Porch railing and screen

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  #1  
Old 02-29-12, 12:09 PM
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Porch railing and screen

I would like to build an enclosure to my "Florida Room". A "Florida Room" I guess is similar to a porch?

Right now it's just a covered space surrounded by screen. I would like to put up some wood partition to give it some more privacy on one side. Not completely closed in but may be something like this.



or even better this.



My question is since I am in hot and humid Florida I should use pressure treated lumber for this?

Is there a way to stain PT lumber such that it looks like "hardwood"? I would like for it to NOT look like a typical fence.

Thanks in advance for any comments.
 
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Old 02-29-12, 12:27 PM
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You could use PT but I think it always looks like PT unless you paint it. Up here, I'd use cedar and on the west coast they'd use redwood, not sure what the best rot-resistant wood choice is in FL.
 
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Old 02-29-12, 12:52 PM
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Cypress might look nice...though it might have a tendency to twist if not dried before milling.

When you say "hardwood", if you mean oak or maple or similar...those would be bad choices for the actual wood IMO.

I think a bunch depends on what would work with what you have. Cedar or cypress will weather to a maintenance free silver finish.

btw...a Florida room is more like a screened in porch or with windows. Not like a non-enclosed porch or deck that has a roof. Do a search for florida room pictures and you'll see what I mean.
 
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Old 02-29-12, 03:42 PM
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PT, cedar and cypress are pretty much your only choices in fla. Most any thing else will rot or get eaten by bugs
 
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Old 03-02-12, 07:08 PM
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Cedar and Cypress are quite expensive. I asked around a 2x4x8' cedar is $14 each and PT#2 is $3. I think cypress is even more.

I guess if I have to use PT, is there a way to stain it such that it looks more like regular wood and not PT?
 
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Old 03-03-12, 05:24 AM
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Once it gets dry enough it will take an oil stain like regular wood although the color will be affected some by the PT chemicals. The big thing is poly. Unless the PT wood is very dry - poly won't stay adhered long term If the PT is dry, poly should adhere ok but only if the wood is completely protected from the weather

If this deck is exposed to the elements, I'd use a toner or translucent deck stain. They don't hold up as well as semi-transparent or solid stain but will be closer to the look you want.
 
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Old 03-03-12, 09:37 AM
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Thanks marksr. I can order the PT wood and have it sit in the garage for a month or two for it to air dry that's not a problem.

So for staining it must be an oil based stain? I hate using oil based stain due to the odor and chemicals. Any chance of a water based stain will work? It will be exposed to the elements, rain, wind, bugs, lizards, spiders and all that.
 
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Old 03-03-12, 04:14 PM
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Ok, it is exposed to the weather - I didn't know for sure

Oil base stains don't hold up all that great in fla's intense sunlight. Latex or waterborne would be the way to go. Waterborne can be had in a toner or translucent stain. I don't know if you have a Color Wheel store near you but they used to have a latex translucent stain that worked well on siding. I don't remember if it was rated for decks or know if they still make it.

IMO it would be better to nail/screw down the PT decking as soon as possible. That should prevent any of it from warping as it dries out. Barring anything out of the ordinary, it's no big deal to clean up the deck and stain it later. Depending on how wet the PT is when bought and weather conditions, it takes between 6 weeks and 3-4 months for the wood to dry out from the PT process.
 
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Old 03-04-12, 12:57 AM
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MiamiCuse,

You're talking about PT lumber, and you're worried about the chemicals in the STAIN???? There are more chemicals in a board foot of PT lumber than there would be in the amount of stain that board foot could absorb in 3 or 4 coats of stain!!!!
 
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Old 03-04-12, 07:29 AM
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Yes it is in hot and humid Miami.

However, my concern with building it and staining it later is right now it is in March. If I do it say in the next two weeks with new PT lumber, rain comes in April and will rain every day for months, then we have the hurricane season till November. I am not sure the wood can dry out if it is rained on every day? Will it still be OK if I don't stain it till next November/December?

The other issue is part of the railings will rest against some aluminum screen framework, once I put it up I will not be able to stain it from one side.
 
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Old 03-04-12, 09:51 AM
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You can buy dried PT lumber but it's expensive It should be ok to wait until fall although you will need to wash the deck. Usually a bleach/water solution is all you need. They also sell a deck brightner if needed. Wood typically dries quicker from rain or washing than the PT process.

If you stain the inaccessible side of the railing before install and leave the rest bare, the moisture would have an unsealed way out and hopefully wouldn't have a detrimental effect on the stained side.
 
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Old 03-04-12, 10:29 AM
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Don't put aluminum in contact with the PT!! The copper ions in the PT will literally eat the aluminum. Either use something that is hot dipped galvanized, wood, or stainless steel. Keep that in mind when you choose fasteners to assemble the railing as well. Hot dipped galvanized, stainless steel, or a screw specifically coated for contact with PT lumber.
 
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Old 03-04-12, 10:47 AM
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You can use window wrap tape to separate the Al from the PT wood.

Sorry to go off subject a bit...but has anyone gotten black stains using Deckmate screws in the new PT wood? Is it the screw or am I just getting mold around the hole? Not that mold is a big issue out here.
 
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