Seasoned Oak, Green Oak or Air Dried Oak?

One of the most common questions we get asked for construction of an Oak Frame Garage is “What is the difference between Seasoned Oak, Green Oak & Air Dried Oak?”

Green Oak

The term ‘Green’ has nothing to do with the colour of the oak nor does it reflect the colour that the oak will turn eventually. Green Oak refers to unseasoned sawn timber, usually fell within 3-18 months with a moisture content of roughly 30-80%. As a result of the high moisture content, when the oak dries out, it shrinks, moves and splits, making it hard to use anywhere close to glass. But brilliant to use in the construction of an oak frame garage, garden room or gazebo adding real character to the final finish.

Air Dried Oak

Air Dried Oak has been cut to size and left to dry naturally. However, it is common that they do not dry out completely. The benefit of using air dried oak means that during the drying out process, the majority of movement has already taken place and therefore less splitting and movement will occur once installed making this the perfect oak to use in sensitive areas where any movement could be inconvenient.

Seasoned Oak

Seasoned Oak is usually cut into boards, and stacked, separated with small battens allowing the timber to breath over a period of time, the moisture content is to be reduces to roughly 13%, making it much more suitable for window and door frame construction and roof rafters. It takes on average, 1 year per 25mm to season properly. During this slow seasoning process, the oak will stay relatively flat and straight, and protected at all times from rain. Seasoned oak, reduces movement and allows glazing methods such as those used in the construction of Orangeries, porches and Garden Rooms. For more information on which oak is suitable for your project get in touch with one of our friendly team today – Contact Us

Garden Rooms – What Do You Need To Consider?

An Oak Garden Room is an ideal place to escape the hustle and bustle of life indoors, which in the current climate is something we can all relate too. Enjoying your garden from a different perspective can be so relaxing whilst also providing a functional additional space, which you can use all year round.

Each Nationwide Oak project is unique, but there are a number of factors, which are common to all of them.  Here we highlight some of the most important questions from our customers.

Do I need planning permission for a garden room?

Most garden rooms do not require planning permission. However, each property is different and it is necessary if the building covers over half your garden, is not for domestic use or if it is over 3m high with a pent roof (a single sloping surface) or 4m high with an apex roof. Larger garden rooms which are within 2m of any boundary line and over 2.5m high or nearer to a public highway than the original dwelling, also require planning permission. For planning purposes, a public highway would include any road or footpath with a public right of way. If you live in a Conservation Area or in a Listed Building, permission may be needed for any garden room over 10 cubic metres.

Do I need building regulations approval for a garden room?

Approval is required for any garden room with an internal floor area of more than 30m². 

Most garden rooms are smaller than this, but if you are aiming to construct a more substantial building, then it will be needed.  Take a look at our blog for planning for more information or contact your local planning department for further advice. The government’s Planning Portal provides a full list of conditions for outbuildings and structures too.

How do I decide on the design of a summer house?

The only thing you really need to consider with this question is how you plan to use your garden room. Come and speak to our creative team and we can create your perfect, bespoke oak garden room.

From a circular oak gazebo with a cedar shingle roof and open aspect to surrounding views…

To an oak framed entertainment area with pizza oven- perfect for family barbeques and summer parties…

Or this beautiful glazed garden room.

Should I connect the garden room to mains water and electricity?

In previous experience, no customer has ever regretted installing either, but it is worth considering early on as it has a huge impact on the location.

Providing an electricity supply is fairly straightforward, but the work needs to be carried out by an electrician who is approved under the Electrical Competent Person Scheme, plus the work needs to be notified to the local building control department.

Be inspired!

Whatever your preference is, making the decision to construct an oak garden room is one you will never regret. Not only will it enhance your property (adding value too), it is likely to become your favourite space in your home.

At Nationwide Home & Leisure we have experience in building a wide variety of oak garden rooms. 

For more inspiration on creating your dream garden room, take a look at our gallery for inspiration or download our brochures.

What maintenance is required with an oak frame garage?

Oak has always been the choice timber for any wooden structure mainly for its strength and durability evident its character that is left for generations to come.
A common question posed to us is what aftercare and maintenance is required with an oak frame garage so here is our guide to aftercare and maintenance.

What are the black marks on an oak frame and what is the best way to remove them?

Naturally your oak frame may get a little dirty during and after the installation process. Also, due to the moisture content of green oak, you may also notice natural tannins which cause black stains to appear on the oak in certain areas. This is a natural process and the recommend way that these marks are can be removed is with using an oxalic acid solution.

Do you recommend treating my oak frame?

Again a common question but we always say there are no specific requirement for any maintenance of the oak frame itself. The natural sunlight on the frame over time will turn the frame to a silvery grey. Depending on your preference, the original, lighter colour can be retained if the wood is treated or sealed before it is exposed to the elements. One thing to be mindful of is once you start to treat the frame this will require ongoing maintenance yearly.

We would always recommend that you choose a test area first to make sure you are happy with the end result.

Will the oak move over time?

It is vital to remember that oak is an organic material and will settle in its own unique way – as the oak releases its moisture and dries it changes the way it looks and characteristics. The more it dries the lighter and stronger it gets. The way our buildings are designed means that as the timber dries the joints lock together to increase that strength. As the frame settles it will create its own unique splits or shakes which are normal and part of the settling process, more importantly part it really shows off the charm of an organic structure.

Case Study – Two Bay Oak Framed Garage

Our client required a bespoke oak framed garage with tiled roof to suit their planning permission requirements.

Located in the county of Nottinghamshire Nationwide Home & Leisure manufactured and installed this stunning Two Bay Oak Framed Garage.

We were also responsible for all groundwork’s which involved 9 x Pile Drive at 4metres in depth below ground, finished with a grid system and shingles to create the garage flooring. Strict guidelines were also in place to ensure the protection of all tree roots in the given area.

The frame was manufactured and installed following strict planning permission guidelines to also use Marley Red Lincoln Pan Tiles to finish the roof.

This two Bay Oak Frame Garage measures 6000mm x 5500mm with catslide to the spec below.

All support posts, eaves beams, tie beams, sole plates, curved braces and stud work in oak with traditional mortice/tenon joints and 19mm kiln dried solid oak dowels. 

  • Ring beam and all support posts manufactured from 150 x 150mm approx. oak beams 
  • Walls manufactured from 100mm x 75mm Oak Studding to form a hardwood frame and completed with 200mm (180mm cover) LARCH feather edged boarding 
  • Straight Gable roof constructed from stress tested C24 timber complete with Red Lincoln pan tiles to finish

Are you interested in an Oak Frame Garage for your house?

Create a Beautiful Oak Framed Garage To Your Exact Specifications & Allow Nationwide Home & Leisure To Guide You Effortlessly Through The Process.

Get a quote by filling in the form on our contact page and we’ll get back to you with complimentary guidance on your project.

Coronavirus (Covid-19) update

Nationwide Home & Leisure, your safety and the safety of all our customers, colleagues and suppliers is of the utmost importance. We’d like to reassure you we’re following the Government’s guidelines and advice and have put in place measures to ensure we continue operating responsibly.

Our team

Our team of craftsmen are working across our production yard, where over 50% of the area is always open to ensure a constant flow of fresh air, whilst keeping a safe, physical distance. Similarly, our site crews are also paying close attention to the guidelines in place when assembling your frames on site.

Virtual Site visits

To maintain the close relationships we have with all our customers, we’ve recently introduced virtual site visits and meetings via the likes of Zoom, Skype and Facetime. This new way of communicating is enabling our customers to start their bespoke oak journeys from the comfort of their home!

If you’d like to discuss an upcoming project, please call 01384 877747 or email to arrange your one-to-one video appointment

We recognise the situation changes daily, and we’ll continue to evolve, adapt and keep you updated.


Coronavirus Update

In this ever-evolving situation, we wanted to take time to reassure you that our Sales, Technical and Drawing departments are currently working remotely, staying safe but are also still fully operational.

Our phone lines and email service remain open and we are still available to discuss your future bespoke oak frame projects with you.