Is Pressure-treated Pine A Good Fence Material For You?

When you start exploring your options for wood fences, one thing you'll notice is that they're not cheap! Woods like hickory and cedar make for excellent fences, but the price tag is always high. If you are looking for a more affordable alternative, you may want to consider pressure-treated pine. Like all woods, it has a few pros and cons to consider before you make you schedule your fence installation.

Pro: Pressure-treated pine is easy to come by.

Pine trees grow readily throughout the U.S., which means there is no shortage of pine wood. Not only does this keep the price down, but it also makes the wood easy to obtain. With more specialty woods, you may have to wait a few weeks for your fence company to get the wood in stock. This will never be the case with pine. The ease of availability will definitely come in handy if and when you need to make fence repairs, too. You can find pressure-treated pine in almost any lumber yard and in any size plank.

Pro: Pressure-treated pine is quite durable.

Pine has the reputation of being soft and therefore non-ideal for fencing. But this is not the case with pressure-treated pine! This wood has been compacted to make it less susceptible to damage, such as moisture damage and insect damage. It won't dent or crack easily like standard pine does, either. Pressure-treated pine is about as durable as cedar as a fencing material. In a moderate climate, it can last 20 years or more.

Con: Pressure-treated pine can warp.

Even after the wood has been pressure-treated, it can sometimes absorb moisture unevenly. This is most likely to happen in the early spring when the weather is wet, and it can cause the wood to severely warp. A warped fence is not an attractive fence, and having to replace the boards as they warp can be annoying and time-consuming.

Con: Pressure-treated pine releases VOCs.

Pressure-treated pine is treated with certain chemicals to help make it less prone to weather damage. This process releases volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, into the environment. This is not a great option for the planet or for your health. If you prefer a greener option, you may be better off with a natural, untreated wood.

To learn more about pressure-treated pine as a fence material, talk to a wood fence services contractor in your area.