Home Mold in PA, DE, MD and NJ, including Wilmington, Philadelphia & Newark.

Dry Rot & Brown Rot in Basements and Crawl Spaces

Mold Removal and Remediation in Greater Philadelphia and Baltimore

Dry rot damaging wood in Berwyn

Damage from dry rot creates small, rectangular pieces of crumbling wood on the surface. Dry rot damage is often mistaken as a termite infestation.

Dry rot (also known as brown rot) is one of the most severely damaging decaying forces on household wood in the world.

Approximately 20 billion board feet of timber are destroyed by wood rot in the United States each year-- far more destroyed wood than is damaged annually by fire!

Replacement wood used to repair damage caused by wood rot accounts for almost 10 percent of the annual wood production in the U.S. alone.

Basement Systems USA has a long history of experience in eliminating, preventing, and controlling dry rot infestations in homes throughout Pennsylvania, Delaware & Maryland, including Chester, Drexel Hill, Marple, New London, Newark, Perryman, Philadelphia, Smyrna, Springfield, Upper Darby, Wilmington and areas nearby.

If you have a dry rot problem in your home and would like more information, call or e-mail us today for a free dry rot control estimate!

What is Dry Rot & Brown Rot?

"Dry Rot" is a term most often used to describe a particular kind of dry, cracking, rotting wood. However, dry rot occurs because of a variety of brown rot species, most notably the "true" dry rot fungus known as Serpula lacrymans.

It originally got its name from the thought that it did not need water to survive and used a fermentation process to survive. Research has long since been proven untrue, and it is now called, more appropriately, "brown rot", although the old name hangs on.

Dry rot needs much less moisture than other types of wood rotting fungi--a wood moisture content of at least 28-30% -- to survive. While there is no official proof on the subject, many contractors have observed that dry rot also will not grow on wood with too much moisture.

Protect Your Home From Dry Rot!

The Bad News
The Good News
  • While dry rot is not the most common type of rot, it can deal serious damage to your home and endure conditions that are too dry for other types of rot to thrive. In fact, up to a 75% loss in the toughness of the wood [PDF] is possible with just a 1% decrease in the wood's weight of the wood.
  • Dry rot fungus spores are present in most homes and can survive for several years, waiting for the right conditions to grow.
  • Dry rot can pull moisture from moist areas to dry areas. It grows through mortar, concrete, masonry, and behind plaster.
  • Despite its name, dry rot needs moisture to produce spores-- at least 28-30% moisture content within the wood with a relative humidity of 95% or higher. Most softwood timbers in dry homes, especially in the upper levels, have a moisture content of 12-15%.
  • Dry rot problems in basements and crawl spaces can easily be solved by controlling moisture by sealing and dehumidifying the space.
  • Treatment of the wood products such as boric acid are known to eliminate and prevent dry root fungi.

Identifying & Treating Dry Rot or Brown Rot Problems in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware & Maryland

Wood severely damaged by dry rot damage in Chatham

Damage from dry rot creates small, rectangular pieces of crumbling wood on the surface. Dry rot damage is often mistaken as a termite infestation.

A common first indication of dry rot in a home is the appearance of a "red brick dust". This is actually an accumulation of fungal spores that are covering the surface, waiting for the proper conditions to start to grow.

An outbreak of dry rot commonly occurs several months after a household water event, such as flooding, bursting washing machine hoses, a failed water heater, or leaking pipes.

Dry rot is also common in vented crawl spaces and basements with flooding. Detection is most common after the damage is already significant. At this point, the following steps are recommended:

Steps to Dry Rot Cleaning & Repair

  1. Remove Damaged Wood: All wood that shows decay or visible fungus should be removed, as well as all wood within one meter of the visible decayed material.
  2. Remove Materials Near Damage: Plaster, paneling, linings, and ceilings around the dry rot areas can also contribute to the damage and should also be removed.
  3. Wire brush Affected Area: Using a wire brush, loose material is removed from all surfaces within 1.5 meters of the furthest edge of the infestation, including metal, masonry, and pipes. Resulting dust and debris is removed as well.
  4. Disinfect area: A disinfectant is applied to all wood, masonry, and exposed soil in within 1.5 meters from the damage.
  5. Rebuild: Substantially rot-damaged beams, joists, and posts are replaced with pressure-treated wood.

Preventing Dry Rot in a Basement: Remove all standing water sources, then install a plastic vapor barrier on the walls and floors. Install a self-draining dehumidifier powerful enough to dry the area. (At least a 100-liter model)

Preventing Dry Rot in a Crawl Space: Seal off all crawl space vents and door covers. Encapsulate the crawl space with a crawl space liner, then install a self-draining crawl space dehumidifier.

Dry Rot Alert!

Architect's Journal
reports that dry rot can growthrough damp mortar, concrete, masonry and behind plaster.

This makes remediation of dry rot complicated and expensive, and it can lead to future problems with dry rot if it is not treated properly.

Preventing Dry Rot Problems in Your Basement or Crawl Space

Basement Systems USA can help you eliminate dry rot problems at their source. We can dry your basement or crawl space, eliminate flooding problems, and seal out humidity.

This not only eliminates dry rot problems, but also creates an environment that is inhospitable to mold, wet rot, and mildew, while helping to keep out termites, carpenter ants, cockroaches, crickets, and other household pests.

We offer FREE, no-obligation dry basement and crawl space quotes in our service area. We can answer all your questions and point out the sources of humidity and moisture in your home.

We service Pennsylvania, Delaware & Maryland, including Cherry Hill, Chester, Drexel Hill, Marple, New London, Newark, Perryman, Philadelphia, Smyrna, Springfield, Upper Darby, Voorhees, Wilmington, and many areas nearby.

Looking for a price? Get a no cost, no obligation free estimate.

Serving PA, DE, MD and NJ including the Greater Philadelphia area
Cities in Kent County, DE
Smyrna

Cities in New Castle County, DE
Bear
Claymont
Delaware City
Hockessin
Middletown
New Castle
Newark
Townsend
Wilmington
Yorklyn

Cities in Anne Arundel County, MD
Curtis Bay
Linthicum Heights

Cities in Baltimore County, MD
Baldwin
Baltimore
Boring
Brooklandville
Butler
Catonsville
Chase
Cockeysville
Dundalk
Essex
Fork
Fort Howard
Freeland
Glen Arm
Glyndon
Gwynn Oak
Halethorpe
Hunt Valley
Hydes
Kingsville
Long Green
Lutherville Timonium
Maryland Line
Middle River
Monkton
Nottingham
Owings Mills
Parkton
Parkville
Perry Hall
Phoenix
Pikesville
Randallstown
Reisterstown
Riderwood
Rosedale
Sparks Glencoe
Sparrows Point
Stevenson
Towson
Upper Falls
Upperco
White Marsh
Windsor Mill
Overlea
Carney

Cities in Baltimore City County, MD
Baltimore
Brooklyn

Cities in Carroll County, MD
Finksburg
Hampstead
Marriottsville

Cities in Cecil County, MD
Cecilton
Charlestown
Chesapeake City
Childs
Colora
Conowingo
Earleville
Elk Mills
Elkton
Georgetown
North East
Perry Point
Perryville
Port Deposit
Rising Sun
Warwick

Cities in Harford County, MD
Aberdeen
Aberdeen Proving Ground
Abingdon
Bel Air
Belcamp
Benson
Churchville
Darlington
Edgewood
Fallston
Forest Hill
Gunpowder
Havre De Grace
Jarrettsville
Joppa
Perryman
Pylesville
Street
White Hall
Whiteford

Cities in Howard County, MD
Elkridge
Ellicott City
Woodstock

Cities in Kent County, MD
Betterton
Chestertown
Galena
Kennedyville
Massey
Millington
Rock Hall
Still Pond
Worton

Cities in Queen Annes County, MD
Church Hill
Crumpton

Cities in Burlington County, NJ
Beverly
Birmingham
Bordentown
Browns Mills
Burlington
Chatsworth
Chesterfield
Columbus
Cookstown
Delanco
Delran
Florence
Fort Dix
Hainesport
Jobstown
Juliustown
Lumberton
Maple Shade
Marlton
Medford
Moorestown
Mount Holly
Mount Laurel
New Gretna
New Lisbon
Palmyra
Pemberton
Rancocas
Riverside
Riverton
Roebling
Shamong
Southampton
Tabernacle
Trenton
Vincentown
Willingboro
Wrightstown

Cities in Camden County, NJ
Audubon
Bellmawr
Camden
Cherry Hill
Collingswood
Gloucester City
Haddon Heights
Haddon Township
Haddonfield
Merchantville
Mount Ephraim
Oaklyn
Pennsauken
Atco
Barrington
Berlin
Blackwood
Cedar Brook
Clementon
Gibbsboro
Glendora
Lawnside
Magnolia
Runnemede
Sicklerville
Somerdale
Stratford
Voorhees
Waterford Works
West Berlin
Winslow

Cities in Gloucester County, NJ
Bridgeport
Clarksboro
Deptford
Gibbstown
Mickleton
Mount Royal
National Park
Paulsboro
Swedesboro
Thorofare
Westville
Woodbury
Clayton
Ewan
Franklinville
Glassboro
Grenloch
Harrisonville
Malaga
Mantua
Mullica Hill
Newfield
Pitman
Richwood
Sewell
South Harrison Township
Wenonah
Williamstown
Woodbury Heights

Cities in Salem County, NJ
Pedricktown
Penns Grove
Alloway
Deepwater
Elmer
Hancocks Bridge
Monroeville
Norma
Pennsville
Quinton
Salem
Woodstown

Cities in Berks County, PA
Mohnton
Morgantown

Cities in Chester County, PA
Atglen
Avondale
Berwyn
Chester Springs
Coatesville
Cochranville
Devon
Downingtown
Elverson
Exton
Glenmoore
Honey Brook
Kennett Square
Landenberg
Lincoln University
Malvern
Nottingham
Oxford
Paoli
Parkesburg
Phoenixville
Pottstown
Spring City
Thorndale
Toughkenamon
West Chester
West Grove

Cities in Delaware County, PA
Aston
Brookhaven
Broomall
Bryn Mawr
Chadds Ford
Chester
Cheyney
Clifton Heights
Crum Lynne
Darby
Drexel Hill
Essington
Folcroft
Folsom
Garnet Valley
Glen Mills
Glenolden
Havertown
Holmes
Lansdowne
Marcus Hook
Media
Morton
Newtown Square
Norwood
Philadelphia
Prospect Park
Ridley Park
Sharon Hill
Springfield
Swarthmore
Thornton
Upper Darby
Villanova
Wallingford
Wayne
Woodlyn

Cities in Lancaster County, PA
Adamstown
Akron
Bird In Hand
Christiana
Conestoga
Denver
Drumore
East Earl
Ephrata
Gap
Gordonville
Holtwood
Kinzers
Kirkwood
Lancaster
Leola
Lititz
Millersville
Narvon
New Holland
New Providence
Paradise
Peach Bottom
Pequea
Quarryville
Reinholds
Ronks
Smoketown
Stevens
Strasburg
Terre Hill
Willow Street
Bainbridge
Bart
Bausman
Blue Ball
Bowmansville
Brownstown
Columbia
East Petersburg
Elizabethtown
Elm
Goodville
Hopeland
Intercourse
Lampeter
Landisville
Manheim
Marietta
Martindale
Maytown
Mount Joy
Mountville
Penryn
Reamstown
Refton
Rheems
Silver Spring
Talmage
Washington Boro
West Willow
Witmer

Cities in Montgomery County, PA
Ardmore
Haverford
Mont Clare
Oaks
Wynnewood

Cities in Philadelphia County, PA
Philadelphia

Please call us at: 1-410-858-4610
Click for the BBB Business Review of this Waterproofing Contractors in Elkton MD
Testimonials
Press Release

Basement Systems USA Earns Three Awards at 2013 Basement Systems Convention

Basement Systems USA received awards for their basement waterproofing, foundation repair, and basement finishing services at the 2013 Team Basement Systems Convention.
Read full press release

2012 Basement Systems Dealer Convention Awards

Basement Systems USA has recently been awarded at the Team Basement Systems International Convention.
Read full press release