Charred / Burnt Timber Cladding

This is a specialist and bespoke process and QTD are the only UK producers of Charring Thermally Modified Hardwood and Softwood.


For centuries the Japanese perfected the art of charring/burning wood to make the wood resistant to fire, rot, insects and the UV effects from the sun. The process of charring/burning the outer surface brings out the richness of the different wood species grain structure. Therefore, varying the intensity of the burning process produces different finishes.

Since coming across a burnt-out barn while on a family holiday in the West Country in 2012 we liked the charred effect and so we then spent many years of experimenting and testing this process using 15 different species of wood. With this intention, we left them to age and weather over several seasons to see how they would perform in our UK Climate. We subsequently took the lessons we had learnt and introduced into the market our unique Charred ThermoWood Cladding Collection.

This labour intensive and dangerous process takes previously Thermally Modified hardwoods and softwoods produced at our factory and then charring/burning the outer surface in a variety of ways. Therefore, this process makes the boards far more fire resistant than standard charred/burnt timbers such as larch and cedar etc.

What are the benefits of charring Thermally Modified Timber? 

The benefit of Thermally Modified wood (ThermoWood) is that all the resins, sugars and tannin’s that are normally present in timbers like larch and cedar have been removed. With this in mind, by applying the additional process of charring/burning the surface, the result is a much improved charred surface. Overall, eliminating the risks of the timber igniting when exposed to sparks or flames. Only Heavy charring becomes UV resistant to fading. If the surface is chipped or damaged it does not expose the natural parts of the timber that may lead to surface peel or potential decay and minimal on going maintenance is required.
All things considered, these days the primary use is for aesthetics and improved performance in exterior applications.

Please note: that the charring/burning process is not an exact science and therefore there will be slight surface burn variations throughout the board length which adds to the unique charring/burning characteristics of each board and species. In fact, ThermoWood is 30% more fire resistant than regular wood.

What ThermoWood species are avaliable charred? 

Species currently available: ThermoWood Pine Softwood, ThermoWood Ash Hardwood, ThermoWood Tulip Hardwood are available in the charred collection. However, other species will come online soon once fully tested.

ThermoWood is 30% more fire resistant than regular wood.
Combined with the charring/burnt process the boards become highly fire resistant.

'Rustic' ThermoWood Pine Heavy Charred Cladding

'Tiger-Lite' ThermoWood Ash Light Charred Cladding

'Ebony' ThermoWood Ash Medium Charred Cladding

'Snake-Skin' ThermoWood Ash Heavy Charred Cladding

'Brushed' ThermoWood Tulipwood Medium Charred Cladding

30 Year Biological Life

100% Natural

High Quality

What is ThermoWood?

ThermoWood is a thermal modification procedure that preserves wood in its most natural and flawless state for a life-long journey. The “ThermoWood method” involves a carefully computer controlled heat and steam process up to 210 degrees C.

Besides the preservation, the ThermoWood process also causes certain chemical changes in wood. Not only does the color darken but the stability, decay resistance and insulation properties are largely increased after the process is complete.

The ThermoWood method, brand, and logo can only by the used by members of the International ThermoWood Association.

Finishing and fixing

Hidden Fixings:

You have the option of using our hidden cladding clip fixing with the Palma cladding profile. The hidden clip system allows you to display your cladding boards with no visual sight of screws in the boards. The additional advantage is that if you wish to modify the cladding elevation at a latter date you can remove the boards and re-use them.

Finishing Brad nails:

Because the Thermowood Cladding is stable and does not cup or twist you can use Stainless Steel Finishing brad nail/pins and depending on the profile you choose, these can be fixed into the profile at an angle of 45 degrees. If you are unsure of the holding strength of a 50mm pin, a bead of flexible silicone can be applied to the batten prior to fixing each cladding board. This will give you a clean appearance to the surface of your timber cladding as they virtually disappear from view. 

Face Fixings:

Standard practise has always been to screw or nail through the face of the cladding which is unsightly and can split the timber. If you wish to do so simply pre-drill stainless screws through the face of the board into the sub-frame to avoid damaging the boards.

Board Spacing:

This will be created regardless of the profile you choose to go with. Do not ram the boards together tightly when fixing so that you allow for any minor movements that can occur with the changes in UK climate. Allowing approximately 1mm will be sufficient for most circumstances.


Cladding Batten Spacing:

We recommend 400mm centre to centre joist spacing for a standard area, projects may vary.


End Grain Sealer:

When the timber starts to dry out it loses the moisture quicker through the ends of the timber hence the characteristics of grain checking and opening up. Clear wax sealer seals the timber ends and slows down the moisture loss to a more controlled process, thus preventing this cracking. This is especially useful because cutting off the damaged ends not only becomes an expensive waste of timber, but may mean the difference between having the right length of timber for your project or it being several centimetres too short.

We recommend using our Messmers End Grain Wax Sealer to prevent the board ends from checking.


“As an architect I deal with a lot of companies, a lot of products and a lot of different locations. At first I was unsure about Charred cladding because I wasn’t sure how it would keep in the rain and damp environment. After carrying out a couple of experiments with QTD who kindly provided me with large samples and a lot of advice I was very pleased with the result. My client was convinced this is the product he’d like to use and I was more than happy to go ahead. The project had an outstanding finish and the charred cladding looked smart to say the least. I will continue to recommend Charred to all future clients and I was extremely pleased with all the help and advice provided by the QTD Staff.”

Hannah J, Leeds

“With help from the team at QTD and their eye for detail our summer house is flawless, ThermoWood Ash heavy Charred has a gorgeous snake skin effect and it looks incredible in the sun. The team were happy to answer the 200 questions I had and it was their outstanding customer service that made this project stress free. I would like to give a massive thanks to everyone for their support.”

Louise G, Brighton


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Get In Touch!

We’d love to hear from you; whether you have a question, have a query or a project in mind, we’d love to know! Please use our contact form below or if you would like to talk to us,
call on: 0118 373 2212