Causes of Dry Rot

An outbreak of dry rot will only occur where there is a good food source, usually timber, although cardboard boxes and general paper debris can also be suitable materials as they also contain cellulose.  In addition to the food source a moisture content of 20% to 40% must be present to start the attack. 

Once the fungus is growing however, it has the ability to transfer moisture into wood which is drier.  It will flourish in unventilated and humid conditions, which are often encountered in concealed areas.  It therefore follows, that outbreaks of dry rot are often caused by the presence of damp such as overflowing lavatory cisterns, plumbing leaks, rising damps, steam, condensation, defective flashings and inadequately ventilated underfloor areas etc.  Permanent wetness rarely causes dry rot.  It is usually after a leak or water source has been checked and the conditions restored to something approaching normal that an outbreak will start to develop. 

Dry rot is different from the other common timber destroying fungi, in that it has the ability to grow oever and through non-nutrient material.  It can humidify the ambient atmosphere for its vigorous growth in stagnant conditions, and its growth will cease where the ventilation is good.
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Identification of Dry Rot

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