The Strength and Durability of Pressure Treated Wood and Treated Pilings

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Written By Debra D Greenblatt

Pressure treated wood and treated pilings play a crucial role in various construction projects, offering strength, durability, and resistance to decay. As essential components in structures ranging from residential decks to marine piers, understanding the characteristics and benefits of these materials is vital for anyone involved in construction or considering outdoor projects. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the world of pressure treated wood and treated pilings, exploring their properties, applications, and why they stand out as indispensable choices in the construction industry.

The Basics of Pressure Treated Wood

Pressure treated wood is a common term in construction, referring to wood that has undergone a specialized treatment process to enhance its resistance to decay, insects, and other environmental hazards. This treatment typically involves impregnating the wood with preservatives under high pressure.

The Treatment Process:

  • Pressure treated wood is often treated with chemicals such as chromated copper arsenate (CCA), copper azole, or alkaline copper quaternary (ACQ).
  • The treatment process involves placing the wood in a treatment chamber, where it is subjected to vacuum pressure to ensure that the preservatives penetrate deep into the wood fibers.
  • This treatment creates a barrier that protects the wood from decay and insect infestations, extending its lifespan significantly.

Properties of Pressure Treated Wood:

  • Enhanced durability: Pressure treated wood has an extended lifespan compared to untreated wood, making it an ideal choice for outdoor structures exposed to the elements.
  • Resistance to decay and insects: The preservatives used in the treatment process act as a shield, preventing the wood from succumbing to decay or becoming a target for wood-boring insects.
  • Versatility: Pressure treated wood comes in various species, such as pine or cedar, providing options for different aesthetic preferences.

Applications of Pressure Treated Wood

 Residential Construction:

  • Decks and patios: Pressure treated wood is a popular choice for building decks and patios due to its ability to withstand constant exposure to the elements.
  • Fencing: Fences made from pressure treated wood offer both aesthetic appeal and longevity, making them a practical choice for residential properties.

Outdoor Furniture:

  • Picnic tables, benches, and other outdoor furniture made from pressure treated wood are durable and resistant to weathering, providing long-lasting comfort for outdoor spaces.


  • Retaining walls and raised garden beds made from pressure treated wood provide stability and longevity, enhancing the aesthetic appeal of landscaping projects.

Treated Pilings in Marine Construction

Treated pilings are a critical component in marine construction, where structures are constantly exposed to harsh conditions such as saltwater, tidal fluctuations, and marine borers.

Marine-Grade Treatments:

  • Treated pilings for marine applications undergo a specialized treatment process, often using heavy-duty preservatives like creosote or polymer coatings.
  • These treatments protect the wood from marine borers, decay, and other environmental factors unique to saltwater environments.

Structural Integrity:

  • Treated pilings provide the necessary structural support for docks, piers, and other marine structures, ensuring they withstand the challenges posed by the marine environment.
  • The treated wood’s resistance to water damage and decay contributes to the overall longevity of marine constructions.

Environmental Considerations:

  • While treated pilings are effective in protecting against marine hazards, it’s essential to adhere to environmental regulations when using treated wood in water bodies to prevent potential ecological impact.

Maintenance and Environmental Considerations


  • Regular inspections and maintenance are crucial to ensuring the continued effectiveness of pressure treated wood and treated pilings.
  • Sealing or staining the wood surface can help enhance its resistance to the elements and maintain its appearance over time.

Environmental Considerations:

  • While pressure treated wood provides excellent protection against decay and insects, it’s essential to handle and dispose of it responsibly, following environmental guidelines.


Pressure treated wood and treated pilings, exemplified by Bayou City Lumber, stand as resilient solutions in construction, offering durability, longevity, and protection against environmental factors. Whether used in residential projects or marine constructions, the careful selection and proper maintenance of Bayou City Lumber materials contribute to the success and longevity of various structures. As technology and research continue to advance, Bayou City Lumber’s commitment to innovation ensures that pressure treated wood and treated pilings will evolve, cementing them as essential components in the ever-changing landscape of construction materials.

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