Engineered wood siding is a great way to add variety and dimension to your home. But before you seal it with paint or stain, you must know how to protect the wood from warping. If it gets too wet or the wood isn’t primed correctly, the material might absorb moisture and expand; when it dries back out again, that expanded surface layer will shrink down unevenly. The result is warped panels that lose their shape over time and eventually rot away. Below are some of the ways to protect your engineered wood siding from warping:
Apply a sealer
Use a penetrating, water-based sealer that will seal the siding boards, protect it from moisture and help prevent splintering. If you’re using an oil- or latex-based paint, choose a water-based wood sealer instead. And don’t apply any protective finish to your engineered wood siding until it’s been exposed to natural conditions for at least one month; otherwise, you’re just sealing in moisture that will cause warping later on.
Avoid painting it
If you want to paint your siding, choose a stain instead. Unlike paint, stains will soak into the wood and form a coating that won’t expand and contract when the wood does. Before you apply the stain, though, seal it with a water-based primer to help the stain penetrate more effectively. Choose prefinished siding if you want to avoid warping altogether.
Keep it dry
It’s essential to keep your siding dry after you apply a finish. Use a high-quality paintbrush, roller, or sprayer and protective coverings like tarps, painters’ drop cloths, or anti-mold paint covers when you’re painting your exterior siding to help keep the humidity down. Even if you’re using acrylic latex paint, use an anti-mold paint cover to protect it against moisture in the air. Otherwise, your panels will expand and contract at different rates as they absorb and lose moisture in the air, making them warp over time.
Pay attention to weather conditions
Make sure that your wood is protected from rain as well as humidity. Wood, like stone, is a composite material made of layers, so it’s much more susceptible to warping when it absorbs water and moisture. Unlike stone, wood can recover and dry out back to its original dimensions and shape.
Seal it at the end of the season
One way to prevent warping is to seal your siding for winter with a professional polyurethane coat that will resist the humidity in the air but still allow water vapor to penetrate the wood. (If you’re planning on painting your siding before winter, ask an experienced home painter about this type of finish. You can’t use some paints and wall coverings with a polyurethane coating.)
To know more about how to protect your engineered wood siding from warping, contact Sherwood Lumber and get a free home estimate. Prefinished KWP engineered wood siding is the best choice if you want to avoid warping. It will give you the long-term durability and flexibility needed for a lifetime of enjoyment with your home.