Vinyl siding leaking around windows! Big problem.


Old 12-19-04, 10:19 PM
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Vinyl siding leaking around windows! Big problem.

A picture is worth a 1,000 words. So here are a few thousand to describe what's going on.

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<td>pic 1</td><td>pic 2</td><td>pic 3</td>

I've pulled off the vinyl siding to expose the sheathing (pic1) and original pressboard siding (pic2). As you can see, there is a spread pattern of water damage below the windows. The vinyl around the windows is standard J-channel in which the siding sits. The only underlayment is the green weather barrier. It's basically poly foam about 1/8" thick.

There are no flashings around the windows as you can see. And, there is no moister barrier between the original pressboarding siding and the sheating. I swear, between the original builder, the contractor who put up the vinyl, and the inspector who signed off on this work, someone should go to jail for this construction! I can't believe some of the workmanship and materials that I've seen in this house that was build in '87. But enough ranting.

The water intrusion has made a wonderful home for all the mold and mildew you see. The smell was so strong inside the house that I began by cutting into the drywall to find the cause. My search led me to what you see here.

Is there any way to seal around the windows to prevent this kind of damage in the future. The areas of original pressboard replaced by plywood in pic 2 suggest that someone has tried to fix this before -- but unsuccessfully.

Even if I put up flashing around the windows, it seems to me that water draining down the J-channel around the window will eventually find its way past the flashing and behind the vinyl siding, eventually soaking through to the pressboard underneath. I don't see how anything short of putting up a moister barrier (e.g. tar paper) would prevent the water from soking through and causing damange.

Any suggestions? I've got to tackle this job tomorrow. Your input is greatly appreciated!


Last edited by jimbodiy; 12-20-04 at 05:53 PM.
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Old 12-20-04, 07:02 AM
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from what i can see there no caulk around all the window trim and along the window frame itself.
All metal joint must be caulk and also along the outside j trim that attach to the window.
check to caul the inside corner of the vynil at top there might be water sling inside the trim.

Old 12-24-04, 08:06 AM
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It appears there is just a lack of barrier over top of the exterior sheeting which is a huge problem, before the house wrap we're all familair with now it was common practice to wrap the entire house with tar paper. There simply needs to be some sort of barrier over the sheeting.

The fanfold insualtion should've had the joints taped to help with sealing also. Water simply gets behind vinyl siding, it's just the way it is and nothing can be done about it, that's another reason amoung others for using the fanfold to help give the water coming through the siding a place to hit and run down kind of preventing it from getting direct contact with the old exterior siding. Those appear to be new contruct type windows and they used 1x's to cover the nailing flange. The flange should've been covered with 9" wide strips of tar paper or better yet, sticky ice barrier matrerial that would adhere itself to the flange and the exterior sheeting. If caulked properly and flashed in that matter, no water should be coming inside the wall-if the original exterior sheeting was water proofed properly.

Honestly there's no way you can hold the applicator/inspector at fault for somebody previously taking shortcuts but not safegaurding the original exterior sheeting. Myself as well as about every other applicator for siding does not go tearing aparts houses looking to if all stages of original construction were done properly, if we did the price's charged from a normal straight forward siding job would go through the roof. There are many times I'm on a site and note areas that need to be re-done so it's correct, but again these are obvious flaws and come from years of expereince of knowing what to look for, not something I'd go tearing everything off the house to look for, alot of times you have to assume things were done correctly since there's alwyas been building codes of some sort.

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