Because timber is a natural product it can deteriorate over time. In nature, wood is eventually broken down in the environment by moisture and living creatures such as grubs and insects. To prevent this process from occurring in timber homes, wood such as pine needs to be treated to ensure its durability and structural integrity in line with the requirements of the New Zealand building code.
There are a number of methods of timber treatment available. At Fraemohs Homes we presently use an Australian product called Vacsol Azure for treating our timber. The wood is coated with special preservatives which protect it against decay and insects. This product is an eco friendly timber treatment because it is non-metallic. Some other methods of treating wood involve the use of metal compounds and there have been some concerns about the health risks and impact on the environment from using such metal-based timber treatments.
Vacsol Azure is designed to be safe and non-toxic and is recommended for use in homes, playgrounds, picnic tables and decks where children and pets may came into contact with it. Similarly, timber treated with the eco friendly timber treatment Vacsol Azure is suitable for use as garden edging, stakes for climbing plants, such as tomatoes and for use in greenhouses.
Vacsol Azure also offers excellent water resistance as the treatment solution includes water repellents and protective waxes.
Handling eco friendly treated timber
If you are building your own Fraemohs kitset home, we recommend that you use normal safety and hygiene measures that you would use on any building site. Your Fraemohs walls are machined to the correct sizes in our factory so no cutting or alterations are needed, but normal care should be taken with other timbers on your project such as ground treated piles and bearers that will be cut on site. These precautions include keeping your work area clean, wearing a mask to avoid inhaling wood dust, and wearing appropriate protective safety equipment, including safety glasses, if you are cutting or drilling timber.
If you have any treated timber offcuts, they can be disposed of through your red bin or at the transfer station. Even though the components of our treatment are not considered harmful at the levels present in the timber, sawdust and shavings are not recommended for composting, mulching or for use as animal litter. Burning of any treated timbers, regardless of how eco-friendly, is prohibited.