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Green lumber, also known as wet lumber, is a timber that still contains a higher level of moisture than its environment when it is used for construction.

Why is it used? Green lumber is used as a building material because it is a cheaper option compared to dry lumber. Using green lumber reduces the drying time of the timber, which means that it can be used more quickly after being cut down.

The effects of using green lumber on a home:

Shrinkage and gaps. Green lumber will continue its moisture-evaporating process even after it has been used in construction. As the wood dries out, it will shrink and form gaps. This can cause issues with structural stability and can also make the home look unattractive. For example, drywall nails may form gaps that can push a nail through the drywall.

Staining and bubbling of paint. As water evaporates from the lumber, so do other fluids like sap. If the timber is painted before the drying-out process has been completed, these other fluids could cause staining in the paint or even make it bubble up and look unsightly.

Mold. Mold can develop on green lumber before it has even been used in construction. This means that a newly built home may have had a mold problem before it was even finished.

To mitigate the risks of using green lumber it is important to involve your home inspector throughout the building process. Additionally, it is recommended to allow the lumber to dry out completely before using it in construction. You should also ensure that the lumber is properly sealed or painted to prevent moisture from being absorbed.

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