What Size Lumber Is Used For Exterior Walls?


Modern conventional home building normally makes use of 2x4 lumber (top line above, second from left) in constructing exterior walls. But 2x6 framing, which is a little more than 1.5 times wider, is a common upgrade and is required by some local building codes.


Interior walls are predominantly made from 2x4s, which are deep enough to fit plumbing and wiring between the studs, while 2x6s make better exterior walls because they leave more space for insulation. Most dimensional lumber is milled from softwoods like spruce, fir, and pine, then kiln-dried for stability.

The Secret about Rough Cut Lumber, Big Box Stores Don’t Want You to Know

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different sizes of construction lumber?

Common Lumber Sizes. Builders often refer to construction lumber as "two-by," as in 2 x 4, 2 x 6, 2 x 10, etc. This distinguishes construction lumber from "one-by," or "board lumber," such as 1 x 4, and from hardwood lumber and other wood building materials, like plywood. Common sizes of two-by lumber include: 2 x 2. 2 x 4.

What kind of lumber do you need to build a house?

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Construction lumber is the basic wood material you use to build stuff, from walls to sheds to doghouses. Sometimes called dimensional lumber, construction lumber generally includes boards that are 2 to 4 inches thick and 2 to 12 inches wide.

What's the correct width for a wood frame?

The general rule of thumb: any width listed as 2" will actually be 1.5" and as for the depth, actual dimensions are .5" less. The reason for this is planing; some true dimensions can be found at lumber yards, referred to as 'rough' lumber or "rough sawn" as they are unplaned wood.

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