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Wet & Dry Rot

Wet and dry rot specialists

Discovering rot in your property’s timber can be worrying and should be addressed as quickly as possible to avoid it spreading and becoming more difficult and expensive to treat. If left untreated, it may eventually weaken the structure of the whole timber building to such an extent that it may cause it to collapse. If it attacks furniture, it may leave it completely useless at the end. Whether you live in a beautiful wooden house or just have some wooden elements at home, stay alert to any signs of fungus activity, especially after rainfalls or in general when the air is very humid.

Example of dry rot in NorthwichWet and dry rot are caused by a type of fungi that attacks and deteriorates timber. If your home has dry or wet rot, our experts here at Atlantis Damp can identify the source of the problem, treat the affected areas and rectify any structural issues to avoid the rot returning. We’ll also give you some useful hints on how you can protect your house from different types of rot without referring to expensive fungicides.


Wet and dry rot, what’s the difference?

Both wet and dry rot are caused by fungus and produce similar symptoms to begin with.  However, dry rot can cause far more damage than wet rot and is also more difficult to treat as it spreads like wildfire, even travelling through brickwork to reach more timber.

Dry rot

Dry-rot fungus rampages through buildings, rapidly destroying any timber in its path. The fungus, which thrives in moist, unventilated conditions, can cause widespread destruction of structural timbers, skirting boards, door frames, and wood flooring. It can occur in the areas of a property that are not often seen, such as floor voids, or behind timber panelling, so damage may be extensive before the attack is discovered.

Wet rot

Compared with dry rot, wet rot is a less worrying problem. It is basically the timber decaying naturally in the presence of high levels of moisture. There is almost always a structural defect causing the problem, it may be that the wall adjacent to the timber is suffering from damp, or water is collecting on the timber. Any structural problems must be tackled at the same time as the timber is treated, otherwise the problem is likely to reoccur. The problem may just be damaged paint finish on the timber allowing the actual wood to absorb excessive moisture. Damage is normally limited to the timber, although the original structural problem may also cause other areas to be affected by damp (such as plaster or decorations).


Treating wet and dry rot

The correct course of treatment is dependent upon each individual situation, however we strive to use environmental controls, such as isolation and ventilation, which ensure that the damp, unventilated conditions required by dry-rot do not reoccur. However, there may be some instances where removal of the affected timber and chemical fungicide treatments may be required. Our surveyor will investigate fully the source of dry/wet rot within your property and explore the suitable method of treatment. All of the results and feedback will be provided in a full written report, along with recommendations and details of the cost.

What are the signs of wet and dry rot?

Both wet and dry rot cause similar problems, but the problems may be more widespread and damaging in the case of dry rot. The signs of a fungal attack include:
  • Cracked or crumbling timber.
  • A musty distinctive smell.
  • Fungal growth visible on timber.
  • Timber darkening in colour.
  • Soft and spongy timber.

What causes wet and dry rot? Both types of fungal attack occur when conditions are damp and poorly ventilated.  This kind of condition is often caused by a structural defect in a property.  When timber is damp for a long period of time it provides the perfect environment for fungus to spore. A few typical causes of a fungal attack are:
  • Penetrating damp.
  • Rising damp.
  • Poor ventilation.
  • Damp cellars and basements.
  • Leaking roof.
  • Poorly sealed windows and doors.
  • Plumbing leaks.
  • Blocked gutters.