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The 5 Best Uses for Nordic White Wood

Nordic white wood (a.k.a. spruce [Picea abies]) is one of the most versatile materials known to man and civilizations have made use of its durability for millennia – whether it be for building homes, boats or consuming its needles for medicinal use. Found in northern temperate and taiga regions, white wood is some of the oldest vegetation on earth, exemplified by Old Tjikko, a 9,500-year-old spruce located on Fulufjället Mountain in Sweden. The people of Scandinavia hold white wood in high regard. To celebrate the wonders of spruce, Siparila Oy brings you the 5 best uses for Nordic white wood.

tight and dense nordic white woodInstruments

Nordic white wood is an excellent material for building the soundboard for musical instruments. Guitars, violins, cellos as well as traditional Finnish instruments like the kantele, all benefit from the unique quality of the wood from our part of the world.

Medicine

The shoots of Nordic white wood are a rich source of vitamin C. Pirates in the 17th and 18th century would make an alcoholic sugar-based beer from the tree to be consumed on long sea voyages to ward off scurvy, since meals generally consisted of dried meat. Also, in survival situations, the needles from Nordic white wood can be consumed directly or boiled into a tea to replace stores of vitamin C in the body.

planed wood

Decoration

Nordic white wood actually makes for a great Christmas tree! In fact, many of us believe Santa Claus is a fellow Finn hailing from our country’s northern region of Lapland, just north of the Arctic Circle.

Paper

White wood (spruce) is one of the most popular woods used to make paper, thanks to its long fibres which bind together to make an incredibly durable material. Finland is one the world’s largest paper manufacturers, having produced 11,329 tons in 2011 alone. However, the cutting down of Nordic white wood is held to a high ethical and environmental standard, the same that we at Siparila hold in cultivating timber for our wood siding.

Siparila is Scandinavian wood supplier

Timber

Nordic white wood is an exceptional building material. In fact, early planes, including the one used by the Wright Brothers to make the first flight, were built out of spruce. Siparila wood siding uses only the finest spruce – Nordic white wood. Its superiority lies in the geography of where it’s grown, just below the Arctic Circle. This is because the short growing season and long winters causes short growth rings to form, which makes it incredibly durable. Spruce has been used in building for centuries. In Scandinavia you can still find wooden buildings that have stayed together for decades without any surface treatment. To prevent cracking and discoloration Siparila surfaces our wood with the newest wood working technology. Siparila wood siding can withstand the harshest of elements thanks to our patented Topcoat which ensures the long-term durability of our product on the exterior of your home. Not only will Siparila wood siding stand the test of time, but also looks amazing on any home by adding a classic rustic look and comes in a variety of colors.

5 Tips for making your wood siding last

If you’re installing wood siding on the exterior of your home, it needs to stand up well to the elements. Your exterior siding is going to be exposed to the weather day in and day out, so it must be properly taken care of to ensure it does not rot shortly after installation. Siparila Topcoat® wood siding lasts for decades with proper maintenance. So to get the most out of your renovation, use these 5 tips to make your wood siding last.

1. Choose the Right Type of Wood

Rot is the most common problem for wood siding, with pine having especially low resistance to decay. When moisture rises above 20 per cent, fungi will form and eat away at the wood. No wood is entirely immune to rot, however Nordic whitewood, redwood, western cedar, and cypress are all naturally resistant to it.

white wood siding

2. Waterproof your Wood Siding

Dry wood doesn’t rot, so it’s important to have your siding is properly waterproofed. Our Siparila Topcoat paint protects the siding against moisture and fungi. Two layers of Topcoat paint on all four sides ensures the siding doesn’t require painting for 15 years.

mansion made with wood siding

3. Prevent Damage from the Sun

Wood siding is extremely vulnerable to damage by the sun. By using the Siparila Topcoat paint, the siding retains its durability for decades because the paint reflects the sun’s harmful UV rays.

horizontal wood siding

4. Avoid Water Traps

If siding installation is not done properly, it can result in non-slanted or improperly sealed surfaces that can hold small deposits of water after rainfall. These are called water traps and are often how rot starts. Avoid water traps by choosing siding that has a smooth profile. Tongue and groove paneling is the ideal choice because it allows each siding plank to be easily attached to the one above it, creating a surface that forces water downward with minimal risk of water traps forming.

siparila siding

5. Keep Siding Away From the Ground

If possible, avoid installing your wood siding all the way to the ground. Siding that touches soil is prone to damage, so keep your panels at least 8 inches above the ground. You should also remove any vegetation that is touching the wall because its moisture can damage the wood.

 

Vinyl Siding vs. Wood Siding

vinyl siding facadeThe siding you install on the exterior of your home serves a higher purpose than simply improving its appearance. Siding is your home’s first line of defense against the elements and where you live will determine how much of a beating it takes over the course of the year. So when you’re purchasing siding, make an informed decision based on cost, durability and appearance. For example, vinyl is a popular siding because it’s affordable and looks similar to wood, however it cracks when exposed to prolonged cold weather; while wood siding is extremely durable, it tends to be more expensive. To help you make the best decision for your next exterior home renovation, here’s some pros and cons of vinyl siding and wood siding.

Vinyl siding is the most popular siding material in North America with 33 per cent of all homes built in 2012 using this versatile material, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. This is because the greatest benefit of vinyl siding is that it can be installed quickly and inexpensively – making it a contractor’s dream. Wood on the other hand is a bit more expensive. Vinyl siding doesn’t require painting on-site, which means fewer delays in installation due to weather.

wood sidingNowadays installation of wood siding is also fast and easy. Siparila Topcoat wood siding comes ready-painted and doesn’t need any maintenance for the next 15 years. Also wood siding comes in a variety of colors and styles, which can be installed both diagonally and horizontally. Siparila Topcoat also has the added benefit of coming in one long length. This speeds up the installation process and reduces waste.

Despite vinyl siding being available in a wide range of colors, it’s prone to fading. It’s also not watertight, which can cause your home to suffer water damage after a heavy rainstorm. This is especially troublesome for those installing vinyl siding in Canada, where storms in the spring and summertime can roll in suddenly. These rainstorms are only made worse by the inconvenient truth that vinyl siding is extremely prone to cracking in hot-cold temperature fluctuations over the course of the year. That’s why vinyl siding is often spun as a “supplemental rain screen” and that the underlying weather-resistant barriers are what truly protects your home. However, the screen is also not watertight because it needs to breathe – therefore, it can lead to a leak in your home.

Wood siding is extremely durable thanks to our groove and tongue fasteners, which allows you to simply lay one panel over another from top to bottom. This prevents the water to get through the siding. Siparila Topcoat also has hidden fastening which protects the wood from the water that may be damaged by leaking through the gap around nail heads. The wood itself is prone to decay, warping and damage from insects like termites. Siparila products are protected against this by painting all four sides in a climate controlled factory.

Brick Siding vs. Wood Siding

Home is your sanctuary. You are a reflection in the way its designed whether it be purple plush sofa pillows or antique armoires. While considerable attention is spent on the inside, why should the exterior be an afterthought?

Your home’s siding serves a purpose beyond its appearance; siding is your home’s first line of defence against the elements, whether it be weather or bugs. Many believe brick siding is the safest bet because of its likely uniform with most homes on your street. However, there are a few downsides to using brick siding in comparison to opting for the wood alternative. Siparila Topcoat wood siding is tremendously durable when standing up to harsh weather and comes in a variety of styles so you are free to express yourself on the outside of your home too. To provide a better perspective, here’s a comparison of brick siding vs wood siding so you can make an informed decision.

Brick Siding

Pros: The benefits of brick siding lie in its weather-resistance, low maintenance and being an eco-friendly building material. Brick, made from a mixture of clay and shale (some of the most abundant material on earth), is extremely durable in all seasons and is actually fire-resistant. The durability is of brick veneer siding means it retains its colour and will never rot, while also never requiring a paint job.

Cons: There is one big downside – cost. Brick is more expensive than other sidings with a 2,500-square-foot costing around six to seven percent more than vinyl siding. Plus, there’s a limited variety of colours and styles. The grout of the brick siding will also require periodic maintenance. There is also the risk that the brick siding is not built properly, which can lead to water damage.

Wood Siding

Pros: Wood is the most environmentally friendly siding you can install. Not only is Siparila Topcoat wood siding sustainably sourced, but is also an excellent insulator which lowers your energy costs. In fact, wood actually produces more energy than it consumes: brick produces nearly 100 kg/m² of CO² during the manufacturing process, while would binds to CO² and is only released when it’s burned. Wood siding is also easy to install using tongue and grooves which slide into place to form a smooth, water-resistant finish. Siparila Topcoat is also primed on all four sides so the panels are protected against rot and mold, even on the backside of the panel. Siparila Topcoat Siding has also thick layer of paint which protects the wood against UV-rays and impurities in the air and water. Not only the paint but also the profile of the panels protects the wood. Siparila Siding has secret fastening. This means that there are no nail heads on top of the siding which makes the siding more durable and aesthetic.  Wood siding also comes in a variety of colours so you’re sure to find the style you’re looking for.

wood siding house

Cons: Wood, like any organic material, is prone to rot if it doesn’t have a topcoat. It’s also prone to damage from termites and other insects if the wood is not properly treated. That’s why your wood siding should never touch the soil and ensure the topcoat is of the highest quality as well as the material. Also, make sure that all the tongue and groove panels are tightly installed.

Wooden surfaces reduce stress levels

Humans are spending far too much time indoors. This is having an adverse effect on our health, particular in terms of our stress levels. According to studies conducted in Canada, Austria, Japan and Norway, wood improves our emotional state when indoors for long periods of time.

Marjut Wallenius, a professor of psychology at the University of Tampere in Finland, says developers should try to incorporate wood as a building material whenever possible to offset the negative effects of little exposure to the natural world. “Wooden surfaces make a room feel warmer and cozier and they also have a calming effect. In these properties, wood beats all other normal surface materials,” Wallenius said.

She points to research that shows touching a wooden surfaces gives people a sense of safety and closeness to nature. This is in comparison to touching metal surfaces like aluminum or stainless steel and even plastic – all cause your blood pressure to raise. This is due to conductivity. Wood has low conductivity compared to metals which have high conductivity – this effects our nervous system and increases our stress levels. Not even plants have the same positive results as wood.

“Continuing this research is also important because questions regarding indoor air are becoming increasingly important social issues in public facilities and housing. The use of wood may affect not only air quality and acoustics but also the atmosphere of a room and the mood and physiological stress level of those present,” Wallenius said.

Wood’s Positive Effect in Healthcare Environments

According to a 2015 FPInnovations study, we are healthier, happier and more productive when connected to nature. Unfortunately, we live and work in built environments with Canadians spending 88% of their lives indoors.

aito interior panelSo really all organic material lifts our mood to a degree, in terms of plants, wood, and views of nature. It leads to “lower sympathetic activation and higher parasympathetic activation result” leading to lower blood pressure, lower heart rate, higher heart rate variability and lower skin conductivity.

Views of nature as well as exposure to wood and plants also leads to lower pain perception, speed up recovery times and increases our ability to concentrate – all of which would be of tremendous benefit to healthcare facilities.

Using natural materials in hospitals and long-term care facilities is shown to significantly improve patient outcomes in terms of the time it takes to recover, pain perception and fostering an overall positive disposition. Natural material is also of benefit to medical practitioners and visiting loved ones because it lowers their stress levels, which in turn, positively effects the patients. Lastly, the study found wood is a great substitute for natural sunlight, and its effects are still beneficiary when used in furniture.

Many hospitals in Canada and around the world have already taken steps to include wood in construction and renovations which has garnered critical acclaim and high satisfaction in patients.

Why choose Siparila Topcoat® Wood Siding?

Installing the right siding is an important decision for any homeowner. The material you choose defines the look of your home and also work towards protecting your home all year round. Wood is a durable and sustainable choice for siding material. Trees grow slowly in the Scandinavian soil due to the cold climate, which produces solid trees with tight growth rings and a straight grain. This makes the wood stronger, lighter and more durable than others. Siparila Topcoat siding is made from the top of the tree where the quality of lumber is premium.

wood siding has many architectural benefits

Protection against water damage

Siparila Topcoat painting system reinforces the wood’s strength and resilience. This process involves treating the fresh wood in a moisture, air, temperature-controlled facility. The wood siding is then primed after it is milled. This allows the coating to seep deep into the pores of the wood for better protection. Lastly, the wood is treated in our facility with a proprietary paint application that gives it a sleek finish. Siparila wood siding has also invisible fastenings which increases the durability of the siding. The siding has a concealed mounting system. There is no visible nail heads on the façade, no touching-up the nail holes, no nails popping out over time or decay around the nail because of the water penetration.

siparila siding is produced in Finland

A Cleaner Look with Less Material Waste

Every Siparila Topcoat® siding piece is end-matched to allow for flexible joint placement; not being bound to stud placement during installation ultimately decreases material loss 5-10%. End-matched profiles also increase the siding’s durability as each piece is painted on all sides which, when tightly fastened to another, creates an invisible seam that will not interrupt the desired pattern of your design. As a result, fixed lengths and end-matching provide a beautiful and durable wooden façade.

High Quality Surface Treatment with 15 Year Warranty

Siparila Topcoat® wood siding does not require further treatment once on the work site. This saves painting cost and speeds up the building process. Because of the quality of our wood fibre and paint, there is no need to repaint for the duration of the 15 year warranty.

siparila extra thick siding

More Stable Structures

End-matched siding with tongue and groove technology creates more stable structures by reinforcing walls and providing extra wind and storm resilience. Additionally, Siparila Oy’s extra-thick profiles offer a heavier nailing strip which provides increased durability during installation and for decades to come. This is complimented by the naturally tough, dense, and straight-grained qualities of the Scandinavian wood it is made from.

end-matched siding

Faster Installation

Because Siparila Topcoat® siding ships in fixed lengths, installers do not have to contend with random or short length pieces. This makes installation easier and faster while mitigating waste and damage by eliminating the need to sort the siding on site. Longer fixed lengths also help to plan the place of the joints beforehand.

Siparila topcoat siding is packed in bundles

Easier Material Calculations

Siparila Topcoat® fixed length wood siding helps installers calculate the amount of the siding required for a project more precisely. There is no need to estimate yield from random lengths. The siding arrives packed in bundles containing the exact number of pieces and lengths, ensuring accuracy of material on hand. This new packing method also reduces material loss resulting in a competitive advantage for the installer.

Various Profiles and Styles

The tongue and groove system allows for complete control and flexibility in the pattern and design of your building’s wooden façade. Installers can be innovative with this versatile material to create designs like herringbone. We give you the power to be creative.

siparila siding has various styles

Invisible Fastening

The Siparila Topcoat®  wood siding tongue and groove design has been developed to enable invisible fastenings. The tongue and groove fastening side of each panel is hidden underneath the next panel which not only creates a smooth façade but also increases the siding’s durability as water cannot seep through nail heads and damage the wood.

Siparila has fixed lenght siding

Safe and Easy Transportation

Fixed lengths are easy to load and transport. Each bundle is tightly packaged, making them easy to manage and move within a construction site. This is especially useful for large building projects that require multiple bundles and materials to be stored at various points on the site.

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