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Hardi directly over LP


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The house I inspected today was built in 1995 / 1996. It was originally sided with LP panel.

First Question: Was it required to have a housewrap installed between the studs and panel siding back then?

Second: The contractor did not believe it was necessary to install a housewrap between the Hardi- Lap siding and LP siding/ sheathing so the new siding is in direct contact with the sheathing. The owner told me that the contractor believed that there was a housewrap installed behind the panels so it was not necessary.

My recommendation is to pull off all of the new siding and install a felt paper over the LP, properly flash windows and other protrusions, and then re- install the siding.

What to you all think?

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Close to 100% of the time the LP panel is left in place if it is in good condition, and I would say 50% of the time it is left in place even if there is siding rot-- I write that up a lot. Having said that, I found no softness/ deterioration along the bottom edges of the siding around the home to indicate the LP should have been removed.

Randy, do they usually remove the LP panel in your area first?

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The LP panel siding is rated as structural sheathing and, except for the grooves in it, isn't any different than the ordinary LP sheathing used on about 80% of the new homes today. However, you're supposed to install Hardiplank over some kind of moisture-resistant barrier behind the HP "in accordance with local building codes" and Hardi says it isn't responsible for water penetration.

Well, in this case, you've got a layer of paper behind the LP and the LP itself is considered moisture resistant with a perm rate that's less than felt, so I don't know that adding wrap, which is NOT designed to be a moisture resistant barrier and is only designed to prevent air infiltration, is going to be beneficial at all.

I guess I have to ask, what is the downside of leaving the wrap, which tends to trap water against OSB, out of the mix so that the OSB beneath the siding is better able to dry out between rains?

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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My concern is that you have a product that was exposed to the elements for about 10 years with a material (Hardi) that is known to hold a bunch of water. You are now trapping moisure directly against the LP.

I don't see how you can properly flash windows and other protrusions.

Also, I don't know if there is any type of barrier behind that LP-- was it required in 1995/6?

Once the caulk sealant fails at the original LP at windows and other trim protrusions, what will keep water out of the wall?

My bet is that it is going to rot out that sheathing over time--- I have an e- mail to Hardi right now to see if they will take a stance, and will try calling them today.

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Hi,

Yes, in 1995/96 LP required a MRB behind it's product; even if it was installed directly over studs. If you'are not seeing any head flashings over windows and doors it probably means that what's there has been applied over sheathing and the windows and doors were flashed behind the siding with Moistop or something similar; the bituthene was probably used on the bottom and sides with nothing but the paper overlapping the top nailing flange, and then the perimeter of the window was caulked.

With the Hardiplank on, is the window still proud of the siding? If they are vinyl windows and the answer is just barely, there's probably a layer of sheathing behind the siding. The siding guy should have at least popped one panel off to see what he had before he started covering it up though.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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There is no head flashing installed. Flashing behind the sheathing just seems wrong to me as the back side of the sheathing is not painted. As water gets in, it will rot out the sheathing as far as I am concerned.

The vinyl windows slightly stand proud of the siding, but there is no sheathing installed behind the panel. It goes directly from the studs to the LP panel as is common down here.

I have an e- mail in to James Hardie. I am thinking about contacting LP as well to see what their take is.

I'm just not convinced that this is a good idea to install fiber cement directly against OSB materials.

Mike, thanks for the help.

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One question. If the hardi-plank was already on a house how do you know what is behind it as far as a barrier. Second, properly sealed and painted the hardi-plank is not going to suck up water unless the caulk fails or they just plain did not do a good job. And third, what would be wrong with Tyvev where it is meant to breath in one direction. It would help keep the LP drier than nothing and it will let the moisture out. The bigger question is the proper flashing around the windows. There is a specific caulking for hardi products. If I am not mistaken that caulking is more like an elastomeric caulking and lasts much longer. I would not remove the LP. Actually I would not recommend anything beyond having a contractor evaluate for possible repairs unless you can varify everthing. Just state your concerns, recommend for evaluation for your concerns.

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I just got off the phone with Hardie's tech support. The guy I talked to said they do not approve of the installation of their product directly onto the LP without a barrier between the 2.

I asked for something e- mailed to me in writing, but he kept saying that all I had to do was look at the installation instructions that show a barrier between their product and the sheathing. I tried to say "yeah, but", but he just kept saying barrier must be installed between the two.

He told me he would tell anyone that called the same thing, and wouldn't send anything in writing--dang it.

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One question. If the hardi-plank was already on a house how do you know what is behind it as far as a barrier.

I knew it was LP because I always look up from the bottom (starter area) and ensure the sheathing is not rotted and that there is a visible barrier). I could not see a barrier and thought "hmmmm" and started using a screwdriver to pry out siding in areas --- that is how I ensure a proper overlap is installed as well

Second, properly sealed and painted the hardi-plank is not going to suck up water unless the caulk fails or they just plain did not do a good job

I don't like to rely on homeowner's properly maintaining their home for one. There were other installation defects as well , including missing Z flashing at belly bands that will allow more water seepage behind the new siding, missing flashing at trim protrusions, etc. So basically the siding job was a typical retro- fit job where things were not well installed.

And third, what would be wrong with Tyvev where it is meant to breath in one direction.

That would depend on what was behind the LP panel-- there is no way for me to know that one.

The bigger question is the proper flashing around the windows.

Not likely if you are talking about the original flashing. And of course-- none for the new layer

I would not recommend anything beyond having a contractor evaluate for possible repairs unless you can varify everthing. Just state your concerns, recommend for evaluation for your concerns.

My recommendation in the report is pretty much that. I verbalized that the only way I was aware of to do this right would be to rip off the siding, but told them to get some expert opinions.

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That's funny about calling hardi. I called them many years ago and it was later that I thought. Mr. H himself answered the phone himself, for what reason I do not know. I asked him a couple of questions and he said almost the exact same thing to me. "Just follow the installation instructions and you will be alright.

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Mike O,

I thought you would enjoy this e- mail I received from Hardie. My original question is the lower section and the answer comes first. i am not sure now who to believe-- tech support via the phone call the person that answered this e- mail.

1 for 2 ........ I'll keep you all posted on this, because now I am ticked off that I get conflicting answers from the same company.

From: Info (Info@Jameshardie.com)

Sent: Mon 6/16/08 4:44 PM

To: Brandon Whitmore (brandon_whitmore@hotmail.com)

It would be definitely recommended, but not required, since the requirement Initially comes from building codes.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From: Brandon Whitmore [mailto:brandon_whitmore@hotmail.com]

Sent: Sunday, June 08, 2008 5:04 PM

To: Info

Subject:

Do you allow the installation of your Hardi- lap siding directly over LP panel siding without the use of a weather resistive barrier if there is a weather resistive barrier behind the LP?

I would think one should be installed since fiber cement siding does absorb moisture, therefore trapping moisture against the old LP product.

Please let me know--

Thanks,

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After questioning the manufacturer and letting them know I received conflicing info, they sent me this e- mail:

RE: þ

From: Info (Info@Jameshardie.com)

Sent: Tue 6/17/08 2:31 PM

To: Brandon Whitmore (brandon_whitmore@hotmail.com)

The Weather barrier is NOT required by us but the best practice would be to install a weather barrier over the LP to keep out any moister from reaching the old product in the first place.

If you choose not to put it on it will not void our product warranty.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Originally posted by Brandon Whitmore

One question. If the hardi-plank was already on a house how do you know what is behind it as far as a barrier.

I knew it was LP because I always look up from the bottom (starter area) and ensure the sheathing is not rotted and that there is a visible barrier). I could not see a barrier and thought "hmmmm" and started using a screwdriver to pry out siding in areas --- that is how I ensure a proper overlap is installed as well

Second, properly sealed and painted the hardi-plank is not going to suck up water unless the caulk fails or they just plain did not do a good job

I don't like to rely on homeowner's properly maintaining their home for one. There were other installation defects as well , including missing Z flashing at belly bands that will allow more water seepage behind the new siding, missing flashing at trim protrusions, etc. So basically the siding job was a typical retro- fit job where things were not well installed.

And third, what would be wrong with Tyvev where it is meant to breath in one direction.

That would depend on what was behind the LP panel-- there is no way for me to know that one.

The bigger question is the proper flashing around the windows.

Not likely if you are talking about the original flashing. And of course-- none for the new layer

I would not recommend anything beyond having a contractor evaluate for possible repairs unless you can varify everthing. Just state your concerns, recommend for evaluation for your concerns.

My recommendation in the report is pretty much that. I verbalized that the only way I was aware of to do this right would be to rip off the siding, but told them to get some expert opinions.

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Brandon, welcome comes to talking with manufacturers reps. to the land of ambiguities when it comes to talking to manufacturers reps. They will NEVER put specifics in writing but rather keep referring you the install sheets - dosen't matter if they are unclear or not. The same goes for CertainTeed. Get a rep on site and I cam guarantee his words will be something like "well, it's not installed precisely as the sheets recommend but it appears to be OK". Then ask them if the warranty would be honored if failure occured. Wait till you call center nailing Hardi seams as a mis-install and the rep comes out and gives the builder and buyer the above mentioned dog and pony show. Like everyone else on the forum is saying - "if it don't look right, it probably isn't". Tell the buyer your concerns and walk away - they will normally but the crappy installation anyway! FYI - say Katen last week and he is his same ole ornery self (pardon the grammar)!

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Paul,

It sounds like you do write up the practice of nailing the centers of butt joints and am curious as to why. A ways back I considered whether to write up this practice and decided not to. I just couldn't (still can't) come up with any really good reason why it will hurt anything. My only slight concern is that they are sticking a hole through the WRB at the nail penetration and when (not if) the caulk fails at the butt joint some water can find it's way into the wall sheathing. But, I have that concern with all siding types, and that is why I write up poor seals, etc. all of the time. Even if that nail wasn't there, the WRB is punched full of holes behind the siding anyway's.

Have you ever seen it cause any problems?

If the siding is properly nailed otherwise, aren't those nails just extra, meaning the installer complied with the manufacturers installation instructions?

I am not arguing with writing this up, just curious as to your thoughts, what you do write, etc.

Also, regarding manufacturer reps.... I've met a couple of them on site in the past. One of them was Certainteed's vinyl siding rep who said that the lack of J trim overlap at the top corners of windows and doors would not be a problem. He just recommended that they caulk the corners if I remember correctly (something weird/ crazy like that). I told him I wanted something in writing from his company stating this was a proper repair---- it never surfaced. I met the rep on site after having a large, fairly reputable builder (job super) and the installer say I was wrong... they did put it in writing. I had the listing agent on site the entire time glaring at me for making an issue of the installation. It makes no sense why the installer does not get all of the grief- -- it's always the inspector's fault [:-dunce]

We pretty much need to change the building code in Oregon. It needs to be written for the average contractor to understand. It needs to lay out exactly how things need to be done. To heck with interpretations.... everyone has their own opinion. I've read the dang code books more than I can count and still can't understand a lot of the stuff in there. Enough of my venting......

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