How Long Does Pressure Treated Wood Take To Dry? Discover the Optimal Drying Time!

How Long Does Pressure Treated Wood Take To Dry

Pressure treated wood is a popular choice for outdoor projects due to its resistance to rot and insects. However, it is important to allow pressure treated wood to dry properly before using or staining it. Understanding how long it takes for pressure treated wood to dry can help ensure the success of your project.

The Drying Process

When pressure treated wood is manufactured, it undergoes a process where chemicals are forced deep into the wood fibers. These chemicals help protect the wood from decay and insect damage. However, this process also leaves the wood wet or damp, and it needs time to dry out before it can be used.

How Long Does Pressure Treated Wood Take To Dry

Drying Time Factors

The drying time of pressure treated wood can vary depending on several factors. These factors include the climate, weather conditions, the size and thickness of the wood, and the type of wood preservative used. In general, pressure treated wood can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months to fully dry.

Climate and Weather Conditions

The climate and weather conditions play a significant role in drying pressure treated wood. In areas with high humidity or rainy seasons, the drying time may be longer compared to areas with low humidity or dry climates. If the wood is exposed to direct sunlight, wind, and good air circulation, it will dry faster. However, extreme heat or prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can also cause the wood to warp or crack, so it’s important to find a balance.

Size and Thickness of the Wood

The size and thickness of the pressure treated wood will also impact the drying time. Thicker and larger pieces of wood will take longer to dry compared to smaller or thinner pieces. It is essential to allow more time for thicker boards or lumber, as they retain moisture for a longer period.

Type of Wood Preservative

The type of wood preservative used in the pressure treatment process can affect the drying time. Some wood preservatives contain solvents that help accelerate the drying process, while others may take longer to dissipate. It is crucial to check the instructions provided by the manufacturer or consult an expert to understand the specific drying time for the wood preservative used.

Safe To Use or Stain

Before using or staining pressure treated wood, it is essential to ensure that it is adequately dry. A moisture meter can be used to measure the moisture content of the wood. Generally, the wood should have a moisture content below 15% before any further treatment can be applied. Applying paint or stain on damp wood can lead to adhesion issues and could compromise the longevity of the finish.

It is worth noting that kiln-dried pressure treated wood is available in some regions. Kiln-drying accelerates the drying process by using high temperatures to remove moisture from the wood. This type of pressure treated wood is ready to use or stain immediately after purchase, requiring no additional drying time.

How Long Does Pressure Treated Wood Take To Dry


Patience is key when it comes to drying pressure treated wood. It is important to let the wood dry adequately to ensure the success of your outdoor projects. The drying time can vary based on climate, weather conditions, size and thickness of the wood, and the type of wood preservative used. By understanding these factors and using moisture meters if necessary, you can determine when it is safe to use or stain your pressure treated wood. Remember, allowing the wood to dry properly will result in a long-lasting and beautiful outdoor structure.

Md Meraj

This is Meraj. I’m the main publisher of this blog. Wood Working Advisor is a blog where I share wood working tips and tricks, reviews, and guides. Stay tuned to get more helpful articles!

Recent Posts