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How New Pressure-Treated Wood Preservatives May Affect Steel Framing

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Steel-framed buildings often include wood components, such as sill plates, top plates, door or window bucks, and sheathing for floors, walls and roofs. Consumers and regulators of building construction involving wood components often require pressure-treated wood to help protect the components from attack by termites, other insects, and fungal decay. Designers and builders need to be aware that recent changes in the available wood preservatives used in such applications may impact the durability of the steel framing.

Pressure Treated Wood

Wood is pressure treated when there is concern about premature deterioration due to termites, other insects and fungal decay. Pressure treatment is a process that forces preservatives into the cellular structure of the wood. Waterborne, Creosote, and Oil-borne (penta) are the three broad classes of preservatives typically used when pressure treating wood. Wood treated with waterborne preservatives is typically used in residential, commercial and industrial building structures. Creosote is primarily used for treating railroad ties, guardrail posts, and timbers used in marine structures. Oil-borne (penta) is most often used for treating utility poles.

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