Wood-Soil Contact

Wood that is in direct contact or in close proximity to the ground will likely to succumb to rot and/or insect damage. It is advisable to make an effort to sever any contact of wood with the ground. Improve ventilation (and drainage) where possible to create an environment less prone to rot or infestation. Please be advised that preventative chemical treatments for termite, carpenter ants or other insect control should not be undertaken without having severed the wood/soil contact around the house and, in some cases, the garage.

The following areas commonly require remedial attention to eliminate wood/soil contact:

    • Porch skirting and stair stringers in direct contact with soil.
    • Create access under porches and sever all wood/soil contact.
    • Provide cross ventilation underneath porches.
    • Structural wood sill beam/support columns at porch addition is too close to grade level; replace with concrete blocks/curbs or other suitable material
    • Deck posts should be supported by concrete piers or other suitable support.
    • Install window well(s) in front of all basement windows which are in close proximity to the ground.
    • Replace basement wood windows/window frames.
    • Wood skirting around crawlspace should be removed to at least 8″ above grade level. Replace with other suitable material.
    • Wood support posts in basement should be replaced with steel posts on a concrete footing or other suitable method.
    • Basement stairwell stringers/support posts are in direct contact with the soil and should be removed and supported by concrete or other suitable material.
    • Garage structure is supported directly on soil. Wood members at the base are starting to rot/rotting and causing settlement. Replacement of sill plate/other damaged members is recommended.

Copyright (2003) CBCG – Reprinted with permission