Water intrusion inspections

Give the great rainfalls we (in the Chicago area) had about 2 months ago (remnents of Hurricane Ike), I have bee VERY busy doing water intrusion inspections. Helps if you know building science and have an I camera.

Newly built townhouse, about 4,000 SF. Walls were single CMU and the stone window sill was flush with the wall and had no flashing. Oh, BTW. No grouting of the CMU spaces.

Quick tips:

  1. Check for flashing under the coping stone / coping tiles. Around here, no one does it and water just drains right through and goes into the walls.
  2. CMU and split faced block MUST be sealed (penetrating silicon sealer). BTW: Chicago, last week, banned split faced block for new construction.
  3. In this kind of construction, usually, uses only furring strips on the interior of the CMU, then they stuff R 13 fiberglass into the (nominally) 1 5/8 inch cavity. What are they thinking. Then the mopes put 6 mil plastic just behind the drywall.
  4. Flashing above windows and doors must be properly done.
  5. Weep wicks (which should be nylon or polypropolyne) are not done properly. Mostly, they just buy cotton clothes line (which disinterates in a year).
  6. Weep wicks in contact with the sidewalk because they poured the sidewalk / driveway too high on grade.
  7. Lintels grouted or caulked. The spaces between the stone/brick/CMU and the steel lintels MUST be left open.

Hope this helps;



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