Why Pressure Treated Wood for Fences and Gates? | Hardy Fence
Pressure Treated Wood
Why Use Pressure Treated Wood for Fence
& Gate Building?
Wood is a great building material for fencing. It is strong, lightweight, easily
worked with tools and relatively inexpensive. The only problem with wood is
that many varieties of bacteria, fungi and insects find it appetizing. When
wood is in contact with the ground or moisture for any period of
time, these organisms attack the wood. Untreated wood fences like pine will
only last a year or two if it is touching moist ground.
Pressure-treated lumber is wood that has been immersed in a
liquid preservative and placed in a pressure chamber. The chamber
forces the chemical into the wood fibers. The pressurized approach makes
sure that the chemical makes it to the core of each piece of wood -- it is
much more effective than simply soaking the wood in the chemical.
The most common chemical used to treat lumber used to be chromated
copper arsenate, or CCA. In 2003, however, the Environmental Protection
Agency restricted the use of CCA in residential settings due to health and
environmental concerns about arsenic leaching out of the wood. The most
widely used alternative to CCA is alkaline copper quat, or ACQ.
Copper is toxic to various insects and fungi that might cause decay. ACQ
binds to wood fibers very well and allows wood to last decades even when it
is in contact with the ground.
The protection provided by the chemical depends on the amount of chemical
that the wood absorbs. In the United States, the amount of chemical is
measured in pounds of chemical per cubic foot of wood. For ground contact,
0.40 pounds per cubic foot is needed. For foundations, 0.60 pounds per cubic
foot is the standard.
The chemicals in treated wood are generally not good for humans. This is
why you see warnings advising you to wear gloves, avoid breathing the
sawdust, and refrain from burning treated wood. Keeping small children away
from treated wood is also a good idea.
Hardy Fence uses pressure treated wood for all supports
and kick boards. Pressure treated wood has stood the test of time. We
will not install pressure treated wood pickets "in Texas" as they have a
severe tendency to warp and cup when exposed to humidity and heat.
Give us a call for more details. We're here to help!
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