Best place to store lumber?

Article - September 26, 2007

This week’s question comes from Stu. He writes:

Alright, I have another question: I live in South texas and well.. its humid. I hear a lot of people talking about how you should bring lumber into your shop to let it dry and acclimate, but what if you work from your garage and its probably more humid there than anywhere else? Are there any storage options short of keeping it in the house?

And here was my reply:
“Hey Stu. The bottom line with wood storage is that you should store it in conditions that closely match the final destination whenever possible. So if your shop is more humid than outside, you are probably better off storing them outside. Incidentally, why is your shop more humid than outside? You may want to pick up a cheap humidity gauge to confirm this.”

“For that reason, some people do store project wood inside their house for a few weeks just to make sure the moisture content is right where it needs to be. Obviously that doesn’t work for everyone. So the real question becomes, what are your options for storage? Most people have no choice but to store them in the shop. Just plan for shrinkage (or expansion) when you build your pieces. And if you have some space in the house, dont be afraid to take all the wood for a project and store it under the couch for about a month before you start the project. Good luck.”

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