Tips for Re-finishing Your Western Red Cedar

For the best results, thoroughly inspect your Western Red Cedar siding, trim and/or decking first for any damage, mildew and dirt.  Make any necessary repairs, then clean the Cedar with warm water and phosphate free soap.  If necessary, a stiff bristle (non-metallic) brush can be used.  If there is mold or mildew (brown or black spots) it needs to be killed with a commercially available mildew killer/cleaner or warm water and oxygen bleach.  Should water staining be evident, scrubbing the wood with an oxalic acid solution can be effective for removal.

Western Red Cedar Siding Cleaning Tips

If there is old paint or solid color stain that is peeling and cracking, you will likely need to remove the old finish prior to removing any mold or mildew.  First, scrape away all loose, cracked or peeling finish.  In severe cases, all the of the old product must be removed and must be done so with extreme care as to not damage the wood underneath.  Should old paint or solid color stains not require full removal, you can feather the edges of the product to the bare wood by careful sanding.   The removal of any mold or mildew can then be done.  Thoroughly rinse with clean water and allow to dry completely.

The use of a pressure washer is not recommended for cleaning Western Red Cedar or to remove old finish, as it may raise the grain and/or damage the Cedar which will make re-staining or re-painting difficult.

If the Cedar has greyed and you would like to restore it back to its original color, that can be done fairly easily using commercially available wood brighteners after you have sanded the exposed surface of the Cedar.  Next, treat any mold or mildew and/or water staining.

After you are certain your Cedar is completely dry after it is cleaned, it is time to refinish.  When choosing a product for refinishing, it should be the same type as the original finish.  Old latex should be replaced with latex, and old oil based finishes should be replaced with new oil based finishes, with the exception of latex being able to be put on top of old oil based finishes.  Always follow the manufacturer’s directions no matter which product you choose and make sure that it is specifically formulated to help control extractive bleeding and is approved for use on Western Red Cedar.

how to prep to stain western red cedar

Caution:  Film forming finishes such as lacquer, shellac, urethane and varnish are NOT recommended for use on Western Red Cedar in exterior applications and should be removed with great care.

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!

We ship nationwide!

(360) 757.6343

WindsorONE Trim Boards, Specialty Boards and Moldings

Manufactured in the USA and distributed by Cedar Country Lumber, WindsorONE trim boards, specialty boards and moldings are durable enough for outdoor use, as well as safe for interior use.

WindsorONE boards are made of real wood, finger jointed and coated with three coats of acrylic latex primer. With sharp crisp edges on all profiles; WindsorONE provides clean strong lines that make your projects stand out.  Builders use WindsorONE because every stick of WindsorONE is smooth, straight and comes primed and ready to install.

WindsorOne Specialty Boards

Focusing on detail and craftsmanship is what has made WindsorONE a leader in the interior/exterior trim market since 1972. All products are made from wood that has been sustainably harvested with no added formaldehyde, which means no harmful odors.

WindsorOne Historical Moldings

There are a wide range of WindsorONE products available including S1S2E and S4S Trim Boards, Tongue and Groove boards, Beaded Ceiling Boards, Beaded Casing & Shiplap, as well as a wide variety of Classic Colonial, Greek Revival, Craftsman and Colonial Revival historically accurate moldings, wainscot caps and panel molding.

For a complete brochure, please click HERE

WindsorOne Products

Before Your Next Project, Be Sure to Visit Us! We Ship Nationwide!

ph 360.757.6343

950 B Fountain Street ~ Burlington, WA

WindsorOne Exterior Trim

Pre-Stained and Pre-Primed Western Red Cedar Shingles

Made from high-quality Western Red Cedar, renowned for even grain, weather resistance, thermal insulation and longevity, our pre-stained or pre-primed shingles are available in natural, sanded and grooved finishes, as well as fancy cuts.

Readily available “off the shelf” (as a special order) in 6 beautiful colors, as well as a transparent Cedar Tone, or in any custom color desired, including treatment with bleaching oil, our pre-stained Western Red Cedar Shingles can add a stunning signature look to any building, combined with lasting durability.

“Off The Shelf” Semi-Solid Oil Stain Colors

Water Lily

Coastal Mist

Iron Stone

 Traditional Brick

Beach Pebble

Thisis Brown

Teal Cedar Pre-stained shingle colors

  • Red Cedar Transparent Stain available with a 5 year warranty
  • Bleached Shingles are a mix of 50/50 Bleaching Oil and Cabot Driftwood Grey Stain
  • Custom pre-stained shingles are available using a quality brand of oil-based semitransparent, semi-solid or solid one coat finishes, including General Paint Products. Custom colors available.
  • Pre-stain and pre-prime (in grey or white) is available for natural, grooved, sanded and fancy cut shingles
  • #1-16”, 18” & 24” Rebutted & Rejointed (R&R) Shingles, 100% vertical grain, 100%
  • #2-16”, 18” & 24” Rebutted & Rejointed Shingles
  • For more information on the grades, sizes and definition of Western Red Cedar shingles, please check out our previous blog post by clicking HERE

prestained western red cedar shingles

Installation and Care of Western Red Cedar Shingles

Western Red Cedar Shingles owe their beauty, color, durability and resistance to decay and insects to the presence of natural tannins produced during normal growth. These natural extractives in Western Red Cedar are water-soluble and may lead to discoloration of finishes on the exposed surface of the shingle. Discoloration from extractives usually appears when moisture from inside the home travels through the shingle to the exposed surface. As the moisture evaporates it may leave reddish-brown vertical streaks. This discoloration is not caused by the stain, the paint or any manufacturing process.

Cedar Shingles should always be stored in a dry, well-ventilated location. You must keep
the product dry throughout the application process. You also must take steps to minimize or eliminate interior sources of moisture before and after sidewall shingle application including, but not limited to the following:

  • Maintain low interior humidity levels (this is the most common source of extractive
  • Ensure proper ventilation during drywall installation, texture spraying, painting or any other process which increases humidity inside the building. It is more likely that
    extractive bleeding will occur if these processes are not completed prior to application of the sidewall shingles
  • Apply over dry panels (OSB or plywood)
  • Use kiln dried studs

To minimize the potential for extractive discoloration, our supplier ensures that the shingles are dried to a moisture content that is less than 15%. They also coat the entire shingle with a primer, paint or stain. Shingles coated with an oil based solid primer that have a finished coat applied over the primer are less likely to experience extractive discoloration. Semi-solid, semi-transparent, and clear stains offer less protection.

Extractive discoloration may also be caused by external sources such as rain, dew and/or water from a faulty roof and gutter drainage. These  water sources combined with dust and other matter may cause stains on the exposed area of the shingle, which is not the failure of the shingle, paint or stain.

Stain absorption may vary due to the density and/or porosity of old growth Western Red Cedar fiber, as well as color variations in the actual shingles. The final color of stain and how it adheres/absorbs into the material will vary. Due to this, color matches are not guaranteed to exactly match any previous sample or order.

In some cases, certain coatings are “1 coat only” applications. However, a second field coating is recommended after the stain has cured for best stain performance. Prior to any field coating, test a small inconspicuous area for proper absorption. Back brushing is recommended.  Be sure to not over apply the stain or paint.

Western Red Cedar Stained Shingles

Limited warranties on coating/finishes are offered through the coating/finish manufacturer.

“Off the Shelf” Colors, as well as Pre-Primed & Pre-Stained Shingles are brought in per-order and do require a small lead time. Sorry, we are unable to accept any returns or exchanges on special order items, such as these.

Because Western Red Cedar and Alaskan Yellow Cedar is only grown in the Pacific Northwest where Cedar Country is located, we are YOUR premium source for Cedar Shingles and Shakes. We ship nationwide from one bundle or carton to full truck loads and extremely competitive pricing ~ even with freight.

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!

950 B Fountain Street, Burlington, WA 98233
Toll Free Phone (866) 757.6343    Fax (360) 757.1050

Renovated Farmhouse in the San Juan Islands

Super excited to receive these photos and message from our long time customer, Craig Youngquist, of Craig Youngquist Construction.   His attention to detail and superior craftsmanship are so evident in every project he takes on.  Please enjoy these photos!

“Hi Tom

Below are some photos of the project that you supplied siding, exterior trim, interior trim and cedar for door replications. Some of the photos are not stellar, but give you an idea of the scope of the job. The wainscot panels were actually recycled from the shiplap sheathing on the interior walls of the original structure. But all the rest of the fir was from you. I ended up buying a moulding machine to replicate the casings and various trim details. We saved a bunch of the original millwork , but didn’t have enough to finish the main floor.

The photo with 2 doors shows the original with the transom above and the replication to the right. The stair skirt, newell, balusters, and railing are the original, but the frame and panel down the stairs and under are newly added. The new roof on the house is slate – which wasn’t original.

I appreciate your generosity and excellent supply sourcing.”

Craig Youngquist


Douglas Fir Wainscoting

This beautifully crafted door is made from Clear, Vertical Grain Douglas Fir we supplied

Beautifully crafted vanity and Doug Fir trim

Clear, Vertical Grain Douglas Fir was used to craft these doors

Stunning farmhouse remodel in the San Juan Islands by Craig Younquist Construction

Farmhouse renovation that we supplied the Clear, Vertical Grain Douglas Fir for

Stunning Farmhouse Remodel by Craig Youngquist Construction we supplied the materials for

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!

We ship nationwide!

950 B Fountain Street ~ Burlington, WA

Toll Free 866.757.6343

Fancy Cut Shingles

As a direct importer for Teal Cedar Shingles, we are pleased to offer  Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Sidewall Shingles made to exacting standards in tribute to old-world charm and craftsmanship.

Western Red Cedar Fancy Cut Shingles

With 10 classic shapes available, these beautiful Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingles will help you add fantastic character and personality to any residential or commercial project.  By incorporating these shingles into your exterior design, you can accent gables, roofs and windows; create eye-catching entryways or fences.   You can weave natural warmth and elegance to your interior design, as well, by using them to accent walls or to highlight your structure’s unique architectural features. Nothing warms an interior quite like real wood.  Because of the natural properties of Western Red Cedar, these shingles work well in high humidity areas including greenhouses, saunas, atriums and pools.

Indoors and out, Fancy Cut Shingles are a timeless favorite of architects, contractors and homeowners around the world, providing warmth and beauty, as well as a wide range of ways to express creativity and make a custom project truly unique.

Western Red Cedar Fancy Cut Shingles


Product Specifications

  • Manufactured from Western Red Cedar Shingles
  • Clear Heartwood, No DefectsPrestained Shingles
  • 10 Patterns to Choose From
  • 3″ & 5″ widths, 18″ & 24″ lengths
  • Code conforming Class “C” and “B” fire rated & CCA Treatments also available
  • Carton Coverage: Sidewall exterior exposure 7 1/2″ max = 25 sq ft
  • Interior sidewall 10″ max = 33 sq ft
  • Available Primed as well as Pre-stained
  • Custom Cuts and finishes to order


Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingle Patterns

 Because of the natural properties of Western Red Cedar, fasteners should be corrosion resistant.  We recommend using stainless steel, aluminum or hot-dipped galvanized fasteners when installing any Western Red Cedar product, including Western Red Cedar Shingles.   1-1/4″ nails are suitable for 16″ or 18″ shingle installation at standard exposures and placed 1″ in from the edge and 1″ – 2″ above the line of the next course of shingles.  These Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingles should be installed about 1/8″ between each other.

Your Fancy Cut Western Red Cedar Shingles may be left unfinished.  Those installed outdoors will weather to an attractive silver grey; indoors they will darken and change based on the amount of direct sunlight they receive.  If you choose to apply a finish to your Fancy Cut Shingles, we recommend doing so before they are installed to ensure even protection on all four sides.  Use a good quality, top grade oil based stain, primer and/or paint.

Before Your Next Project, be sure to visit us!

We Ship Nationwide!

Toll Free 1.866.757.6343

Fire Treating Western Red Cedar and Doug Fir Building Materials

To help with your piece of mind, we are happy to offer custom fire treating to our Western Red Cedar or Douglas Fir products through our partner, CHEMCO. CHEMCO was one of the early pioneers in fire retardant technologies, and became the only producer of fire resistant wood roofing allowed for sale in California. CHEMCO uses Thermex-FR, a safe and environmentally friendly fire treatment formula that renders wood resistant to fire.

Products treated using CHEMCO’s proprietary fire retardant system have passed strict fire and weathering tests and comply with all building codes, however, we recommend checking with your building department to ensure compliance with your local regulations. The effectiveness of this fire retardant is proven by independent laboratory and quality-control testing and verified by real-world stories in which it was subjected to both structural and wild fire scenarios.

The process of fire retarding is done by using a vacuum-pressure impregnation to remove moisture and air from the wood cells and replace it with Thermex-FR. Next, the wood is cured in a kiln to lock the fire retardant into the cells. This process significantly increases fire protection for residential and commercial buildings without sacrificing the natural beauty of the wood.

To sustain fire, you need three main ingredients ~ Fuel, Heat and Oxygen.  THERMEX-FR suppresses all three elements

1) Fuel: An intumescing foam is produced protecting the surface of the wood.

2) Heat: Intumescing foam insulates the wood, absorbing heat endothermically. Surface
temperature drops below what is required for combustion.

3) Oxygen: A non-combustible gas is generated to dilute the amount of oxygen in the air around the flame.

Q: What is the difference between “fire resistant” and “fireproof”?

A: All materials are vulnerable to fire damage, so the term “fireproof” is technically incorrect for any product. Nevertheless, engineers and fire technicians have developed tests to provide a comparison of the fire resistant properties of different materials. Products treated with Thermex-FR have proven themselves consistently on all such tests.

Q: What makes fire resistant wood treatment last?

A: The patented fire resistant formula bonds to the interior structure of the wood during a vacuum-impregnated treatment process. The result is fire protection that lasts for the useful life of the wood product itself.

Q: Are fire resistant products hazardous to the environment?

A: No. Fire treated wood products are composed of all natural elements, and they are not toxic to the environment.

Q: Will my fire retardant treated wood products have to be re-treated?

A: No. Fire retardant products never need to be re-treated. The unique formula that is used during processing at the facility is thermally cured in dry kilns. Upon reaching the right temperature, the treatment is bonded to the wood and thereafter is no longer water soluble.

Q: What are the typical applications for fire retardant treated lumber and plywood products?

A: Lumber and plywood that have been treated with fire retardant are intended for above ground exterior use. These include exterior decks and balconies, stairways, covered walkway, siding, molding and trim, soffits and fascia, open-air roof systems, stables, scaffolding, and construction staging.

Q: What wood species and sizes are available to have fire treated?

A: Douglas Fir, Southern Yellow Pine, and Western Red Cedar. All common sizes and most
construction species of lumber and plywood can be treated by Thermex-FR including Shingles and Shakes, Exterior Siding, Soffit, Fascia, Decking, Timbers and Beams, Trim and Interior Paneling.

Q: Does the fire treatment meet building codes?

A: Yes. These products meet the performance requirements of the local building codes, however, we suggest checking with your local agency to ensure compliance.

Q: Is there any reduction in strength compared to untreated wood?

A: Yes. The treating and drying processes causes a slight reduction in strength that varies according to treatment, wood species, specific properties, and applications.

Q: Can these fire retardant products be used in ground contact?

A: Fire retardant treated Western Red Cedar and/or Douglas Fir is intended for exterior, above ground uses.

Q: Is it okay to cut wood that has been treated with fire retardant?

A: Yes. Cutting lengths, drilling holes, and sanding lightly are all permissible. It is not necessary to field-treat cut ends in order to maintain the flame spread rating.

Q: What types of fasteners should be used with fire treated products?

A: Hot-dipped galvanized or stainless steel hardware is recommended, as the FRX wood treatment could increase the corrosion of bare steel.

Q: Why should I put fire resistant shakes on my roof when I live in a relatively wet

A: No matter where you live, there always exists the danger of an errant firework or a flying ember from the burn pile of a neighboring home. When it comes to protecting your home, there is no such thing as playing too safe.

For a piece of mind, we can provide fire treating services to roofing shakes, as well as other Western Red Cedar and Douglas Fir building materials

Care & Maintenance of Building Materials that have been Fire Treated

Fire-retardant lumber and plywood can be coated with a paint or stain, but caution should be taken in choosing the right manufacturer. Not all products adhere to the unique finish and the flammability of the finish should be considered. Shakes and shingles that have been treated with fire retardants should not have any additional coatings applied.

For warranty and other important information, including MSDS Sheets, please visit the Chemco website by clicking HERE

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!

We Ship Nationwide!

950 B Fountain Street, Burlington, WA

General Guidelines for Installing Western Red Cedar Siding

Like all natural materials, Western Red Cedar responds to the environment; Cedar siding can swell or shrink to reach equilibrium with the moisture content of the surrounding air. By acclimating your Cedar siding prior to installation and by following these basic installation tips, your Western Red Cedar siding will provide many years of service ~ naturally!

Kiln Dried “Clears” have been dried (to approximately 12% moisture content) at the mill and are the most “ready to use” of all Western Red Cedar siding products and may be installed upon arrival, except in very hot and dry environments (allow 3 to 5 days for acclimation) or if it has gotten wet. If the siding has gotten wet, it should be separated and allowed to dry completely before installation.

Dry “Knotty” Sidings should be allowed to acclimate in most environments for 7 to 10 days prior to installation. In damp or high humidity environments, more time may be required for acclimation.

To acclimate your Western Red Cedar (or Alaskan Yellow Cedar) siding, stack pieces individually on evenly spaced vertically aligned “stickers” in a dry storage area, off the ground and under cover. Air should be circulating all around the pieces of Cedar siding.  Unseasoned or “green” Cedar sidings that have not been dried with a moisture content exceeding 12% prior to delivery will require much longer to acclimate to their surrounding environment.

Narrower widths of channel, bevel and board and batten sidings allow for shrinkage when supplied without prior drying. Acclimation of green siding products can take 30 days or longer depending on the environment. Store the stack by separating the pieces with vertically aligned stickers in a well ventilated, dry location off the ground by at least 4”. If it is to be stored over damp ground or new concrete, place a moisture barrier under the siding.

After your Western Red Cedar Siding has acclimated, a coating of primer, stain or oil should be applied to all surfaces, including the ends, is recommended. The type of coating will vary depending on the final finish desired. If a solid color stain or paint will be used, an alkyd oil stain-blocking primer should be used as the first coat, applied on all four sides. Always follow the manufactures’ recommendations to ensure the product you have selected is for use on Western Red (or Alaskan Yellow) Cedar and compatible with the intended finish coat.

To save money and time on the job site, we can arrange to have your Western Red Cedar siding coated with a product of your choice. Your siding will be completely covered all four sides with a flood coat in a temperature controlled environment, free of dust and debris and back brushed to ensure even absorption and coverage. This quality of pre-finish is impossible to duplicate using on-site installation methods. Read more about the process HERE

Custom Milled Western Red Cedar Log Cabin Siding Pre-stained with Penetrating Oil

Stud walls generally require no special preparation when installing horizontal siding. The Cedar siding should be nailed into the studs at a maximum of 24 inch centers when applied over a wood based, solid sheathing.  When installing vertical siding over stud walls, horizontal blockers are needed and should be spaced not exceeding 24 inch on center.

Walls made of masonry will require furring strips that are thick enough for nail penetration of 1-1/4” into sold wood with a ring shank nail.  Using rigid foam sheathing as a nailing base for Western Red Cedar Siding is generally not recommended and should only be done in compliance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.  Proper wall construction includes the use of gas permeable building paper and vapor barriers.  Always check your local code to verify all building requirements.

Stainless steel nails are the best choice for installing Western Red Cedar siding, especially if the siding is to be finished with transparent or semi-transparent stain. No. 304 grade is fine for general siding applications, while No. 316 grade stainless should be used when installing near salt water. Alternatively, hot-dipped galvanized nails that are corrosion resistant can be used.  Other types of fasteners are not recommended.

Prior to installing your Western Red Cedar Siding, make sure that corrosion-resistant flashing is properly installed to prevent moisture from entering wall and roof spaces above doors and windows, at the junctions of dormer walls and roof surfaces, and along the transition of siding materials such as cedar to brick or stucco.

Keep the lowest edge of your Western Red Cedar Siding at least 6” off the ground and treat the end grain of the bottom of vertical siding with a water repellent preservative or primer.  Caulking is to be used where the ends of your siding contact vertical openings or trim. Use only non-hardening caulks such as plyurethane, polysulfide, tepolymer rubber, acrylic or acrylic silicone.  Always follow manufacturer’s recommendations.

For tips on installing specific siding profiles, please visit our friends at the Western Red Cedar Lumber Association by clicking HERE

How to Install Western Red Cedar Siding

Before your next project, be sure to visit us!
We Ship Nationwide!

ph 360.757.6343

950 B Fountain St, Burlington, WA 98233