Licensing of Wood Treatment Pesticide Applicators in Florida1

Frederick M. Fishel 2

This document explains the licensing and regulation of persons who apply restricted use wood treatment pesticides in Florida as regulated by the Florida Pesticide Law (Chapter 487) and administered by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Wood Treatment Pest Control

All persons who use or supervise the use of wood preservative pesticides, or other pesticides requiring licensure, in wood treatment facilities in the production of treated wood products must have a pesticide applicator license issued by the Bureau of Licensing and Enforcement/Pesticide Certification Section. The Wood Treatment category does not include the use or supervision of restricted use fumigant pesticides. This category is regulated by the Florida Pesticide Law (Florida Statutes, Chapter 487).

Category Certification Standards

Applicators seeking a license in this category must demonstrate practical knowledge of:

  • using wood preservatives;

  • air monitoring procedures;

  • personal protective clothing and equipment;

  • hygiene and related health and safety measures;

  • emergency procedures; and

  • practices necessary to prevent environmental contamination.

License Classification

Certified wood treatment applicators may be licensed as either public applicators or commercial applicators. These are the major differences:

  • A public applicator is a licensed applicator employed by a public or governmental agency. The license is only valid when performing work for the public or governmental agency. The public applicator fee for a four-year license is $100.

  • A commercial applicator is a licensed applicator who is licensed to apply restricted-use pesticides on any property provided they are certified in the category for which the applications are made. A commercial applicator is usually a contract applicator. The commercial applicator fee for a four-year license is $250.


Persons must successfully complete two examinations before they can apply to the Department for a license. These examinations are a Core examination and the Wood Treatment category examination. The Core examination may be taken at any UF/IFAS Extension office. The Wood Treatment category examination may be taken at a UF/IFAS Extension office that offers category examinations. No special qualifications must be met to take the examination. There is no fee to take the examinations.

Study Materials

Manuals and study materials for Core and Wood Treatment applicators who will be taking exams may be obtained from the UF/IFAS Extension Bookstore by calling 1-800-226-1764 or online at The content of the Core exam is based upon the manual, Applying Pesticides Correctly (Figure 1). The content of the Wood Treatment exam is based upon the manual, Wood Treatment. It is available for free download at Sample labels may be obtained from suppliers of pesticide products.

Figure 1. Applying Pesticides Correctly: A Guide for Pesticide Applicators (CORE)
Figure 1.  Applying Pesticides Correctly: A Guide for Pesticide Applicators (CORE)


Applicators must recertify every four years. To recertify, applicators may take the examinations again or attend training and obtain 4 continuing education units (CEUs) approved for the Wood Treatment category and 4 CEUs approved for the Core category. Core CEUs cannot be used to meet the required Wood Treatment CEUs. No substitutions of other types of CEUs are allowed. Opportunities to earn CEUs may be found at

Restricted Use Pesticides Applied in the Wood Treatment Category

Table 1 lists Florida's registered restricted use pesticides at the time of this writing that are applied in the Wood Treatment category and the reason for the restricted classification.

Additional Information

Fishel, F.M. 2005. Pesticide Toxicity Profile: Wood Treatment Pesticides. PI-92. Gainesville: University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Bureau of Licensing and Enforcement, Pesticide Licensing Section, 3125 Conner Drive, Bldg. 8, L-29, Tallahassee, FL 32399-1650, Phone: 850-617-7876, (accessed March 2016).

UF/IFAS Pesticide Information Office, PO Box 110710, Bldg. 164, Gainesville, FL 32611-0710, Phone: 352-392-4721, (March 2016).


Table 1. 

Restricted use wood treatment pesticides in Florida.

Pesticide Common Name

Criteria for RUP


Fetotoxicity and oncogenicity in laboratory animals


1. This document is PI-155, one of a series of the Agronomy Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date June 13, 2007. Revised July 2010, August 2013, March 2016, and March 2019. Visit the EDIS website at for the currently supported version of this publication.
2. Frederick M. Fishel, professor, Agronomy Department, and director, Pesticide Information Office; UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

The use of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information. UF/IFAS does not guarantee or warranty the products named, and references to them in this publication does not signify our approval to the exclusion of other products of suitable composition. All chemicals should be used in accordance with directions on the manufacturer's label.