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Old 07-18-2018, 09:16 AM   #1
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1995 30' Excella
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Borate elimination/prevention treatment for floor rot

Hello, I've replaced some of the subfloor, but most other sections are still ok. I've been wondering if there are non/low toxic treatments to stop or retard rot.

Has anybody experience with borate solutions (Disodium Octaborate Tetrahydrate) that are intended for treatment against insect and fungi degradation of wood? Alternatively, has anyone experience with borate treated plywood?

This product is marketed for elimination/prevention of termites, but it also is used to stop/prevent decay due to fungi.

https://www.solutionsstores.com/bora...yABEgIsifD_BwE
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Old 07-20-2018, 06:59 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Bob Blarney View Post
Hello, I've replaced some of the subfloor, but most other sections are still ok. I've been wondering if there are non/low toxic treatments to stop or retard rot.

Has anybody experience with borate solutions (Disodium Octaborate Tetrahydrate) that are intended for treatment against insect and fungi degradation of wood? Alternatively, has anyone experience with borate treated plywood?

This product is marketed for elimination/prevention of termites, but it also is used to stop/prevent decay due to fungi.

https://www.solutionsstores.com/bora...yABEgIsifD_BwE
I am glad to see you present this question. I hope everyone can benefit. This is a way Airstream could solve all their rot problems.

Timbor is a borate based non toxic insect, termite, mildew, fungus, and rot prevention treatment. It is approved to spray on residential framing as a pre treatment. It is very safe and easy to use.

Timbor comes in 1.5 lb sealed packs and you mix it with 1.5 gal of water in a simple pump garden sprayer. Apply it to un-sealed wood. It wets and resides on the surface and appears to dry quickly. Then over time it draws moisture from the air and diffuses from cell to cell thru the wood. It penetrates all the way thru, but can take a year or so. It originally was developed for log homes to prevent rot and beetle insects in the big thick logs. The power utility industry uses it to treat power poles in high moisture areas. It is used professionally to treat powder post beetles in residences.

Ideally, you would apply two applications to each side of the new plywood. While you are at it, spray it on as much of the existing Airstream floor you can get access to. It penetrates and can travel sideways somewhat. Every little bit helps. In the process of replacing my rear floor, I dropped the belly skin, removed the bubble foil, and sprayed the exposed plywood from underneath all the way to the axles. Also from above, there are many places under cabinets and drawers where some plywood is exposed and it can be sprayed. I pulled up the carpet, just removed staples at the perimeter, and sprayed underneath. Some areas Airstream applies black paint to the plywood in an attempt to prevent rot (but actually traps moisture). This paint will block penetration of the Timbor. I used a razor knife and slashed the surface in a cross hatch pattern to allow Timbor access to penetrate.

Always mix a 10% solution. Add water first and then the powder. A 10% solution, 1.5lb/1.5gal ratio, is stable and will keep a long time. If you accidently mix it too strong, it will come out of solution and make solid flakes and crystals that will clog your sprayer. Otherwise, the 10% solution will keep in a little sprayer and can be used later. I keep a 1qt spray bottle handy in my shop, too. It absolutely works.

It makes wood perform like non-corrosive pressure treated wood. The reason the pretreated lumber industry doesn't use it is because it takes time to soak in and they don't have the space & time to allow for that.

I use it all around my farm on any wood exposed to the weather.
It is non toxic to animals if they chew the wood.
It does not cause corrosion, and is ok to use with aluminum and steel against the treated wood.
It does not discolor the wood.

The most important aspects of the application are:
Accurately mix a 10% solution.
Spray on to bare, un-sealed or un-painted wood.
Spray until surface is wet and allow to dry.
Spray a second application and allow to dry.
Treat both sides if you have access to do so.
It will not penetrate thru paint or sealant.
After dry, it can be painted.

Timbor can be purchased on line from DIY pest control suppliers such as this site.

https://search.domyown.com/search?p=...w=list&sku=144

Just imagine, what if the Airstream factory treated the plywood with Timbor?

Good luck with your new floor!

Brad
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Old 07-20-2018, 06:02 PM   #3
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Old 07-23-2018, 12:55 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by TG Twinkie View Post
Following this thread.
I thought I would add some background about my experience with Timbor.
My first experience w Timbor was on my house about 20 years ago. I live in a farmhouse North of Atlanta that is built of traditional thick (about 1 to 1.5") rough sawn pine lumber siding that was fresh cut and not kiln dried. It looked great. But after several years of exposure to humidity, powder post beetles emerged from all the lumber. It was a big problem.
I had a professional company diagnose the beetles and treat the wood. They pressure washed the wood on the whole exterior of the house to remove the stain/sealant. After dry, they sprayed 2 applications of Timbor. There was no way to get to the back side of the wood, so they had to count on the Timbor diffusing all the way thru from one side. They advised it was a slow process and could take 2 years or more. But they had successful experience treating log homes with 6 to 12" thick logs.
After 1 year, the wood was about 90% clear and they retreated the trouble areas with a spot foam solution. After about 4 years of annual touch-ups, all the boards were clear.
I learned to include Timbor in all my farm construction work. I noticed the vendor website had some comments that Timbor would not penetrate more than 1/4" and that is incorrect. I don't know why they would say that.
While most insecticides are hazardous, Timbor is very safe to work with and is approved for use in residential construction. I hope everyone with Airstreams can take advantage of the safe and long lasting properties of Timbor.
Brad
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Old 07-23-2018, 05:30 PM   #5
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Gee thanks for the info!

Somewhere/sometime ago, I had read about borate rods that are inserted into holes bored in wooden boat hulls to prevent rot, and the author mentioned about the original use for log homes. It took some time for me recall this (after I'd installed the floor.)

What makes me especially happy is that I can apply to the floor that I've already installed.
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Old 07-23-2018, 05:31 PM   #6
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1995 30' Excella
Harper Woods , Michigan
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Gee thanks for the info!

Somewhere/sometime ago, I had read about borate rods that are inserted into holes bored in wooden boat hulls to prevent rot, and the author mentioned about the original use for log homes. It took some time for me recall this (after I'd installed the floor.)

What makes me especially happy is that I can apply to the floor that I've already installed.
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