Wood Rot Issue


Old 09-25-07, 08:24 AM
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Wood Rot Issue

So this past weekend I was going to replace a sliding glass patio door 80"x72", that is until I removed the wood trim and the bottom kick plate under the patio door and all the sheathing is dry rotted as well as the wall studs and the support joist that is holding up the door. I'm nearly panicking as I don't know what to do first. Not to pat myself on the back but I'm a pretty handy mechanical engineer that has replaced every window and door in my house, plus I can do moderate auto repairs and have accumilated allot of tools. Is this rot something I can do myself? Where should I begin and what tools and materials should I get or need besides a good stiff drink to calm me down. I do have some pictures of the rot I can share.

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Old 09-25-07, 10:41 AM
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Try this,
either take a picture of how everything is put together, so you have something to go back to verify, or find the middle of the nearest solid stud even if it is 8ft away, now before cutting make up a 2x8 header that will pass the rot on both sides and either make an a frame and prop it up under the soffit, pull the legs of the a frames in tight to gain a little lift just enough to take the weight off the wall and nail 2x6 across the frame each frame so it can`t move(make sure there is a 2x4 plate on the ground under the frame.Once the ply wood is off take another picture if needed.( word to the wise ) make shallow cuts when cutting into a wall .....
big jax
Old 09-25-07, 04:50 PM
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Pictures are worth 1000 words. Post 'em if you got 'em.

It's not suprising to find rot under patio doors- you can almost take it for granted that there's going to be rot under them at least at the corners, if not all the way across the subfloor.

Depending on how bad it is, you first have to determine how much you are willing to replace and how much can just stay put. For instance... it's common to see the end of the sill plate that your studs are resting on rot away, and sometimes some of the bottom of the trimmer stud is bad too, since water wicks up the end of it (the trimmer is the one underneath the header- the one you see on both sides of your rough opening). But seldom have I seen the king stud rot off (the one behind the trimmer that the header is nailed to). In that case, you can usually cut the sheetrock nails, the sheathing nails, and pull the nails out of the trimmer, and remove it. You can cut off the rotton 1 1/2" of the sill plate, since it's usually mostly gone anyway. (if it's mostly solid, leave it!) Then assuming you cut out the sill plate, replace the trimmer with a new piece that runs all the way down to the mud sill, which should be even with the bottom of the floor joists.

As for the rotton sheathing and possibly rim joist, it depends how much you are willing to remove. If there's a deck in front of it, you're probably not going to tear the deck off just to fix the rotton wood. Instead you might install blocking between the joists and put new subfloor down in the rough opening. But if it's easy to get to the rim joist and sheathing, now's the time to do it. You'd probably end up replacing everything from the king stud to king stud. Don't piece in little pieces, just tear it all out and replace it all. Don't worry about a little rot on the ends of your floor joists. If there's 1 or 2" of rot, then you might want to install some blocking between the joists or scab something onto the sides in order to have something solid for the rim joist to nail to.

If the subfloor is rotton, the rot likely ends at the interior edge of the old door. You can cut all that subfloor out with a skilsaw and reciprocating saw, using a straightedge to cut a nice straight line. You'll want to install some blocking where the old subfloor meets the new subfloor. You don't want deflection where the two meet. Again, if the tops of the floor joists are punky, just leave them- scab some new wood onto the sides or fill it up with blocking so that your subfloor will have something solid to screw to.

Before you install the door, your housewrap should be installed below and around the doorway, folding it into the rough opening to protect the edges of the opening. A flexible butyl flashing (like Tyvek Flexwrap) would help protect the front edge of the rough opening from water damage. At the least, I'd recommend you use something like Tyvek Straightflash or Grace Vycor Plus, or Protecto Wrap. But the best thing to use is a pan flashing if you are worried about water getting into the opening again. You can either purchase one, or make something yourself. If you notice water damage along the sides of your studs, water has been getting into the doorway from above. But if the damage is confined to the bottom and has wicked up the sides, that is from water getting under the threshold.

A recent post regarding door pan flashings is at: http://forum.doityourself.com/showthread.php?t=318168
Old 09-26-07, 05:27 AM
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cut and paste on the below link to view the pictures.


If you still can not view them then email.

BTW I had no choice but to remove the deck because it was in the way. If you look at the pictures you will see something missing between the sheathing and the capboards. Thats right, no tar paper or any other moistuer barrier.
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