A Tag For Every Application

Whether building a deck, fence or a garden bed, it is important to understand which treated lumber to use for these outdoor projects. Making an educated decision will help prevent rot and decay in the future.


This month, ProWood is officially introducing our new bold, black end tags. ProWood is committed to education, making it easier than ever for DIYers and building professionals alike to find the right treated lumber for their project. Each end tag features the ProWood logo as well as a color bar that indicates the treatment type and appropriate application.

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Being able to understand the capabilities, and also the limits, of treated lumber can ensure projects and structures are built to last. Each color bar on the end tag represents a treatment option: Light Duty, Above Ground, Ground Contact, Critical Structure, Borate, and Naturals. Generally, manufacturers and dealers are embracing ground contact/general-use treated lumber to eliminate confusion and to ensure their customers are covered. However, our focus is on educating homeowners and professionals to not only make the right decision, but to understand the reason behind it. Our three most common treatment options available are ProWood Light Duty, ProWood Above Ground, and ProWood Ground Contact.

ProWood Light Duty

Represented by a white bar on the end tag, it’s made for non-structural projects that are easily replaced and maintained. The recommended applications for this treatment option include fence pickets, lattice, and landscape timbers. This option comes with a 1-Year Limited Warranty (in proper application).

ProWood Above Ground

Represented by a gray bar on the end tag, Above-Ground treated lumber is best suited for elements that are easily replaced, maintained, and installed at least 6 inches above the ground. The recommended applications include railings, balusters and fencing, however, this treatment option is not suitable for deck joists, beams, or near-ground uses. ProWood Above Ground is backed by a Lifetime Limited Warranty against rot and fungal decay, and termites (in proper application).

ProWood Ground Contact

Represented by a green bar on the end tag, Ground Contact is our most widely used general-purpose treated lumber for above-ground, ground level, and freshwater applications. This treatment option is required for elements critical to the integrity of the structure and difficult to replace- such as ledgers, beams, joists, and posts. Ground Contact treated lumber is recommended for projects with inadequate ventilation, frequent moisture, or in contact with the ground (like garden boxes). ProWood Ground Contact is backed by a Lifetime Limited Warranty against rot and fungal decay, and termites (in proper application).

Questions to Ask the Customer


If uncertain about the end use for a customer’s project, ask these questions to determine the type of treatment that is recommended for them:

  • Will the lumber be difficult to replace or maintain?
  • Will the lumber be critical to the integrity of a structure?
  • Will the lumber be 6 inches or less from the ground (or touching the ground?)
  • Will the lumber be subject to inadequate ventilation?
  • Will the lumber be exposed to frequent or prolonged moisture?

If the answer is YES to at least one, then ProWood Ground Contact treated lumber should be the recommendation. This treatment option is always a safe choice to ensure the quality and integrity of their project for years to come.

For more information specific to the applications, visit WWW.PROWOODLUMBER.COM/USE


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