I previously asked here about replacing exterior wall structural
members after a termite infestation (http://tinyurl.com/kwndug ) and
I've finally gotten around to actually doing the work.
Are there rules of thumb, building code sections or other guidelines
about how much damage needs to be done to a structural member before
it needs to be replaced? There are pieces of the framing (e.g., wall
studs) that have obviously been hit by termites, but where it seems
clear to me that the vast majority (> 75%) of the original wood is
still there and intact. I'd like to avoid tearing out "fairly sound"
pieces if I don't have to.
If it looks good, it probably is. For just wall studs, etc., wouldn't
worry about it much at all other than you'll need the surface edges to
hang sheetrock/siding to. If it's basically there but need that edge, a
couple of choices--a) scab a short piece to the side, or b) cut in a
piece to patch in the damaged section.
For "real" structural load-bearing members such as joists, headers,
etc., you'll want essentially the same load-bearing capacity as was
there initially just to be on the (perhaps cautiously) safe side.
Although the termites were probably attracted to damp/wet wood resulting
from "tub" leaks somewhere, you still have to find out where they gained
access to the structure. From the shoddy build method used, I wouldn't be
surprised if the outside stucco extends DOWN below grade (into the
soil/backfill). Ideally, there should be up to 6" of visible concrete
foundation below the bottom edge of the stucco. That way, termites would
have to build 'tubes' creeping up the concrete to get to the wood structure.
If the stucco and paper is below grade, they have ready access to your
I've seen properly built walls with the foundation "reveal" be
backfilled/covered by landscapers to a depth where the soil/mulch is then
lying against the stucco.
Looking at the "inside" pictures, I can't guess what there is outside at
ground level but I'm guessing NO concrete ?
BTW, In the development where I built in 1998 (AZ ground infested with
termites), I sprayed all the lower 4 feet of the 2X6 framing and OSB
sheathing, in & out prior to application of the construction
paper/foam/wire/stucco with TIMBOR solution. After the initial commercial
termite application (DURSBAN 1%-several hundred gallons used) I bought
DURSBAN from the local builders supply and every two years or so, would
spray 1% all along the outer foundation, with a heavier application where I
knew there were foundation penetrations. After 5 years, I had no termite
problems. The neighbors (frame) home next door (I watched a shoddy termite
pre-treat done) had termite "tubes" up & into the walls before the house was
even finished and they persisted, even up to the roof structure needing
remedial work every year for the "5". Another neighbor with a CBS home had
the termites eat their way up the inside of the sheetrock "paper" and even
came thru the walls into/ and 'ate' picture framing hanging on the walls. I
would guess that had a lousy termite Pre-treat there too.
BTW2, I think TIMBOR is still available but DURSBAN had been 'banned"
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