How To Treat Wood For Outdoor Use

How To Treat Wood For Outdoor Use

When it comes to outdoor spaces, most of us think about great landscaping, plants, and maybe a small bench. Very few people think about the materials used for the outdoor space. However, in time, even outdoor spaces need maintenance. That’s why it is important to know how you can treat wood for outdoor use. If you want to use wood outdoors, there are different ways of protecting them from the elements so they last longer. Understanding how you can treat wood for outdoor use will help you make the right decision. Here are some ideas on how you can treat wood for outdoor use.

How To Treat Wood For Outdoor Use?

Pressure Treated Wood

One of the most common ways to treat wood is by using pressure-treated wood (PT wood). It is a common choice for outdoor structures and furniture because of its durability. However, PT wood is not actually wood at all. Rather, it is wood that has been chemically processed in a high-pressure environment. The process imparts chemical properties to the wood, including prevention of rot, insect damage, and stains. If you are working with a sizable portion of the wood that will be exposed to moisture, PT wood can be a great choice. It is easy to use and can be applied in large quantities. While PT wood is a great option for many indoor uses, it is not a good choice for outdoor furniture pieces. If it is left untreated in outdoor settings, the chemicals used in the process will leach out and can be harmful to the environment. This is why you often see PT wood used in outdoor settings such as decks, fences, and other structures. While these pieces are well-protected from the elements, they are not safe for children and pets to come into contact with.

Coated Metal Guardrails

Many people choose to use metal guardrails as a safety feature on decks and stairs. While metal is a strong, durable material, it can also be slippery when wet, which can be dangerous. To combat this, many homeowners choose to treat metal guardrails with a wood finish. This can be done in a couple of different ways. One option is to dip the rails in a wood finish. This provides a strong, protective coating that will not chip or peel like many commercial wood finishes. Another option is to spray the rails with a wood finish. This provides a smooth finish that is easy to clean and will not chip or peel. With either method, you can choose an outdoor-grade finish that will last for a long time and protect the metal from moisture and other elements.

Uv Coating

Another excellent treatment for outdoor guardrails and other pieces is a UV coating. This type of treatment protects the metal from the sun and helps prevent it from becoming discolored over time. It is an excellent option for metal railings and other pieces that are exposed to a lot of sun UV coatings come in a wide array of colors, allowing you to match them to your deck’s design. There are several different types of UV coatings, including acrylic, urethane, and many others. They all have different properties and perform differently, so be sure to choose a product that meets your needs.

Solid Coating

A solid coating is similar to a UV coating in that it protects metal from outdoor elements. It is applied to metal by spraying it on and letting it dry. A solid coating is thicker than a UV coating, making it more protective. While UV coatings are useful for metal railings, a solid coating is ideal for the main support structures of a deck, such as the posts, beams, and joists. A solid coating will last for many years and is easy to apply. It is also inexpensive, so it is a great choice for metal pieces that are coming into contact with children and pets, as they won’t be harmed by the wood finish.

Rot Resistance With Calcium Phosphate

Another option for treating wood for outdoor use is to add a chemical called calcium phosphate. This chemical is naturally found in wood and helps to prevent it from rotting, but it can be naturally occurring in varying amounts. Adding the chemical ensures that the wood is highly resistant to rotting. One of the best ways to add calcium phosphate to wood is by treating it with a liquid solution. This provides a thin coating that adds rot resistance to the entire piece of wood. This is a great option for outdoor furniture pieces and other pieces that are meant to take rough use. While treating wood with calcium phosphate can be effective, it does take considerable time and effort.

What Is The Best Type Of Wood For Outdoor Use?

When you are choosing wood for an outdoor space, you have to choose the right type of wood. Not all woods are suitable for outdoor use. Here are some of the most suitable woods for outdoor use. –

  • Cedar- Cedar is a popular choice for outdoor spaces. It is naturally resistant to insects or other pests. Cedar also repels water which makes it a suitable choice for decking. 
  • Ironwood- Ironwood is a dense, strong wood that is perfect for outdoor spaces. It is naturally resistant to water and insects. It is also durable and easy to maintain. Ironwood has a dark color and it can be difficult to stain. 
  • Redwood- Redwood is a good choice for a deck. It is naturally resistant to water and insects. However, it is not a good choice if you have a shady area. Redwood is a light-colored wood that fades over time.
  • Teak- Teak is a popular choice for outdoor spaces. It is naturally resistant to insects and water. It is also a good choice if you have a shady area. However, it is a costly option.
  • Pressure-treated pine- Pressure-treated pine is a good option if you are on a budget. This type of wood is treated with preservatives to protect it from the elements. It is a suitable choice for decking or any other outdoor space. 
  • Composite wood- Composite wood is a good choice if you are on a budget. A good example of composite wood is plywood. Plywood is made with layers of different materials such as hardwood or softwood, glue, and resin.

Why Is It Important To Treat Wood For Outdoor Use?

Before you decide to use wood for an outdoor space, you need to treat it. Even if you are using a new piece of wood, you need to treat it first. This is because the wood naturally repels water and other elements. If you don’t treat the wood, it will rot and get damaged. That’s why it is important to treat wood for outdoor use. Here are some reasons why you should treat wood for outdoor use. –

  •  Protects wood from water damage – You should protect wood from water damage. Water damage can cause wood rot and make it break easily. 
  •  Protects wood from UV rays – UV rays can fade the color of the wood and cause it to break. If you don’t protect it, the UV rays will make the wood brittle and prone to damage. 
  • Helps repel insects – Wood naturally repels insects, but you have to treat it to protect it from the elements. Insects can eat away at the wood and make it 

What Is The Best Way To Treat Wood For Outdoor Use?

Wood is a natural material that has been used in outdoor spaces for a long time. However, it requires some treatment to make it suitable for outdoor use. Whether you are using a new piece of wood or an old piece that has been left outdoors, you can treat it to protect it from the elements for a longer period. There are a few ways to treat wood for outdoor use. You can choose the one that best suits your needs. Here are some of the most common ways to treat wood for outdoor use. 

  1.  Staining – Staining is a great way to protect the wood from UV rays and water damage. It is an inexpensive way to treat wood for outdoor use. This is recommended for outdoor use only if the wood is left untreated.
  2.   Painting – Painting is another common way to treat wood for outdoor use. This is suitable for any type of wood. While painting does not protect wood from water or UV rays, it is a good option if you are using softwoods like pine. –
  3.  Sealing – Sealing is another effective way to treat wood for outdoor use. This is a good option if you want to protect the wood from both the UV rays and water. This is a suitable choice if you are using hardwoods. 
  4. Staining and sealing – Staining and sealing are two effective ways to treat wood for outdoor use. This is recommended if you want to protect the wood from all elements. However, this is an expensive option, and you have to reapply the treatment as the wood weathers.

Conclusion

Wood is a great choice for outdoor spaces. However, you have to treat it before you use it outdoors. There are a few ways to treat wood for outdoor use. Staining, painting, sealing, staining and sealing, and choosing the right type of wood are some ways to treat wood for outdoor use. If you want your outdoor space to look great for a long time, make sure you treat wood for outdoor use.