Durability is one of the key performance factors used to assess the suitability of a timber species for a specific application. The durability rating of a species is based on the natural ability of the heartwood of that species to resist decay and insect pests (including termites).

AS 5604 Timber Natural Durability Ratings and AS 1604 Timber Preservative Treatment provide guidance on durability requirements for a range of in-ground and above-ground applications. Building practice also plays a major role in the durability performance of timber in construction. 


Durability of timber is also reliant on the ability to minimise the effects of insect attack in both individual form and completed constructions. Requirements for the protection of houses from subterranean termites are defined in Part 3.1.3 of the Building Code of Australia (BCA). These requirements apply only to areas where there is a known risk of termite attack to buildings.

Further Information:

Timber service life design - design guide for durability - this technical design guide will give building and construction industry professionals the confidence in determining the service life timber in a wide range of applications, from sole plates to suspension bridges.



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