also an environmental concern when it comes to making fresh timber. Companies that are working on new wood pieces strain natural resources, especially if their business isn’t focused on sustainability. This can lead to deforestation, especially in areas that are already smaller in scope. Using reclaimed wood prevents all of this from happening, minimizing your carbon footprint.
2. Reclaimed Wood Provides Wider Planks
Reclaimed wood is old, which has a benefit you may not notice. The planks you buy will be wider than fresh timber, because they were made in a time before the business became focused on capital over quality. Reclaimed wood comes from older trees that had more time to grow, providing wider wood from which to make planks. This is especially helpful if you’re planning on using the wood to cover large areas, like in floors or siding.
3. Age Gives Strength
Most living things only get stronger with time, and reclaimed wood is often made of timber that had a much longer time to grow than wood in the modern timber industry. Known as virgin timber, it usually comes from an uncultivated forest. It hasn’t been touched by chemicals or industrial machines, so there’s less of a chance the wood will split during or after your project.
This durability is why businesses sell reclaimed wood for a slightly higher price, but it’s well worth it. No project is ever a success if it’s made with materials that won’t stand the test of time. Reclaimed wood will likely prevent you from having to perform touch-ups in the months or years to come.
4. Recycled Wood Requires Less Maintenance
People become interested in reclaimed wood for many reasons, but one of the biggest is less maintenance. The wood could grow into its maturity before being chopped down and transformed into planks. That means you won’t see the discoloring and warping that’s common with new planks. Reclaimed wood is stronger and aged. You won’t need to be careful about cleaning up water spills to prevent splitting. It’s perfect for floors and furniture in homes with large families or renters.
5. Reclaiming Saves Money
Many types of wood on sale may initially seem more budget-friendly than reclaimed material. The discount would be nice at first, but you’d still be buying wood that would require touch-ups and eventual replacement. The cost of having to redo your project will add up far more than you ever saved on a sale.
Reclaimed wood provides you with a quality material you can only find in something that’s been aged and worked with. It saves you money in the long run because you won’t need to have it replaced or fixed. It takes care of itself, so you can enjoy your life beyond the project it’s necessary for.
6. You Can Buy Local
Timber companies, especially larger corporations, get their wood from all over the world. Outsourcing is cheaper for them and gives them more competitive rates, which results in the wood you’ll find on sale. Why support a company and send your money to a place you don’t know when you could buy local wood instead?
Many local companies can connect you with the reclaimed wood you need. You’ll be supporting small businesses and keeping wood from ending up in landfills near your home. Do a little research to find where you can buy reclaimed wood where you live, so you can buy from people who want your town to succeed as much as you do.
Reclaimed wood provides security and quality all in one product. You’ll know you’re getting something that will last a long time, so it’s worth every penny. See what reclaimed wood is being sold in your area to discover the options you have. Compare plank sizes and wood coloring to get the materials that best suit your project, and then have fun creating something you can be proud of well into the future.
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