Installation Tips, Safe Practices, Care and Maintenance

  • Installation Tips
    Fasteners and Connectors
    • For the best results, use building-code approved, corrosion-resistant fasteners and connectors for all exterior wood projects.
    • Hot-dipped galvanized steel is recommended and should conform to ASTM A153 for fasteners and ASTM A653, G185 for connectors.
    • For coastal installations, use code approved stainless steel.
    • Stainless steel offers the best protection. Type 304 or higher stainless steel is recommended for very wet environments such as poolside deck. Type 316 or higher is recommended for exposure to salt or saltwater.
    • Caution: Do not mix metals: Use stainless-steel fasteners with stainless-steel connectors and galvanized fasteners with galvanized connectors.
    • Ecolife can be used in direct contact with aluminum products, including flashing, even in continuously wet applications.
    • Direct contact of Preserve®CA treated wood with aluminum products is not recommended.
    • For permanent wood foundations and corrosive environments, such as areas with saltwater spray, stainless steel fasteners are recommended.

    Installation Tips
    • For exterior project applications, treat all field-cut ends of boards and drilled holes with a brush-on wood preservative. Copper naphthenate formulations are available from home centers, lumber dealers and hardware stores. Deck stains and sealers do not provide adequate protection.
    • Place the best-looking side of a deck board face up.
    • Butt boards tightly together during installation as they will shrink slightly in width and thickness as they dry out.
    • Pre-drill holes at the ends of boards to help prevent splitting.
    • Use screws to improve holding performance.
    • Install fasteners flush to the wood surface. Do not overdrive fastener.
    • Install the un-cut end of support posts in ground contact applications.
  • Safe Practices When Working with Pressure-Treated Wood
    • Wear gloves when working with wood.
    • Wear a dust mask when machining any wood to reduce the inhalation of wood dusts.
    • Wear appropriate eye protection to reduce the potential for eye injury from wood particles and flying debris during machining.
    • Wash hands thoroughly with mild soap and water after working with treated wood.
    • All sawdust and debris should be cleaned up and disposed of after construction in accordance with local waste management regulations.
    • Do not burn pressure-treated wood.
      Wash work clothes separately from other household clothing before reuse.
    • Pressure-treated wood should not be used where it may come into direct or indirect contact with drinking water, except for uses involving incidental contact such as fresh water docks and bridges.
    • Do not use pressure-treated wood in circumstances where the preservative may become a component of food, animal feed or beehives.
    • Do not use pressure-treated wood for mulch.
    • Treated wood may be disposed of in landfills or burned in commercial or industrial incinerators or boilers in accordance with federal, state and local regulations.
  • Care for Your Pressure-Treated Wood Project
    • Your outdoor project or deck should last for years. Keep it looking its best with the right wood and deck cleaners, sealers and stains to enhance its long-term beauty.
    • After installation, allow the wood to dry prior to applying any finish. Test the wood with a few drops of water to see if the wood is dry enough to readily absorb the water.
    • Apply the finish to a small portion of the deck to ensure that the wood is sufficiently dry. As soon as the wood is porous enough to accept the stain, it is ready to stain.
    • Apply a high-quality oil or water-based finish with UV protection and water repellent to slow down the process of wood turning gray from exposure to the sun. Always follow finish manufacturer’s application instructions.
    • To provide long term aesthetic appeal for your deck or outdoor project, keep it free of dirt and debris, and apply a water repellent sealer every two years after initial staining and sealant are applied.
    • Liquid detergents, water and a stiff bristle brush will remove most mildew and dirt. 
    • For hard to clean surfaces, use a deck brightener containing oxalic acid and follow the manufacturer’s instructions to retain the wood’s natural beauty. 
    • Never use household bleach or foaming cleaners as they can strip the preservatives and damage the wood fibers leaving an unnatural whitewashed appearance.
    • Use care if a pressure-washer is used for cleaning, as excessive pressure may cause damage to the wood.
  • How to Remove the Grade Stamp on Wood

    Light sanding will remove or lighten the grade stamp's appearance.