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I also don't like pressure-treated lumber for health issues. I have two puppies who sun themselves on decks. I don't like the idea of their noses and mouths so near chemically treated wood. I would even guess that the chemicals seep and leak out.

  4 answers
  • Ken Ken on Dec 29, 2017
    I've had this discussion before and when people decide something is dangerous no facts or studies will sway them. No chemicals seep out of treated lumber. None. Decking treated with the copper/arsenic compound which is somewhat worrying has not been sold for decades. Just don't use treated decking if you don't want it.

    Cedar is available in some areas and Trex decking is available everywhere. Of course cedar, under the right conditions, can release compounds that are slightly toxic. Is it more toxic than ACQ treated pine? I have no way of knowing but I do use ACQ treated lumber for my raised bed planters that grow vegetables. Am I worried? Not in the least. Trex is made from recycled plastics and wood fibers. As the plastics and wood break down in the sun it is likely that small bits will shed. Would I make a meal of the stuff? Of course not. That does not mean it poses a risk to health any greater than produce that comes from the grocery store.

    My point is that life is not 100% safe. You take your chances in every breath you take. Is treated decking more toxic than things that may be in the soil around my house and yours? Unlikely.

  • Use a different material. There are other options.

  • William William on Dec 29, 2017
    Then go with composite decking. Still use treated wood for the framing.

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Dec 29, 2017
    There are pressure treated woods that don't use arsenic. We redid all the wood floors in our fishing boat last summer with Marine plywood and Marine 2x4's that were the safe wood. You aren't allowed to use the arsenic ones in a boat. Marine wood is more expensive, heavy and very durable, but you have to make sure that you get the safely treated wood. Ask at your home improvement store for the safe treated wood, it is out there.