American White Oak is widely used in furniture, flooring and cabinetry due to its attractive grain patterns and durability


American white oak is a popular hardwood species that is native to the eastern United States. This species is widely used in furniture, flooring and cabinetry due to its attractive grain patterns and durability. American white oak is also valued in the construction industry for its strength and resistance to decay.

The heartwood (the centre rings of the tree) of American white oak is light to medium brown, with a distinctive grain pattern that ranges from straight to irregular. The sapwood (the outer rings of the tree) is usually pale yellow and is distinct from the heartwood.  American white oak is usually slightly lighter, with a more subtle grain pattern than European oak which generally has a warm, honey-like medium-brown colour with a more characterful grain pattern.

American white oak is a heavy and strong wood, with good dimensional stability and resistance to wear and tear. It is also a very workable wood, and can be easily cut, planed, sanded and shaped. However, it has a tendency to split when nailed, so pre-drilling is recommended. American white oak stains well and can be finished to a smooth and polished surface.

One of the unique features of American white oak is its high resistance to decay and insect infestations. This makes it a popular choice for outdoor projects such as decking, fences and pergolas.

Depending on what you need, Premier Forest Products can create bespoke profiles and mouldings to your specific requirements at our specialist machining facilities, including skirting, architraves, door linings and cladding.  Take a look at the gallery above to get a flavour of the wide range of mouldings and joinery products we can create for you: customised furniture, doors, stairs, cabinets and more!

American White Oak at a glance:

  • Botanical name: Quercus alba
  • Common names: White oak
  • Density: Approx 670-770 kg/m3
  • Colour: Light to medium brown
  • Grain: Straight
  • Texture: Coarse and uneven
  • Hardness: Janka hardness rating of 1,350 lbf (5,990 N)
  • Durability: Moderately durable
  • Working Properties: American white oak is relatively easy to work with, it can be sawed, planed, drilled, turned and carved well
  • Stability: Good

*The Janka hardness test measures the resistance of a sample of wood to denting and wear.

Internal cladding image courtesy of Studio B.


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