Wet Rot

What is wet rot

Wet rot is basically timber saturation with a high moisture content around or above 50%. It is easy to treat in that once the affected timbers are removed and the source of moisture ingression stopped, there should be no more wet rot. The danger is when it is left untreated as it can create a myriad of problems including structural damage.

Wet Rot is a fungal growth which in turn is part of a family of fungi called Coniophoraceae. The most common form of this in Ireland is Coniophora Puteana. It spreads through saturated timbers. It does not spread through walls like dry rot, although the area where wet rot is located may have very wet walls due to moisture penetration. This can be remedied by drying out and in some cases rebuilding the walls. The level of work required is dependant on the level of wet rot present. In most cases wet rot treatment is simple and involves the removal and replacement of affected timbers after preventing moisture ingression.

What does wet rot look like

Wet rot fungi is identified by black strands that remain in the damp areas where it commonly grows. There may also be fungus like bodies that can vary from light to dark brown in colour. It may also darken the timber. The most tell-tale sign however is the level of moisture. In some cases there are no signs other than very damp weak timber as the growth is often hidden. The reason for this is the nature of what causes the rot and in many cases a leaking pipe that has not been noticed for a long time or a crack in a wall may be the cause.

Wet Rot Treatment

Treating wet rot is not complicated and involves a few simple but very important steps to follow. First locate and deal with the source of water ingress. Next remove any existing timbers that are structurally weakened and replace them. There is no need for chemical sprays once Wet Rot has been properly removed.

For those with an interest in the science behind our treatments

The science behind the removal and replacement of soaking wet timbers is simple. Replace them and make sure they stay dry and you will never have wet rot. There is no need to use any chemicals for the treatment of Wet Rot. This will save you money and avoid the use of unnecessary treatments. An important point in all of these works is to encourage the homeowner to adopt preventative measures and if the case arises where wet rot is present to use sensible good building practices in order to treat wet rot and maintain the integrity of the building.This is beneficial to both you and the environment. Make the house breathable but also warm and this will help avoid many damp problems. Modern buildings have excellent airtightness but it is always necessary to have good ventilation. 

Examples of wet rot

If you think you may have a wet rot problem you can book a free survey with us by filling in the contact form below or just call us on 049 8554593 or 085 8555897 where you can reach us anytime.