Wood / Plywood and different forms of timber are used in the renovation of every house and it will die down if it is not taken care off. If it is maintained well, it will last a lifetime. As time passes, wood invites dust and and shows signs of ageing (just like us humans :). Thus wood rot and mould develops due to various atmospheric conditions and leads to slow wood damage. The mushroom-like fruiting bodies often seen are the first visible sign of woot rot. It is important to detect these signs at the initial stage so that further damage can be prevented. Here is how to detect wood rot and mould :
The reason behind wood rot
Wood inherently contains some amount of moisture and is highly prone to rotting. Fungus is hugely responsible for timber rot. Moisture is the most favourable breeding ground for fungus. Oxygen and food are also required for the fungus to develop. As they depend on others to produce their food, they extract nutrients from the wood they develop on.
You can detect them in old properties, or where there is water intrusion for some reason. In the initial stage, it is difficult to distinguish it from the wood rot fungus because they look almost same but in later stages, they are easy to distinguish because of the appearance they create in the woods. The dry rot fungi can spread to other wood also over time, and this ability to spread is one of the main differences between dry rot wood and wood rotting fungus.
Wet rot is a type of timber rot mostly caused by damaged paint finish on the timber, which in turn allows the wood to absorb excessive moisture. Here the damage is limited, though it can affect other areas like the plasters or the decorations as well to a slight extent. The paint might look ok, but sometimes the damage is from inside the timber
Wet wood rot can develop in the kitchen sink, bathroom basins, shower and washing machines where there is risk of leakage of water and may go unnoticed. Always address the problem at a structural level so that it eliminates the possibility of recurring. Prevention is necessary because untreated damp walls may cause serious set backs both economical and heath as time passes.
Clean and dust your wooden items at regular intervals, keep away soil and another debris from the bottom of these.
White timber rot
This is another form of wood rot which makes the affected wood turn white. It will progress from greyish-white to yellowish. When they fully develop, the wood becomes spongy.
Soft timber rot
This is another type of timber rot which is not usually seen inside the home. Though they can attack wood shingles in wet climates. Certain types of timber rot are present for a long time in the wood and cause severe damage while some others are more peripheral and develop “fruiting bodies” on the crust of wood.
How to detect mould
Mould is another form of fungi that causes wood rot. They also grow where there is moisture content. They may cause discolouration, but they cannot decay wood
What they do is that they increase the absorption quality of wood which further makes it susceptible or vulnerable to fungal growth. The sap stain fungi look almost like a surface mould. However, it is also not capable of damaging the structure of wood, it only changes the appearance. They will stop growing when the wood dries out. It indicates that the wood was wet at some point of time, but not now.
Knowing how to detect wood rot and mould can help you protect your precious wooden furniture.