Pine is taking over the building industry. It’s being used for everything from retaining walls to house framing. It has proven itself an affordable alternative that provides pest protection or weather endurance as hardwoods do naturally. The advantages of using treated pine for decking are that it’s cheap and plentiful and is a better alternative than hardwood and composite decking alternatives.
Let’s Understand what Treated pine is:
Pine is an affordable, sustainable, and readily available wood that grows in almost any place. However, as it is prone to termites and rot, we have to treat the raw timber with chemicals that make treated pine better for outdoor uses like decking. The chemicals used for the treatment in today’s times are safer than those which were used earlier.
Different Treatments used for Treating Pine:
It may be helpful to know more about the different types of treated pine before deciding what kind is best for your decking project.
We all know the familiar green decking. The color comes from how it’s been treated with chemicals to make it termite and rot-resistant, but there are several types out on the market, so you should be careful when choosing your timber.
The three different types of treatment for pine decks include:
- Copper Chrome Arsenic: There is a severe concern about the safety of arsenic in CCA treatment though it is legal in Australia.
- Alkaline Copper and Quaternary: ACQ treated pine is the most common alternative to corrosion-resistant coating. This material offers just as much protection against termites and rot, making it an excellent choice for those who want their decking material without any risk of destruction from these insects or natural disasters.
- Light Organic Solvent Preservative: LOSP is a great natural option for those looking to avoid the harmful effects of arsenic.
When working with treated pine, it is always good to wear protective eyewear and gloves. The ACQ and LOSP treated decking boards are considered safer than the dangerous CCA formula but still need some extra precautions taken when handling them because they can cause skin irritation on contact, which may lead to an allergic reaction in rare cases.
The Durability of Treated Pine Decking:
The two most essential classifications for durability and contact with the ground, respectively (H3 vs. H4), will help you decide if a board is suitable in your yard or not.
Sustainability of Treated Pine Decking:
Though it’s often considered an environmental hazard, treated pine is one of the most environmentally friendly timbers you can choose. It has a fast growth rate, and many people don’t know that much about how they’re produced, so there aren’t any serious problems with illegal logging.
Is Treated Pine decking a Good Option?
The advantages of using treated pine for your deck are that it’s cheaper and easier to work with than other woods. It is also less expensive, so it’s easy on the pocket as well.
Whether you should go with treated pine depends on where your home is and what kind of outdoor activities it’s in proximity to. If the area has high fire danger that would be one thing not to treat; while one shouldn’t consider using these types when around pools or other structures that could come under attack at any moment.
Disadvantages of Treated Pine:
So if treated pine is so great, why isn’t everyone using it? There are a few disadvantages of using the material for decks.
The downside to using pine over other types of wood for your decking is that it’s more susceptible and will dent or scratch more than harder woods. You can keep this from happening through good sealant treatment and regular maintenance, such as cleaning off the dirt with proper care.
The fire-resistant hardwoods are preferable to treated timber. Some of the best choices include Merbau, black butt, and spotted gum trees for their ability to withstand high temperatures from fires without scorching or burning.
Prone to Shrinkage:
Pine is prone to shrinkage, so it should be properly sealed to avoid any problems later.
If you’re looking for a long-lasting, durable product, it doesn’t get much better than Grade 1 hardwood. These types of timber have been known to last anywhere between 25 – 40 years!
Hardwood decks are more robust and last longer than treated pine, but they also cost more. You should read up on the best timber for decking if you want to decide whether hardwoods or pines work better in your situation!