Oregon State Certified Home Inspector # 337 | Oregon C.C.B. # 110603

Pest & Dry Rot Inspections

Buckley's Inspection Services, Inc.

What is a Pest & Dry Rot Inspection?

A Structural Pest & Dry Rot Inspection reports in greater detail the apparent causes of wood-destroying organism infestations or dry rot situations and the suggested remedies. It is sometimes called a Termite Inspection or Termite Report. There are two general categories of reportable concerns: 1) actual structural damage caused by an infestation of termites, carpenter ants, powder post beetles, and/or dry rot, and 2) conducive conditions such as excessive moisture, inadequate ventilation, direct contact between wood and earth, etc., which, if left uncorrected, may eventually lead to infestation and structural damage.

Although the Whole House Inspection does include an examination of the crawl space area and plumbing system, the Pest & Dry Rot Inspection is considered to be a separate inspection process by the State of Oregon. The Pest & Dry Rot Inspection is performed in accordance with the accepted Industry Standards as adopted by The American Institute of Inspectors® and is performed on the basis of visible evidence in readily accessible areas of the structure.

The Pest & Dry Rot Inspection Report goes beyond reporting conditions that were found and also makes suggestions for repairs necessary to get to the goal of a clear report. We do not perform the repairs, but we can assist you by providing a list of independent contractors who do perform the type of repairs we have suggested.

How Do I Get a Clear Report?

After the initial pest & dry rot inspection, you can get repair bids from licensed contractors. Our company does not perform any repairs on the home as that would be a conflict of interest. Accordingly, we cannot suggest how much somebody else would charge to complete the repairs. We recommend getting at least 2 or 3 different bids from properly licensed contractors you would consider hiring.

After the needed repairs have been completed, simply call us and let us know that you are ready for a re-inspection. The typical re-inspections fee is between $35.00 and $75.00 per visit for our time spent to re-examine only the conditions that were to be repaired. If all repairs are satisfactory, we will issue a clear report. If any repairs were not completed satisfactorily, we will prepare an updated report that lists which repairs were completed satisfactorily and which repairs were not completed satisfactorily and the suggested remedies. This process is repeated until all repair work has been satisfactorily completed and we can issue a clear report.

It is to your advantage to hire a reputable contractor to complete the necessary repairs. A contractor experienced with the types of repairs specific to your situation can properly complete the necessary repairs in a minimal amount of time and give you a greater possibility of obtaining a clear report with only one re-inspection visit.

I Have Not Seen Termites at My House…

Termites: Contrary to what some individuals believe, termites do exist in the Klamath Basin and are even common in some areas, especially the geothermal areas. The termites are attracted to the warm, moist ground conditions. If undetected, termites can cause extensive damage to the structural integrity of the home. The average homeowner has never seen a termite, mostly because termites are very secretive and are not readily visible to the untrained eye. Termites can burrow 25 feet or more underground and prefer to spend their life underground – away from light and air. They are able to detect sources of heat and are often seen first near water heaters or furnaces in homes. For further information, see the “Living With Bugs” guide.

Carpenter ants: Carpenter ants are active indoors during many months of the year, usually during the spring and summer. When ants are active in the house during late winter/early spring (February/March), the infestation (nest) is probably within the household. When carpenter ants are first seen outdoors in the spring and summer (May/June), then the nest is likely outdoors and the ants are simply coming in for food. The natural food for Carpenter ants consists of honeydew from aphids, other insects, and plant juices, but they will readily forage for water and food scraps within the house. Under natural conditions, carpenter ants nest in live and dead trees and in rotting logs and stumps. However, they will also construct their nests in houses, telephone poles, and other man-made wooden structures. Nests are typically started in deteriorating wood which has been exposed to moisture. Often, the colony will extend its nest to adjacent sound wood. Nests are commonly found in railroad ties used for landscaping and other wood in contact with the soil.

Carpenter Ant

INTERESTING FACTS: Ants of the genus Camponotus are known as Carpenter ants because they house their colonies in galleries they excavate inside wood. Carpenter ants do not eat the wood they remove during their nest-building activities, but deposit it outside entrances to the colony in small piles. The wood is used solely as a nesting site. The galleries of carpenter ants are kept smooth and clean, and are not lined with moist soil as termite galleries are.

Powder post beetles: Powder post beetles in the larval stage of development bore through timber and create channels throughout the wood they have attacked. These channels greatly weaken the structural integrity of the wood. Beetles will continue to re-infest a wood source with their eggs until it no longer provides enough sustenance for them, which means they have reduced the once-sturdy timber to a hollow shell.

Dry Rot: The fungus that is commonly referred to as “dry rot” actually requires elevated moisture levels to begin growing and damaging wood. Dry rot is frequently found in areas of the structure that have minimal ventilation or where the installed vents have been covered over for extended periods of time. Once the fungus spores have started to germinate, the fungus grows through the wood and destroys the structural properties of the wood by secreting enzymes that turn wood cells into glucose, which the fungus uses for food, enabling the fungus to continue growing.