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Burnt wood - Japanese technology for natural wood protection

Updated: Mar 7, 2023

Name „timber frame“ speaks for itself and describes the type of construction, used for buildings. Most common material, used for the exterior of timber frame buildings is timber cladding. For those who are looking for exceptional design and texture, we suggest to take a look at burnt wood and consider to use it for your building.

Charring is known since 18th century as a special Japanese natural wood protection technique when wood is preserved with hot flame. Because of different climates in Japan, timber cladding used for the buildings had withstand rain, wind, heat and moisture and that’s how charring began to be used. Charring makes wood fire resistant and waterproof. Furthermore, the wood is protected from insects as well.

Charring technology is usually used for soft wood such as pine, cedar, spruce, or larch. Because of its protectiveness and usage, burned wood could withstand the test of time and had found its place in contemporary architecture. During the charring process, natural oils are used which is different from chemical paint and oils which are used for other treatment of wooden surfaces.

Burnt wood is more and more popular in Western countries and is used for building façade cladding, decking, fences and even roofs. Because of raw and artistic appearance, such wood speaks about authenticity, prestige and sense of aesthetic.

The charring process highlights the beauty of natural wood texture and creates colours, which cannot be created with paint or oil. Darker natural lines created by the flame make an eye catching surface and buildings becomes exceptional and unique. Colours of burnt wood can vary from warm light grey to black.

Advantages of burnt wood:

- durability.

- fire resistant.

- increased water resistance.

- protected from insects.

- doesn't rot.

- unique appearance.

Disadvantages of burnt wood:

- needs to be re-oiled once in 5-10 years.

- inconsistent finish (some people might find this as advantage).

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