What Wood Cladding to Choose for Your Modular Home

Share

Wood Cladding solutions for modular homes have been one of the most popular methods. Whether you’re looking for a complete renovation, extension, or simply a new build, these solutions have been empowering the prefab industry for many years now. Also, depending upon the architectural design style you prefer – from barn-style farmhouse look to modern contemporary angled-style modular homes, there is a wide variety of wooden claddings that constantly amaze homebuyers across the world.

Some of the well-known wooden cladding solutions are as follows:

  1. Western Red Cedar Cladding
  2. Oak Cladding
  3. Larch Cladding
  4. Sweet Chestnut Cladding
  5. Thermowood
  6. Kebony Modified Timber Cladding
  7. Accoya Modified Timber Cladding
  8. Cross Laminated Timber Cladding

However, respective to your location and local harvesting, it may be possible that some of these are available while some aren’t. You need to double-check with the modular home manufacturing companies to ensure the best possible option for your location’s climate. Here is a detailed description along with pros and cons for each type of wooden cladding for you to confidently choose the best option.

Western Red Cedar Cladding

This medium to coarse-textured wood is purely durable and easy to work with the solution. Varying in colors from red to pinkish brown or sometimes with darker red and brown steaks, they are bound to exhibit a natural and authentic appearance. Cedar is lightweight with extremely low density – hence, making it an easy to maintain and long-lasting option for up to 50 years.

One of the main advantages is that this material is naturally resistant to decay, hence there is no treatment required before installation, but under some conditions, you might need a little UV Protection. Secondly, due to the softness and light-weightiness of the material, both screws and nails can be very well inserted and in the case of cutting, machineries make it far much easier as compared to other hardwoods. 

Since it is more on a higher-end, the costs of this cladding solution is expected to go high. Also, one of the major reasons to take care of is that this material is reactive to iron – hence, make sure to avoid iron nails for installation.

Oak Cladding

Unlike Western Red Cedar, Oak is a hardwood with a much high density. This traditional method is very popular in most of the countries in the North where it is readily available. Oak has a coarse and an uneven texture with highly striking colors such as golden browns, chocolate browns, honey tones, and sandy hues, thus, making it a much versatile option.

On the other hand, since oak is a hardwood, it makes drilling, screwing, and nailing quite a difficult task – so it is always recommended to pre-drill in these situations. Also, just like cedar, it reacts with iron – so it is better to use stainless steel nails and screws. Another disadvantage with oak is affordability. Since it is a premium, hardwood product, the expected price is likely to rise making it an expensive solution.

Another fact that the homeowners should take care of while installing oak is that if it is left untreated, it is quite likely to develop a natural silver patina in some years. However, opposing to the great stability it offers, oak definitely makes an even solution.

Larch Cladding

Larch is a softwood that shares many similarities with Cedar. From durability to external applications, these both cladding solutions make a great option for modular homes. However, the main differences include the appearances, your personal preference, and the budget. First and foremost, it is a medium to fine-textured wood with mainly pale yellow or medium brown shades making it a very natural finished timber option.

Due to its versatility, this wooden option is used for cladding as well as decking and flooring. Meanwhile, during the installation, you can use screws and nails without having to worry about the quality and the overall process. Just like Oak, even Larch is subjected to attract a silvery-grey layer over a few years.

Depending on the quality and availability or your location, the price is subjected to rise. But it is definitely a one-time investment as the life expectancy of larch is about 30-50 years.

Sweet Chestnut Cladding

Sweet Chestnut is a widely available option in Britain and across Europe. Known for its sturdiness and durability, this straight-grained timber option is available in some very attractive colors such as golden, deep yellows, and dark mineral browns. However, if it is not protected well against the UV radiation, there might appear a silvery-gray layer that is subjected to weathering.

Due to its versatility, it makes an ideal option to be used in exterior cladding applications and flooring as well as decking. When it comes to cutting, screwing, and nailing, sweet chestnut yet again proves to be an ideal option. However, it is recommended to choose pre-drilling of stainless-steel nails to avoid any corrosion and damage.

Since it is not easily available, the costs to import or transport may vary. Hence, on the larger picture, they tend to increase the overall costs of your modular home. So, if you are on a budget, this is probably not the best option.

Thermowood

Thermowood is a perfect dark-stained timber option that is considerably denser than cedar but not as dense as larch. It is a softwood with medium to a fine texture that has good workability with machineries, nails, as well as screws.

Thermowood is basically heat-treated timber which is also very sustainable as it is formed under specific conditions and temperatures. Due to this modification, the resulted timber is quite strong with extreme stability, lesser shrinkages or swellings, and negation of any distortions and moldings. It is widely used in timber modular homes that aim for an extra tinge of sustainability since it is originated from well-managed PEFC-Certified Forests and no harmful chemicals are used during production.

The longevity of this material is hereby a subjective note. The longer this wood is treated with heat – the longer will the wood last. On the other hand, due to the same heating process, the hemicellulose in the wood is broken down that leaves no room for fungi and decay making it a very long-lasting cladding material. Thermowood is also expected to be affordable since it is easily available and doesn’t involve the usage of a lot of chemicals during production.

Kebony Modified Timber Cladding

Kebony is a chemically modified timber cladding option which is treated under specific eco-friendly conditions to improve the stability and durability of the material. Just like other hardwoods like teak and mahogany, this timber has deep brown hues making it a natural, and attractive cladding option.

Kebony is a treated softwood just like Accoya and Thermowood, that have been thermally boosted to maintain resistance and improve sustainability as compared to other hardwood timber options. However, this method is comparatively expensive and requires little to no maintenance and is also UV resistant.

The appearances are quite noteworthy. Available in two grades, the character texture displays more of a knottier appearance that is well suited to traditional styled homes and on the other hand, a clear texture simply is devoid of any knots while giving a seamless appearance.

Accoya Modified Timber Cladding

Accoya is a treated modified timber option that sets a great benchmark for sustainability, efficiency, and performance. This cladding option is sustainably sourced from FSC Certified forests and has a minimal impact on the environment. Hence, if you are looking for an option to help the planet, Accoya cladding could be your answer.

It is a softwood cladding option that is available in a wide variety of characteristic warmer hues such as browns and reddish browns. Hence, unlike the Kebony which is mainly used for traditional styled homes, these make a good match for traditional as well as contemporary styled modular homes.

As the material is treated under specific conditions, it automatically becomes a stable, durable, and sturdier option which is great for extreme climates. Due to this, they can easily be cut in the desired shape and be easily molded. Since they are available in various finishes such as smooth, charred, and brushed, you can choose from any one as per your personal preference.

Cross Laminated Timber Cladding

Cross Laminated Timber Cladding is apparently a new concept in the industry. With the help of the latest technologies, it is now even being used to construct skyscrapers and mega buildings. However, CLT has its own benefits when it comes to cladding them. So, CLT is a hardwood that dates its roots back to spruce, pine, and larch with quite a subtle and smooth appearance.

Cross Laminated Timber just doesn’t offer a cladding solution but is totally a structural material option too. As compared to traditional timber frames, these panels offer a faster and more durable experience, but in a way – more expensive. They are more versatile, sustainable, sturdier, and durable as compared to any other type. Hence, a home built in CLT structural material will offer a CLT cladding as well.

Due to the treatment under specific conditions, this material offers great insulation and resistant to termites and decay properties. Hence, making it an ideal yet very expensive option in the list.

Last Word

Timber cladding is definitely one of the best options to choose from if you want a natural appearance in your modular homes. Not just limited to external but wood offers a wide variety of internal cladding options as well. Now that we have discussed the 8 popular types of wood cladding along with their pros and cons, are you confident about what best to choose?

Do let us know your questions and reviews in the comments below!