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Thread: Leaking window

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Miami, Florida
    Posts
    230

    Default Leaking window

    Would like some opinions on this.

    There is definite moisuter around this window. It is hard to see, but in the middle picture the sill is stained. My theory is that the window is not properly sealed, but without ripping it out how would we know.
    The moisture meter only showed positive down near the baseboard. (I'm thinking the stain may be from leaving the window open). The second theory is that the water is seeping in through the wall or foundation.

    Thanks in advance

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    Bill Siegel
    Florida Home Inspection Team Inc.

  2. #2
    Nolan Kienitz's Avatar
    Nolan Kienitz Guest

    Default Re: Leaking window

    Could be bad or lack of proper flashing at time when window was installed at time of original build. How old is house? Does seller's disclosure hold any clues?

    Stucco down to landscaping? Can't see foundation for moisture at exterior or did meter reflect elevated levels there as well?

    Or ... as you indicated ... perhaps someone left window open a tad during a gully-wash.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    25,315

    Default Re: Leaking window

    Bill,

    Typically, the problem is that water goes down through the stucco sill outside and collect under the loose stucco. Did you tap on it, and, if so, was it loose? Usually (probably 80% of the time) the stucco is loose, allowing water to collect under it.

    Either way (loose or no, loose just lets more water in, not loose does not stop the water), it is also very likely that a precast sill was not installed, meaning that a wood buck was installed along the bottom of the window.

    Wood bucks are never (okay, not 'never', just 99.999999% of the time) caulked or sealed under *properly*, i.e., where it will stop water.

    The water then leaks in under the window, down the inside the block wall, and collects on the horizontal furring strip used as a nailer for the drywall and base. That is one reason why most leaks show up low instead of up high.

    Typically, the insulation is that Fi-Foil junk which is never installed properly either, it is just nailed across the face of the furring strips. This means that the only points to get wet until the bottom is the nail penetrations. The nails will rust and bring the moisture to the drywall surface, creating a rust stain.

    Another problem on those double windows is leaking at the center mulls.

    Also, windows are prone to leak at their corners.

    Three sources of leaks, in the order I suspect them, and they will typically all shown up at the bottom near the base (except for corner leaks, you can frequently see the water stains at the drywall returns next to the bottom corners).

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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Miami, Florida
    Posts
    230

    Default Re: Leaking window

    Thanks Jerry,

    My first thought were what you said. Your clairifcation was great.

    Bill Siegel
    Florida Home Inspection Team Inc.

  5. #5
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Leaking window

    Looks like the weather has been quite nice there. With that said and looking out the window at the nice, green grass and the water hose in the yard... there is a good possibility that the windows have been open when running the sprinkler system or watering the yard.

    Sometimes the simpliest condition could be the right one.

    Rich


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Miami, Florida
    Posts
    230

    Default Re: Leaking window

    Richard,

    Most people down here never open their windows. This particular area is also known for its wonderful construction, especailly around the windows.

    Bill Siegel
    Florida Home Inspection Team Inc.

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