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Poll: What is the source of my troubles?
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What is the source of my troubles?

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Old 03-05-2012, 12:34 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2012
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I hope it's wood rot!

Hello all!

Delurking to ask a question, although I have benefited from the wealth of knowledge on the site before (thanks!)

I have a rental property that recently went vacant, and is scheduled to be occupied within the week. Went over there tonight to scope things out and discovered looked like some rotted cedar trim by the back door. So I ran out to the borg, got a piece of cedar, went home grabbed my pry bar, nailer, hammer etc. and figured I would replace it and be done. When I pried off that trim piece I found some additional damage. I didn't see channels in the wood, like I would expect if it was WDO (termite, etc.) related, but I took some pictures to post here and see what you guys thought about it and what the mediation will need to be.

I'm quite handy. I'm 27 and have 3 rental units as well as my house. I've only been able to afford all of that by maintaining them myself. Another way to say that is "I can't afford to hire the work out!" Should be okay as I have most tools at this point as well as some major projects under my belt. However - because of the limited time before the new tenant moves in I am in somewhat of a hurry and will have limited time available to work on the property. So I'm trying to avoid such activities as ripping out the subfloor, if possible, at least for now. These folks that are moving in are on a short term lease and I will likely have some time at some point this summer to be in there doing some more extensive work. I'm planning at that time to retile this location, and so it will be much easier to rip out the subfloor then if need be.

Please take a look at these pictures and let me know if you think this was caused by wood rot or something more nefarious, like termites. .

Assuming it's not termites, for a temporary solution, I was thinking about making an epoxy / fiberglass patch for the small holes in the subfloor and using self leveler to bring that up to the current subfloor. Obviously as a temporary solution. Then just replace all the rotted wood either with pressure treated / cedar, or that concrete product that doesn't rot. One thing I'm unsure about the the right side of the door frame. It's also rotted. Can I just multi-master a piece of that out and replace it with pressure treated wood, or must the whole side go at one time?

Any other thoughts are appreciated as well, thanks!

FYI - Full size versions of these images can be viewed at...


Thanks for your help!!!


dustindufault is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2012, 12:40 AM   #2
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Looks like serious wood rot to me...


A picture is worth a thousand words.
Stephen S. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2012, 06:11 AM   #3
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Yep, rot. Termites leave mud trails/tunnels that are easy to spot.
Just Bill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2012, 06:20 AM   #4
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Typical water damage caused by a bad door /improper installation.

Patch it for now---get a new door and fix it right in the summer.
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oh'mike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2012, 09:57 PM   #5
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Looks like rot and you may have mice working on the floor from below on that soft wood. Termite damage would be more inside the boards, they almost look normal but are paper thin and you can poke a hole in the board with a screw driver and it will be hollow.
Old House 1884 is offline   Reply With Quote

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