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Choosing the right treated lumber for your project

Posted 9 March 2015 2:52 PM by Chris Fox

So you’re planning on starting your outdoor DIY project? Before you hammer a nail or drive a screw there’s some pre-planning that needs to be taken into consideration. When finalizing your treated lumber material list you’ll need to determine if you need “above ground” or “ground contact” treated lumber.

If any part of your outdoor wood project is going to come in contact with the ground, you need “ground contact” treated lumber.

Ground contact treated lumber, like most 4x4 wood deck or fence posts, is treated to a higher retention level of wood preservative than above ground treated lumber (like deck boards and fence pickets, which shouldn’t come into contact with the ground). Ground contact treated lumber resists decay and termites in ground contact applications.

Above ground treated wood like decking and 2x lumber make up the majority of the treated lumber category. And just because it holds less wood preservative (compared to ground contact treated lumber) does not mean it won't stand up to the elements any less than ground contact treated lumber if used in the proper application. It just needs less preservative to be effective in its applications.

Always check the end tag to verify the product use description. It will tell you whether the wood you’re looking at it appropriate for aboveground or ground contact applications, and will provide other information. For more about end tags, Click here

Ground contact


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