The American Lumber Standards Committee will publish new design values for No. 2 and lower-grade lumber starting June 1, 2012. Brian Smalley, president of the Southeastern Lumber Manufacturers Association (SLMA) says that both deck builders and framers could be affected by the changes, but that most contractors are prepared. “Users will have to evaluate their building plans to determine if they’ll need to decrease the span between the pieces or use a different grade or dimension of lumber,” Smalley says. “Some builders might find they’re already overbuilding.” Smalley adds that the SLMA is working in league with the Southern Forest Products Association (SFPA) to educate users about the changes. Contractors can contact SFPA with technical questions about the changes.

—Lauren Hunter, associate editor, REMODELING.