Mold and wood rot are both produced by fungi, but one is more dangerous to wood than the other. While mold is unhealthy, it will not break down wood like wood rot does. However, because mold also requires moisture to form, its presence is a warning that wood rot could happen.
It is easy to spot the differences between mold and wood rot. Wood rot presents as decay, and mold presents as discoloration, usually black or white.
Wood rot is a dangerous but avoidable condition often found in the wood of older houses. Windows are a particular trouble spot and must be checked for wood rot often.At All-Weather, we have seen it all when it comes to wood rot in Kansas City area homes! Our first priority is helping our clients identify wood rot before it becomes a detrimental issue for your home.
Wood Rot and How to Spot It
Wood rot is exactly what it sounds like: the decay of wood caused by fungi. If the wood around your windows is decaying, that’s a sure indication of wood rot, but it isn’t always visible. We suggest that you press your fingers into the wood. If it feels soft or crumbles, wood rot is below the outer surface of the wood.
What You Can Do About Wood Rot
There are four conditions necessary for rot to occur: wood, oxygen, warmth, and moisture. While fungi is what causes rot, it will not affect your wood if all four of the above aren’t present. Once rot has started, you should replace any wood that is too damaged and use borate products to treat new and old wood. Borate products, like BoraCare and TimBor, work as a fungicide and come in either liquid or powder forms.
Preventing and Avoiding Wood Rot
The key to avoiding wood rot is in eliminating moisture. Of course, it’s impossible to completely avoid moisture from coming into contact with your windows, but there are a few ways you can minimize it so that fungi cannot thrive:
- Paint the Wood: Painting the wood will act as a barrier against water and moisture. This way, you can let your windows get wet without worrying that the water will seep into the wood.
- Remove Standing Water: Remove any standing water (for example, water that pools around your windows during rain storms).
- Promote Good Airflow: Maintaining a good airflow is crucial because the faster your wood can dry, the less chance it has of producing wood rot.