Subject: Possibly rotten floorboards
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
OOH, I'm so glad that there is a specialist out there like yourself. I shall have to check out your web site!!
You wrote "What evidence does the handyman have that there is 'fine rot' in
the floorboards?" He tried to screw the boards down in the hope that they
were simply not tight. No effect after 20 screws were placed in a small
area. He took another look at the visible underside and saw lots of tiny
fine lines which he pointed out to me. I had done the pick test. Except for
a charred section, they were not soft and flaking.
Hmmm.... Well, assuming that the handyman was trying to fasten the
boards into the joists underneath and he couldn't get any to grab, it
means that your joists are deteriorated. Not a happy thought. What
you're going to have to do -- or have done -- is have a section of
boards pulled up and the joists examined. You're just going to have to
keep going as long as you find bad wood.
The question is, how did the joists rot? How old is the house? Is there
a basement, or just a crawl space? Is there ventilation? Is there
moisture? Where are you in the US?
Anyway, with rotten joists you can saturate them with a penetrating
epoxy, such as our CPES, sister the joists with some new wood also
soaked with the CPES, and then put the boards back down, after having
applied the CPES to the undersides. The CPES penetrates the wood deeply
and significantly restricts the ability of any of the rot fungi to reproduce.
Sounds simple, but a fair amount of work for someone, and some expense
Get back to me if you need more info or have further questions.