Orchard Construction makes it easy for you to feel confident about the fasteners we use with your treated lumber projects.



Electrogalvanized nails were commonly used with CCA-treated lumber; however, E.G. fasteners are not suitable for use with the “new” formulations due to the higher corrosion caused by the chemical formulations. Industry experts now recommend the use of hot-dipped galvanized nails, stainless steel products, or polymer-coated fasteners (acceptable if recommended by the manufacturer) with CA-B and ACQ-treated wood

Treated Lumber


On March 20, 2003 the treated lumber chemical suppliers and treated lumber manufacturers in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), finalized a voluntary agreement to stop producing CCA-treated lumber for residential and consumer use by December 30, 2003.

CCA stands for Chromated Copper Arsenate, a wood preservative formulation containing copper, chromium and arsenic. Copper acts as the main fungicide and also provides some protection against termites. Chromium helps to bond and secure the chemical components to the wood. Arsenic provides protection against termites and copper-tolerant decay fungi.

Arsenic, used in CCA treated lumber, is a known carcinogen. Thus the long debate over arsenic’s safety when used in residential structures. CCA lumber will continue to be produced, but only for use with industrial and commercial applications. It will not be intended for use in decks, swing sets, picnic tables, or residential fencing. Treated lumber manufacturers have responded by providing “new” wood treatments. Alternatives to CCA lumber include:

  • Alkaline Copper Quat (ACQ) – Uses ethanolamine or ammonia to act as the carrier solution. Typical brand names are Preserve, Preserve Plus, NatureWood, and AC2.
  • Copper Azole Type A and B (CBA-A and CA-B) – Contains copper and boron in the preservative. Brand name is Natural Select Wood.
  • Sodium Borate (SBX) – Utilizes boron as an active ingredient. One brand is Envirosafe Plus.


The drawback to these environmentally safer wood treatments is that they are more corrosive to unprotected metal fasteners, in fact, five times more corrosive to common steel, according to the American Wood Preservers’ Association (AWPA). This includes steel fasteners.


The two most important things to remember when selecting deck fasteners, framing nails, decking nails or screws are: (1) holding capacity, and (2) resistance to corrosion. Using the wrong fasteners can compromise the appearance, longevity, and safety of your project.

So, which fasteners should you use for your treated-lumber project? Grip-Rite takes the guesswork out of fastener selection by clearly identifying nails and screws approved for use with the “new” treated lumbers. Look for the bright yellow “Approved for exterior use with all types of treated lumber” sticker on Grip-Rite fasteners 1#, 5#, tubs, buckets and boxes and you’ll know you have made the right choice. You’ll find this sticker on:

  • Stainless steel fasteners, hand drive and collated
  • Hot-dipped galvanized nails, hand drive and collated
  • PrimeGuard Plus-coated fasteners
  • PrimeGuard 10-coated screws

Stainless Steel – We recommend stainless steel fasteners for every outdoor project, including all treated lumber, cedar, redwood, and when used near coastlines. Stainless steel fasteners carry a lifetime guarantee against rust and corrosion when used with treated lumber. These fasteners are packaged in clear, resealable plastic tubs and have a silver label.

Hot Dipped Galvanized – Nails are immersed in molten zinc to insure thicker, even coating. Meet or exceed ASTM A 153 Class D for galvanization. It is important to point out that galvanized fasteners are rust-resistant and not rustproof; there is no guarantee that these fasteners will remain rust-free. Hot dipped galvanized fasteners will have a green label.

PrimeGuard Plus-coated – Patented polymer coating offering protection equivalent to hot dipped galvanized. These fasteners are packaged in clear, resealable plastic tubs and have a gold label.

PrimeGuard 10-coated – This is a patented coating that carries a 10-year guarantee against rust and corrosion when used with treated lumber. PrimeGuard 10-coated fasteners have a gray label.