What Is Delignification And How It Might Affect You

Timber roof frame on a new home under construction

After the growing trend of new builds in the outer suburbs over the last few years, a lot of clients are now looking to stay closer to the city, which can mean the purchase of an older home. As a Home Integrity experienced Registered Builders doing pre-purchase building inspections every day; I see age deterioration causing all sorts of issues, affecting areas that the untrained eye would not normally notice.

Terracotta tiles are one of the big items that will deteriorate with age – the weather, temperature extremes and movement, will all cause a tile to deteriorate, crack and chip, and overall movement away from the roof battens.

This means the roof timbers are exposed to the elements and could be continually getting wet and drying out, getting wet and drying out, not just by exposure but also by condensation, causing delignification of the timber.

Delignification is the result of the breakdown of the fibres which creates a furry finish to the outside of the affected timber. Where delignification is only minor there won’t be any structural issues, however in extreme cases, over a prolonged period, this can result in significant structural loss of strength and could eventually cause a roof to collapse. This is one of the key inspections performed by an experienced Home Integrity Registered Building Inspector when a Structural Plus Pre Purchase Building Inspection or a Structural Premium Pre Purchase Building Inspection is requested.

The above describes a scenario that has been observed during a particular Pre Purchase Building Inspection performed by one of our registered experienced Home Integrity Building Inspectors, however, every situation is unique and your circumstances may differ. As you can see the tile in the top photo has significantly deteriorated compared to the tiles in the photo at the bottom. Water ingress into the roof space is possible as to is the further deterioration of the tile battens and structural roof frame members. Home Integrity would always recommend consultation with an experienced, qualified roofing tiler to provide advice to resolve the issue.

Home Integrity can also inspect and report on spas and swimming pools including safety barriers, arrange retrospective approvals by local Council and Shires on all structures, inspect and report for insurers to take out Home Owner Warranty Builders Warranty Insurance, Handover and Defects Building Inspection Reports, and provide Building Consulting on individual issues around the home.

Contact the team at Home Integrity on 08 6184 5624 or email [email protected] with your queries and we’ll point you in the right direction.

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Hi there, 

We see you have added an Electrical, Plumbing and Gas inspection (EPG) with a Pre-Settlement inspection. 

Please note these are very similar inspections, just performed at different times. The EPG occurs during your pre-purchase inspection, while the Pre-Settlement occurs 5-7 days before settlement. 

If you require both please proceed to check out. Alternatively, remove one and continue.

If you would like further information, please call our office before proceeding to check out on (08) 6184 5624