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Old 10-29-2012, 09:15 PM   #1
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


Has anyone ever seen this? When I look up into the exterior wall of my house, above the basement windows, there is this huge gap, where I can see up into the inside of the wall, between the siding and (I believe) the interior wall. We have no insulation, and I've seen animals run up into these gaps.

It looks like this was done originally; it doesn't look like anything rotted away, it just looks like when they build the house (in 1929), this gap existed. Along the bottom of the siding, the rest of the exterior wall is flush with the foundation, but above all these window wells (we have 4 of them), there are these gaps where I can put my hand up into the wall.

1) Has anyone ever seen anything like this? Can this be explained?
In the one pic, you can see the bottom of a 2x4; does this mean that in these gaps, the stud that holds the wall is resting on NOTHING?

2) What's the best way to close these up so that animals don't get in, and also so when we blow in cellulose, it doesn't just come pouring out? It's a narrow space. Should I just cut a 2x4 to size and slam nails into it from the outside of the siding? If I try to seal the bottom with a piece of wood, I'd have to get a nail (or something) through the siding, my piece of wood, and foundation concrete.

Any help on this would be greatly appreciated. I'm flabbergasted and dismayed by this. Please see pics. if this should go in different forum, please let me know. I put here because it seems like a big problem for blown insulation.
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!-basementwindow.jpg   Walls open to outside above basement windows!-wallhole.jpg   Walls open to outside above basement windows!-wallhole2.jpg   Walls open to outside above basement windows!-wallhole3.jpg   Walls open to outside above basement windows!-wallhole4.jpg  


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Old 10-29-2012, 09:23 PM   #2
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


Looks like ballon wall constrution to me.
http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...5909A&first=80

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Old 10-29-2012, 09:45 PM   #3
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


How tall is the structure? Post a picture farther back showing the whole house from ground to roof.
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Old 10-29-2012, 09:49 PM   #4
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


+1

Not sure that is balloon. Looks like something funky.
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Old 10-30-2012, 06:44 AM   #5
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
How tall is the structure? Post a picture farther back showing the whole house from ground to roof.
Here's a pic of the whole house on the side where I took the pictures, as well as a pic of one of these basement windows from the inside. From the inside, things look normal, as far as I can tell; the insulation is stuffed into the space between 2 joists, and there's the big sill plate or whatever underneath it.

It's a two story house w/ very, very steep roof. These basement windows are recessed into the foundation a little bit (which I think is normal), and there are those metal wells around the outside of them. It's the recess where the gap in the wall above is; it's like they never closed off the bottom of the wall where the recess is, but again, doesn't look like anything rotted out; just looks like when they did the wall, it's flush against foundation, but they did nothing to make up for the fact that there's nothing under the wall where theose windows are recessed inward.

It looks like there's more foundation above the window on the foundation side of this gap. I've included a pic of the window from the INSIDE as well. The basement ceiling/1st story floor are well above the top of this window.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:20 AM   #6
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


That is actually a 1 story bungalow, not two story. Balloon framing would not be what you are seeing. What they actually did, was bring the siding down lower than it actually was, when the home was built. Mine is that way also, the siding goes two rows below the rim joist.
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Old 11-03-2012, 07:15 AM   #7
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


A siding contractor told me the basement windows were put in after construction, and when they knocked the foundation wall out to make the windows, they did not close up the gap this caused at the bottom of the wall (wall used to be touching foundation, not foundation is gone where they put windows).

Can someone tell me how they would close this up? It's a small space to get to, up above the steel window wells, and there's nothing really to nail into on the SIDES. I supposes I could nail soemthing up into the bottom of the siding, but I doubt that would be very sturdy. This is in Michigan, with very cold winters and hot summers. We're getting blown in insulation, so I want to try to seal this up in a way that won't condense.

Please help.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:59 AM   #8
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


Looks like it would be simple enough to rip some 1/2 plywood, prime and paint it making sure to seal the outside edges and just nail it up.
I'd use my narrow crown staple gun, it's small enough to fit in that area.

It would be no differant then what you have to do under a bow or bay window when it over hangs like that.
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:29 AM   #9
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Walls open to outside above basement windows!


The siding contractor is an idiot. Not, it is just shoddy workmanship, when they lowered the siding down farther than it was, when it was built.

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