Pressure-Treated Southern Pine

Why Use

Southern Pine?

Pressure-treated Southern Pine wood products are an economical and renewable building material for long-term performance.

Wood can be attacked by insects, microorganisms, and decay fungi, especially in high-moisture conditions. That’s why many builders opt for pressure-treated wood with preservatives to help ensure long-term structural performance to protect lumber used in a range of service conditions. 

There are a variety of processes used to protect wood products, including pressure, non-pressure, thermal, nonbiocidal, and fire-retardant treatments. Each treatment process can also incorporate a variety of preservatives. And while there are options, the best preservative for any project largely depends upon the product, species, and end-use application.

Pressure treatment with preservatives protects wood exposed to high-moisture conditions and potential deterioration. Treated wood must meet minimum requirements for preservative penetration and retention for use in a particular service condition.

But not all wood treats the same. Most wood species do not easily accept preservatives and must first be “incised,” or perforated along the surface, which reduces the wood’s strength and stiffness.

Southern Pine’s unique cellular structure, meanwhile, does not require incision, allowing preservatives to penetrate deeply and rendering it useless as a food source for fungi, termites, and micro-organisms. Its superior treatability makes it the preferred species for pressure treatment with preservatives.

Types of Wood Preservatives

There are three broad classifications of preservatives used to pressure treat wood products:


preservatives serve a variety of uses including residential, commercial, marine, agricultural, recreational, and industrial applications. They are most frequently specified because they are clean in appearance, odorless, paintable, and registered with the EPA for interior and exterior use without a sealer.


preservatives, including creosote/coal tar mixtures, protect railroad ties, marine pilings, and utility poles.


preservatives are used primarily for utility crossarms and poles, piling, posts, and glulam.

Check out our Pressure-Treated Southern Pine publication to understand the proper specification and use of pressure-preservative treated Southern Pine products. Topics include:

Wood Preservatives
for Long-Term Performance

Pressure treating wood products with preservatives increases intended-use longevity, and preservers consider the following when determining which preservatives and processes to use:

Proper Handling and Storage of Pressure-Treated Lumber

Pressure-treated wood does not present a health risk if handled properly. When it comes to safely using pressure-treated wood, many of the same safety rules for untreated wood apply.

Pressure treating does not prevent the normal passage of moisture in and out of the lumber, so proper storage (before and during construction) is important. Treated lumber should be stacked and stored in the same manner as untreated wood.

Pressure-Treated Lumber:
The Lower Environmental Impact Option

Industry quality-control standards for manufacturing and preserving Southern Pine ensure long-term performance and minimize environmental impact. Advances in preservative treatments, environmental management, and sustainable forestry practices make treated wood an ecologically sound building material.

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is an essential part of green building because it offers an objective and consistent way to measure the environmental impacts of building materials and assemblies. Study after study in Europe, North America, and elsewhere has shown that wood outperforms other products when considered over its complete life cycle, and LCA confirms the environmental and other advantages of wood construction.

But how does wood treated with preservatives compare to other building products used for the same application? Members of the Treated Wood Council published a series of life cycle comparisons on a range of treated products from decking to marine piling. Regardless of the application, analysis shows preservative-treated wood has a lower environmental impact when compared to steel, concrete, and plastic composites.

Check out the following the LCA reports to learn more about the sustainability of treated lumber:

connect with a pressure-treated

Southern Pine lumber manufacturer today!

connect with a pressure-treated
Southern Pine lumber manufacturer today!