Pressure Treated Wood
One of the most common types of wood used to build fences in harsh weather areas (like Western New York) is pressure treated southern pine. There are many different chemical preservatives and processes used to treat exterior wood products. The main idea behind these processes is to increase the durability of the wood against exterior conditions, including solar and UV rays, moisture and termites. The main chemical process used to treat the pressure treated wood we use to build our fences is called ACQ (Alkaline Copper Quaternary). To save you most of the technical mumbo-jumbo, this process combines copper (a fungicide) with another chemical which acts as an insecticide. Even though this newer process uses less harmful compounds than older pressure-treating processes (such as those that used arsenic), pressure treated wood should still not be burned and care should be taken when handling the wood. Although pressure treated wood has increased durability against termites and some exterior elements, staining the fence is still recommended in order to achieve maximum protection.