Eucalyptus wood is a popular choice when it comes to designing projects. It has lots of important hardwood qualities which are useful in construction.
When I was working with Eucalyptus wood, I was curious to know its drawbacks because I was already aware of its benefits.
I did some research and was able to find some key disadvantages of Eucalyptus wood.
Here’s the list of Eucalyptus wood disadvantages,
- Eucalyptus wood cannot handle extremely cold weather
- Eucalyptus wood susceptible to insect and pest attacks
- Prone to crack due to temperature changes
- Less durable than teak wood
- Extensive expansions and contractions damage the wood
- Eucalyptus wood color fades over time
- Less availability
- Moderately expensive wood
- Need regular maintenance
- Eucalyptus wood is allergic to some people
From this article, we’ll deeply explore each of the above Eucalyptus wood disadvantages in detail and give you the simplest method to fix those cons.
Furthermore, I’ll answer some frequently asked questions as well.
First of all, let’s have a brief look at the main advantages of Eucalyptus wood.
Advantages Of Eucalyptus Wood
- Resistant to rot and decay
- Sustainable wood
- Straight and even grain structure
- Attractive dark red over time
- High durability
- Able to use for outdoor projects
- High endurance and strength
As you can see Eucalyptus wood is filled with lots of benefits.
This is why it has become so much popular among woodworkers. It gives exceptional qualities for significantly less price.
“A series of flying saucers levitating over a network of floating platforms made from Eucalyptus wood,” is how designer Ab Rogers explains his Bath House experience at @Wonderfruitfest to @Design_Week.— Hypothesis (@HypothesisXYZ) October 3, 2022
Want to spend a sunny day here? Hypothesis gets you that ☀️ pic.twitter.com/FAPcW8qxMa
So, let’s head into the key topic of Eucalyptus wood disadvantages and discuss how to fix them to get the maximum out of Eucalyptus wood.
Disadvantages Of Eucalyptus Wood
1. Cannot Handle Extreme Cold Weather
Extreme cold weather conditions cause Eucalyptus wood to crack and split since the wood cannot tolerate extreme cold and Eucalyptus wood fibers will lose and break under cold weather conditions.
This happens mostly for the Eucalyptus wood outdoor woodwork and furniture.
Note that, Eucalyptus wood cracks not because of the snow. Wood has good tolerance against snow but cannot tolerate coldness.
Harsh cold can break and crack the wood easily.
Therefore, better to use treated and sealed Eucalyptus wood furniture and woodwork for outside use. When the wood is well sealed and finished, cold weather cannot affect that much towards the wood, and it won’t crack quite easily like unsealed wood.
The wood sealer works as a barrier between the Eucalyptus wood interior environment and cold weather outside.
But we cannot guarantee even after sealing and finishing the wood you can get 100% protection from the extreme cold weather since it can vary on the quality of the wood finisher or sealer.
Therefore, always choose quality wood sealing and wood finishing products.
I highly recommend you cover up or move Eucalyptus wood furniture and woodwork to somewhere safe during the winter months to keep wood from cracking.
Cold weather significantly loses the dimensional stability of the Eucalyptus wood. Especially if it is outdoor furniture.
If your Eucalyptus wood is cracked due to cold weather it can be very hard to repair the wood, but you can apply wood filler or wood putty and apply wood stain on top of that to fix the crack and restore the wood.
Tiki time Eucalyptus wood pic.twitter.com/12fYRJI0tK— Banana Joe (@JoeClemente1) October 6, 2022
2. Susceptible To Insect and Pest Attacks
Even though Eucalyptus wood is a durable and strong hardwood, it attracts insects and pests, and they damage the wood by losing its durability.
Insect and pests’ attacks mostly happen when you left Eucalyptus wood furniture untreated or unsealed.
Here’re some common insects and pests that damage Eucalyptus wood,
- Eucalyptus long-horned borer is a popular pest that damages Eucalyptus wood by laying eggs inside of the wood.
- The larval form of insects damages the Eucalyptus wood by making tunnels inside the wood surface.
- Beetles attack Eucalyptus wood heavily.
- Psyllid insect species damage Eucalyptus wood by releasing sugary, sticky substances that cause fungi and mold to grow.
Eucalyptus wood interior environment is a healthy habitat for insects to lay eggs.
Pests take Eucalyptus wood as a habitat, and they widely spread all over the wood within a couple of weeks by eating the Eucalyptus wood.
new deck shelves for T made from red eucalyptus pic.twitter.com/Hd0SFxFubP— Brian DV (@Hybernaut) April 24, 2016
You can stop insect and pest attacks only by chemically treating the Eucalyptus wood with a quality finisher like lacquer, varnish, wood stain, or finishing oil like Danish oil, teak oil, tung oil, and linseed oil.
Apply wood finisher all over the wood including small cracks and holes in the wood surface by preventing insects from going inside the wood.
Those chemical substances are harmful and able to kill insects, pests, and their eggs.
Insect and pest attacks commonly happen when you use Eucalyptus wood for outdoor woodworking projects like making garden beds and patio furniture since gardens are the kingdoms of insects.
Insects love to eat wood and you need to give proper care and regular maintenance to the Eucalyptus wood by applying a sealant regularly by not letting insects and pests damage the wood.
3. Prone To Crack due to Temperature Changes
Eucalyptus wood is unable to tolerate extreme temperature variations since its wood fibers expand because of the thermal expansions and shrink during cool temperature levels.
This can lead Eucalyptus wood to crack and split over time.
Eucalyptus wood is super sensitive to temperature changes.
We cannot control the wood movements with environmental change, but there is a possibility of preventing the wood from cracking by applying a proper sealer or finisher to the wood.
A quality stain or finisher is able to penetrate inside the wood fibers and make them more flexible to move along with environmental temperature changes without cracking.
Especially wood stain and oil finishes can prevent Eucalyptus wood from cracking because they can soak into the wood and increase the wood flexibility.
If you live in an area that changes temperature drastically better not to use Eucalyptus wood for furniture and woodworks since they will lose stability and get weakened pretty quickly due to the continuous wood movements with temperature.
Repairing is also probably a waste of time and money since it is so hard to change the natural behavior of Eucalyptus wood.
Ikea summer chairs, on a Sunday, why the hell not! A relaxing afternoon with eucalyptus furniture and small screws and wooden pegs. pic.twitter.com/Fvj5drOm7D— Pre-Season – Rob 🇨🇦 🏒 💻 (@RobSwiz) June 14, 2021
4. Less Durable Than Teak Wood
Even though both Eucalyptus wood and teak wood are hardwoods, teak wood is better when it comes to high-end furniture.
This is because teak wood is stronger, harder, denser, and has higher durability than Eucalyptus wood.
Plus, teak wood has luxurious look that adds unique beauty to the furniture and woodwork.
Overall teak wood is so much better wood in every aspect than Eucalyptus wood for any woodworking project.
The only downside of teak wood over Eucalyptus wood is the price. Teak is more expensive than Eucalyptus wood. but when it comes to durability, teak wood furniture can last for so longer than Eucalyptus wood furniture.
Therefore, teak wood furniture needs less maintenance and no repairing cost.
Eucalyptus wood is not better than teak wood for long-term furniture.
Because you’ll have to replace Eucalyptus wood parts and repair Eucalyptus wood furniture more often. Repairing and maintenance cost lots of money and time over time.
Using teak wood for your furniture and woodworks over Eucalyptus wood is a good long-term investment.
But if you’re on a tight budget and looking for quality wood for outdoor furniture, Eucalyptus wood is a wise choice.
Naturally durable #Eucalyptus provides an environmentally friendly alternative to CCA-treated pine for this window box. The #wood is very dense & construction took time, but it is beautiful & will last for decades. pic.twitter.com/PFvqPJ7mYN— Euan Mason 🌳🌲🪐🔭🎼🎸🌏 (@TreeStarMan) January 4, 2022
5. Extensive Expansions and Contractions Damage the Wood
Eucalyptus wood is highly sensitive to the humidity changes of the environment. Eucalyptus wood expands under high humidity and contracts under low humidity levels.
This can cause irregular wood movement which can lead wood to crack and lose its stability.
This is how it happens,
- When the environmental humidity is high, moisture tends to penetrate the wood inside to balance the environmental humidity with the humidity inside of the wood. Because of the high moisture concentration inside the wood, the wood gets swells and expands.
- When the environmental humidity is less, moisture tends to evaporate from the wood to balance the environmental humidity with the humidity inside of the wood. Because the less moisture concentration inside the wood, the wood gets shrinks and contracts.
When environmental humidity changes drastically, extensive expansions and contractions occur in Eucalyptus wood fibers. This can cause irregular wood movements since not every wood fiber of Eucalyptus wood expands and contract at the same speed.
Because of these irregular movements of Eucalyptus wood, the wood gets twisted and warped easily due to humidity fluctuations.
An outdoor loveseat with a durable eucalyptus frame and sumptuous cushions makes enjoying the summer weather a breeze. 🌺 ❤️ pic.twitter.com/jEUvV6g0Ie— Seaboard Bedding (@SeaboardBedding) August 17, 2022
You can prevent extensive expansions and contractions of Eucalyptus wood by stopping moisture absorptions and evaporations with outside air.
Apply a wood finisher or sealer to prevent Eucalyptus wood from dealing with outside air.
Sealer coatings work as a barrier between the wooden surface and outside air and prevent moisture from going inside the wood due to environmental humidity changes.
By applying a proper sealant, stain, or wood finish you can stop Eucalyptus wood from warping and twisting and able to increase its durability of the wood.
This is so important for the Eucalyptus wood outside furniture.
Featuring 3 slatted shelves and foldable mechanism, this Malibu Outdoor Patio Wood Three-layer Garden Plant Stand is a great fit for your patio garden. Made from 100% Eucalyptus – a very durable Hardwood, this planter stand can stand up to all kinds of changes in the weather. pic.twitter.com/0qieNfO9dm— Simply Living (@zimlayhomedecor) November 17, 2021
6. Eucalyptus Wood Color Fades Over Time
Direct sunlight fades the color of Eucalyptus wood.
The reddish-brown color of Eucalyptus wood fades to a lighter silver patina color over time because of the harmful UV radiation of the sunlight, contamination of the environment, and the natural aging process of the wood.
As we all know, Eucalyptus wood has good weather resistance. But wood is wood. Wood is highly sensitive to environmental elements like sunlight.
Therefore, applying proper sealant with UV inhibitors is a must to stop the discoloration of Eucalyptus wood.
If your Eucalyptus wood furniture of woodwork faded over time, you can bring back its original reddish-brown color by applying reddish brown color wood stain all over the wood surface.
Wood stains are able to color up the wood providing good protection to the wood from environmental elements such as moisture, UV light, and insect attacks.
Most wood stains contain UV inhibitors that help to protect the wood from discoloration by enhancing wood appearance.
Therefore, applying a proper sealer or stain before keeping Eucalyptus wood outside is a must to protect the wood from sunlight.
Direct sunlight damages the wood and gives a dull unpleasant appearance.
Or you can use windows with UV filters and cover up Eucalyptus wood furniture to protect it from direct sunlight to stop fading.
Proper caring is a must to keep Eucalyptus wood without fading.
7. Less Availability
Eucalyptus wood is not widely available in local stores. Therefore, most people tend to use online stores to buy Eucalyptus wood.
But there’s no guarantee about the wood quality since it is so difficult to purchase wood without watching them with the naked eye.
The reason for the poor availability of Eucalyptus wood is that most people tend to use it as an alternative for hardwood floors because of being cheaper than hardwoods like teak, mahogany, and Oak.
It is challenging to find Eucalyptus wood that matches your color or style at local stores.
Ordering online is the best option to find the Eucalyptus wood species that you’re looking for. But I highly recommend using branded sites for quality woods with no damage.
Another red gum eucalyptus table top coming together. Helping a friend with this one. Just in time for Christmas dinner too.#table #eucalyptus #custom #handmade #redgum #wood #sawmill #sawyer #monolocoworkshop #chandler #az pic.twitter.com/y9NxHj8X6C— Ty Moser (@trmoser) December 23, 2018
8. Moderately Expensive Wood
Even though Eucalyptus wood is cheaper than luxurious hardwoods like teak wood, it is moderately expensive than most hardwoods that we mostly used.
Eucalyptus wood is more expensive than Bamboo, Birch, Poplar, or Alder.
But Eucalyptus wood is not expensive as teak wood, Mahogany, Hickory, and Cherry wood. that’s why it is considered a moderately expensive wood.
The main reason for Eucalyptus wood’s expensiveness because of its less availability in the local stores.
You can always find quality woods like Maple, Poplar, and Beech for a cheaper price than Eucalyptus wood because of their high availability.
Those woods also have excellent qualities or sometimes better qualities than Eucalyptus wood according to your project type.
This outdoor wooden chair is the perfect addition to any backyard. Durable and weather resistant, this chair is designed to stand up to years of use.— inwoodrwanda (@inwoodrwanda) July 22, 2022
Material : Eucalyptus #madeinrwanda #furniture #inwoodrwanda pic.twitter.com/fD7fuGnbmm
9. Need Regular Maintenance
Eucalyptus wood needs regular maintenance to live long with proper care. Without regular maintenance Eucalyptus wood may get attacked by environmental elements such as moisture, UV light, and insect and pest attacks and its color will fade over time.
Even though Eucalyptus wood is. Hardwood is not durable as teak, hickory, mahogany, or cherry.
Therefore, giving regular maintenance with proper care is a must.
You should always apply quality sealant or finisher from time to time to keep it protected consistently.
Apply wood sealer at least once per year since once the previously applied coating fade away, would get exposed to the outside air and can get affected by elements.
Also, make sure to clean your Eucalyptus wood furniture regularly to remove dust and debris since they can damage the wood and give an unpleasant appearance to the wood.
Here’re some quality wood finishers and sealants that can protect Eucalyptus wood in the long run.
All the above finishing oils and sealants help Eucalyptus wood to improve its tolerance against environmental impacts, temperature changes, humidity changes, and much more.
They protect the wood from cracking, warping, rotting, and decaying.
This eucalyptus tealight holder will get the wabi-sabi treatment tomorrow. A touch of varnish to highlight the grain & emphasise the gold will do the trick I think 😀👍🏼 pic.twitter.com/UTktd70kcg— mygardentalkstome (@mygardentalkst1) September 7, 2020
If the wood somehow got rot because of poor maintenance, there’s no use in applying a wood finisher on top of the surface.
You need to remove the rotted area and restore wood with a quality product like Flexseal. That’s how you should repair rotted Eucalyptus wood.
But overall, Eucalyptus wood has good rot resistance and weather resistance.
Therefore, you can use Eucalyptus wood for an outdoor project with ease. But applying quality sealant is a must for their durability.
Aunty Anna says: a clean dry cloth saturated with eucalyptus oil cuts through sticker/sellotape residue like a knife through butter. I bought these drawers with grotty old sticky label marks on them. Quick rub and dry- GONE. Don’t use on paint/varnish tho. Better living everyone pic.twitter.com/rzOyFuuuov— Mrs Penguins (@Polychromantics) December 8, 2019
10. Eucalyptus Wood Is Allergic to Some People
Eucalyptus wood can be allergic to some individuals since wood sawdust and other particles can cause skin and eye irritations.
Plus, wood sawdust can cause breathing issues.
In order to reduce health effects, always wear gloves, and goggles when working with Eucalyptus wood.
Plus, use a quality dust collection pipe system to remove sawdust before they roam free in your working area since it may cause conditions like asthma, bronchitis, and toenail fungus diseases.
Some people are allergic to the oil that release from Eucalyptus wood.
If you’re allergic to tree oil better to stay away from Eucalyptus wood since both have similar types of oils.
Furthermore, always select a well-ventilated area to work with Eucalyptus wood since good air circulation helps to reduce distinct odors that come from wood finishes and stains that use for Eucalyptus wood finishing.
Better not to use Eucalyptus wood for indoor and outdoor furniture if you feel you’re not safe around the wood.
Because there’re so many better types of woods that provide the same or better features than Eucalyptus wood for the same price.
I’m allergic to eucalyptus, so now I’m super itchy…….. Worth it. Flowers arranged for tomorrow’s Ostara celebration!! pic.twitter.com/t8AtvBJc8o— Pumpkin Spice Lysa (@lysapenrose) March 22, 2019
That’s it, folks. Now you have a clear in-depth idea about Eucalyptus wood disadvantages with all the relevant solutions.
So, let’s answer some frequently asked questions.
How Long Will Eucalyptus Wood Last?
Eucalyptus wood lasts for about 25 years with proper care and regular maintenance. But with no care, Eucalyptus wood won’t last for more than 2 – 3 years of use.
Apply quality sealant to keep Eucalyptus wood protected and for enhanced durability.
Proper caring is a must to increase the lifespan of Eucalyptus wood since if the wood does not get attacked by moisture, UV light, temperature variations, or humidity changes, it won’t get easily damaged or weakened.
Apply sealant, wood finish, or wood stain all over the wood at least once per year to keep Eucalyptus wood last for so long.
After 25 years of use better to move on to a new option since Eucalyptus wood is not durable as teak, mahogany, or cherry wood to have lifetime durability.
Eucalyptus flooring for my office is in— Pete Brown @ Microsoft::Windows (@Pete_Brown) September 23, 2022
Need to let it acclimate for a week or so and then I can start laying it down. Will be nice to stop looking at the Advantech OSB 🙂
Current plan is to nail it down diagonally in here. TBD. pic.twitter.com/ipYVQA00GO
Does Eucalyptus Wood Crack?
Yes, Eucalyptus wood gets cracked because of extremely cold weather, extensive expansions, and contractions due to humidity changes, temperature fluctuations, insect and pest attacks, UV light, moisture, and excess drying.
You can prevent Eucalyptus wood from cracking by applying a quality sealant or finisher to increase wood flexibility.
Applying wood finisher-like finishing oil, penetrate deep into the Eucalyptus wood fibers and make them saturated.
They will increase the flexibility of Eucalyptus wood and prevent the wood from cracking under extreme weather conditions.
Once Eucalyptus wood gets cracked due to any of the above impacts, you can repair wood by applying wood filler or wood putty and applying wood stain on top of that to hide visible marks and get back Eucalyptus wood to its original look.
Even though Eucalyptus wood has excellent natural weather resistance, it gets broken in harsh extreme conditions.
But overall, Eucalyptus wood is great for any project due to its natural resistance.
I love the flooring I picked out. I can’t wait until Monday when it’s finished.— Alexander G. (@asg5704) December 19, 2020
It’s sustainable Eucalyptus for those that are curious. pic.twitter.com/Iygrl0daHH
Is Eucalyptus Wood Good for Anything?
Eucalyptus wood is great for designing projects and outdoor woodworking projects like making bots, structural beams, doors, window frames, patio furniture, flooring, cabinet making, millwork and so much more.
Eucalyptus wood is a versatile wood that can use pretty much for anything. But applying a quality sealant or finisher is a must to keep the wood for so long.
Beautiful timber eucalyptus handrails the team installed on a floating pontoon in Al Seef. We completed the look with a teak finish to complement the deck. #Timber #Balustrades #Eucalyptus #Pontoon #AlSeef #Dubai pic.twitter.com/KaPDinuS89— Cape Reed International (@CapeReed) August 29, 2022
Do Termites Eat Eucalyptus Wood?
Yes, termites love to eat Eucalyptus wood. More than 80% of Eucalyptus trees in Northern Australia got eaten by termites and that is also one of the key reasons for the less availability of quality Eucalyptus wood.
Termites chew and eat Eucalyptus wood using their sharp legs.
They’ll loosen the wood’s stability and strength. Once the termites went inside the wood, they’ll spread quality, and removing them can be extremely difficult.
Even though Eucalyptus wood is moderately termite resistant, under extreme termite populations like outdoors, Eucalyptus wood gets no luck surviving.
You need to treat Eucalyptus wood chemically to prevent it from getting attacked by termites since, harmful chemicals in wood finishes, and wood stains able to kill termites.
Therefore, applying a quality sealant or finisher on Eucalyptus wood is a must especially if you’re willing to place Eucalyptus wood furniture outside to get protected it from termite attacks.
Note sure if these are eucalyptus – resin after rain, and cambium after termites… pic.twitter.com/Ins2UTKyJI— Peter Barnes (@infinite8horizo) October 19, 2019
Is Eucalyptus Wood Eco-Friendly?
Yes, Eucalyptus wood is eco-friendly wood. it helps to keep sustainability through carbon sequestration. Having oil is important to get protected from moisture and other elements.
As per research, Eucalyptus wood is 10 times more sustainable than cottonwood.
Because of being so environmentally friendly, Eucalyptus wood is used for large construction projects.
It is non-toxic wood with excellent woodworking properties.
Did I cover all you wanted to know about: Eucalyptus Wood Disadvantages?
In this article, we have deeply discussed 10 Eucalyptus wood disadvantages and how to fix them using simple techniques and tricks.
Eucalyptus wood disadvantages are poor resistance against cold weather, susceptibility to insects and pests, prone to cracks, less durable than teak, irregular wood movements due to humidity changes, discoloration over time, less availability, moderately expensive wood, need regular maintenance, and can be allergic to some people.
Most of the above disadvantages of Eucalyptus wood can be fixed by applying a proper sealant or finisher.
Furthermore, I’ve answered some frequently asked questions as well.
Hope you have gained good knowledge about Eucalyptus wood disadvantages in-depth with easy fixes.
Try Eucalyptus wood for your next woodworking project and try to minimize its cons as discussed and try to get maximum benefits out of it. Happy woodworking with Eucalyptus wood!