My rear screened porch has some has 2x2s that hold the screens in place and many of them are rotted from moisture.

It looks like they are plain old 2x4s that were ripped down (though I'm not sure) and then painted (poorly) with exterior paint.

What type of wood and should I use to replace them? I do wish to paint them to match the rest of the house. Or can I use any good quality wood and prime and paint with a good paint?

3 Answers 3


As long as you make sure that the wood is isolated from the source of moisture as much as possible (or better still remove the source) then any decent quality wood properly primed and painted should be OK.

I would also consider getting the wood treated first.

  • Removing the source of water is impossible since it's a screened porch and its mainly the rain blowing sideways. I'm thinking my next stop would be my favorite paint store.
    – hometoast
    Commented Aug 18, 2010 at 17:12
  • @hometoast - sorry I assumed it was sitting in a damp environment rather than "just" being lashed by rain. A good paint job should see you right on this one.
    – ChrisF
    Commented Aug 18, 2010 at 17:18

Cedar would be a good choice, if you want something untreated.

  • 1
    But then you have to wait to paint it. Waiting a whole year has been suggested (diy.stackexchange.com/questions/140/…). Commented Aug 18, 2010 at 13:23
  • @vebjorn: thanks I saw that question -- which lead me to ask this one. And, for sure, waiting a year isn't what I'd like to do.
    – hometoast
    Commented Aug 18, 2010 at 17:10

Most timber that has been painted is done after the fact and typically the areas that are likely to soak up water are not accessible to the painter, such as the underside of the timber. This is typically also where water can settle and therefore will get soaked up by the timber which creates the rot due to not being visible and therefore not exposed to sunlight to dry out. When installing new timber in exterior locations it is best to paint it after being cut to size to ensure that in unseen places a coat of paint creates a water barrier. Most hardwoods are best for exterior locations, but nearly all timber can be used if properly painted as @ChrisF says.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.