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Brick window sills not sloped


Inspectorjoe
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I had a four year old brick veneer fronted house today that had about four or five window sills that were either dead level or sloped very slightly back toward the house. There are no signs of moisture at the interior areas.

Can I assume the only proper fix is to tear them out and relay/replace them with properly sloped bricks? I'd guess that to do that, the windows would have to be removed too.

Joe

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Pardon the thread drift.

Here are a few pics of the lead coated copper flashings I made for the arch top windows on my house. It takes about 30 minutes of hammering, rolling and cajoling to make each one. I think there are about 30 total.

You guys are the only people I know that'll appreciate them.

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Yo Momma! That's some nice metal work. Put up a pic of your house; I wanna see the whole thing.

As far as flat sills, it's epidemic; rowlocks, stone, concrete, doesn't matter; they're all going in flat, and most don't have flashing. When I bring it up, there is the usual pointing @ the caulking bead.

Rowlocks don't hold up particularly well even when everything is perfect; do it crappy, and it can't last.

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Yeah, Kurts right on (Duh, you think so, O'Handley?)

If that contractor wanted to put them in flat like that, he should have insisted on a full pan flashing under that window all the way out to the end of the sills. That's going to leak, sooner or later. Did you look under that row to see if there was a gap? Sometimes I find them where the framing has shrunken and the window slips down in the opening and levers the row up a little bit. When I find those, I can usually find a gap at the top of the window opening as well. Sometimes they've pumped the gap full of caulk, hoping I wouldn't catch it.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Originally posted by Chad Fabry

Pardon the thread drift.

Here are a few pics of the lead coated copper flashings I made for the arch top windows on my house. It takes about 30 minutes of hammering, rolling and cajoling to make each one. I think there are about 30 total.

You guys are the only people I know that'll appreciate them.

That's impressive.

Would you please describe the process you used to make them?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Would you please describe the process you used to make them?

Sure.

I made a machine w/ a pair of flat rollers. I can adjust the distance between the rollers.

I make an 'L' shaped flashing from 20 oz copper and then roll the back leg through the rollers which mashes it down and expands it. It takes 15 or twenty passes to get close to the arc shown.

The bottoms of the arc have to be hammered to stretch the metal further.

Once that's done I attach the flashing to the trim and carefully peen over the bit on the face of the trim.

Terry, the house was built in two stages. The original part was 1832, the part in the photo around 1850.

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Originally posted by Chad Fabry

. . . I made a machine w/ a pair of flat rollers. I can adjust the distance between the rollers.

When you get a chance, could you post a picture of this machine?

I make an 'L' shaped flashing from 20 oz copper and then roll the back leg through the rollers which mashes it down and expands it. It takes 15 or twenty passes to get close to the arc shown.

The bottoms of the arc have to be hammered to stretch the metal further.

I don't understand this part. Do you mean you hammer each end of the arc or do you hammer the bottom circumference?

Once that's done I attach the flashing to the trim and carefully peen over the bit on the face of the trim.

Does the peened-over section develop wrinkles as it turns over the trim? Do you do this in place or do you use a form?

Might it be easier to solder this type of flashing from two pieces?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Originally posted by Jim Baird

Check the Brick Institute website. That and wall section details in codebooks show a minimum of 15 degrees slope for those projections.

Thanks for the tip on the website. It's a treasure trove of info and detailed drawings.

Originally posted by SonOfSwamp

If you're going to write it up, make sure to mention the need for flashings, end dams and weep holes.

I wrote this stuff up on every new house for years. I doubt that any of it got fixed.

Speaking of not getting fixed, I inspected the same house (not this one), three times over the course of six years. It wasn't because the sales fell through - each time, it sold. So the the last two inspections I did on it, I had inspected it for the sellers when they bought it.

All three times, I found the low brick facade on the West end to be separated from the wall structure about three inches at the top course. You could see behind it, and amazingly, not a single tie could be seen. I don't know what the heck was keeping the thing in place, especially considering the amount of corbeling under the bay window.

Over those six years, lots of other improvements (mostly cosmetic) were made to the house. It boggles the mind how this was ignored.

The picture doesn't show the true extent of the separation, since vinyl corner trim was added that partially blocks the gap.

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Originally posted by Kurt

As far as flat sills, it's epidemic; rowlocks, stone, concrete, doesn't matter; they're all going in flat, and most don't have flashing. When I bring it up, there is the usual pointing @ the caulking bead.

Like probably everybody else, I see lots of screwed up brick work, but it's extremely unusual to see the sills flat like that.

Originally posted by hausdok

If that contractor wanted to put them in flat like that, he should have insisted on a full pan flashing under that window all the way out to the end of the sills. That's going to leak, sooner or later. Did you look under that row to see if there was a gap? Sometimes I find them where the framing has shrunken and the window slips down in the opening and levers the row up a little bit. When I find those, I can usually find a gap at the top of the window opening as well. Sometimes they've pumped the gap full of caulk, hoping I wouldn't catch it.

No, the contractor didn't intend for them to be flat like that. There were only four or five out of maybe ten that were flat. Not all of the others were sloped a full 15 degrees, but they were sloped.

There were no signs of movement, no gaps and no caulk. The joints are nice and clean, so I doubt it was done by unskilled labor.

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I did a 'new home final' today where the brick window ledges had a wonderful slope all the way from "0" to "4" degrees.

I did the framing inspection on this house and gave the builder a head's up with documents/images regarding the BIA and IRC requirements for a slope of 15 degrees. Guess he didn't read or maybe it was his brick crew.

My client sent me an e-mail tonight asking if it was real important to have the slope. Well now ... that began a rather lengthy reply with more documentation ... for the 2nd or 3rd time. Oh well.

I had one builder rip 'em out 3 times before he got them right. The last time around he went to the big box store and got the simple meter/gauge that is in the images. Then his brick crew got on the bandwagon.

Kind of a nice feeling when at least one in Lord knows how many inspections gets corrected.

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Majority of windows were at this slope! (Where's the water??)

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WOW ... all of 4-degrees !! [:-party]

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