Treated lumber question

Discussion in 'ex-Rag Chew Central' started by KC7JTY, Jul 28, 2009.

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  1. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    I just built a free standing roof to go over my 8x10 concrete slab out back and am concerned about the 4 vertical 4x6 treated (green) timbers that are made of Grand/White Fir.
    The lower ends are set in concrete but they are only treated with the green chemical to prevent rotting and nothing to prevent cracking and warping exposed to the weather.

    Should I add some additional coating/treatment to prevent problems, and if so what would be a good call?
  2. K7UNP

    K7UNP Ham Member QRZ Page

    If they are set in concrete and fastened to the roof properly then I would not be "very" concerned about cracking or warping. Talk to the lumber yard folks. They get questions like this all the time. If the wood is treated and it is fastened at both ends as you described they should be good to go for quite a few years. Where is this structure located geographically? That makes a difference also.
  3. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'm not an expert, but where I'm from (the Northeast) we used to plastic wrap timbers before setting them in concrete. I saw "old timers" doing this for years, and asked them why. They all pretty much concurred: "That's what makes them last longer than you'll be alive."

  4. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    In the land of 9 foot snows and 60 mph winds, North Idaho.
  5. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    I'm not concerned about the lower ends rotting, it's the exposed above ground sections I'm worried about.
  6. WF7A

    WF7A Subscriber QRZ Page

    If you can find out whether the posts are made of heartwood or not, that would help in determining whether they'll twist or not: Heartwood is wood cut from the core, or heart, of the tree and usually remains fairly straight whereas wood cut from the outermost part of the tree trunk tends to warp like crazy.

    If you can still see the ends of the posts and there are concentric rings from the center, then chances are it's heartwood. BTW: If the wood was kiln-dried when you bought it then there should be very little warping afterward.

    I'd check it out with a lumber outlet, first, but I'd coat the wood with a good sealant that has anti-fungal and/or insecticide in the mix to keep the wood healthy for years to come.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2009
  7. KC9IUX

    KC9IUX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Applying sealant helps.

    Warping occurs when the wood dries out, especially if it dries in a short time.
  8. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    At least 2 are heartwood which tends to split more than the outer cuts.
    I'll call Ziggy's and see what they say as far as sealant, but in the past I tend to get a different answer depending on the person and day of the week.

    Steel roofing panel installation is a real trip, seems the special screws needed to hold it down are harder to get than dope, and you must buy a bag of 100 at a time. Hey man....can I cop some screws? (come back next week, I might have something then)
  9. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    Looks like all helluva is about to break loose here with 50 mph winds, lightning, 1/2" hail and heavy rain. Good thing I got all the screws into the roofing panels today. (Murphy's Law)
  10. AC0H

    AC0H Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The only thing the "green" does is slow down the natural rotting process and keep insects out. It does nothing for UV or water.

    I would suggest an latex stain which does two things. You don't have to look at the unnatural green color and it seals the wood. I use it on my deck which gets pounded by direct sun all summer.
  11. N7WR

    N7WR Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've used non pressure treated wood posts (lots of them) for my barn, hay shed, and other out buildings. They are set in concrete anywhere from 2.5-3 feet in the ground. I used latex paint on them when I did the work 5 years ago. We don't get 9 ft snow here in NE Oregon but 4 ft on the ground from Dec-April is not uncommon. So far no twists or cracking.
  12. WB3JLA

    WB3JLA XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I Like CEDAR does not rot easy

    Can do nice stain

    Don't cost as much as treated

  13. WF7A

    WF7A Subscriber QRZ Page

    Rats, we missed the action down here in Post Falls—we're in a rain shadow so all the cool (read that as nasty) weather goes around us; we just had a brief, slight drizzle down here last night and that was it.
  14. KR2D

    KR2D Ham Member QRZ Page

    Sunlight (UV) will cause the most damage over time. Don't worry about water or grond contact.

    I took down a shed that had been up for 15 years. It was sitting on pressure treated 4x4s that were in the ground. They were as damp as the surrounding soil, but looked brand new.

    My deck made of pressure treated wood is nearly 25 years old, and many parts are close to needing replacement - but ONLY the parts exposed to sunlight are damaged. The undersides of the decking and inner joists and posts - everything in constant shadow - all look new. The rail, built in benches and tops of the decking are basically flaking away.
  15. N7RJD

    N7RJD Ham Member QRZ Page

    All I know about treated lumber is that the termites argue about it with about half saying "Tastes Great" and the other half saying "Less Filling." :D
  16. KD0DKI

    KD0DKI Ham Member QRZ Page

    So you put the wood in to the cement?

    An what research told you to do that?

    Cement is a mix of chemical, sand, and stone it gets hot as the chemicals react this heats the chemicals in the green and combinds with them. It will last maybe 10 years or so.

    Get some GOOD cedar and cover the green with it to protect it from the elements.
  17. WF7A

    WF7A Subscriber QRZ Page

    That's common practice with wood fence posts up here in the Inland Pacific Northwaste.

    What I'm surprised about is that somebody hasn't come up with hollowed-out wood fence posts that would slide over metal fence posts. That way, you could have a 'normal'-looking wood fence post with wood rails or slats...though I, personally, would opt for vinyl since it has a longer lifespan.
  18. NA4BH

    NA4BH Ham Member QRZ Page

    DON'T PAINT treated lumber. Use a stain. The lumber has to breathe and if you paint it, you will speed up the decay. With the green in the wood expect it to leach out into your covering. Re-apply every few years. Look at Olympic stain to do the job. It waterproofs and still allows the wood to breathe.

    Did you put gravel in the bottom of the holes? It is like a tower, water that does get in it needs a place to go otherwise it just sits there and does what water does to things. Save the tags off the ends of the posts and your receipt, this will help you in the 40 year guarantee (in about 15 years).
  19. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    Oh yeah!!?? We had Niagara falls up here last night. Lasted plenty long too.
    Enough to wash all the bird doo off the roofs.
  20. KC7JTY

    KC7JTY Banned QRZ Page

    The 4x6s are sitting on 2" thick bricks in the bottom of the holes.
    Looks like a latex deck stain is the move although the lumber yard where I bought the treated posts said not to use anything. :eek:

    BTW: Rough cut cedar 4x4s (they actually measure 4 inches by 4 inches) 10 feet long are $50 a pop. The treated 4x6s x 10' were $14.80 each.
    Lumber is cheap here but it's mostly grade 2. The good stuff gets shipped to the flat landers in places like Iowa.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2009
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