Image by Markus Winkler


is the wood most commonly used for exterior facades in all of Scandinavia. It is low in weight and has medium density. The strength properties are good. Its cellular structure makes it more resistant to moisture compared to pine for instance and it is very durable when painted or stained. It is also readily available making it a cost effective option.
















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is Scandinavian pine wood that is heated in special ovens to 180 - 230°C for several days using only heat and steam - i.e. no toxics whatsoever. The addition of steam prevents cracking and the oxygen content in the air is kept low to prevent the wood from burning up. In the process, the chemical properties of the cell walls of the wood change, giving the wood a greater resistance and durability to both rain, sun and wind. In fact, the facade does not need to be painted for protection as necessary with untreated wood. The process of heating destroys the nutrients in the cells and it thus becomes completely uninteresting for both fungi and insects. Furthermore, thermowood contains and absorbs very little water, which means that the dimensional stability is increased by 50% leading to a more airtight gap and crack free construction. Thermowood also has larger pores than untreated wood which increases the insulation capacity by up to 30%. Finally, thermowood is lighter than for instance the more commonly used untreated spruce, making it an excellent choice for your lightweight tiny house. 

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Image by Jinomono Media

Red Western Cedar 

is easily recognisable by its warm colour, and distinct scent. The latter is caused by the oils and acids produced by the wood,  scientifically known as polyoxyphenols. These water soluble ‘phenols’, in combination with naturally occurring compounds called Thujaplicins are also responsible for Cedar’s natural resistance to moisture, decay and insect infestation. 


Cedar has one of the lowest densities of any commonly used soft wood. The low density of cedar allows it to maintain a constant moisture content and to repel water, keeping it dry - a major factor for the durability of wood. The low density and moisture content allow cedar to maintain its dimensional stability better than many other sorts of wood. This means that swelling and shrinkage are minimized and warping is almost unheard of. Cedar will not split or crack as quickly and fasteners will stay tight longer, making cedar an ideal wood for outdoor construction in any climate. Since cedar is not affected by the elements as easily, it is more durable than most other soft woods.

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Compare all three options


  • Choose spruce if you are looking for locally produced, well performing, cost effective wood used as facade material in all of Scandinavia for many centuries.


  • Choose thermowood if you are looking for locally produced, durable, beautiful wood that has the same outstanding performance as cedar but for a cheaper price. 

  • Choose cedar if you are looking for durable, beautiful wood that comes at a premium price, with naturally occurring properties that guarantee an outstanding performance.

To consider: Cedar is produced in the US and transported here, whereas thermowood and spruce are readily available locally, possibly making the latter two the more environmentally friendly options.