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Throughout the past decade or so, reclaimed barn wood has become very popular. You see it in everything from repurposed barn wood sliding doors to tables, beds, entertainment centers, wall paneling, wall art, and reclaimed barn wood shelves.

There are so many different ways to reuse this beautiful and strong furniture material. It gives you that unique, rustic look that’s great for home décor while also being eco-friendly.

Reclaiming Old Barn Wood

Before you start looking at what parts of old barns can be reclaimed, there are some warning signs you should look out for. When you’re looking at reusing old barn wood, catching any warning signs early on can help prevent bigger problems for you in the future.

Some common warning signals to watch for include:

Signs that reclaimed barn wood has gone bad
  • bug infestations
  • dampness and mold
  • rotting
  • weakness
  • splinters
  • hidden nails
  • rusted metal
  • lead paint

Some of the old barns that you see coming down today were actually constructed back in the 1800s, especially when you’re looking at the strong structures in Lancaster County. So, a lot of barns definitely existed before the U.S. banned lead paint use in the late 1970s. 

When you’re reclaiming old barn wood, it’s important to remember that you should be gentle with the wood in order to preserve it properly. It may sound like fun to come in like a wrecking ball, but each individual piece of barn wood should be treated with care in order to prevent breakage, splintering, scratching, chipping, and cracking.

You may already be aware that not all parts of a barn can be reclaimed. It’s best to find bigger, more consistent pieces of wood that all come from the same barn and haven’t been painted. Some of the best parts of the barn for reclaimed wood include:

Reclaimed Barn Floors

If there isn’t a dirt floor, the barn floor is a great place to start. But you may also want to check out the wood below it. Sleeper joists, carrier beams, and floor trusses are all great pieces to look for. These pieces of wood were used to help support the structure of the barn.

Barn Rafters

The barn rafters are the long beams that form the roof of the barn. Some terrific pieces include upper frame beams, roof trusses, and barn joists.

Barn Siding

Weathered barn siding can give an amazing rustic look to almost any interior design, whether it’s a house or a restaurant. 

Making Old Barn Wood into Reclaimed Shelves

Here at Urban Legacy, we use reclaimed wood to build shelves as well as wood wall art. Our small, family-owned business is very passionate about turning reclaimed barn wood into beautiful home décor items that families will be able to enjoy for years to come.

If you have any questions about our process for reclaiming wood, please feel free to contact us.