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Question DetailsAsked on 9/3/2017

What service to hire for smaller sill plate damage replacement?

Just bought a house with 2 or 3 sections of sill plate damage ( maybe 15 feet total), from past termite presence. Termites are gone now (per home inspector), and I'm having the lawn re-graded to get a bigger gap (it's about 1" presently so that's presumably how it got wet in the first place). I just don't know who I should be looking to hire for this type of service - finish or unfinished carpenter? foundation specialist? general contractor?

Much thanks

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Here are some previous similar questions with answers which ought to help - generally for your purpose you are probaby looking at some insulation and drywall and siding removal to do the work, and possibly subfloor damage as well, so a General Contractor is probaby your best bet.

One other thought - I would not trust the home inspector to have a good enough inspection to detect any termite activity - I would have a Pest Control contractor come in and find any further/current infestation as well as locate previous damage which might have been missed (which may increase the remedial contractor work). I would also schedule a remedial treatment spraying integrated with the repair work at a minimum, and you should probably (given a termite damage history) find out if there has been a recent full perimeter termite preventative treatment which you can continue the service on, or else get an initial perimeter treatment. For a building with proven infestation history I do not recommend the inspect and put in wood stakes to see if they get attacked route (actually not a very good method at any time) - I recommend the full perimeter foundation treatment plus soil injection program - costs 2-3 times as much initially and at retreatment every 3-10 years depending on your locale's rainfall and soil type, but actually works as opposed to the hit-and-miss stake programs.

BTW - new sill plate should be treated wood - I emphatically recommend full ground contact rated wood, not just regular treated wood - only about 10% more expensive, but the newer lower treatment standards and less effective chemicals make regular treated wood (especially the "Wolmanized" stuff) quite prone to rot and insect damage - I have seen fungal growth, mold, carpenter ants, and post beetles deteriorating stockpiled regular treated wood awaiting construction (only a few months out of the mill) and once even uncovered a termite nest in a building supply stockpile of treated timbers as I was pulling out pieces to load - and this was straight from the mill that month !

Treatment used to be with arsenic and/or chromate treatment that really work (commonly for 40-50 years or more in ground contact) - the environmental alarmists have eliminated the really effectvie products, and the treatment rates went from 0.8-1.2#/cf retention for ground contact or 0.4-0.6#/cf for above-ground, to now around 0.25-0.4 for ground-contact and 0.1-0.25 for above-ground, so between lower treatment rate and less effective chemicals the effectiveness has significantly dropped. The reason I re-treat concrete or ground-contact treated wood before installation (takes a couple days to a week to not besticky, though) using Cupreanol or similar copper treatment designed for treating cut ends.

Be sure to coordinate any treatment for termites, and warn the general contractor about any known treatment, and of course ground/perimeter treatment should be done AFTER the contractor is done to prevent unnecessary crew exposure.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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