A Penta pole is a type of utility pole that is treated with pentachlorophenol, otherwise known as Penta. Penta acts as an effective pesticide that leaves wood highly resistant to nearly all kinds of wood-killing fungi and insects such as termites and powder post beetles. It also acts as a preservative that has been shown to extend the service life of a utility pole by several years.
Penta has been used since 1936, and since then it has become rather controversial in the use of pressure treated wood. It is only really widely used as a wood treatment in the United States due to the impact it is said to have on the environment. However, much of the Penta that is used today as a wood treatment is made using a different process and is said to be much more environmentally-friendly.
How Are Penta Poles Made?
In the past, Penta was infused into wood using a solution made from petroleum oil. While this technique is still used, it has been found to be harmful to the environment in some cases. many companies that make Penta poles prefer to use a biodiesel instead of a petroleum solution. Biodiesel is derived from crops such as soy and corn, making it a much more sustainable material than petroleum. Utility poles that have been freshly treated with biodiesel also do not have the strong gasoline-like smell that Penta poles are known to have. In either case, the effects of a Penta treatment on wooden utility poles will last for several years, although it does degrade in small amounts. This is why it isn’t uncommon to find very small quantities of Penta near the surface of a treated pole even though the treatment is still infused within the wood below the surface.
For those who care about the aesthetic appearance of utility poles, you will be happy to hear that Penta poles have a pleasing, honey-brown color that looks great in most neighborhoods and has a natural yet elegant look. Since Penta is such an effective preservative and pesticide, you can be certain that any utility poles and other wood products treated with it will be looking great for many years to come.Tags: Penta pole