Can Poplar Wood Get Wet?


How susceptible is poplar wood to wetness? Anyone interested in working with poplar wood for the woodworking projects needs to think around this. It has a huge impact on the probability of rotting in any wood type. The rate of decay tends to be more if the moisture content is high.

For poplar wood, wetting is something common. This is why it may not be a good pick for outdoor projects. However, proper treatment through staining, priming, and painting may work well to reduce the probability of wetting. The first thing to do is to determine the moisture content of the lumber you are planning to use. Going for the conventional kiln-dried poplar wood is essential.

Impact on Treated Poplar Wood

Poplar wood is friendly to priming and staining. It is significant to perform these tasks on any newly acquired lumber. The same case should happen for the untreated complete furniture. With the treatments on the surface, the chances of wetting will be lowered. These protective layers act as barriers between the wood structure and the external environment.

Untreated poplar wood has an average lifespan of three to four years. This is brought about by the gradual decay of the wood structure. The mold development also negatively impacts the structure as well. As you think of the treatment, remember about the painting work. Paints offer an additional layer that is impactful on the maintenance of the internal moisture levels of the wood.

Outdoor Projects

Poplar wood gains much popularity in the making of indoor furniture such as cabinetry. This is due to being lightweight and easy to work on since it is soft. Apart from such attributes making the indoors a perfect fit for the poplar wood, the issue of wetting is critical as well. Most in-house settings exhibit low humidity hence helpful in inhibiting moisture absorption into the wood.

Some outdoor projects such as decking, roofing, and bridge constructions do not suit poplar wood. Exposure to rain will certainly degrade the wood structures. Therefore, such weather-related conditions need to be considered before any outdoor usage of this hardwood.

Sapwood Concentration

The concentration of sapwood differs from poplar trees of different ages. Younger and fast-growing ones tend to have a relatively higher concentration which means a higher likelihood of decay. Most slow-growth and old poplar trees are preferred due to their more resistance to water. Again, the heartwood is less permeable to water as compared to sapwood which makes old trees a better pick.

While shopping for poplar wood, focus on the color of the as it tells more about the age. Old and water-resistant poplar is typically darker than the younger wood. Finding modern manufacturers is beneficial as they classify their wood by certain criteria such as color and size.

They also condition their wood to be safe from shrinkage. This is through making the poplar easily adapt to the moisture content it will get exposure to. The use of ring shank siding nails may efficiently help in this. Power-driven screws are considered as well in suppressing shrinkage as a result of moisture.

Poplar wood is prone to wetting as compared to other types of hardwood. This can, however, be reduced through doing the wood treatment. The painting work also plays a significant role. Outdoor settings make the hardwood more vulnerable to wetting than when indoors.

Can Poplar wood get stained? Read this article here.

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