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Water penetration caused fungal rot and decay of wooden structural rafters.

This client’s roof had leaked and caused water damage to the drywall on the ceiling and two walls.  Unfortunately, this issue was either not apparent or went unreported by previous tenants.  The result was severe rot and decay of wooden structural truss rafters for the flat roof along with the decay of plywood roof decking.  Once decayed rafters were exposed the contractor shored up the rafters so that repairs could be made to the bottom 2″ x 4″ plate which had completely severed from the cinder block exterior wall it rested on and all load-bearing was on the top plate of the truss.

Professional Structural Damage Opinions

Structural compromise is very dangerous during winter snow loading followed by a warm-up and rain and can cause catastrophic failure.  Rot and decay of wooden materials are one of the primary concerns to homeowners and especially to home buyers.  Mold growth and exposure to living spaces with mold spores is the predominant concern for most people, but they don’t realize the long-term consequences of leaving moisture penetration and mold growth unresolved for an extended period of time.

This type of situation frequently occurs in single-family homes with poorly ventilated attics made worse by bathroom exhaust venting into the attic space instead of through the roof.  This is even less detectable than a roof leak and can lead to wet and dry rot of roof plywood and cause delamination, cracking, and failure under snow load or footstep.

Truss wood rot from water

Roof truss rafter bottom plate rot and decay.

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