Need some more information before you make your next purchase of hardwood lumber in Houston? The staff at any lumber yard will be prepared to answer any questions you have for them. Here are a few questions you should consider asking to give you more information about the wood you’re looking at.
How is the lumber tallied?
Hardwood lumber invoices are produced primarily based on the footage of the board. This means it’s important for you to know if the price you’ve been given is based on a gross or net. Gross is green lumber that has not been kiln dried, and net is lumber that has been kiln dried. Keep in mind that the lumber will shrink during the kiln drying process, so you need to know exactly which measurements your price is based on to ensure you’re getting a reasonable deal.
Where is the lumber from?
Your lumber yard representative should be able to tell you which region the lumber comes from. Hardwood is common all across the continent, and most of those hardwood forests are in the eastern part of the United States. There are three primary growing regions for hardwood lumber—the Northern, Appalachian and Southern regions.
The lumber from one region is not necessarily any better than the lumber from one of the others. However, depending on which region the tree was grown in, there could be some different characteristics that you may or may not want in your wood. Therefore, it’s important to have an understanding of these characteristics and how they vary across regions.
Has the lumber been sorted in any particular way?
Most of the time, you’ll find hardwood lumber gets packed in bundles of random widths and lengths, but those bundles will usually be 48 inches wide by 48 inches tall. Suppliers will often sort lumber into special products for their customers, meaning you can find lumber sorted by special widths, lengths, colors and characters (heartwood, wormy, rustic, etc.). You can ask your hardwood supplier about this sorting ahead of time so it’s easier for you to get exactly what you need when you arrive at the lumber yard.
Do you offer any types of special services?
Hardwood suppliers often provide different types of services when preparing lumber loads. For example, you can have them surface the lumber to a desired thickness, have it straight line ripped on one edge, have it ripped to an exact width for your needs or cut down to a specific length. These services will usually come at a cost, but they can also make things much more convenient for you, so it’s important to balance that cost versus convenience when deciding whether or not it’s worth paying for those extra types of services.
These are just a few example of questions you should be prepared to ask any lumber supplier. For more information about how to choose your wood at a lumber yard, we encourage you to contact Houston Hardwoods Inc. about our lumber in Houston.