Just about every home or office building uses wood and timber in the construction of its roof. Being an organic and natural material, Mother Nature has her ways of causing decay, and sometimes prematurely. There are two primary causes of timber and roof rot: dry rot and wet rot. Today we are going to look at roof dry rot.
What is Dry Rot?
Dry rot is a fungus that is considered the cancer of timber in homes, as it can spread through a roof so rapidly. It is typically found in moist, unventialted areas of the home. It is able to seep through bricks and affect every piece of wood from inside floors, attic insulation, and paneling.
How to Detect Roof Dry Rot
The appearence of dry rot is typically an off white color that has the feeling of felt, or cotton-wool. If the fungus has been exposed to the sunlight, it often appears in a yellow color. Though dry rot is most often found on wood, if it grows large enough you may also find spores (in a red color) on plastic and painted walls. If you hold the wood that is affected by the dry rot, it basically crumbles with slight pressure.
How to Treat Dry Rot
Think of Dry rot in this way: it is a fungus that carries moisture from one area to another, and potentially up to several yards away. The affected roof wood is often removed, as well as taking out many surrounding yards of wood to ensure all fungus is removed. Afterwards, chemical fungicide treatments can be used to treat other surrounding wood and brick areas, although it is often thought of as unnecessary and too expensive.
Being proactive is design and construction is the new way of battling dry rot infestations. Incorporating proper roof ventialtion systems will defend against moisture buildup that allows dry rot to grow and spread. For other areas of the home such as doors that are in close proximity to brickwork, you can apply a moisture free membrane.
If you have noticed the initial stages of dry rot, or believe dry rot is a likely issue you home or roof is facing, it may be best to have a roofing professional perform an onsite analysis to determine if the home has been affected. Taking care of the issue before it becomes a significant infestation can save you thousands of dollars if you had to completely remove a large amount of affected wood.