Charring ThermoWoods has many benefits, from an aesthetically pleasing finish to resistance to harsh weather conditions. We have outlined the main pros of charring ThermoWoods below!
Timbers are organic and all-natural, which means that over time, and in response to changing moisture levels, the material will expand and contract. When exposed to Europe’s ever-changing seasons, it can crack, split or rot. Typically, oils and varnishes are applied to form a protective coating to the wood, protecting the timber from changing moisture levels. This application is effective; however, it needs to be reapplied on a regular basis.
The Japanese decided to experiment with charring the timbers’ surface instead of applying a coating. The controlled burning of the wood’s surface creates a layer of carbon on the surface and depending on the timber being burnt will also create a different textured finish. Consequently, forming a long-lasting weatherproofing system which is also sealed to prevent any charring being rubbed off.
A common cause of natural timber deterioration comes from biological sources such as insects, mould and fungi. The ThermoWood process that the timber goes through, removes the properties that the insects like to feed off, thereby eliminating the deterioration and extending the timbers lifespan.
Again, a range of coatings can be applied that will greatly reduce the risk for natural timbers. However, by charring the timber, an extra and ongoing coating is not needed. The carbon outer layer is an additional deterrent to insects.
For mould and fungi to grow on timber it needs high moisture and oxygen levels to grow. Techniques like thermal modification reduce the moisture level to 7% closing the cell structure in the timber which prevents mould spores from growing. Natural unmodified timbers have a moisture level of around 15-18% and the cell structure is more open to increasing the moisture content within the timber.
Greater Fire Resistance
The charring of ThermoWoods increases the materials’ resilience to burning. This is because the thermal process removes the properties that generally ignite timber giving the timber a ‘Class B’ fire rating, with an additional charred outer surface which does not ignite or burn easily. With this, you have a product that is very fire resistant, stable and offers a 30+ year durability.
The benefit of heavily charring the surface is that the layer of carbon that builds up on the surface becomes naturally UV resistant, providing a durable, natural matt black colour.
The charring trend reciprocates the growing demand for more industrial looking properties, clad with black accents and accessories. This process provides a strong, aesthetically pleasing visual impact. With a variety of different effects available from smooth to a crackled appearance, charred cladding can be chosen to suit your own tastes. If the surface gets chipped or damaged, the natural parts of the timber are not exposed, which would normally lead to surface peel or potential decay. This risk is absent in our ThermoChar® range with finishing options such as ‘Rustic’, ‘Crazy Crackle’, ‘Tiger-Lite’, ‘Brushed Ebony’, ‘Lizard Skin’ and ‘Snake Skin’.