What is Dry Rot?

Dry rot is a type of fungal timber decay known as Serpula Lacrymans. It occurs when wood becomes too wet with a moisture content of over 20%, and the wood-destroying fungus attacks the timber.

The most dangerous type of fungal degradation is dry rot. The dry rot fungus is extremely destructive, spreading across brickwork and destroying any wood in its path, including structural timbers, skirting boards, door frames, and flooring. It affects all types of structures, both new and old, and if left untreated, it can be harmful to a property since the fungus can impair a building’s structural integrity and lead it to collapse.

Is dry rot caused by damp?

Dry rot is caused by dampness that germinates the dry rot fungus spore on the timber(usually caused by penetrating damp). This means that it can appear almost anywhere. This type of rot is often caused by leaking roofs, penetrating damp due to defective gutters and masonry and plumbing leaks inside your property.

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Understanding The Causes Of Dry Rot

Dry rot spores are constantly present in the air. If the conditions are right, they will germinate and form hyphae (fine threads of fungal growth) once they settle on wood. If dry rot is not handled, it can significantly lose wood strength and pose a threat to a building’s structural stability.

Dry rot develops when airborne spores come into touch with damp wood with a moisture content of more than 20%. These spores then germinate, resulting in grey root hyphae threads—mycelium forms from the hyphae, which coats the wood in a thick cotton-wool-like substance. The fungus consumes the wood and absorbs its moisture, weakening it. The fungus subsequently develops into a sporophore, a fruiting body that produces new spores to complete the dry rot lifecycle.

Dry rot spores develop into the wood-destroying fungus due to damp timber, and the fungus thrives in moist, damp, poorly ventilated conditions. There are many reasons why timber could be damp in the home, including penetrating damp, condensation, leaking pipes, faulty drainage, broken roof tiles, or a leaking washing machine, thus creating the ideal environment for fungi growth.

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  • Dry Rot Treatment & Remediation Services in Brighton

How to Identify Dry Rot

The longer dry rot is left untreated, the more damage it will cause to your home. Therefore it’s critical to recognise the indicators as soon as possible. Early discovery is crucial to eradicating the fungus. Keep an eye out for the following warning signs:

  • damp or musty smell
  • cracking timber
  • softened or spongy timber
  • discoloured or distorted timber
  • weakened timber
  • black–brown fungal growths.
  • damaged or decaying timber
  • damp or musty smell
  • deep cracks in the timber grain
  • brittle timber or timber that crumbles in your hand
  • concentrated patches of orange-brown spore dust
  • grey strands on timber
  • fruiting bodies that look like large mushrooms.

Is it safe to live in a house with dry rot?

Dry rot is one of the most harmful wood fungi, not only because of how it affects the structural integrity of your building but also because it reflects the underlying damp situation. While dry rot is not a health hazard in and of itself, it can result in costly structural deterioration that eventually becomes a health hazard.

How Dry Rot Affects Your Property

Dry rot can affect any wood type, old or new, in a home or business. This sort of wood deterioration is becoming increasingly common in homes across the United Kingdom. If you don’t take care of your dry rot problem immediately, it could become dangerous for you and your home.

If you have dry rot concerns, the best solution is to schedule a dry rot survey with Sussex Damp Experts. Our specialist surveyors have over 10 years of combined expertise in diagnosing and repairing dry rot, so you can be sure that your property is in good hands.

Unsure Which Type of Wood Rot You Have?

Do you suspect your house is infested with dry rot spread? If you are unsure what type of rot your property is affected by, we can assist. Our team of professionals has extensive experience identifying, removing, and treating wood rot, so you don’t have to.

We are members of the Property Care Association and Trust Mark, and all of our rot treatments come with an XX-year guarantee. Give us a call on 01273 257 765 to speak with our staff about professional rot treatment or to organise a full rot survey on your house. If you want a skilled surveyor to determine if you have rot issues, you can schedule a survey appointment online or by phone.

Booking A Dry Rot Survey

If your home or business is experiencing issues with suspected dry rot infestation, we would recommend a professional timber survey conducted on your property. If you believe you have dry rot in your property, get in touch with our team today on 01273 257 765 or fill in a contact form to book a thorough property survey with our dry rot experts.

Our wood rot experts will identify dry rot in wet timber and determine the moisture content of the affected timbers. They will help you understand the causes and propose treatment options to eliminate this wood-destroying fungus.

Investigating Dry Rot Outbreaks

Before treating dry rot, you’ll need first to consult a professional. They will then need to determine the full extent of the dry rot outbreak. To do this, they will open up the affected area by removing plaster and render in all directions and removing flooring and lifting floorboards. They will then be in a position to identify the infected timbers.

The importance of enlisting professional assistance stems from the fact that removing this timber may jeopardise structural integrity. They’ll be able to help you get rid of any contaminated wood. An expert will also determine whether you require a chemical-based treatment to aid with less severe dry rot issues.

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How We’ll Fix Dry Rot In Your Property

Our professionals will arrive and begin our dry rot treatment process once our dry rot survey is completed, a solution has been agreed upon, and our surveyor has scheduled a convenient time with you. To remedy dry rot in your home, our professionals will take the following measures:

  1. Stop the Moisture Source

    We will locate and remove any wall plaster or infected wood to allow direct access to the treatment area. Our pre-treatment effort will keep dry rot spores from developing in the future.

  2. Remove Damaged Area

    All rotting wood and damaged linings such as panelling, skirting, ceilings, and plaster prevent the rot fungus from spreading further.

  3. Targeted Dry Rot Treatment

    A fungicidal paste creates a chemical barrier if the dry rot fungus has infected structural timbers and masonry. This will not only keep the wood-rotting fungus from re-establishing themselves, but it will also keep wood-boring insects at bay for many years.

  4. Damaged Timber Replacement

    Our experts will begin replacing timber with preservative-treated timbers after they are sure that dry rot has been completely removed from your home.

Sussex Damp Experts: Your Dry Rot Specialists

An inspection is the first step in resolving any damp or dry rot problems in your home. Only true damp problems will be reported, and helpful and cost-effective solutions will be offered by our damp proofing experts at Sussex Damp Experts.

Our moisture proofing specialists may inspect your property, conduct a damp and timber survey, and advise you on the best course of action for repairs. The Property Care Association must approve a damp surveyor, such as our experts (PCA).

Sussex Damp Experts provides a comprehensive choice of damp proofing solutions, and we are confident in our abilities to provide cost-effective repairs backed by our 30 years guarantees.

Whether your home needs dry rot treatment, rising damp treatment, basement waterproofing, timber treatments, or other damp proofing services, you can rely on our damp proofing experts to assess the issues in our detailed surveys and provide you with the most professional services to give you peace of mind in the future.

If you suspect your house has dry rot, call us now at 01273 257 765 or fill out our contact form to schedule a full property inspection with one of our dry rot experts.

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