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  1. #1
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    Mar 2009
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    Charlottesville, Va.
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    Default Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    This mornings house was built in 2002 and was sided with vinyl. The siding on the west wall had significant staining at the weep holes and at the joints. The quality of the vinyl installation was on the high end of what I typically see.

    It is my understanding that the west wall because of the lower altitude of the afternoon sun and subsequent relative high heat gain on this wall can experience some peculiar moisture issues. There were bathrooms against this wall on the second floor, which did have exhaust vents and there was no fungi growth on any of the interior finishes in these bathrooms.

    I do check behind vinyl in several locations for house wrap and this house did have it....unlike yesterdays. It's interesting how the majority of the staining is concentrated in a horizontal band corresponding to approximately the area immediately above and below the second floor rim band.

    I"m wondering if this degree of weep hole staining is typical for a large exposed gable end or is something more complicated going on here.

    Can I please get some opinions on what you think from the pics and on what you may of may not write up in this case?

    Thanks.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    I think it is dirt from air that is being sucked in the weep holes, cracks, etc. Kind of like drywall "ghosting" that we see inside homes, except that this is being caused by negative air pressure inside the home.

    Air is being sucked from the inside by bathroom vents, laundry dryer, kitchen fan, HVAC and anything else that might cause a draft or sucks air.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  3. #3
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    Mar 2009
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    Thank you Scott...now that you've said that causing me to look more closely at the dirt patterns around the weep holes and joints, I think you are exactly right. The location primarily around the often poorly detailed rim band supports your theory.

    I look forward to having the 5000 plus inspections under my belt like you do and the experience that comes with them.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Chicago IL
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    I'm thinking Scott could be right but I'm not too sure. I'm wondering if maybe there is some amount of water entry behind the vinyl that is coming out but isn't getting transferred inward because of the Tyvek. I'm always very leery when I see that type of window install.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Charlottesville, Va.
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    I agree about the bogus integral siding channel windows...they are always suspect...and I always communicate my concerns about them with the client on site. The dirt patterns appear to me that air is being drawn into the weep holes not that water is dripping out of the weep holes.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    Robert and Markus - Could you guys expand on your comments about the type of window installation?

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Charlottesville, Va.
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    Integral siding channel windows are flanged windows with an additional profile that creates a channel all the way around the window to insert the siding into. As you can see in the photo, at the window header without additional flashing installed that siding channel is IMO more accurately called a water trough.

    I'm not a big fan of relying on high tech "flashing" tapes and house wraps to keep water out of the underlying wall structure.

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Chicago IL
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    Great pic Robert, shows just how much of a liability these things can be. I know the RE agents around here are horrified when I use 'water trough' as a term.
    Aside from the fact that installing a lower surface positive to an upper surface is a bad idea, the installation relies to heavily on 'correct' installation. If the tyvek is sloppy, if the window hasn't been taped to the wall, if the vinyl is cut kind of sloppy and short the leak potential is permanently increased by so much. I like the fact that there is already a gap at the miter, another good entry point.
    Here at least, snow and ice builds up on top of that flashing, then as the sun radiates it melts and weeps underneath. Sort of like ice dams do at the roof/gutter edge.

    www.aic-chicago.com
    773/844-4AIC
    "The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Foster View Post
    Thank you Scott...now that you've said that causing me to look more closely at the dirt patterns around the weep holes and joints, I think you are exactly right. The location primarily around the often poorly detailed rim band supports your theory.

    I look forward to having the 5000 plus inspections under my belt like you do and the experience that comes with them.
    Thanks, but I'm still learning with every inspection. After the first couple of thousand inspections I really started to understand what this profession is all about!

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  10. #10

    Default Re: Vinyl Siding weep hole discharge

    I agree with Scott, the pattern suggest air infiltration or infiltration. If you have the ability to thermally scan the wall with a decent temperature difference you may see more. There are usually too many weak spots where air can move freely.

    Jeff Zehnder - Home Inspector, Raleigh, NC
    http://www.jjeffzehnder.com/
    http://carolinahomeinspections.com/

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