The Advantages of Pressure Treated Timber
Timber has been an invaluable building material for thousands of years, but it’s no secret that it can be prone to decay in certain conditions, which can limit its practicality for numerous applications. Environments that are particularly prone to moisture, that encourage the growth of bacteria and fungi or that harbour wood-boring insects are all naturally challenging for timber products to prosper in. And although other building materials – such as rock, concrete, steel and aluminium – might be used in place of timber, they often tend to be much more expensive and occasionally difficult to work with.
In order to combat the issues surrounding natural timber products and make them more suitable for extreme conditions, pressure treated timber was created. Pressure treated timber is produced through the application of intense pressure which forces one of a number of different chemical compounds deep into the wood grain. This process helps the timber to protect itself better against the elements, fungal and bacterial growth and pest infestations. For this reason, pressure treated timber is a popular construction material that is used in a wide range of applications.
Regardless of whether you are interested in installing fencing, flooring or a wooden building, investing in pressure treated timber will enable you to have well-maintained, durable wood surfaces for years to come. It offers several unique advantages over natural wooden timber, as well as other construction materials. In this blog, we will outline some of the key advantages of using pressure treated timber as a building material for your next DIY project.
1. Moisture Resistance
Natural wood that is left in damp environments for prolonged periods of time will eventually soften, allowing fungus, bacteria and other microorganisms to hone in, which will in turn lead to the wood decomposing. On the other hand, pressure treated timber utilises one of the several chemical compounds based on copper, a natural biocide, to protect the wood from harmful fungi and microorganisms that cause it to decay. After being treated, the timber can be used in a variety of applications, such as for decking which is exposed to different weather conditions all year round.
2. Fungal Resistance
Even with the smallest amount of prolonged moisture, many different types of fungus can attach themselves to wood and start to spread, sinking deep into the grain to slowly start decomposing it. As the wood weakens, it is at risk of being preyed upon by other organisms, including bacteria and insects. As pressure treated wood makes use of copper-based compounds, such as alkaline copper quaternary and copper azole, fungal growth is prevented. These are frequently used in conjunction with other compounds that offer insect resistance. The chemicals used allow pressure treated timber to be used in applications in which it will be consistently moist, such as submerged poles or in basements.
3. Insect Repellant
In some parts of the UK, insects such as carpenter ants, woodworms and wood-boring insects pose a significant threat to any structure made out of wood. Insects can easily bore through the timber, weakening it and eventually leading to hazardous structural problems, especially when the wood is exposed to damp conditions. The copper compounds in pressure treated timber provide protection from insect damage; additional chemicals such as borate or arsenic compounds, can be added to further discourage insect activity.
Furthermore, by placing pressure treated timber in areas prone to insect infestations, it can also provide an additional barrier that protects the rest of the structure from harm, including untreated wood. It can also discourage other insect pests, such as cockroaches and spiders, from taking up residence inside the structure.
4. Fire Proofing
Of course, one of the biggest threats to wooden buildings is fire. In using the same pressure treated timber that is used to repel insects and fungicides from boring into the wood grain, fire-retardant chemicals can also be added to reduce the wood’s flammability. Fireproof timber can be used in applications where the risk of fire is significantly increased, such as near fireplaces.
5. Size Variety
Pressure treated timber is available in a wide array of sizes to be suitable for different purposes. For building purposes, it comes in the standard dimensional timber sizes, such as 2×4, 2×6 or 2×10. For posts, it can generally be purchased in a variety of square cross-sections, such as 4×4 or 6×6, as well as round cross-sections. Other common applications include the building of wooden buildings, decks, docks and piers or for lighting posts and utility poles. Planking is also available for deck flooring or for siding.
6. Cost Effective
When compared to natural wood, pressure treated timber tends to work out more expensive. However, it is more than worth it for any application that requires resistance to water, microorganisms, fungal growth and insect infestations. Furthermore, compared to other materials that could be used in place of pressure treated timber – such as stone, concrete, aluminium or steel – it’s generally less expensive to purchase and construct thanks to its ease of installation. Pressure treated timber can also be used in a number of indoor and outdoor locations where materials like steel would swiftly corrode without a proper coating.
As previously mentioned, pressure treated timber will last much longer in any environment where it is exposed to the elements or consistent moisture in comparison to natural, untreated wood. Its insect and fungal resistance also help it to outlast natural wood, and because it tends to be more dense than untreated wood products, it is also much stronger. It is far lighter than materials like concrete or stone, and unlike steel is resistant to oxidation. All of these features combined mean that you can be rest assured that it will be many years before your pressure treated timber is due for a replacement, which will help you save money in the long run.
8. Ease of Use
Much like other wood products of its kind, pressure treated timber can easily be cut to size using a saw, and fasteners like nails are able to penetrate it with ease. Drills can be used to bore holes through the wood, and routers can be used to shape it. When compared to materials like steel, pressure treated timber is much more lightweight and thus can be easily manoeuvred, and it doesn’t require any special techniques like welding in order to get a project done. When it comes to pressure treated timber, practically anything can be built quickly and efficiently without any specialist knowledge or equipment.
Looking For Sheds Made to Order with Tanalised Wood?
As we hope this blog has demonstrated, pressure treated timber is a versatile and convenient building material for just about any project, from mounting a garden fence or decking to installing a shed. Thanks to its resistance to water, fungal growth and insect infestations, you can be rest assured that your wooden products will be extremely durable and will last for years to come with a minimal amount of maintenance. Varieties that are fire resistant, as well as new formulations that are much more environmentally friendly than earlier versions, can be implemented to ensure that your projects are safe and aren’t negatively impacting the planet.
If you’re in the market for high-quality, robust wooden buildings that are manufactured with pressure treated timber, look no further than Timclad (York Timber). We stock a wide variety of garden sheds, timber workshops, summer houses, children’s playhouses and much more. We ensure that all of our products are Tanalised Pressure Treated, and as a result we can offer a ten-year anti-rot guarantee and unbeatable weatherproofing for every building. Tanalised wood buildings also protect from insect attacks and fungal decay, giving all of our pressure treated timber sheds the natural beauty of wood whilst also protecting them from the ravages of nature.
On top of their protective properties, pressure treated timber sheds and other products are proven to have exceptional colour properties compared to other preservatives. Pressure treated garden sheds take on a green colouration, which blends in seamlessly with the nature around it. The tanalised timber then slowly weather to a warm brown before gradually fading to a silver-grey. What’s more, tanalised wooden buildings do not have to be painted or stained multiple times to maintain their preservative features. You can also use decorative coatings on top of them, such as water-repellent treatments.
To ensure that your new building arrives in perfect condition, at Timclad (York Timber) we offer a reliable timber delivery service – every single one of our garden buildings is delivered directly from our factory to your front door using our own transportation. Timber delivery can be provided throughout Yorkshire, and we also include free installation as part of our high-quality service. To find out more about any of our products, please get in touch with us today.