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I just built my first ever deck this week... I used pressure treated SYP.

Spent a whole day on just the railing

I hand routed and profiled my post out of 4x4 post.

Router and profiled my hand rail using 2x4

And made my own balusters out of 2x6

Everything turned out great until I went outside today and noticed all my hand rail post are splitting...( pics included )

What should I do to prevent this? What’s causing it? How do it keep it from happening next time? What can I do now to keep it from getting worse?

I have not sealed the deck or stained it yet. Waiting it to dry... how long do you guys wait typically before staining/sealing/painting?

I did hear from someone hat whenever you cut PT wood that you have to apply some sort of a sealer to the cut ends?

I’m worried my handrails and balusters are going to start developing splits as well...




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Property Mgt/Maint
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Sand the post ends. This will close up the grain. Then apply end grain sealer, I usually just smear clear silicone on the ends. There are still no guarantees, but it will help. Then you need to protect everything as soon as will take a stain or sealer.
Usually it so wet it needs to dry some. It can take 6 months here.
 

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DIY Your Own Air Bed
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It's already cracked. But if you want to prevent further cracking of the post you can countersink some screws to keep crack together. I'd use wood filler to then hide screws but there may be a better product to use outside, others would know better then me.
 

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Remodel and New Build GC
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"How to keep pressure treated SYP from splitting?"

Don't use it....

Really not trying to be sarcastic.... But as a finish wood (railings/decking)...I don't know of any way to prevent splitting/warping.... as a framing material Yes I use it.

This would be in a Colo dry climate with extreems in seasons... maybe it performs better in different climates.
 

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retired painter
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Learn to live with the cracks, that is the nature of PT wood. Any filler that dries hard is prone to crack and/or fall out as the seasons/humidity changes. If I had to fill a crack I would use caulking.
 

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Those 4x4's are called box heart, meaning they contain the center of the log they were cut out of. Those will always split. Doesn't matter the species either. It has to do with how the wood shrinks when it dries. The only way to prevent it would be to hollow out the center, which obviously isn't practical. Or special order timbers that aren't box heart, but that isn't going to happen either. So you you live with that.
 

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Naildriver
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Today's 4x4's are coming from 15 year timber rather than 35 year timber of years gone by. In some instances the timber is so small, all you get is a 6x6 and it is barky. It all is going to check, so don't try to drive screws, etc into it to try and stop it. It doesn't hurt the stability of the wood. The only thing you have to look forward to is the warping of your balusters. Cutting them from 2x6 will release internal energy within the wood that WAS being held together by all the grains. You split those grains and the ability to stabilize. It will happen, so be ready.
 
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It is a deck. Live with it. I see people mitering pt corners perfectly....and then when the sun hits them......oh well. Pt will check, split, cup, warp,.....pick a thing......but it will also be there for a long time
 
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