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Condensation from steel bucks in basement windows

Condensation from steel bucks in basement windows


Old 01-16-20, 06:06 AM
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Condensation from steel bucks in basement windows

Noticed some water at the bottom of a finished basement wall under a window. I pulled back the drywall, vapor barrier, insulation and I found mold like I've never seen. A portion of the sole plate in a stud bay was pitch black like someone had painted it.

I then started to think about the sources of the water. The window and drywall around it are bone dry. The insulation under it was soaked. I recalled that the replacement window guys had left the steel buck in place.

Is it possible to have so much condensation on a steel buck, over many years, be the cause of the water and mold? Thanks
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Old 01-16-20, 06:26 AM
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It's hard telling what is letting the water in. It could be condensation but that would only happen in VERY cold weather... to me that seems unlikely. It might have leaked prior to window replacement... Or it could have started leaking after window replacement. No way for us to know. We don't know the circumstances... If it has been leaking due to rain... Or cold. If the drywall around the window is fine I'd say its not from condensation.

If there is a window well, rain water can often run into the window well and quickly soak into the foundation and cause a leak. Especially if the foundation is concrete block.

Improper grading, plugged gutters, lack of a cover on the window well are usually to blame.

If you noticed the water on the floor after a recent rain, I'd say that is the culprit... Not the metal frame.
Old 01-16-20, 06:15 PM
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Thanks Xsleeper. I took drywall down around the window area and the buck had water on it on the right side of the window that is seeing the most moisture. As I moved to the left, it was drier and drier.I would like to add that the windows were installed in 1999 when the basement was finished. I noticed that I may have made a huge mistake when installing the vapor barrier. I used that red sheathing tape to cover and attach the vapor barrier to the buck. The part of the buck under the window was not taped as I used acoustical sealant to secure the vapor barrier. That said, only the right side of the window is showing moisture so I don't know if what I did caused the issue. (Should be wet all over, right?) My thought is after 20 years of dripping condensation, it would accumulate, theoretically. The bottom piece of drywall and the right side that I removed were bone dry. I fully appreciate that not all details are known and without having eyes on the problem, it's a difficult diagnosis to make. It looks more now than ever that water got driven in somehow. Thanks.

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