Western Red Cedar


With many home owners now looking to make greener living choices, architects, specifies and engineers are increasingly choosing Western Red Cedar as a sustainable building material.

Western Red Cedar heartwood is renowned for its good insulation properties, far superior to brick, concrete and steel. Structures built from Western Red Cedar will be cooler in summer and warmer in winter. It has very good weathering characteristics which makes it popular for exterior applications.

Aside from its relatively knot-free, ‘clean’ appearance, it has a natural resistance to decay and moisture absorption, meaning it can typically be installed without treatment.

Weathered Appearance

When freshly machined Clear Western Red Cedar seems to vary from a light straw colour to a dark red/brown, but the colour becomes more uniform in natural light. It is much sought after for its “weathered” appearance.

Flame Spreading Rate

Western Red Cedar’s flame spreading rate and smoke developed classification is considerably below the maximum limits set by most building codes. (Class II)

Great Finishing Properties

The low resin content means it has good finishing properties enabling it to take a variety of coatings including paints and stains exceptionally well, provided it is dried and properly primed. This can be undertaken by Illingworth Ingham (M/CR) Ltd.

Unlikely to Warp Or Twist

Western Red Cedar has a low wood density and low shrinkage factor which means it is unlikely to warp or twist. It’s also the most stable of the softwoods and is subject to little movement once installed.

High Natural Resistance To Decay

Western Red Cedar is reported to have a very high natural decay-resistance.

In terms of durability it is long lasting when properly treated. 

Technical Information


North America & Canada


Average 370 kg/m³


Durable – class 2 – long lasting when properly treated.


Low shrinkage factor, resistant to warping, twisting & checking.

Working Properties

Planes and sands clearly. Machines well. Small cutting resistance, but can fray during cross cutting. Easy to nail with stainless or galvanised nails, glues well.

Finishing Properties

Good finishing properties due to its lack of pitch and resin extractions. This enables it to take a variety of coatings including paints and stains exceptionally well, provided it is primed. It also polishes well.


Illingworth Ingham (M/cr) Ltd offer a wide variety of timber cladding patterns for panelling and moulding or we can custom produce to your requirements.


PEFC available on request