The dreaded call.....

I got a call from a client yesterday. Performed their inspection in early March. Water leaking in above their living room window. I had called out caulked flashing above the window with Hardiplank siding and of course the seller / contractor said it was fine.

So I visit today and sure enough the inside upper window trim boards and area are stained and wet. The top of the window is well above the gutters and hidden from any potential weather. New roof above that.

The client says well let’s take the trim off and see what is happening. So we removed the trim boards and lo and behold this is what we find. When the new window and siding was installed, they folded the Tyvek wrap into the rough opening at the top. They added spacers to the header and installed the trim, leaving a 1/2 inch gap between the trim and header covered with Tyvek.

As you can see below, the warm air from the home would hit the trim and move to the void where condensation would form on the Tyvek attached to the cold header and drip down on the MDF trim. This is all because of the Tyvek wrap being stapled to the bottom of the cold header. Had it been cut on the exterior, there would not have been an issue.

So far, none of the other windows show similar moisture issues. Client was very happy to know the cause. They were contacting the seller / contractor for repairs. When they offered payment, I declined. THAT simple 15 minutes will bring in more referrals and business. And it gave me a chance to stop at a favorite burger stand 2 blocks away. :mrgreen:

Nice, well maybe not for your client, Thanks for sharing.

Good find Stephen, but I would not call it a problem because of the Tyvek. Regardless of the material there, this would happen and probably still will.

I would venture a guess that the Window is not properly installed, allowing a cold air wash to cause to condensation at the header.

But I wasn’t there, this is just what I find a lot.

That is why I use flashing tape around all exterior openings during construction.

Nice. It almost always pays to go back and check things out. Great job

Spray foam around the window is needed to control the cold air movement into the opening…all the way around. I bet the jambs and sill are doing the same thing. I don’t think it is because the header is that much cooler than the inside air.

Back in the day we always installed insulation by hand, shredding batt insulation and stuffing voids between window and doors and framing. Had a client that decided he wanted to insulate himself. He used the spray foam on all of the doors and windows. Got a late night call that he couldn’t get out of the house, the spray foam had expanded so much none of the doors or windows would open. Had to break out the sawsall to get him out that night;)

Based on all the other items in the home, I can almost guarantee the windows were installed incorrectly. :roll:

That’s the way we installed the Tyvek in a cold climate, but, we foamed the gap. It was never an issue.

On the top, never.

Yes, on the top. And then as Roy said, flashing tape. Installed hundreds this way.

As per Dupont

You should watch the video again and compare to the pics posted. Not the same install.

good catch

Did you even watch your own video? You NEVER tuck the flashing into the rough opening on the top. :roll:

Oops, could be a lot of leaking windows in Utah. Great video eh. That’s not what was recommended 20 years ago however.

I always tuck the rap around the openings then when the windows and door are installed. Then I install the flashing tape.
Someone tell me I’m wrong! I’m not!

You are wrong. ;):slight_smile:

I second that.

And, a third…:slight_smile: