When it comes to a home, there are small maintenance problems, and there are large ones. And then there are also silent and dangerous ones. Dry rot falls into that last category. Unlike most major forms of home repairs, such as hail damage, roofing leaks, or damaged siding, dry rot is rarely detected until it has already done significant damage. So how do your avoid this problem? Let’s start with three things you should know about dry rot:
1) Dry-Rot Grows Where There Is Moisture
Because dry rot is a fungus, it is moisture- loving. Almost without fail, where there is an untreated leak, dry rot can also be found. But this is also a valuable clue when it comes to finding dry rot – all you need to do is check where moisture is likely to collect. Windowsills, damaged gutters and downspouts, any areas (exterior or interior) where water damage is visible, decks, and any points where wood comes into contact with the ground, are all important areas to check. And if you suspect you have dry-rot, the next step is to inspect the wood itself. If it flakes off easily, can be easily penetrated with a nail or screwdriver, or gives easily to pressure, chances are you have dry rot.
2) Act Fast – But With Caution.
Dry rot is not a repair that can wait. Why? Because it can progress very quickly and do some serious damage to your house. But, before you do anything, it if first important to make sure that your porous-looking wood is not a victim of termites or carpenter ants. Calling a termite inspector can help you differentiate the source of the problem. And if it is determined that you have dry rot, the first thing you’ll want to do is eliminate your moisture leak. After that, it is important to replace the damaged wood with pressure treated wood.
3) An Ounce of Prevention Is Worth A Pound Of Cure.
Better than treating dry rot is simply not having it in the first place – and that requires a little prevention. So what are the best ways to prevent dry rot? Start with ventilation of your attic, crawlspaces, and basement. Then check all your deck, porch, roof, door, and window flashings. Next, make sure all of your gutters, downspouts, and drains are clear. Lastly, keep all wood siding and trim off the ground, and ensure that all water runoff is diverted safely away from your home.
This article is brought to you by ASAP Roofing, a national roofing company that specializes in hail damage, roofing restoration, and weatherization. ASAP has offices in Dallas, Texas, and Denver, Colorado.