What is Thermo-treated Wood and Where Should I Use It?

By Perswood Team,

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Why you might be missing out if you don’t opt for thermo-treated wood for your outdoor features.


If you’d like to use wood for your outdoor builds, but are holding back because of uncertainty over its durability, thermo-treated wood may be what you’re after. While wood, when installed and maintained appropriately, already makes for an attractive and hardy material, panels that undergo thermal enhancement endure all weather conditions even better. We lay out what sets thermo-treated wood apart and the advantages it can hold for you.


What makes thermo-treated wood more durable for outdoor use?

Thermo-treated wood undergoes a treatment process that crystallises its fibers, including starch and resin. This process enhances the wood’s stability, reducing its tendency to contract or expand when exposed to moisture. As a result, thermo-treated wood exhibits improved durability and can withstand various weather conditions, such as rain, humidity and temperature fluctuations.



Can I use softwood for outdoor projects if it’s thermo-treated?

Absolutely. One of the advantages of thermo-treated wood is that it enables the use of softwood, including popular varieties like pine. Traditionally, softwood was considered less suitable for outdoor applications, but with thermo-treatment, it becomes a viable option. This expands the range of available materials and provides more design flexibility.


How does thermo-treated wood enhance the appearance of outdoor features?

Thermo-treated wood offers improved appearance and uniformity. The treatment process reduces colour variations within the wood, resulting in a more uniform and natural look. Additionally, the smooth surface of thermo-treated wood makes it easier to oil or coat, eliminating the need for extensive sanding. This applies not just for outdoor features; this characteristic is ideal indoors too — think timber screens, doors, cladding and ceilings. Moreover, thermo-treated wood accepts paint well, allowing for a wider range of customisation options.


Is the process of thermo-treating wood eco-friendly?

Yes! Thermo-treatment is an environmentally friendly process. Unlike many other wood treatment methods, it does not involve the use of chemicals. Instead, the wood undergoes a process of intense heat and steam. This approach ensures the longevity and stability of the wood without the need for potentially harmful substances, making thermo-treated wood a sustainable choice.


How does thermo-treated wood compare to natural wood for outdoor projects?

Thermo-treated wood outshines natural wood in several ways. Unlike natural wood, which is prone to bleeding, sapping and colour run when exposed to moisture, thermo-treated wood undergoes a transformation that prevents these issues. It has enhanced stability, similar to charcoal, with crystallised fibers that prevent contraction and expansion. As a result, thermo-treated wood can be the superior choice for outdoor projects, with better durability, reduced warping, and fewer limitations for larger builds. It is also more affordable than hardwood.



Where can I get thermo-treated wood in Singapore?

Perswood is one of the earliest innovators in thermally treating wood for Singapore’ climate. We introduced the ZIRCON process around 2010, which ensures that the treated wood can withstand the full range of Singapore’s weather conditions. All ZIRCON wood is heated from 190ºC to 250ºC, with the addition of steam, to permanently enhance the wood at a molecular level.

In conclusion, thermo-treated wood revolutionises outdoor construction and design by providing enhanced durability, expanded material options, improved appearance, and an eco-friendly manufacturing process. Its numerous benefits over natural wood make it a superior choice for long-lasting and visually stunning outdoor features. Embrace this innovation and unlock the full potential of thermo-treated wood for your next outdoor project.