Termite infestations cost American property owners an estimated $2.5 billion every year, according to Terminix.com. Because home insurers refuse to cover termites, almost all of these expenses come out of pocket. If you need to repair minor termite damage around your home, you can use a structural epoxy wood filler to shore up the wood. However, before you apply the epoxy, you need to take specific steps to clean and preserve the surviving wood, or it will eventually rot from inside.
Things You'll Need
- Die grinder with a core-box router bit
- Moisture meter
- Power drill
- Borate wood preservative
- Plastic syringe
- Two part epoxy primer
- 2-inch latex paintbrush
- Two part epoxy filler
- Paper towels
- Plastic board
- Plastic putty knife
Ensure that an exterminator has eliminated your termite problem before you begin repairs.
Remove all of the damaged, rotting wood with the claw back of the hammer.
Sand down all rot-softened, honeycombed wood with a die grinder loaded with a core-box bit.
Gauge the moisture levels of the wood using a meter. Repeat step 3 if you get a reading greater than 18.
Drill three evenly-spaced, half-inch deep holes in the area damaged by termites.
Squeeze the wood preservative into the drilled holes using the syringe.
Brush on the epoxy primer using a 2-inch latex paintbrush. Remove any excess primer using paper towels. Wait 15 minutes for the primer to dry.
Blend the epoxy resin with the catalyst on top of a plastic board. Stir the two components using a plastic putty knife.
Sculpt the epoxy filler into the termite damage. Conform the epoxy to match the surrounding wood.
Tips & Warnings
- Epoxy filler will disintegrate in sunlight. Be sure to apply a coat of primer and paint no later than two days after application.
- Do not use a wooden board to blend the epoxy, or it will immediately begin to bond to the surface.
- Never attempt to repair termite damage with epoxy unless you have first applied a wood preservative.
- Ensure that all termites have been eliminated before you begin repairs.
- Termite infestations allow a great amount of moisture to build up in wood which leads to rot. Be sure to thoroughly remove all rot before you begin repairs or the patch will not last.
- Epoxy wood filler is extremely durable and ideal for repairing minor termite damage in wood. However, if the termite damage has led to extensive rotting, you will need to replace the wood. Do not use epoxy to repair extensive termite damage.
- Photo Credit cash image by Mat Hayward from Fotolia.com
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