Property Preservation

At Applewood we also specialise in damp proofing, timber treatment, dry/wet rot and tanking. We use the most up-to-date, specialist materials to eradicate the source of the problem and repair any damage caused to leave your property dry and warm for years to come.

If you suspect you have any damp or wood rot problems it’s important to have it treated as quickly as possible. Applewood can identify the problem and undertake remedial works to keep your property sound.

  • Damp Proofing
  • Wet Rot
  • Dry Rot
  • Woodworm
  • Timber Treatment
  • Tanking

For a free inspection and quotation contact us on 0131

All work is guaranteed.

Dry Rot

What is Dry Rot?
Dry rot is a fungus called Serpula Lacryman that attacks timber in buildings often causing serious damage before becoming obvious. Despite being labelled dry the fungus needs up to 20% moisture in timbers to germinate and can often be found in dark recesses such as sub-floor areas or behind panels. Using wood as a form of food the fungi can spread very quickly, weakening timber and creating a health hazard.

Serpula Lacryman is a microscopic organism that can go undetected for many years. The first signs of an outbreak can be dry, brittle timbers or a brown/orange dust appearing on surfaces. A mushroom like fruiting body can also appear very quickly.

Causes of fungal decay can be easily identified in your property. An outbreak can start anywhere that water can seep in and reach exposed timbers eg. through damaged roofs or gutters or after plumbing leaks. Poor ventilation combined with water seepage will trigger dry rot. Storage area such as sheds, garages and loft spaces can often be prime locations for incubation because they can contain additional food sources in the form of cardboard boxes and are often untouched for lengthy periods of time.

Caught early dry rot rot can be successfully treated by specialist damp proofing and timber treatments. We carry out specialist surveys to investigate the extent of damage and assess the area that requires treatment. This includes a set perimeter around the infected area in case of microscopic spread. To successfully treat the area an Applewood Technician will locate the source of the moisture and repair any damage. All food sources ie. timber will be removed along with any evidence of the fungus. The area will then be treated with a specialist dry rot fungicide before all timbers are replaced with pre-treated materials.

Woodworm

Woodworm is most often caused by the Common Furniture Beetle when it lays its eggs on a suitable timber surface (often softwood such as pine or plywood).

Death Watch Beetles, although not as common, are found in sections of hardwood often after dry rot. When larvae hatches it bores through cracks in the wood feeding and growing while causing unsightly and structural damage. Woodworm can easily be identified where there are small bore holes or tunnels in timber or fine dust around the site of holes. In severe cases timbers can be weakened or damaged to the extent that they disintegrate easily.

Treatment is dependant on the type of insect, whether it is still active and the extent of any infestation and resultant damage. A professional survey is therefore essential to avoid any unnecessary treatments and to recommend the best course of action which can include the replacement of timbers and/or chemical spraying of the affected area.

Selling Your Property?

A Home Report can often be the first indication that there is a damp problem in your property.

We understand that you need to have repairs carried out quickly so that you can provide the necessary guarantees to potential buyers.

Wet Rot

There are a number of fungi such as Mine fungus (Poria vaillantii) or Cellar Fungus(Coniophora puteana) which are responsible for wet rot. All survive where timber has a moisture content of between 40-60% and is most common where wood has been damp for a prolonged period.

Like dry rot the fungi can cause severe damage to the structure of a property although it’s not quite as serious if caught in time. It is most commonly found in basements, wooden floors where joists are fitted to damp masonry or underneath kitchen sinks, washing machines or baths. It causes the strength of timber to weaken and become discoloured, soft and distorted. Although the wood looks darker when damp it can easily look sound if dried out and covered in paint when in fact it is rotten from the inside. Poking a screwdriver into the wood will easily show if it is damaged.

At Applewood we carry out a full inspection to identify the source of any water ingress as well as a general health check of roofing, gutters, windows and doors. Once remedial works have been completed the affected timbers will be replaced and preservative treatments applied. Ways of increasing ventilation will also be introduced before issuing a full guarantee for all preservation works.

Rising damp

Rising damp can be found in old properties where there is often no damp proof course (dpc) or where an existing damp proof course has become defective. All houses built since the 1870s should have a dpc, however, if for example a patio is built over it, then rising damp can occur. It is caused when moisture and ground salt is absorbed from the ground through brick, mortar or stone and can often be detected by horizontal tide marks and discolouration. Rising damp can rise to around a metre in height and causes damage to internal plasterwork and decoration. Floors can also become damp and stained.

To repair damage and treat rising damp skirting boards and plaster are stripped out to expose the brick work. A silicone based chemical is injected in to form a new barrier and the wall is re-plastered using a specialist material with a waterproof additive. In the case of a patio or other external feature being the cause, it can be lowered to below the dpc and allowed to dry out.

Your home can be protected from rising damp by ensuring that plasterwork is damp resistant, particularly at ground level and by ensuring that there is sufficient ventilation to the property.

Tanking

Creating additional living space in a converted cellar or basement can be reasonably inexpensive and can substantially increase the value of your property. By applying a waterproof lining to the areas of a building which are below ground level, previously uninhabitable areas can be converted into kitchens, bathrooms, studies or bedrooms. Without a tanking system damp can rise and penetrate through the structure of your property.

Our tanking systems are covered by an insurance backed guarantee giving you peace of mind and the knowledge that you have a professional job carried out by a qualified tradesman.



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