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weep holes on stone veneer


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House was built in 2008 and has real stone veneer on part of the home. There are no readily-visible drainiage provisions as you would find with brick. Using the 2000 IRC R703.7, it states that "All stone and masonry veneer shall be installed in accordance with this chapter, Table R703.4 and Figure R703.7..."

Looking at figure R703.7, it clearly shows weepholes. And, R703.7.6 (located in "this chapter") states necessity of weepholes.

Local code enforcement states weeps are necessary on stone veneer. I got mixed answers from other contractors and home inspectors.

Now, this house is a new construction foreclosure. Bank took it over and a contractor was assigned to make repairs from my report. Contractor stated that the stone manufacturer said specific weeps are not necessary when gaps are intentionally left in the mortar between stones as gaps serve as weeps. That makes sense to some degree and mortar is not real tight on this home; gaps present in random places.

However, weeps are supposed to be placed immediately above the flashing. So, I would think I would see a horizontal line in the stone where the bottom of stone, and mortar gaps, would serve as weeps (make sense?) I don't see any planned break or purposeful patten to the stone where the flashing would be.

What do you think?

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I think it's all wrong. Even if the flashing is there, grade can't be above the weeps.

Do not be surprised if you get varying answers from everyone you talk to. After at least a decade of this stuff being very widely distributed within industry channels, most folks still don't get it at all.

There's the gaps you can see; hard mortars and hard stones probably create multiple miles of miniscule hairline additional cracks between the mortar and stone. You get immense capillarity with all those ledges to catch the water, and all those hairlines to soak it into the wall.

I'd also wonder hard at the underlying drainage plane and water resistant barrier, if it exists. No one appears to know much of nothing about anything, so I'd describe the defects and allude to the idea that there could be water in the wall; I'd have to open it to know for sure.

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What Jim Luttrall said. The stuff in your picture is adhered stone veneer. It doesn't matter if it's real stone or fake stone. It's fully adhered. There's no air space behind it and no reason for weep holes. It's supposed to terminate at a weep screed at the bottom and not be buried in the soil at all.

I don't think there is an air space. So, in that case you would reference the MVMA document and it should have weep screeds at the base of the wall, above windows and doors, not go into the ground, caulk between stone and trim (like brick moldings, etc).

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Hi,

Agreed, it's a thin veneer - you can see the thickness of one of the stones in profile in the photo.

Yes, the MVMA document will clearly show them how it is supposed to be; just remember that the MVMA says that document is not a steadfast rule - it is a best practices guidelines.

I've talked directly to folks at MVMA about that document. They still defer to manufacturer's own rules; so, if it were me I'd cite the issues I see relative to it being contrary to the best practices recommended by the MVMA in their guidelines, but point out that where a manufacturer states that it's fine - Contractor stated that the stone manufacturer said specific weeps are not necessary when gaps are intentionally left in the mortar between stones as gaps serve as weeps - he cant expect much help from the manufacturer.

It sure does look like a manufactured stone product though. Interesting that the contractor referred to the producer as "manufacturer" too.

I'd remind him that I'm only the family doctor and that the contractor and the manufacturer are supposed to be the specialty surgeon and the medical device manufacturer; if they aren't budging in their position, despite my insistence that it's incorrect, this will ultimately end up being a roll of the dice and he'll need to make up his own mind as to whose opinion he goes with at this point.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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It's supposed to terminate at a weep screed at the bottom and not be buried in the soil at all.

Forgive my ignorance on the subject, but if it is true stone, shouldn't the base rest on a support ledge due to its weight, like Mr. Luttral wrote? (vs. a weep screed).

PS: When is the last time you've seen a weep screed used with cultured stone?

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It's supposed to terminate at a weep screed at the bottom and not be buried in the soil at all.

Forgive my ignorance on the subject, but if it is true stone, shouldn't the base rest on a support ledge due to its weight, like Mr. Luttral wrote? (vs. a weep screed).

PS: When is the last time you've seen a weep screed used with cultured stone?

Never. Not once. The builders and subs don't even know what one is.

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It's supposed to terminate at a weep screed at the bottom and not be buried in the soil at all.

Forgive my ignorance on the subject, but if it is true stone, shouldn't the base rest on a support ledge due to its weight, like Mr. Luttral wrote? (vs. a weep screed).

PS: When is the last time you've seen a weep screed used with cultured stone?

Never. Not once. The builders and subs don't even know what one is.

I've been hammering the details of the MVMA manual for about six months and one big builder has been sharing it with his sub and the last few houses I did in one of their developments not only had the proper separation, they had the termination beads, weep screeds, backer rod and proper flashings.

Keep hammering on it long enough and word gets around.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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I've been hammering the details of the MVMA manual for about six months and one big builder has been sharing it with his sub and the last few houses I did in one of their developments not only had the proper separation, they had the termination beads, weep screeds, backer rod and proper flashings.

Keep hammering on it long enough and word gets around.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

Mike ... you have a link for that document/website?

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I've been hammering the details of the MVMA manual for about six months and one big builder has been sharing it with his sub and the last few houses I did in one of their developments not only had the proper separation, they had the termination beads, weep screeds, backer rod and proper flashings.

Keep hammering on it long enough and word gets around.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

Mike ... you have a link for that document/website?

If you Google mvma installation guidelines, it will be the first link listed. I think their web-site is currently down, however.

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Hi,

The MVMA site is masonryveneer.org but it's easily the slowest site on the net. Either their ISP's server is bogged down or they are on dialup, 'cuz it takes about 15 minutes for most of the page to load and even then it hasn't even started loading the graphics.

They've got some stuff that's useful on the home page (If you can get to it). Codes, an online guide, etc.. It looks like they've updated their guidelines. The copy I've saved is a February 2009 copy and it looks like the upgraded their guide in July 2010. I've tried to download it via Firefox, Chrome, IE8 and IE9 (Beta) and nothing is working - that site is slower than dogsnot rolling down the side of a ship in the Antarctic.

Nolan, if you can't get that new guide downloaded, shoot me an email and I'll attach my Feb 2009 copy to a reply back to you.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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