Wood rot repair is one of the most common home repairs. Most (not all) wood rot occurs on your home’s exterior when your home gets wet and water doesn’t run off or evaporate. While some home repairs might seem optional, you’ll save money by making wood rot repairs as soon as you find the problem.
Minimizing Wood Rot Repairs Around Your Home
How can you save money? Wood rot is caused by wood-destroying fungi that break down the wood cells which are a food source, producing wood rot or decay. When you repair wood rot, you are essentially removing the fungi which is causing the damage and replacing or repairing the damaged sections of wood. Until the fungi are gone along with the conditions (moisture and temperature) needed to support the fungi, more damage will occur.
Your home’s exterior is exposed to the weather year-round and many homeowners don’t realize the most important role of exterior paint is to protect the wood from water damage. The wood trim that bumps out from your home is vulnerable to wood rot because it takes a beating from the weather, and if you don’t paint frequently enough, water finds its way into the wood where it can support wood-eating fungi and yes, carpenter ants which we find frequently.
Where Is My Home at Risk?
Because wood rot occurs in damp areas that do not dry out, it often goes undetected until a remodeling project exposes it. The following areas are the most likely spots for wood rot to get a foothold:
- Window and exterior door frames
- Decks and patios
- Near gaps in exterior siding or roof shingles
How Should I Look for Wood Rot?
Checking your home for signs of wood rot should be an annual mission, and a good time to do it is during your annual weatherproofing tasks.
How Can I Prevent Future Problems?
When it comes to wood rot repair, prevention is the key. It’s easier – and much cheaper – to prevent rot rather than fix it. The following steps will help keep the wood in your house dry so fungi don’t have a chance to set up shop.
- Seal all cracks around exterior doors and windows with caulk.
- Scrape away old hardened caulk, and replace it with fresh caulk.
- Clean gutters regularly.
- Add a covered entryway over doors to keep the rain away from the doors.
- Use a good dehumidifier in any room subject to high humidity
- Install exhaust fans in bathrooms
- Repaint exterior windows and siding if the paint is cracking or peeling.
- Make sure to remove all standing water around the home.
- Replace traditional wood with composite wood.