• Falmouth University

How Long Does Timber Cladding Last?

Timber Cladding can last many years depending on a variety of factors. This helpful guide, put together by timber cladding experts NORclad, will explain how long timber cladding lasts as well as tips for making it last longer.

How Long Does Timber Cladding Last?

According to the specie, treatment, maintenance and a whole host of other influences, you can expect quality timber cladding to last anywhere between 40-60 years. From the moment wood is cut from a tree, the process of degradation begins. However, this process is gradual, creates stunning natural changes in the timber, and can be slowed.

What Causes Timber Cladding to Decay?

Untreated exterior cladding can be susceptible to rot, fungal decay, insects, weathering and more. Treating timber cladding can help maintain the moisture content and therefore reduce risk of fungal decay.

NORclad’s Brunnea Treatment is a blend of preservative and Brunnea pigment which, when applied to cladding, provides protection from fungal decay, insects and rot. Once treated, timber cladding requires little to no maintenance.

Interior vs Exterior Timber Cladding

Interior timber cladding is less likely to experience the same wear and tear as exterior cladding. Regulated conditions inside a building mean moisture levels of the timber are unlikely to rise to a harmful level (above 20%), reducing risk of rot and fungal decay.

As exterior timber cladding is exposed to the elements, it is unlikely to stay dry and is consequently more susceptible to decay. Therefore, when choosing a timber specie for your exterior cladding, it is advised to pick a more durable specie to withstand the elements for longer.

Best Timber Cladding Species

All timber cladding species bring something unique to a build, so picking the perfect specie can be hard. Timber grown in harsher climates will no doubt be hardier to adverse conditions, as not all species are appropriate for cladding.

Over the years, NORclad have established themselves as timber experts, getting to know each specie, how they work, and all their special characteristics. NORclad source and supply only the best timber specie, from striking Siberian Larch, durable Oak and popular European Redwood, to homegrown British Larch and versatile Canadian Western Red Cedar. Consult with timber cladding experts NORclad today to find your ideal cladding solution.

Top Tips to Make Timber Cladding Last Longer

There is no one way to prolong the life of timber cladding, but if installed professionally and maintained properly, timber cladding can last that little bit longer.


Not all timber species need to be treated, for example most hardwoods are naturally durable enough, however treatment is always an option and may be beneficial for species such as European Redwood. Timber is categorised into different hazard classes (1-4) according to what conditions it will endure in its life and likelihood of rot – timber in hazard classes 3 and 4 are pressure treated accordingly.  Pressure treating means the timber isn’t just simply coated but permeated to ensure effectiveness.

Find out more about pressure treating with our useful guide to protecting your timber cladding.


Even the most durable timber specie will feel the effects of the elements sooner if improperly placed. Consider where the timber cladding will be installed and its subsequent vulnerability. Moisture and insufficient drying can occur on cladding installed on North and East facing walls.

To prevent contact with insects and moist ground, we recommend stopping your cladding around 150-250mm off the ground.


Over time external cladding changes appearance due to weathering, with timber cladding often going slightly brown, then a beautiful silver finish. While the effects of weathering can be slowed with clear or coloured treatment, the natural shift in finish is often what attracts people to cladding. Read more about weathering here.

Protect Against Moisture

When installing timber cladding there needs to be an allowance within the backing structure for ventilation. Have good drainage on your building and consider overhanging eaves to protect external cladding from excessive moisture. Cladding that is not dry is more at risk of increased decay from rot and fungal decay.

NORclad’s 30-Year Warranty

Our pressure treated wood comes with a 30-year warranty against rot and fungal decay, giving you peace of mind that your timber cladding will last for years to come.

Take a look at our sustainably sourced timber products or talk to an expert today. We will help you find the perfect timber cladding solution to last the ages.

2020-05-11T13:20:12+01:00January 23rd, 2020|

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