Leaking J-channel

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  #1  
Old 01-03-07, 02:19 PM
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Leaking J-channel

The back of my house has a large picture window. There is no eave above it, and no shelter from direct rain.

The J-channel above the window is somehow draining water behind the siding. It has been doing this for years apparently, as I just replaced all the rotten wood.

I caulked any possible sources of leaks at the corner of the J-channel, but I just squirted some water on the siding so it rain into the J-channel. It goes behind the siding and down below the subfloor where the supporting beams meet the block walls of the crawlspace.

Any ideas or fixes I can try? It's very frustrating. I have a feeling it is getting underneath the cut piece of siding meets the J-channel, but I have no idea what to do. Thanks!
 
  #2  
Old 01-03-07, 05:17 PM
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Vinyl, aluminum and steel siding all allow water to get behind the siding. No amount of caulking will prevent this. Building paper is the only protection for your sheathing, and the water runs behind the siding until it exits at the bottom edge of the siding.

There are ways to direct this water out sooner, but I hesitate to go into that. Hopefully you installed some decent building paper like tyvek or tarpaper under your siding and j-channels the 2nd time around.
 
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Old 01-06-07, 11:26 AM
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It sounds to me that you've already got water behind any paper that may be there if it's leaking into the wall. If you can take the J-channel and a couple courses of the siding off you can do a couple of things, first I'd use some of the self adhesive *****athene type tapes to seal between the sheathing and the window. Then I'd put a piece of drip cap above then window, then install the j-channel followed by the siding.


Good luck.
 
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Old 01-07-07, 11:42 AM
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I agree, proper flashing above the windows is mandatory to minimize leaking. J channel just looks good and has very little ability to redirect water completely. The underlayment, likewise must be layered properly to shed the water from top to bottom and around the perimeter of the window. As NH said, removing several courses of the siding from mid-window to above it, flashing it, and reinstalling the siding will be your only recourse.
As you remove the siding, don't disturb the nails. Lift the siding off the nails. This will give you the same course correction you will need to reinstall the siding.
 
  #5  
Old 02-04-07, 11:17 PM
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Thumbs up Water resistance

The idea that the siding on your home does not provide water Profing is invalid. Whatever siding exists (either vinly or wood shakes) on any home, shoud provide a waterproof method of instalation.
Even though homes sided with natural products arent as easy to maintain as composite sided homes does not mean that the effects of water infiltration go unmentioned.
The fact is , Vinly is Not final, and I'll be back to repair all the homes that have been hacked up ( cut the sill horns to make life easier ).

People can do what they want and they usually do.
 
  #6  
Old 02-05-07, 06:49 PM
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Siding is not manufactured to be waterproof, but to shed water. J channel basically only dresses up the edge of the siding. It will channel water in small amounts if properly cut and installed. Flashing and proper tape sealing is mandatory to ensure against water infiltration.
 
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Old 02-06-07, 06:11 PM
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These are just my views on J channel leaking behind siding. I have never seen J Channel leak if it was installed correctly. Now this is how it should be installed. J channel comes in 12' 6" long strips. You never end a piece at a corner. the best way to install it is to have several feet across the top then with a 1/2 corner cut, you bend it at the corner and run down the side of the window. Most of the time even siding companies stop their J Channel at the window corners then cut the next piece to make a corner flip. These leak. I also caulk J Channel after it is installed. Of course drip cap is also placed over the windows. Anyway thats how it is. Is there some waste with this method ? Yes there is. Is there any leakage ? No there isn't. Have a good day.
 
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Old 02-06-07, 08:55 PM
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I really didn't want to continue this outdated thread by adding additional thoughts of my own. But it seems like there is a bit of misunderstanding about vinyl siding and the sort of "leakage" that is being discussed. Vinyl siding that is installed carefully by thoughtful installers will still have some "leakage" but it will not be the type of leakage that will result in damage to the home due to contant wetting, mold and rotting.

Vinyl siding is *NOT* waterproof. It is not designed to be and it cannot be made waterproof, although there are certain installation techniques that are good practices which can reduce the amount of water that gets behind vinyl siding. These techniques mainly involve redirecting water that gets behind the siding back out into the siding weep holes.

To understand where the vast majority of water infiltration comes from, imagine you are a drop of water. The wind is from the east. The wind drives you against the house where you run down the face of the siding on a gable end and run into a j-channel over a window. You then spill over the end of that top j-channel at the corner of the window and continue downward. Now you are in the side j-channel, in the 1/4" gap between the j-channel and the siding. Water can fan out behind the siding as it travels down the j-channel, flow over the slotted portion of the j-channel (and travel through these slots, or even off of the j-channel altogether) and then out onto the building paper, especially if it is driven by wind.

Water running inside the side j-channel will then run to the bottom of the j-channel, and drip off the corner. Some of it will drip out onto the face of the siding. However, a large percentage of it actually runs BEHIND the siding at this point. THAT is the sort of leakage that is unpreventable, whether it be vinyl, aluminum or steel siding. It is also the reason why is it so important that building paper be used behind these types of siding. It is the reason why the top flange of windows should not be installed on TOP of the building paper. It is also the reason why the IRC was amended to *require* building paper under these types of siding, because under former IRC guidelines, it was not required and has resulted in thousands of damaged homes when builders omitted building paper because they were not "required to" by the letter of the code.

When water gets behind vinyl siding, it travels behind the siding until it exits from behind the bottom course of siding. This makes it imperitive that building paper be used, and applied in a manner that will shed water. This will ensure that normal "leakage" does not leak into and damage the underlying sheathing and framing.

Compare changes made to Table R703.4 in the IRC over the past 6 years.
 
  #9  
Old 03-23-07, 07:59 PM
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Hate to keep beating a dead horse but this threasd is right up my alley. Long story short

* the carpet in my sunroom was wet after it rained all day
* peel back carpet and padding and upon closer inspection the water was coming from under the base molding, saturated the tack strips
* knock hole in wall for yet another closer inspection
* removed some insulation and discovered mold and mildew in a small concentrated area
* took the pump spray with bleech and water and saturated the effected areas

On a side note I didn't mind knocking a hole in the wall because we were planning on installing bead board paneling. So now my dry wall patch doesn't have to be perfect, just functional.

* went outside and started removing the two lower vinyl panels and the green insulation barrier (which is probably .25" thick) in order to get to the sheathing.
* the leak(s) appears to be coming from my window flashing.

Hole in wall
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_193_full.jpg

Close up of mold and mildew
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_195_full.jpg

Wet tack strip
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_197_full.jpg

Green insulation barrier
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_205_full.jpg

Two lower vinyl panels removed and insualtion barrier cut away. I was also in the process of install a french drain because at first i thought it was a grading issue
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_218_full.jpg

A closer look
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_219_full.jpg

Another closer look
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_221_full.jpg

The sunroom was an addition, it probably measure 10x12
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_56_full.jpg

I'm pretty handy around the house but I far from a general contractor. My initial gut feeling is telling me to remove all the vinyl and insulation barrier on the 3 exterior walls to expose the sheathing. Address any flashing issues and wrap the sunroom with a house wrap or 15lb roofing felt. Install a thicker insulation barrier and re-install the siding

How would you address this issue?
 
  #10  
Old 03-23-07, 09:12 PM
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I love beating dead horses! Well, not really, but I love this thread. Sadly, your photos illustrate the points discussed in this thread.

Before commenting (which I can hardly wait to do) I'd love it if you could remove 1 more row of vinyl siding (the one that goes around the bottom of the windows) and post some pictures of that.

I think you are on the right track. You really should have building paper under all the siding. However the vast majority of your leakage can probably be taken care fo by giving attention the the flashing around the bottom of those windows, and by some details where the vertical j-channels terminate.
 
  #11  
Old 03-25-07, 08:33 PM
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Had a uninvited house guess this weekend, so I defered the repairs until next weekend. This will give me a few days to think of a way that both me and my house guess wins.

Sleeper, don't you worry, I'm a picture taking fanatic. I like to document my work. Especially when it's a first time project like this one.

But I do have one question, is there a proper way to remove and re-install vinyl siding. I know siding is installed from bottom up, so does that mean it should be removed from top down. My only concern is removing the bracket that secures the bottom siding. Will I be able to re-install the bracket at the same height.

This is the bracket I'm refering to. I don't know if you can tell, a vinyl siding was used as some sort of flashing then the metal bracket was secured on top of that vinyl. Then they proceeded upwards from there. Is that a common technique?

http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_221_full.jpg

Uninvited house guess. I have not checked to see if a egg is in the nest.

http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_223_full.jpg

http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_224_full.jpg
 
  #12  
Old 03-26-07, 12:54 PM
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Wow. I never thought this thread would keep going months after I originally posted my question!

I took a look at the pictures you posted. You are so lucky. I ended up ripping out a 4x8 section of floor (due to ants and rot), a 4 x 7 piece of sheathing, and drywall. My studs were actually rotten at the bottom, and the only thing supporting the huge picture window was one stud on the other side of the window!

The problem in this case was the absence of any building paper behind the siding and the fact that the sheathing was OSB (in my opinion). I put up heavy felt paper and sealed the seams with house wrap tape and it hasn't leaked since! The major leak was at the bottom corner of the J-channel where the water just ran right down. No problems now!
 
  #13  
Old 03-26-07, 04:57 PM
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>>is there a proper way to remove and re-install vinyl siding

You can find a vinyl siding unlock tool at most hardware stores / big box stores. You can start removing vinyl siding at any location... you don't necessarily have to start at the top and take it all down. You could remove one piece on the middle of a wall, if needed.

You take the unlock tool, start at the end of the piece you want to remove, stick it in the bottom (where the 2 pieces hook together) then you slide it along and "unzip" the bottom of the piece you want to remove. Then you unzip the piece ABOVE the one you want to remove, so as to reveal the nails. Then you can unhook the siding from the nails (or pull the nails) to remove the siding. (I number the back with a magic marker, if I'm removing a lot, so as to reinstall it in the same place once it goes back on again.

In your photo, the white piece behind your "starter strip" could stay, although from the photo at http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_222_full.jpg it doesn't look like that piece is flashed over your cement blocks at all? Or maybe I just can't see it well. Don't remove the starter strip if you don't have to. The tyvek or tar paper you will apply can just lap over the starter strip without causing any problems.
 
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Old 03-26-07, 05:00 PM
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Gizzorge, it was either post in this thread or create a new thread. I glad you mentioned felt paper, because I bought a roll of 15lb felt paper and it's a lot cheaper than house wrap.

Once again, thanks Sleeper
 
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Old 04-14-07, 06:35 AM
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moble home leaks

I don't know where to go yo post a question but only a comment.

I just put a new shingled roof on a double wide mobile home.
Now when we have hard rain there is a leak where the home comes together in the center .
 
  #16  
Old 04-14-07, 11:23 AM
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Welcome to the forums!

The roofing forum is at:

http://forum.doityourself.com/forumdisplay.php?f=19

To post a new question, you would click on the "new thread" button.

If you are using standard 3 tab shingles, you probably have a leak at the ridge cap or the row immediately below it. Shingles need to run right up to the peak of the roof, and the ridge cap shingles need to cover the nailing area of the final course. This means that below your ridge cap, you will have no more than 5" of that final course exposed. Any more than that, and you can have a leak.

Additionally, ridge cap shingles should only have a 5" exposure.

It's also possible that the leak is being cause by a low slope condition (2:12 pitch or less)
 

Last edited by XSleeper; 04-14-07 at 11:34 AM.
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Old 04-14-07, 01:13 PM
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Nice job, Frank. I do the exact same thing. That's what I was referring to in my post (3 months ago) when I said, "There are ways to direct this water out sooner, but I hesitate to go into that."

When I said "unpreventable" I was referring to the fact that water gets behind vinyl siding. That is not preventable. Additional measures can be taken to direct that water out as soon as possible- practices we both use.

At any rate, those are nice pictures and good documentation. Mind if we refer to your illustrations in the future?

If you read the entire post, I think you'll find that most people don't understand the need for techniques like that. They think that vinyl siding is "waterproof" or that more caulking will solve the problem.

When these extra flashing techniques are not used, it becomes imperitive that building paper is used, because it is the only thing protecting the sheathing until water exits the wall at its lowst point.
 
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Old 04-14-07, 01:58 PM
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Help yourself and spread the word. I feel like I'm a factory worker fixing the same thing all the time. I've been trying to get builders to change for years. And manufactured housing companies too.
 
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Old 04-14-07, 02:15 PM
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Its unfortunate that the majority of builders depend on the building paper or housewrap to be the "flashing". It just makes sense to direct the water back out ASAP.

The Journal of Light Construction detailed that technique in the mid 1990's. Can't find the exact article anymore since my wonderful wife threw out my old magazines without asking. (grrrr!) I had been using that technique since about 1992 when we first started getting into some vinyl siding jobs. It's only common sense. You're the only person I've ever heard of that does it too, so I think congratulations are in order for trying to do a good job.
 
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Old 05-03-07, 07:12 PM
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Remember me, it's time for a update and finale. My problem have been solved, but it wasn't solved until after a few hours of work. The cause of my problem was repaired in 30 seconds of less.

So I took the the siding all the way above the windows and exposed the green board
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_226_full.jpg

This is a close of the the window flashing and j-channel. Both windows were installed like this on all four sides
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_227_full.jpg

The green board was installed under the flashing so I had to cut it out.
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_228_full.jpg

After removing the green board I couldn't see any positive evidence of where the leak was coming from. So after taking precise measurements on where the starter strip was installed, I removed the starter strip, installed tar paper over the green board, then re-installed the starter strip
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_229_full.jpg

After re-installing the siding I took the garden house and soak the entire side the of sunroom, from top to bottom. After soaking for a few minutes I went inside to look for a water trail, and sure enough there was a trail. THAT SUCKED.

So the next day I had a bright idea. Instead of soaking the entire wall with water, why not start from the bottom and slowly work up the wall while the wife is inside looking for a trail. So that's what I did. When I got to the bottom flashing of the suspected window, BINGO the water trail started flowing on the inside

Upon a closer inspection this is what I found. I used a screwdriver as a diagnostic tool.
http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_230_full.jpg

That's correct, my window was silicone only on 3 sides. http://memimage.cardomain.net/member_images/4/web/496000-496999/496700_231_full.jpg

I applied silicone and problem solved in 30 seconds or less.

As you can see there are trees that border this room, so it's somewhat protected from your average rain fall. This August will make it two years since we have lived here and it has rained countless times since then. But it wasn't until the day in question when it showed a water trail inside the sunroom. I'm in the process of extending my concrete patio so disregard the cut and rolled up sod.

That's gents
 
  #21  
Old 07-21-13, 10:33 AM
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CandyMan, your pitures are missing!

Dear CandyMan, I found your post about leakin J-channel, it seems to me really
related to my problems, but your pictures are missing! Please, please, please, make them public again!
 
  #22  
Old 07-21-13, 12:26 PM
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Lena, welcome to the forums! It is doubtful Candiman will respond as it has been over 6 years since the last post, and, yes, the links seem to vaporize over time, although he is still active. Are there any issues we can help you on? Do you have pictures of your situation that you can post to help us see what you see?
 
  #23  
Old 07-21-13, 03:25 PM
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Luckily I've had only one email address for 15+ years. So even though this thread is 6yrs old, I got a email notification.

Try this link, this is where I have the pictures at

http://www.cardomain.com/ride/496700...go-gvx/page-5/
 
  #24  
Old 07-21-13, 03:35 PM
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Thanks CM. Wasn't sure you'd check in, but that's good.
 
 

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