Masonry fences aren't as popular as wood fences or vinyl fences, but they may be…
There are several types of wood fences available, and not all of them are pressure treated. While there are many benefits to using pressure treated wood outdoors, there are other options you might want to explore. Here we’ll review which types of fence pickets are pressure treated and what you might want to select for your property.
How Pressure Treating Works
When lumber is pressure treated, it’s put into a vacuum chamber with a combination of chemicals. The vacuum chamber extracts air from the space so the chemicals can penetrate deep into the wood.
Each chemical in the pressure treating process is designed to shield the wood from an outdoor element. One targets pests. Another targets bacteria. Yet another protects against fungi. They work in combination to fortify the wood so it lasts long after it’s milled.
A living tree has natural defense mechanisms, but wood fence pickets no longer have access to those nutrients. Pressure treatment provides supplemental protection against rot and deterioration.
Pine Fence Pickets Are Usually Pressure Treated
The most common pressure treated wood for fencing is pine. This is a low-cost solution that can last for decades with proper care. The chemicals from the pressure treatment process eventually fade or lose their potency. With routine staining and sealing though, you can combat this loss and re-shield the fence.
Cedar Fence Pickets Are Not Pressure Treated – Here’s Why
Cedar is naturally resistant to insects and decomposition. It doesn’t need to be pressure treated because it has its own defense system built in. Cedar still needs to be stained and sealed like other wood, but it is far more durable than pine.
With this in mind, cedar isn’t as strong as pine when it comes to soil protection. This is why many fence installers will recommend pressure treated pine or metal for the fence posts, since those are the fence elements that interact with the soil. The pickets can still be cedar since they’re installed slightly above the ground.
Other Types of Fence Pickets That Do Not Require Treatment
Wood is far from the only privacy fence material on the market. If you want something that’s going to look great and last with minimal maintenance, consider a vinyl or composite fence instead. These materials offer the same privacy as wood, but they are manufactured to last far longer with outdoor exposure.
If privacy is not a concern, you could choose an iron or chain link fence for your property. These materials do not need as much maintenance as wood, but they will not obstruct the view into your yard.
How Long Do Pressure Treated Fence Pickets Last?
Pressure treated pine fence pickets can last 15-20 years with routine maintenance. In fact, staining and sealing could add years to that projected lifespan, especially if you start early.
Whether you’re trying to protect your existing fence or looking to get a new one, All Around Fence is here to help. We offer a variety of personalized solutions to help you protect your property. Contact us at (443) 838-9374 to schedule your fence consultation.