Report #008

  • Home Value: 285,000
  • Damage Amount: 55,000
  • Damage Percent: 19.2%
  • Severity:
  • Damage Frequency:
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Section 1: Summary

I reviewed the exterior of this home to discover points of possible moisture ingress into the building envelope. This is a summary of my findings and advice for corrections.
The exterior of the home is clad with a brick veneer and stucco. The addition is clad with a cement board siding that is intended to replicate a similarity to stucco by James

The brick veneer is a trim that extends up the wall, terminated with a row lock, then stucco up the rest of the wall. The finishing brick at the top of the wall has a mortar wash cap that was apparently used to create a transition from brick to stucco. This mortar wassh provides no drip detail so moisture runs down the wall over the cap and down the face of the brick. I often see this type of detail on homes this age. This has historically proven to be a less than effective detail to protect this brick and usually contributes to mortar degrading at a faster rate than if it had a limestone sill with a drip detail.

The joint where the brick meets the vertical wall surface is open in quite a bit of the front wall and the west side wall. This allows bulk water to flow behind the brick and into the wall surfaces that the brick is covering. Evidence of this moisture is showing up on the inside of the basement on the front side of the home. The mold problem on the face of the brick that has been identified by A Mold Detective and commented on by Dave from PuroClean will be tough to control unless this brick detail is corrected. The brick at the front of the home right of the entry over the window well is loose and could be pulled off with not much effort.

The lintels on the home are very rusted and some are very heavily into plate rust. The brick has been re-pointed in some areas but this is more a surface band-aid than effective maintenance. There are rust lines flowing over the head trims at the garage door indicating moisture getting behind the brick in the assembly above. The fire place chase has brick that is surface spalling, a condition caused by saturation of moisture then freezing and repeated over time. The chase cap is also a mortar wash style cap that is degraded and in need of correction. Going forward, all of the brick is in need of major correction; it might be more cost effective to replace it all due to the level of maintenance required.

The stucco on the east side of the home that has been replaced needs to be reviewed for general maintenance. There are areas that moisture could have access. Careful consideration needs to be given to the overall performance of this system before just sealing these defects. Some of these areas act as release points for incidental moisture that intrudes into the system. This is a barrier system, not a water managed system so it is of value to look at the whole assembly rather than looking at one area in isolation. I do have a very good stucco contractor that has worked on other projects I have consulted on. The addition is sided with a fiber cement board material with vertical and horizontal wood composite trims. The horizontal trims are required to be protected by a flashing. This is a code requirement; code requirements are generally the minimal standard. The siding on this addition is too close to grade which has the potential to cause premature failure of the siding and trim products used to clad this structure.

The collector head at the roof on the rear of the home where the low slope roof runs the water is filled with leaves and debris. This is a necessity to keep clear and free flowing in order to effectively manage the water in this area. I suggest servicing at least two times per year. The electric mast was mounted into the stucco with a plastic expanding anchor. This is not a correct detail as it can pull a section of the stucco off of the wall as it pulls free. The fastener needs to go deeper and install into framing behind the stucco and be imbedded in a sealant.

There are flashing details at the roof that rely in a bunch of gobbed on black jack. There are intrusion points on this sealant that may be allowing moisture intrusion into the building envelope. Black jack and the like are often used in lieu of good flashing and better sealant details for the expediency of the job. All of these areas need to be addressed and corrected appropriately. There is a crawl space that should be opened and reviewed further. I snapped a picture at my visit and it reveals exposed fiberglass insulation batts that are loose and laying on the dirt. The following pages are captioned pictures to give clarity to the problems I am seeing on this home. The pictures of the crawl space are included on the last page without comment.