What is Dry Rot and What Causes Dry Rot

What is Dry Rot and What Causes Dry Rot

A Guide to Dry Rot

Dry rot is one of the most damaging conditions for your property to suffer from. It grows and flourishes in moisture which can come from a number of sources to include damaged gutters, drips from a leaky pipe, or rain water from the roof.

Dry Rot Damage

Spores exist in just about every home. Unless they are provided with water, they will not germinate. Dry rot can form creating a large fluffy cotton wool like fungus that can cause serious harm to properties within your home. The timber can lose structural integrity over time.

Lifecycle of Dry Rot

Dry rot begins with a tiny spore. When this spore is combined with timber and moisture it turns into hyphae, producing fine white strands. This is where dry rot is allowed to grow and works whiles the funguses starts to break down the timber. The mushroom body is a natural defense system that is formed within the atmosphere where spores are pumped out into it. More than one spore will allow it to germinate and the resulting product is mycelium. This can travel quite a distance seeking timber to attack.

Signs of Dry Rot

You can identify dry rot by the following ways:

• Red Spore Dust
• Cotton Wool Like Cushions
• Crumbling Timber
• Mushroom Like Fruiting Bodies

Dry Rot vs. Wet Rot

There is often confusion about dry and wet rot. The answer is simple. Wet rot requires higher moisture than dry rot to grow. Wet rot needs 50% more moisture than dry rot which requires only around 20% moisture content. Dry rot is also considered a more damaging condition.

What to do with Dry Rot

When dry rot is identified, it needs to be immediately corrected to ensure further decay does not occur and minimize longer term repair costs. Hiring an expert will normally establish the extent of the problem, identify and remove the source of moisture, remove any wood or plaster that is damaged, replace all removed timber with treated wood and advice on additional steps to follow if needed.
Posted on Jul 29, 2013


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