Why using Pressure treated vs. cedar for making deck, AND best time for staining PT

Hi, I have a question regarding to the type of wood needed for building a deck. Looks like most of the folks are in favor of pressure treated wood. I know that the PT is resistent to bugs, and lasts longet than the other types. Well, that's great. So why other type of woods like cedar/readwood are in the market? Can you please tell me about advantages/disadvantages of PT and other type of woods? Moreover, I have a porch made of PT. The porch is almost 1 year old and I like to stain the PT because I don't like the greenish look of PT. Somebosy told me that after a year, it would be OK to apply stain. Applying stain on fresh PT would result in failure. Is that right? How long should I wait till I can apply stain to my PT without seeing bad and ugly results.
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FardinA wrote:

I waited a year to stain mine as the wood needed to dry out. Looks awesome now.
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"Creamy Goodness" <creamy at agbf1942 dot com> wrote in

completely exposed to the sun which probably helped dry it a bit quicker.
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Read up and wonder no more:
http://www.southernpine.com/ptl.htm
FardinA wrote:

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Chromated Copper Arsenate
Ingredients: Chromium (yes, the stuff in the movie "Erin Brokovich") Copper Arsenic (poison)
Yum!
I built a deck out of this stuff, before I knew anything about it. As I just about to drive the last screw in (almost literally), I saw a story on TV about it. Of course, all lumber dealer's knew the ban was coming but no one told me (I got mine at a local lumber yard). After I saw that news story, I figured that it was probably exaggerated a little. So I blew it off. Hell, it was too late now, I was finished building the damned thing. Then I walked out back onto my newly finished deck and saw my 2 year old daughter drop a popsicle on the deck and pick it up and eat (before I could stop her). I then look over a bit and saw my dog licking up a puddle of melted popsicle.
The fact that this web site is trying to bestow the virtues of CCA makes their opinions suspect. They suggest its use in garden areas, children's playsets, etc. There is a reason why it was pull from the market for most residential use. Even if they did only mention that fact in one sentence (that I have been able to find) on their entire web site. Of course, they don't bother to mention 'why' it was pulled or for what uses it was pulled.
Quote (http://www.southernpine.com/technicalinformation2.htm#preservatives ): "After December 31, 2003 CCA will be withdrawn for most residential consumer-use treated lumber applications."
I know that no one here buys lumber at Home Depot. But if you do, that's only PT lumber that the one near me carries.
By mid-2004, there should be no more CCA lumber on store shelves in the US. That's the deadline. The newer (supposedly safer) PT lumber uses a chemical called Alkaline Copper Quat (ACQ). I'm waiting for that to build my new privacy fence this summer.
codepath

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There isn't any CCA in my Borgs, all ACQ. It's still green, dripping wet and ready to corkscrew as soon as it dries out if you don't have it nailed up.
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S-weet!
codepath
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Pressure wash it well;
when you're completed. With an alkali cleaner, then bleach it. Whick will remove all the surface traces of any poisons and repellants used.
I seasoned my treated lumber for two years in the weather, stacked and sticklered before building my deck.
I used rough cut Poplar for my fence, now time to pressure wash the mildew off all the wood and stain it with some semi transperant stain.
To hell with the neighbor's bitching too!
LOL
Refinish King

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Check out this link (Environmental Protection Agency): http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/factsheets/chemicals/cca_qa.htm
Key Points: - After machining (cutting, routing, etc), boil your clothes and hands - Arsenic is a known human carcinogen and is acutely toxic - Arsenic does leach from CCA-treated wood products and some chemicals may also be dislodged from the surface of the wood upon contact with the skin
Check this link (Consumer Protection Safety Council): http://www.cpsc.gov/phth/ccafact.html
Key Points: - In June 2001, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) docketed a petition by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) and the Healthy Building Network (HBN) to enact a ban of CCA or chromated copper arsenate-treated wood for use in playground equipment. - Manufacturers of CCA reached a voluntary agreement with EPA to end the manufacture of CCA-treated wood for most consumer applications by December 31, 2003. EPA has indicated that some stocks of wood treated with CCA before this date might still be found on shelves until mid-2004. - Exposures to arsenic in the wood might increase a person's probability (or risk) of developing lung or bladder cancer over their lifetime. - An average daily intake of arsenic for a 2-6 year old child ranges from about 2.46 g per day depending upon amounts in diet, air, and soil. From the staff's analysis, arsenic exposure in children from contact with CCA-treated wood playground structures is estimated to be about 3.5 g each day that includes a playground visit
codepath

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Keep in mind that the EPA consists of a bunch of Mother Earth people that would have us all riding bicycles, making our own clothes from the wool we shear from the sheep in the front yard and eating eggs from the chickens (free range of course) in the back yard. They tend to exaggerate things and have been known to tinker with statistical models to "prove" their theories to get to the results they want (e.g. check out the history of the second hand smoke studies that prevent you from enjoying a cigarette or cigar with your cocktail in more and more places around the country). There is no better example of Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics (ranked from left to right in order of true, less true and even less true).
I've used CCA treated wood for years on decks, railings and outdoor benches. It was a reasonable solution to a common problem. I was smart enough to avoid it on anything that would come in contact with food like picnic table tops and such. That was just common sense...I know there are chemicals in it and many times the wood was still wet in the working phase and for sometime after, most likely forever. Practical solution to that was to teach my kids to not eat anything that slipped and hit the ground, whether CCA decks, kitchen floor (Mr. Clean has to taste great), lawn (bet those herbacides/pestacides will be great for you) or anywhere else. Throw it away and go get another one. If there aren't anymore, then they start to learn that they shouldn't drop them.

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Tom Kohlman wrote:

Yep cause industry has NEVER EVER lied about there products safety or ingredients. Dude, ya gotta get your info from more places than Limbaugh.

Do you make sure they never run barefoot or play on their hands and knees too? The reason the treatment is in the wood is to KILL stuff, i.e. insects, bacteria, etc. that would otherwise destroy or decompose the wood. The arsenic is not there to prevent erosion. Duh.

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It's a heavy metal poison:
and several women have been arrested in North East Pa, for bumping off their husbands for tainting their nice bagged lunches with it.
LOL
Refinish King

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Looks like most of the folks are in favor of pressure treated

For most, marketing and apparent cost, if the bottom line is the $ a lot of people won't look any further. For the others, beauty, aesthetics, and health concerns are worth the difference in $ cost.
Bernard R
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THe structural properties of cedar are different than PT pine. Meaning joist, beam and post spacing will vary between the species. Span tables usually take this into account and group similar lumber together. e.g 2x6 joists @ 16" o.c. can span 9'9" using PT, but only 7'9" using cedar.
What may be done is using PT for the structural members and cedar or redwood for the deck boards, railings, etc. (the parts you're exposed to).
The idea of waiting to stain PT is to let it dry out. Usually a few moths does the trick, depending on thickness, exposure and so on. I'd say 6 months max, but take that with a grain of salt since I can't see your material.
Don't use Thompsons deck stains.
Renata
On 2 Apr 2004 11:56:57 -0800, fardin snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (FardinA) wrote:

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FardinA wrote:

Fine Woodworking (or maybe Fine Homebuilding) did an article a few years back on this issue. The author returned to a deck he had built a couple years earlier, took soil samples, and had them tested. In terms of concentration, the back yard met the criteria for a Superfund site.
So let's say the EPA is overly stringent - do you really want ot experiment on your kids? I myself am considering Ipe. Ya, now I'm gonna get grief for destroying the rain forest.
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