From Engineering on March 23, 2007 in Decks and Patios
Over 80% of the countrys decks are made from pressure treated wood, making it the most popular deck material in the US. Even if a deck is made of cedar or redwood, it will most likely have a pressure treated substructure, because it is economical and long-lasting. About 80% of pressure treated wood is southern yellow pine. Its initial greenish color eventually fades to gray and is available at nearly every lumber outlet. Pressure treated wood usually has a warranty against decay and gets its name from the process of forcing a chemical preservative into the wood under pressure. Preservatives can be toxic so dont burn the wood or breath-in the saw dustthough a new process was introduced in 2005, making the lumber safer to use. Though the preservatives in the wood help protect against insects and rot, it does not prevent against weathering. Pressure treated would can be stained or painted, but be sure the product you are using is compatible with the pressure treated material. Pressure treated lumber will shrink and some of the grain may rise or open up. These so-called splits and splinters are a natural occurrence with pressure treated lumber and may happen within a few days after being exposed to the sun. It is by far the least costly building material available in deck construction and comes in a variety of dimensions. Estimated Cost of Pressure Treated Wood: 35-50 cents/linear foot.