Has anyone ever seen this...

7 year old all brick home, the first picture is the worst example, the 2nd picture is the other corner and many other vinyl windows look similar to the 2nd picture.

I can’t tell if the lintel is bearing on the top of the vinyl window frames due to caulking. No signs of anything wrong inside the house or with the lintel.

Something has to be putting a load on the vinyl window units…

Aug 19 2009 061.jpg

Aug 19 2009 062.jpg

It pretty much has to be long-term pressure or the sill wold have snapped instead of bending. Looks like maybe the window sill was supported by shims which are positioned 4 or 5 inches back from the corners.
I don’t know what other than the lintel could create that kind of stess.

What did the top of the window look like?

If the window is installed in a framed wall maybe that’s helping to stabilize it somehow.

The top has caulk, can’t see anything unusual.

If the header moved down there would be cracks inside the house, no signs of any patch work or painting.

Imagine what would happen if the entire footer under the brick moved down some, the lintels would put weight on the windows without any other evidence other than the weak link which is the lower vinyl frame.

Do you know the manufacture of the windows? It seems to me that there should be more of a reveal on the sides of the window and the glass. Could they have been replacements? Anymore photos (interior)? Something looks off…

Hello Bruce I did some work at a home here that was just like yours. Mine was a 2 story brick on front only and every window showed the same compression on the corners of both second and 1st fl. Also the the 2nd story window sill had a gap of nearly an inch between the window and brick. If you stood out in the street and looked at the lines of the house it appeared the home was bowed down from the ends and some places it looked like the brick was pulling away from the home. The home only has about a 6/12 roof doesn’t appear to abnormal roof weight. I siggested a SE needed to look at this.

Is there wood rotting under the vinyl compounding the crush?

During a pre-drywall inspection once, I remember seeing some windows with shims along the bottom that had been jammed in too hard and were causing a bow in the lower frame. Shims too tight, or brick veener settling down… I just don’t see how a framing problem could do this without major movement on the interior, everything is near perfect inside. The seller said this was missed by two other inspectors.

Bruce, that is a good one. Never seen anything like that in all my years.

This is a vinyl clad window and a brick veneer.

Not seeing the upper part of the window makes it difficult.
Windows in brick veneers are typically installed 2-1/2’ to 3" inset from face of brick, so therefore, they are under stress if the masonry above should start acting above them.
Brick veneers will act independently of the stud framing behind them because of the brick wall ties holding them to the framing. Thus, no reaction moments such as cracks visible on the interior.
A substantial amount of pressure was exerted to provide us with this reaction in the photo.
The broken brick bothers me, because of the way it is broken and somewhat indicating that movement has occurred under the window.
The sealant on the jambsides of the window appear unbroken in it’s bonding of the two units. That indicates possible movement directly under the window unit.

A full picture of the exterior in that location would help. :slight_smile:

Best I can do. :slight_smile:

Other than what I said, I am baffled too!

No need to post other pictures, nothing at all is evident except the usual sloppy caulk work along the top. Its normal to have some gaps along the lintel that have to be caulked.

This is not a vinyl clad window, solid vinyl as far as I know, lots of these used around here, about 50 different makes that typically have no manuf name readily visible on them. (they don’t want to hear about things later)

The seller promised to keep me updated on what is found.

Bruce, you said all brick but you didn’t mean double wythe did you? I assume you meant the entire exterior is brick but it’s fastened to a framed interior wall with ties. Right?

Ok Bruce, seems like you have it under control.

Solid vinyl windows around here are called replacement windows. Either way, when there is an action, there is a reaction.
That sure looks like one. :):smiley:

yes, all brick means no vinyl or siding on sides and rear :slight_smile:

No double wythe around here except on older buildings maybe, not residential that I have seen.

The masons are stingy with the wall ties, the whole brick wall could move and flex the ties or pull nails loose if it needed to.

Bruce, I’ve never seen that either. Strange that the lintel or upper part of the wall has compressed but there are no cracks in the brick itself at the top of the windows. I’m assuming you looked very carefully, but I can’t understand how that could happen without cracking in the veneer.

Good catch. Refer it out. Don’t forget to go back and re-inspect it later for an extra $100. :mrgreen:


Me think that the house framing is shrinking…

How 'bout this idea: the windows never fit right to begin with. They were crammed in there and pushed down by the lintel from day 1. That would explain no cracking inside or out.

I think thats it, framing shrinkage, same consenus over on IN where I posted this too.

Must have been some really wet wood or zero gaps for movement or we would see this more often.

This is not something you want to miss, lets see, tear out all windows and trim, tear out all brick sills, install new windows or at least the frames and finish work on large 2-story house… very expensive.

Shrinkage. (That term reminds me of a Seinfeld episode.)