Drying Wood Framing

Compared to most other hygroscopic materials, dimensional lumber absorbs and releases water relatively slowly. This means that the sooner drying begins, the less water will be absorbed into wood materials, and the more rapidly they will return to acceptable MC. It also means that wood framing that has absorbed significant water will take more time to release it. Low vapor pressure (low humidity), often combined with hot dry air movement across material surfaces, may be required to ensure efficient drying. See the discussion above for wood flooring for more general information about the response of wood materials to wetting.


Wood framing tends to swell or warp when wet, but usually returns to its approximate size and shape when dry. Organic components can act as a food source for mold if wet for extended periods, but do not support mold growth as easily as “engineered” types of wood products (particle board, OSB), paper products, and similar materials. If components remain at more than 20% MC for extended periods, fungi can affect the structural integrity of wood (dry rot). Wood framing normally is held together with steel fasteners, which are subject to corrosion when wet over time, with a possible reduction in holding strength. Some modern framing, especially trusses used for floor and ceiling joists, is made of engineered lumber. Most engineered lumber is significantly less resistant to water than solid wood lumber, especially when exposure to liquid water or excessive humidity is for an extended time.  This sensitivity can result, not only in an appearance change, but in deterioration of strength, stiffness or other characteristics as well.

It’s always important to properly dry a structure. Contact Dririte of Tampa today for more information (813) 283-2202

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