As a homeowner, you’re probably aware of common signs of roof problems such as leaking, torn shingles, and cracked or peeling paint. But, what about the problems that aren’t as obvious?
Roof rot is one of the most insidious issues for your home’s integrity. Sometimes, it can start and progress completely unseen. If left untreated, the damaging effects of roof rot can accumulate until you have to pay a significant amount to fix it.
If you want to avoid this problem, you need to know the signs of roof rot and how to prevent it. This article will help you do both. Let’s get started.
Causes and Signs of Roof Rot
Roof rot, also known as wood rot and dry rot, is the side effect of fungi consuming wood. Fungi grow in moist places—at the root of roof rot is water. This could be a pipe leak, a ventilation issue, or a result of humidity or condensation.
The earlier you can spot dry rot, the better your chances of a successful, inexpensive repair. Look out for issues like these:
- A musty smell
- Brittle wood
- Stained drywall
- Dark brown wood
- A sagging roof
- Fungal growth or sprouting mushrooms
One easy test for dry rot is to poke wood with a screwdriver; if it flakes or cracks, you likely have wood rot.
Preventing Roof Rot
While you can’t control the weather, there are many actions you can take to reduce the likelihood of dry rot. Be sure to:
- Seal cracks around doors and windows with caulk
- Put a dehumidifier in the attic, basement, or any humid room
- Repair leaks and other roof damage quickly
- Clean your gutters twice a year
- Ventilate spaces like bathrooms, crawl spaces, and the attic
- If you have a deck, sweep standing water away after it rains
- Have your home inspected once a year
Repairing a Rotting Roof
Sometimes, even the best prevention methods can’t defeat dry rot. While the fungal spores are not dangerous, the damage left behind is a structural hazard that could lead to a collapsed roof.
Dry rot repair is a big job—not even the pros can salvage the damaged wood. While not every case of wood rot leads to drastic measures like replacing your roof, this isn’t a project you should DIY. If you leave any rot behind, the damage will continue to spread.
The full repair process includes removing affected wood, patching it, treating it with a fungicide, and then re-plastering and painting.
Learn More About Roof Rot
Roof rot is too expensive of an issue to ignore. Keep an eye out for the signs of roof rot and do your best to prevent it from damaging your home. Learn more about roof rot today, or schedule a professional roof inspection.
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