Bleaching Lumber

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by charles, Jun 12, 2004.

  1. charles

    charles Well-Known Member

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    This has worked for me. Maybe everybody already knows it.

    I felled some large pines and hauled them away to make lumber. All cut at 7/8ths inch thick and up to 16 feet long. Many are 16 inches wide.

    Anyway I got the boards in all wet (green) last summer and stickered them
    up for drying. Winter hit and they did'nt dry for months. Got black mold stain all over their pretty surfaces and down to about one millimeter deep.

    I bought the cheap WalMart large jugs of bleach and sprayed it (straight, no dilution) on to the boards. The mold and spores is of course killed and the stains bleached out well. Its southern yellow pine and the boards themselves are much lighter. Looks good.
     
  2. 2A

    2A Well-Known Member

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    Works great. We bleached our entire log home while we were building it. It simply sat too long and mildewed. Amazing thing was it's a spray and forget procedure.
     

  3. Windy in Kansas

    Windy in Kansas In Remembrance

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    Won't undiluted bleach actually eat into the wood rather than just kill the mildew?

    Seems to me that spills are pretty corrosive on wood. Other opinions????
     
  4. 2A

    2A Well-Known Member

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    Yellow pine in our house. It's been bleached three times now. Twice while under construction and then once over the last month, a bit at a time. I'd stained the logs on the outside but never gotten around to polyurethaning them so over the last year and a half they'd mildewed and sun bleached. The bleach spraying again killed the mildew plus lightened them back from the original staining but I see no damage and even very little grain raising. I suppose if this were a horizontal surface and the bleach sat it might eat things but on vertical surfaces exposed to sun and wind it dries in minutes.
     
  5. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    You can also use TSP [trisodumphosphate] and a ressure washer for gettingthe molds off, and if you are careful you wont ruin the grain of the logs or boards.... a pressure washer also does fine by itself,but does not stop the molds that are deeper in the wood.

    When you sticker lumber make sure the outer most sticker is at the ends of the boards.... to minimize end checking, painting the ends will also help.

    Adding dry sawdust and salt to the surface of the boards will help dry faster, covering with blackplastic and adding a box fan will also get the moisture out of the wood in a hurry [plastic should be lifted off the wood about 12 inches to allow for evaporation to take place more effectively using cattle panels to keep it off is the easiest way of doing this short term.

    William
     
  6. 2A

    2A Well-Known Member

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    That was my main point of bleaching originally, avoiding the pressure washer.