Termite worries

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  #1  
Old 04-13-02, 03:48 PM
Edd
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Unhappy Termite worries

Today the termite company came out on my request to treat a new construction area, and to inspect some damage I found by the plumbing trap. Our house is a 50+ year old brick adobe house with lathe plaster on the walls. The plumbing trap between the kitchen and the bathroom is accessable through a crudely cut hole in the plaster of the wall. After seeing some dead grass in that area I called out the company.

The guy said that the area had been treated before by them (before we moved in) at the request of the seller. The stud that is visible is completely damaged. I can force my finger all the way through the wood And it's like dried paper. Now because this is a wall separating two rooms, in a brick house, it should be safe to assume that it is not a load bearing structure.

What exactly could be going on in the wall... if the area is inactive, then that means the termites haven't come back since the first treatment, but do they tend to come back to places they have been? Is it possible that the stud is damaged all the way up to the roof? Can the adjacent studs be affected? and if so do I have to dismantle the wall to find out or can I drill into the stud and feel around? Should the stud be replaced on a non-load bearing wall, or will it do to leave it untouched if it's the only one? Are these questions best answered by a structural engineer? If so how much does a structural engineer cost to be reasonable?
And where do you find one in the Yelow Pages?

Thanks in advance.
 
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  #2  
Old 04-28-02, 07:56 AM
J974
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First things first. Open up a section of wall and see how bad the damage to the framing may be.
 
  #3  
Old 04-29-02, 12:10 AM
Edd
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The damage is substantial to the one stud, and in order to find out how the adjacent studs are doing, cabinets will need to be removed. So what's the best way to proceed? Surely a sturtural engineer would be better at testing wall studs than me!
 
  #4  
Old 04-29-02, 07:12 PM
J974
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I'm a union carpenter, 16 years experience, and I have never heard of a structual low-bearing wall being tested in an exisiting structure. It may be hard to swallow, but I would want to see behind the drywall to see the structual integrity of the framing. How can someone test a load-bearing wall in a house that it is already framed and drywalled? I've never heard of such a test being performed! Base cabinets aren't that hard to remove. I would remove them and cut one foot up on my drywall, across the length of the wall to see the damage. I would think you could tell if the damage is severe enough to open the rest of the wall. To me this would be a small investment to making sure my house is structually sound.


I live in the Chicago area and I too just found termites in my house! What a helpless feeling! I cut holes in my walls in spots, and the wall in which I can see the most visable damage to the drywall ,I am going to remove all the drywall too see the studs for myself.
 
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