The Benefits of Using Western Red Cedar

As one of the world’s most unique softwood species, Western Red Cedar comes with many benefits, and has gained a reputation for its natural rich tones and high durability. This has made it a popular choice for external architectural use, as it can withstand the elements without compromising on style.

Regardless of where you plan to use Austratus, we highly recommend Western Red Cedar as a timber choice because of the following benefits it possesses.

Key Benefits of Western Red Cedar:

Austratus - Benefits of Western Red Cedar Infographic

1. Fire Protection

Western Red Cedar timber is an ideal choice for any project because of its limited flame spread and other fire-hazard prevention properties. This makes it highly suitable for commercial interiors, as the timber meets Building Code Level 3 and far exceeds minimum fire safety requirements. Externally, Western Red can also reach the second lowest Bushfire Attack Level of 12.5, depending on approval from local authorities and any other precautions taken (e.g. the timber is kept off ground level).

2. Sustainability

When it comes to environmental performance, studies have proven natural wood to be superior to synthetic products in virtually every way. It is unsurprising then that Western Red Cedar is a highly sustainable wood type, capable of removing greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere and being both renewable and biodegradable. Western Red is also most commonly sourced from the best sustainably managed forests worldwide. Making it the optimal timber choice for sustainability.

3. Durable and Resistant

Offering unrivalled dimensional stability, Western Red Cedar holds an Australian Durability Rating of 2 and is resistant to cupping, warping, and shrinking. Even without the use of coating, this wood species maintains exceptional durability, with naturally-occurring preservatives in the timber acting as a built-in resistance to termites, moisture, and decay.

4. Acoustic Properties

With the right engineering, Western Red Cedar timber can meet various acoustic ratings when used in internal architectural designs. The open cellular structure of Western Red helps to absorb and dissipate sound, making it effective at confining noise. Alternatively, for external applications the timber’s sound deflection properties can be improved with additional planning (e.g. the use of thicker cladding) making it a perfect choice for music rooms and auditoriums.

5. Aesthetic

A designer’s dream come true, the natural colouring of Western Red Cedar is highly aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Rich with crisp colours and tonal properties, the timber can transform outdoor spaces, liven up traditional home décor, and inspire innovative architectural designs. With all its practical benefits, this final aesthetic advantage has served to put Western Red Cedar at the forefront of modern design. See some of the projects we’ve worked on and the gorgeous results we have produced with our Austratus system.

Our Recommendation

The benefits outlined here give an idea of why and how Western Red Cedar is an optimal choice for your Austratus design. While we highly recommend using this form of timber externally, it also makes an excellent feature for some internal designs. For further professional advice on choosing the right wood for your timber wall or suspended ceiling, contact Austratus today.