Nails Vs. Screws for a Pressure-Treated Deck

Pressure-treated wood is the best choice for building a long-lasting outdoor deck. Galvanized screws are used more often than galvanized nails in deck building because of their staying power. Screws are less likely to pull out of the wood than nails.


Pressure-treated wood is disease and rot resistant. Using galvanized screws or nails does not affect the pressure-treated lumber's effectiveness.


Using nails or screws in the construction of a deck is the personal choice of the contractor--the benefits of nails or screws are slightly different. Galvanized nails could lift from the wood, whereas galvanized screws are less likely to lift and require attention in later years.


Both nails and screws must be made of galvanized metal and designed for use with pressure-treated wood. Nails and screws are different in that a nail is installed with a downward force into the wood and screws are turned in manner that ensures longer-lasting stability.


Preventing pressure-treated boards from overshrinkage is easily achieved by applying a preservative to slow the drying process of the wood. The preservative also protects the tops of the screws or nail heads, making it less likely they will lift from the wood.


The cost for galvanized nails or screws to use on your deck is about the same. If using a nail gun, securing your deck boards is a quick task. Using screws can take more time and effort during installation.

About the Author

Tammy Wood has been writing for more than 15 years, and has been published in the Chicken Soup For the Soul books, "Parenting" magazine and several websites. Wood serves as the director of online marketing for 12 organizations and creative director for BTC Interactive, a newsletter and article archive. She received a degree in business management from the University of Washington.