For centuries pilings have been used to offer a solid foundation for structures built on land or water. In docks and marine structures pilings are fundamental to warranty a long life of the project. Pilings have to be protected from the elements. In the case of wood pilings the right kind of chemical and physical
treatment has to be done before installing them. If pilings are not treated properly it is best to use alternative materials such as fiberglass. Both new and existing pilings can be protected from the elements. New wood pilings can be covered with a plastic layer. UV , sunlight and rainwater can be
damaging to pilings and that is a reason caps are a must.
Among the many alternatives you can install treated wood pilings. For marine use up top a max in wood treatment for marine use of 2.5 CCA. Diameters can go from 5 to 16 or more inches and lengths of 60 feet and more. Greenheart pilings can also be used, however this a renewable resource brought from
Guyana and therefore getting more difficult to obtain in the desired lengths. However these piling don’t even need treatment and are many times more resistant than treated pilings.
Fiberglass Pilings on the other hand have been proven with several hurricanes and seem to be able to withstand much better than other materials. In many cases wood pilings seem to be in great shape when inspected. After a storm surge and a great amount of damage many times the findings show that
wood pilings actually had rot not visible during an inspection and were the weak link to a catastrophic damage to a structure. Fiberglass pilings can last many decades and many times it is well worth the extra investment.
There are many ways to protect pilings from the elements. Among those, are protecting the pile even before it is installed. There are pvc sleeves that can be heat shrunk to provide continuous protection. On already installed pilings black vinyl sheeting can be used to wrap the existing piles. In extreme cases
were changing piles is very difficult a concrete can be poured around the pile to give it many extra years. This is done with the use of a plastic casing. Pilings also have to be protected from the effects of rainwater and UV rays. Plastic caps are an easy way to protect wood piles.
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