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Water in rim joist


Erby
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I don't want to prejudice you with my opinion so I'll just post the pictures and see what y'all think.

This is the back of the 58 year old brick veneer house.

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Water is wicking up from the sill plate into the rim joist area all along the back wall.

The sill plate is above the basement garage doors. The sill plate is NOT below ground level. No "obvious" source of water in the rim joist area. No pipes, etc. Moisture meter said it was dry at time of inspection but who can remember the last time we had any decent rain around here.

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Hi Erby,

Are you sure it's a rim joist? Like Chris said, it's wicking water like hardboard does. Odd configuration; notched joist ends with a sill plate on top and what looks like blocking between joist ends on the bottom to prevent overturning. Is that some kind of hardboard or cellulose sheathing behind brick?

What's that house sided with; can't really make it out - it's too grainy on my monitor - but it looks like it's either painted brick or stucco - heavy window ledges - brick? I'm thinking lack of weeps and painted brick that can't dry to the outside. Alternatively, I'm thinking it's an area that gets cold enough for a lot of Seattle sunshine that's drained onto the garage floor and evaporated to condense into water on an uninsulated rim joist and wick up into the wood..

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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This is a simple one. Look at how little overhang there is on the back. In the winter the gutter is "ice damming" and leaking into the attic plate and behind the siding. It runs down the tyvek or whatever other paper is used and collects where you see the stains. Tell them to install a gutter heater next winter, turn it on when ice is expected and see if the problem goes away.

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Originally posted by hausdok

Hi Erby,

Are you sure it's a rim joist? Like Chris said, it's wicking water like hardboard does. Odd configuration; notched joist ends with a sill plate on top and what looks like blocking between joist ends on the bottom to prevent overturning. Is that some kind of hardboard or cellulose sheathing behind brick?

Yeah, why would they need the notches and blocking if there was an actual rim joist. It definitely looks like hardboard when I blow the photo up and I don't think anyone ever was stupid enough to make a joist out of that stuff.

I'm also interested if you metered the stains on the "wood". The stains on the concrete below would indicate at least one session of water running, almost pouring, down the concrete, but if it was active and an ongoing thing I'd expect a lot more rust on those tools.

No conclusions really, but I wonder if the area was left exposed to a rainstorm at some time during construction, siding, etc?

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I'm still troubled with the rim material. Regular dimensional lumber resists absorption through the sidewall of the cells and one normally doesn't see that kind of staining. The only other place I've seen that odd pattern, besides on hardboard, was where the wood had a nest of termites inhabiting its core and their nasty damp interior environment had caused the stains.

OT - OF!!!

M.

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This is basicaly an early form of a rain screen wall. I believe the problem lies in the paint used on the brick. I believe it is thermaly driven vapor causing condensation on the inside of the masonry veneer, where it runs down to the foundation where it pools causing the staining on the masonite like board used at the rim and possible extending vertically on the outside of the framing.

Given the age of the building there is no vapor barrier in the wall. The paint on the wall has created a vapor barrier at the exterior of the wall. Kentucky gets cold yes? I do not see any vents on the side of the building or roof that would indicate that the house has no ventilation fans for the bathrooms. (bathrooom windows don't count since most people do not use them in the winter) All of the humidity of the building is trapped, it needs a way out.

Note: I would first try to rule out that the windows are leaking allowing water into the brick veneer. The vapor barrier condition still exists even if the windows are the major source of water.

Your recomended solution should be two fold.

1. The air gap needs to be weeped. Small holes can be drilled from the outside through the grout at the foundation line, Holes every 12" should be adequate. You could also vent the air gap in the wall but this might be excessive for the condition.

2. Add bathroom vents vented to the exterior. I always specify a timer type switch that starts with the lights coming on in the room and goes for a designated amount of time (IE. 15-30 minutes.)

Go to http://www.gobrick.com/html/frmset_thnt.htm

read Technical note 27

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Hi,

Where is the staining of the rim joist located in relation to the garage door? Is it right above? Perhaps there is moisture trapped in the air space behind the brick veneer which trickles down to unproperly flashed garage doors. Is the flashing allowing for drainage of the brick wall above it?

It is also hard to see if there is cracking in the stucco where moisture could penetrate, but it looks like a big crack running just above the garage doors. Tough to see from the pics. Take your time, and put it all together.

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Originally posted by kurt

Does Kentucky get big ice dams?

Being one state south, and having been to KY a fair bit lately, I can tell you that major ice/snow is unusual in KY/TN, but it's unpredictable. I've seen two days here in Nashville when the thermometer read 15 below. Wind chill was 50 below.

But heck, I got 18 inches of snow in SC in 73.

Al Gore lives right up the road. Maybe I'll go ask him...

WJ

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Originally posted by Richard Moore

"Al Gore lives right up the road. Maybe I'll go ask him..."

Walter, you might want to wait until tomorrow. The man obviously likes his food and I would imagine that he is currently in a deep, tryptophan induced, coma. That's my own "activity" plan for later today.

BTW Richard, great avatar. Your pooch I presume?

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The subfloor boards appear to be recycled. Any chance that the rim was recycled and the staining occured in another location?

Originally posted by Erby

I don't want to prejudice you with my opinion so I'll just post the pictures and see what y'all think.

This is the back of the 58 year old brick veneer house.

Image Insert:

20081126101912_DSC04818.jpg

149.77 KB

Water is wicking up from the sill plate into the rim joist area all along the back wall.

The sill plate is above the basement garage doors. The sill plate is NOT below ground level. No "obvious" source of water in the rim joist area. No pipes, etc. Moisture meter said it was dry at time of inspection but who can remember the last time we had any decent rain around here.

Image Insert:

20081126102031_DSC04792.jpg

143.87 KB

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