Larch Vs Cedar Cladding – Deciding What Timber Cladding to Use

From private domestic homes to large commercial and retail buildings, timber cladding is an incredibly popular material used to enhance the exterior appearance of a wide range of properties.

For any timber cladding project, it’s absolutely essential that you pick the right specie. There are so many different types available and as they all possess their own unique set of qualities, each specie provides a slightly different finish and style to one another.

Siberian Larch and Canadian Western Red Cedar are two of the most common species. Both are regarded very highly by architects and deliver amazing aesthetic results. In this guide, we compare their characteristics to help you decide which is best for you to use in your project.

Origin

As their name suggests, both species are imported from foreign countries. Whereas Siberian Larch originates from the stunning forests of Siberia in Russia, Canadian Western Red Cedar comes from beautiful forests in Canada and the costal Pacific of North West USA.

Appearance

Both Siberian Larch and Canadian Western Red Cedar are regarded highly for their appearance.

Siberian Larch usually starts its life as a pale yellow/golden brown colour and tends to gradually weather to a silvery grey colour if left untreated. It’s a specie well known for its texture with the shapes and patterns of the growth rings providing real character to each panel.

Canadian Western Red Cedar, on the other hand, varies from pale reddish-brown through to dark brown, with beautiful grain patterns. It too, however, will weather to a silvery grey when exposed to rain and sunlight. The warm red and brown tones ensure it’s a specie rich in personality.

Durability

One of the hardest commercial softwoods available, Siberian Larch is moderately durable. It is slow growth, high-density wood that isn’t as vulnerable to knocks, scrapes and scratches as other species (which is ideal if you’re using it for exterior cladding).

Canadian Western Red Cedar is a very stable and durable specie. It’s very lightweight which allows those using it to be able to machine and work with it easily. It’s also very thermally efficient and offers great thermal properties, meaning that it operates well in both hot and cold climates.

Maintenance and Treatment

All timber and building materials inevitably change over time, so it’s pivotal that you keep them protected in order to ensure they remain in good condition. Leaving them untreated can increase the rate at which they weather and cause potential issues with UV rays. Some species require more maintenance than others, however.

Siberian Larch is typically a low maintenance wood. The resin in the timber means it has an element of natural protection against rot and decay, and the fact it is so dense also means it requires less maintenance.

Similarly, although Canadian Western Red Cedar is a durable and highly resistant timber, it is can be beneficial for a top-quality treatment in order to offer an element of colour stability. “Brunnea” Treatment is a treatment process that involves impregnating the wood cladding with a blend of preservative and Brunnea pigment. It holds colour longer than other similar products and provides a 30-year warranty against rot and fungal decay (out of ground contact)

Price

The price of Siberian Larch and Canadian Western Red Cedar will largely depend on the quantity you require, what measurements you need and a range of other details. For the best and most accurate quotes, it’s therefore advised you get in touch with our timber cladding specialists today.

We’ll also be able to provide advice on which specie is best suited to your project.

Fixings and Installations

Both Siberian Larch and Canadian Western Red Cedar take to fastening and fixing well.

It’s critical you use only the finest stainless-steel fixings to avoid corrosion and staining of the wood.

With all timber species you should use annular ring shank nails as they provide extra grip and support. The length of the nail should also be approximately 2/2.5 times the thickness of the board to ensure a good anchoring into the support batten behind the cladding.

Uses

Siberian Larch and Canadian Western Red Cedar are often the chosen specie for a wide range of uses. Their durability makes them suited to external applications such as cladding, decking, roofing and fencing.

Timber Cladding with NORclad

Here at NORclad, we’re committed to providing the best value to our clients. With more than 40 years’ experience in the industry, we specialise in supplying a leading range of timber cladding and façade solutions.

If you’d like to find out more about Siberian Larch, Canadian Western Red Cedar, or any of our other beautiful timber cladding species, please feel free to speak to a member of our team. We’d be more than happy to assist you in making sure you get the best results from your project.

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