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  1. #1
    Mike Holmes's Avatar
    Mike Holmes Guest

    Default ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Hi.

    I have a dilemma.

    Anderson windows, Certianteed siding, the Vinyl Siding Institute of America along with ASTM E2112-01 (Standard Practice for Installation of Exterior Windows, Doors and Skylights1) no where suggest that J channel should be caulked to the side casing of a vinyl window or door that I have found.
    The closest E2112-01 reference I find is a section under

    5.12 Dissimilar Materials.
    5.12.1 Direct contact of aluminum surfaces with all incompatible materials shall be avoided. Aluminum shall be protected from incompatible materials by placing between the surfaces substances such as bituminous coatings of paint, caulking, non-absorptive plastic, elastomeric tapes or gaskets.
    5.12.2 Wood or other absorptive materials which may become repeatedly wet and which are in contact with aluminum should be painted with two coats of waterproof exterior paint and the joints sealed with a properly selected caulking compound.


    It appears clear to me that caulk in this case could at best only temporarily make up for a failure to incorrectly install the WSB (Tyvek) and window in the first place since Vinyl siding is not supposed to form a waterproof barrier.

    Yet I am told that it is necessary to follow the manufacturers instructions and ALSO that the caulk be applied.
    This could just be busy work that does no harm, but I think that differential expansion will quickly degrade any seal even if it had dubious value to start with, and will then quickly look terrible.

    What should I do ?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Holmes View Post
    Hi.

    I have a dilemma.

    Anderson windows, Certianteed siding, the Vinyl Siding Institute of America along with ASTM E2112-01 (Standard Practice for Installation of Exterior Windows, Doors and Skylights1) no where suggest that J channel should be caulked to the side casing of a vinyl window or door that I have found.

    Yet I am told ... that the caulk be applied.


    What should I do ?
    You don't have a dilemma.

    Last edited by Mike Lamb; 04-23-2013 at 05:04 PM.
    Mike Lamb
    Inspection Connection, Inc.
    http://www.inspection2020.com/

  3. #3
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Mike,
    Hate to burst your bubble, but Tyvek is not waterproof.

    "What should I do ?".....Caulk baby caulk.


  4. #4
    Mike Holmes's Avatar
    Mike Holmes Guest

    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Lamb View Post
    You don't have a dilemma.
    I don't ? how do I follow standards and do something that is not recomended, somehting that is even likly to be a problem?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    Mike,
    Hate to burst your bubble, but Tyvek is not waterproof.

    "What should I do ?".....Caulk baby caulk.
    Hehe, yeh unfortunatly caulk is not going to help though, if anything anywhere said caulk worked in such a situation I would do it, but nothing says to use caulk, everything says install your tyvek and flashing correctly underneath the siding.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Holmes View Post
    Anderson windows, Certianteed siding, the Vinyl Siding Institute of America along with ASTM E2112-01 (Standard Practice for Installation of Exterior Windows, Doors and Skylights1) no where suggest that J channel should be caulked to the side casing of a vinyl window or door that I have found.
    Yet I am told that it is necessary to follow the manufacturers instructions and ALSO that the caulk be applied.
    WHO is telling you that you should "also" caulk it?

    You should follow: a) the code; b) the installation instructions; c) any product approvals; d) the most restrictive of the a), b), or c), which may mean doing parts of a), parts of b), and parts of c).

    It appears clear to me that caulk in this case could at best only temporarily make up for a failure to incorrectly install the WSB (Tyvek) and window in the first place since Vinyl siding is not supposed to form a waterproof barrier.
    ARE the WRB (building wrap) and the window incorrectly installed? How do you know they are? Building wrap is a water-resistive barrier, not a waterproof barrier.

    This could just be busy work that does no harm,
    Or it could actually do harm ... if the intent is for the caulk to keep moisture out, then the caulk will keep moisture in too. Do not caulk joints which are intended to allow air flow to dry things out.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  6. #6
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Mike,

    Having sold thousands of windows in a previous life, installed many, read the installation instructions for all of the major players (Andersen, Marvin, Pella, Certainteed, Silverline etc.etc.etc...) I can tell you a couple of things.
    First most window manufacturers installation instructions are vauge at best when it comes to waterproofing the "opening". They don't want to be on the hook for water "leaking around the opening". I have been on dozens of jobsties in which a customer had water coming in around a window or door and rarely, if ever was the penetration through the window.
    Second, vinyl J-Channel was never meant to be a water "barrier" around any opening. It is nothing more than a piece of trim to make the siding installation look complete. Caulking the J-Channel to the window or door can actually create a dam and allow water into a wall cavity instead of allowing it to travel down the exterior and away from the opening.
    There are window wrap products that are made specifically for wrapping a window or door to stop water from entering the opening. They are sold in rolls 4" to 12" wide and 50' to 100' lenghts. They are usually a rubber membrane material that has an extremely sticky petroleum based adhesive on the back side. If used properly this is the best way to waterproof an opening.
    As a home inspector, when I see a house that has the J-channel caulked to all of the windows and doors, I think the builder didn't want to spend an extra $300 - $400 on a good window wrap and relied on caulking, Tyvek tape and Tyvek to waterproof the opening. When I look at the opening from inside the house I get the moisture meter out. I also make sure to explain this to my client as something they will want to monitor after they move in.


  7. #7
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Holmes View Post
    Hi.

    I have a dilemma.

    Anderson windows, Certianteed siding, the Vinyl Siding Institute of America along with ASTM E2112-01 (Standard Practice for Installation of Exterior Windows, Doors and Skylights1) no where suggest that J channel should be caulked to the side casing of a vinyl window or door that I have found.
    The closest E2112-01 reference I find is a section under

    5.12 Dissimilar Materials.
    5.12.1 Direct contact of aluminum surfaces with all incompatible materials shall be avoided. Aluminum shall be protected from incompatible materials by placing between the surfaces substances such as bituminous coatings of paint, caulking, non-absorptive plastic, elastomeric tapes or gaskets.
    5.12.2 Wood or other absorptive materials which may become repeatedly wet and which are in contact with aluminum should be painted with two coats of waterproof exterior paint and the joints sealed with a properly selected caulking compound.


    It appears clear to me that caulk in this case could at best only temporarily make up for a failure to incorrectly install the WSB (Tyvek) and window in the first place since Vinyl siding is not supposed to form a waterproof barrier.

    Yet I am told that it is necessary to follow the manufacturers instructions and ALSO that the caulk be applied.
    This could just be busy work that does no harm, but I think that differential expansion will quickly degrade any seal even if it had dubious value to start with, and will then quickly look terrible.

    What should I do ?
    Hi,

    You've said nothing here so far about head flashings. There should be head flashings incorporated into the drainage plane of the wall above the window. There shouldn't be any caulk used between the head flashing and the J-channel above the window.

    As long as you've properly flashed the perimeter of that window according to the manufacturer's instructions, caulking the edge of the window to the J-channel on the sides really won't do anything except eliminate a little gap between the J-channel and the window casing. It won't stop water from getting in or out. The J-channel is simply a receiver for the siding to slip into and once the siding is slipped into the J-channel there isn't any seal.

    Lots of vinyl siding guys omit the head flashings because the VSI manual is so vague about the need to install them. They should be installed.

    Mike O'Handley
    Kenmore, Washington


  8. #8
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Yes, There are a lot of windows/doors without head flashing on vinyl siding. I used to like & trust flashing rather than caulking for wall penetration, which can provide ventilation for drying. But a call back regarding the window water intrusion changed my philosohpy. I always point out once I see no caulking around window frames as attached. Flashing may be better for dry climate but I doubt it in the rainy wet NW coast esp on the buildings without overhang protection, no FAI.

    By the way, I did not get why Mike quoted code about aluminium?

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  9. #9
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Holmes View Post
    Hi.

    I have a dilemma.

    Anderson windows, Certianteed siding, the Vinyl Siding Institute of America along with ASTM E2112-01 (Standard Practice for Installation of Exterior Windows, Doors and Skylights1) no where suggest that J channel should be caulked to the side casing of a vinyl window or door that I have found.
    The closest E2112-01 reference I find is a section under

    5.12 Dissimilar Materials.
    5.12.1 Direct contact of aluminum surfaces with all incompatible materials shall be avoided. Aluminum shall be protected from incompatible materials by placing between the surfaces substances such as bituminous coatings of paint, caulking, non-absorptive plastic, elastomeric tapes or gaskets.
    5.12.2 Wood or other absorptive materials which may become repeatedly wet and which are in contact with aluminum should be painted with two coats of waterproof exterior paint and the joints sealed with a properly selected caulking compound.


    It appears clear to me that caulk in this case could at best only temporarily make up for a failure to incorrectly install the WSB (Tyvek) and window in the first place since Vinyl siding is not supposed to form a waterproof barrier.

    Yet I am told that it is necessary to follow the manufacturers instructions and ALSO that the caulk be applied.
    This could just be busy work that does no harm, but I think that differential expansion will quickly degrade any seal even if it had dubious value to start with, and will then quickly look terrible.

    What should I do ?
    I have read many different versions of Andersen window installation instructions. They all require caulking between the window and adjacent materials.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Yes, caulk between the "nailing fin" and the sheathing behind it.
    If you are using a lap or panel siding (like) Hardi Board, Hardi panels, T1-11, cedar lap etc.. and you use a 1x trim board around the window, then you might want to also use caulk at the location where the 1x trim meets the window.
    Andersen also recommends the use of "flashing" around the window. Flashing does not mean "metal" flashing, like the old days, as far as Andersen is concerned a flexible window wrap with an adhesive backing is what they prefer.
    I been on many service calls with Andersen Reps. and watched them dance around the Andersen recommended way to waterproof the opening. They will tell you to follow the instructions of the manufacturer of the "flashing". The premise is that, if there is water penetration between the window and the opening, Andersen (and most manufacturers) do not want to be held responsible for the penetration. But never will you hear a Rep. explain that "caulking" is all you need.


  11. #11
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    I realize this is an old thread, but it did come up on a search I just did. We just installed all new UPVC windows from Germany and nailing fins are not common in Europe at all.
    After much consideration we went ahead with the retrofit style installation as, imo, all windows ultimately rely on flashing.
    This gets us nearer to my search query. Our windows were double, and sometimes triple flashed, depending on how much coffee my contractor drank that day. Yes, sometimes he would flash to the shear, sometimes he would flash to the Tyvek first. Either way he flashed correctly and finished with flashing to the windows (which were flush mounted with the shear).
    Now the question, should we caulk where the J-channel meets the window casing ? We used pvc window casing so we aren't really worried, but clearly water can get through that gap if we don't caulk.
    This shouldn't be a problem given that the water will run down the Tyvek (it should anyway).
    We definitely caulked the inside of the casing (to the windows) and we purposely did not caulk the top seam.
    Any feedback would be highly appreciated.
    Any correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think I saw this answered yet.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: ASTM E2112-01 and Caulking J channel to window/door casing.

    Allowing too much water penetration behind siding is never a good thing. It can be a problem if there are any defects in the flashings or WRB. It could also contribute to long-term deterioration of the WRB. Since these joints are typically the largest source of water penetration, I think the joints should always be sealed (and is required by most window manufacturers). Because there is little movement at these joints a good sealant lasts for a very long time, so it is not a maintenance issue.

    When it comes to water, belts and suspenders are a good idea. Taken literally, that makes no sense, but I assume you know what I mean.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Allowing too much water penetration behind siding is never a good thing. It can be a problem if there are any defects in the flashings or WRB. It could also contribute to long-term deterioration of the WRB. Since these joints are typically the largest source of water penetration, I think the joints should always be sealed (and is required by most window manufacturers). Because there is little movement at these joints a good sealant lasts for a very long time, so it is not a maintenance issue.

    When it comes to water, belts and suspenders are a good idea. Taken literally, that makes no sense, but I assume you know what I mean.


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