Osmose Hi-bor® Receives GREENGUARD Certification

Griffin, GA – May 15, 2010 | Osmose, Inc., the premier supplier of wood preservative technologies, has earned GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certification for their Hi-bor® wood preservative technology from the GREENGUARD Environmental Institute (GEI).

GREENGUARD Children & Schools Certification indicates that a product has undergone rigorous testing and has met stringent standards for low volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions. Products certified to these criteria are suitable for use in schools, offices, and other sensitive environments. Certified products are listed in the free online GREENGUARD Product Guide which is a valuable tool for architects, designers, product specifiers, and purchasing organizations that want to locate, specify, and purchase low-emitting products for indoor environments. “By achieving GREENGUARD Certification for their Hi-bor preservative technology, Osmose demonstrates to architects, specifiers, builders and contractors their dedication to improving indoor air quality and providing low-emitting VOC products,” said Henning Bloech, Executive Director of GEI.

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Resurface Your Old Deck To Look Like New

May 12, 2010 | The easiest way to renew your pressure treated wood deck is to thoroughly clean it of dirt and debris. Also, make sure all the lumber fasteners are countersunk into the surface. Scrub rust marks and stains from the surface, then sand down any visible imperfections in the wood deck surface with a portable walk behind sander. These deck sanders make quick work when sanding wood decks and can be rented from your local equipment rental outlet.

If a board’s appearance can’t be revived, consider flipping the board and using the other face. If rot has set in or a plank is split, then you should replace the treated lumber deck board to ensure safety. Stain and seal the entire wood deck surface to protect it from the elements. By staining and sealing the wood surface you’ll help restore your deck’s appearance. And hopefully, for a few bucks and a little elbow grease, you’ll be able to squeeze a few more summers out of your pressure treated wood deck.

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U.S. Construction Spending Increases

May 12, 2010 | Construction spending in the U.S. unexpectedly increased in March, propelled by gains in state and local government projects.

The 0.2 percent increase brought spending to $847.3 billion, and followed a revised 2.1 percent drop in February that was larger than previously estimated, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The value of private projects dropped to the lowest level in 11 years.

Federal government stimulus funds may be trickling down to the state and local level, promoting construction of power plants, transportation systems and hospitals. Other areas of the economy are struggling as high building vacancies and low plant use mean spending on commercial projects will continue to be depressed in coming months.

Read the full article on www.businessweek.com.

Good News From The Housing Sector

May 12, 2010 | Recent reports on housing starts, new home sales and housing prices show that the housing recovery continues.

The housing crash is the single most important factor that started this recession, so it would be nice to know when it will end.

Although the housing inventory exceeded the demand in 2007 and 2008, we have known for a while that the fundamental supply and demand ingredients would permit a genuine housing recovery to begin in 2009. As demand caught up, housing prices stopped falling and stabilized at more normal levels.

Read the full article on the NY Time Business Blog here.

Lumber Costs Jump Through The Roof

May 12, 2010 | In the past two years, John Sockaci has seen a drop in calls from people wanting new homes built. But as he and his crew remain busy building additions, putting up drywall and other projects, the general contractor from North Sewickley Township has seen another trend: The price of lumber has gone through the roof.

“It went up ever since the price of gas went up,” Sockaci said.

The price of lumber has stacked up dramatically in the last year, more than double from last year, according to the National Association of Home Builders, which estimates that the cost of lumber and wood products account for about one-third of the costs of materials used to build a home.

From the everyday Joe who wants to build or repair a deck to the homebuilder who is trying to catch a break, the steep rise in construction costs could hurt.

You can learn more by viewing the original posting on www.timesonline.com.

Trex® Announces First-Quarter 2010 Results

Market Demand for Trex Transcend® Very Strong

WINCHESTER, VA – May 12, 2010 | Trex Company, Inc., manufacturer and distributor of Trex® decking, railing, fencing and trim, today announced financial results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2010.

Net sales for the first quarter of 2010 totaled $66.3 million compared to net sales of $67.7 million for the 2009 first quarter. Gross margin declined 60 basis points from Q1 2009 due primarily to start-up costs associated with Trex Transcend®. The company reported a net loss of $4.6 million, or $0.31 per diluted share, for the 2010 first quarter compared to a net loss of $3.1 million, or $0.21 per diluted share, for the 2009 period.

You can learn more by viewing the original posting on MarketWatch.com.

May Is Deck Safety Month

May 12, 2010 | Your deck is the perfect place to enjoy the warm weather with friends and loved ones. But an unsafe deck could possibly collapse, causing serious injuries to you and your guests.

The number of deck failures and resulting injuries has been increasing at an alarming rate. Between 2000 and 2008, there were at least 30 deaths reported as a direct result of deck collapses, and more than 75 percent of people on a deck when it collapses are injured or killed. With 40 million decks in the United States that are more than 20 years old, it’s important for homeowners to check their deck.

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DeckTools® Offering Free Webinar on 5/7/10

Seeing is buying…

April 30, 2010 | Imagine showing a prospective customer a picture of their dream deck — and not just a drawing or sketch, but a realistic, full-color, 3D image they can look at from any angle. DeckTools®, a sales, design and estimating software program for decks, makes it easy for deck builders and suppliers to create one-of-kind deck designs right from their laptops.

Customize nearly every detail, from the deck shape and railings to materials, connectors and fasteners, while quickly generating plans, proposals and material lists. DeckTools® users are seeing 30% increases in their closing rates and 40% increases in the overall sale price of deck packages with DeckTools®.

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Wood Preservatives Dominated by Copper Azole

Type C is the most advanced formulation…

April 30, 2010 | Since 2002, alkaline copper quaternary (ACQ) and copper azole have competed over preserving wood used in non-industrial applications. ACQ had an early lead as the more common replacement for CCA (chromated copper arsenate), but there has been a significant trend toward residential treated lumber protected by copper azole due to benefits of the azole technology.

Over the past 10 years, deck builders have been introduced to wood protected by several preservatives in differing variations. Out of this competitive mix, Copper Azole has emerged as the most common preservative for residential treated wood. It provides wood products with long-term resistance to termites and decay fungi.

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How To Float And Not Leave Shore

April 15, 2010 | There are many ways to get yourself out before the public. Building a float and participating in some local parades is a good way to show people that you are out there. This is one thing that we did this past year. Operating from word of mouth with practically no marketing budget for almost ten full years, this economy drove us to getting our name out in front of many more homeowners. The float idea came up and seemed like an inexpensive and fun way to accomplish this. It also gave an opportunity to work at something that was not constrained by the site or someone else’s ideas.

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