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Wood Rot - an alternative to replacing damaged, non-structural wood

We receive a lot of calls to replace rotted or cracked boards. Water, termites, insects, sun exposure, and other factors can cause wood to waste away, rot, or crack. In certain cases, it is necessary to replace these boards with either another wood product or even a composite product. However, if the damaged material is not structural or can be saved by any sort of repair, we are able to offer a much less invasive and cost effective solution.

There is an alternative to replacing trim boards, clapboards, or any wood surfaces that have these minor rot issues. We have been using a two-part, paintable epoxy product that enables us to repair damaged wood for a number of years. After the application, we sand the epoxy down to the contour of the wood we are repairing and once the sanding is complete, the epoxy can be primed and painted. For many years, the trusty body repair patch, Bondo, used by auto repair shops, was also used by carpenters to repair much more minor damage (gouges, scratches, very minor rot). Unfortunately, it did not have the life that this new epoxy product has and was unable to correct slightly larger rot or crack issues.

We were recently contacted by a homeowner who had a resident woodpecker that was wreaking havoc on some of the wood corner boards on his home. The homeowner wanted us to remove the boards and replace them with new material. Upon our inspection of the damage, we noticed that the holes created by the woodpecker did not go through the entire board. In addition, the damage was not very extensive and in no way was the structure of the house being affected by rain getting into the damaged areas. We presented the homeowner with the epoxy alternative and showed him the cost savings and he was thrilled.

Using this two part epoxy product has saved homeowners the expense of removing large sections of wood just to replace specific boards. This product can be used on everything from window sills to decorative wood columns and has been used on This Old House. During the Webb House exterior restoration project, we were able to save many original trim boards by using this product enabling us to preserve the history and look of the historic building. We were even able to fix some minor problem areas on the museum’s front entry columns.

If you are interested in learning more about the product and other applications, please contact us at 860-529-9583 or email us at [email protected]