How To Tell If Wood Is Seasoned 1

How To Tell If Wood Is Seasoned


A well-seasoned wood is lovely, and you can build many versatile wood projects without worrying about moisture or constraints. Before you work on any wood piece, it is important to ensure it is well-seasoned to prevent any problems in the future. Every woodworker ensures that he used a completely dried wood inside out. However, how to tell if a wood is seasoned?

What You’ll Need to Follow This Tutorial

Apart from your senses, a moisture meter is an electronic device that comes with a probe is needed for a more accurate testing if a wood is seasoned or not.

Simple Inspection to Check If Wood is Seasoned


A seasoned wood is lighter as compared to green wood.

Loose Bark

When a wood dries, its bark falls off more easily. However, it does not mean that any wood with bark firmly in place is necessarily green.

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A fresh and green wood has a pleasant smell. It has a sap-tinted aroma. A seasoned wood smells like wood, however, the scent is not that strong.

A Seasoned Wood Smells Like Wood 1

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As wood seasons, the sapwood’s color on the ends and the split sides fade. On the other hand, a cord of seasoned wood looks dull and subdued, not bright, with splits or cracks visible on the ends.

The Sapwoods Color On The Ends And The Split Sides Fade 1

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This is a very thin layer between the sapwood and the bark. If ever you suspect a wood is green, peel the back section of its bark and check the greenness. If this layer is green, then the wood is green.

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A seasoned wood makes a clear and higher pitched “clink” whenever you beat two pieces together. A green wood makes a dull “thud” when it is struck.

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Other Ways to Check if Wood is Seasoned

Using a Moisture Meter

A moisture meter is an electronic device that comes with a probe. It provides a rough estimate of the wood’s moisture content. A seasoned wood has a 20% or less moisture content. However, this device can be unreliable. A problem arises when the user take samples from a dried spot even though the other parts are not dry. You need to split or cut the wood being tested for best results, then measure the moisture content of the newly exposed surface. By doing so, you’re testing the wood’s internal moisture content.

Using A Moisture Meter 1

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Search for “Checks”

Wood shrinks as it seasons because it loses water, causing small cracks to form. These are visible in the end grain.

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Feel the Wood

Seasoned wood loses abound half of its weight. When you’re familiar with the species of wood you have you will know when it feels ready. Various tree species have varying densities. Experience can help, but the weight won’t be sufficient.

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Knowing how to tell if a wood is seasoned is very important, so you can choose the best wood pieces with the right condition to ensure a successful woodwork project. This is very important before staining, painting, or finishing wood. If you find this article helpful, you can share it and leave a comment below.