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Old 03-14-2009, 01:50 PM   #1
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


I have a casement window (Norco Siteline, alumninum clad exterior, wood interior) which leaks at the bottom (floor) when wind driven rain hits it. Opening the window I see the truth hardware box is all wet, and water has seeped through down to the floor (these windows are long, sitting only about 8 inches off the floor). It's not a flood (I had to pull the carpet back to see it--about a 1/2 cup maybe on the subfloor and I let it all dry out out).

The windows have only a small bubble type rubber weatherstrip around the sash. House settling (10 years old) and lack of an obvious moisture barrier under the window contributes to the problem. I have had several window companies come out and none seem to have a solution short of replacing it (and the 40 other windows) or caulking the window shut (hmmm). Seems to me if I can make the window seal tighter, I can pretty much solve this problem.

Right now we've got plastic over the bottom sill and the sash closed tight against it. This keeps everything dry but sure is ugly!

Searching for weatherstripping has led my on a hundred paths. I'd like to avoid removing the factory installed rubber stripping that is there and simply adding to it. My husband doesn't want to screw in anything, he wants adhesive backed stripping in case it doesn't do the trick and he can remove it.

Any help appreciated!

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Old 03-14-2009, 05:33 PM   #2
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


Not sure of your situation. I have a window flashing tutorial. See if it pertains to your situation in any relevant way. It might give you an idea on what to do.
http://www.albertsroofing.com/Window%20Flashing.htm

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Old 03-14-2009, 11:07 PM   #3
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


Tinner666

Thanks for the photos but not sure this helps. My water is not getting in around the window flashing. The water is coming in through the frame of the actual window. The water gets under the sash, over the sill, into the open wood box where the truth hardware is encased when closed, and into the wall. I'd like to increase the weather stripping on the sash to seal the window sash tighter. This is a small, slow leak occuring because the sill is sagging slightly and the sash does not make a tight seal on the bottom. You photos show windows where either house wrap or flashing was completely missing. The only flashing I don't have is sill wrap or pan flashing under the window unit that was not done around here when the home was constructed. Adding that now would be prohibitive and impossible without removing the window in a brick veneer home. If I did that I might as well replace the entire window as I don't think if it we removed it could be replaced back in the same way.

Any suggestions appreciated for making the sash close tighter on the bottom.
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Old 03-15-2009, 02:44 AM   #4
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


mariein, check the sill to see if there are a couple small drainage holes that would allow water to drain back outside. If there are holes, make sure they're not plugged with debris or caulk.

Have you tried contacting the JELD-WEN customer service? (googling Norco takes you to the JELD-WEN site)
http://www.jeld-wen.com/about/contact.cfm

Are all 40+ windows doing the same thing? Is there some trim that could be removed so you could see what's going on under the sill, as far as why it's sagging? Maybe the installers didn't put shims under the center of the sill. Just guessing.

It's no surprise that the window companies wanted to replace all the windows. When they suggested caulking your windows shut, did you ask them how your family would get out if, God forbid, there was ever a fire blocking the doors? You might be better off finding a knowledgeable and experienced handy-man or someone else who could take a look at the problem for you. Good luck.

Last edited by gma2rjc; 03-15-2009 at 02:49 AM.
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Old 03-15-2009, 05:29 AM   #5
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could you post a few pic's of the problem area of the window, you will get more constructive advice on the repair other then guessing. show the existing window weatherstripping. BOB
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Old 03-15-2009, 12:33 PM   #6
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


Hi

I will post photos.

I have contacted Jeld Wen. They sent their authorized warranty repair guy out (even though they are out of warranty). No one could come up with a solution. They said the house settled. They suggest adding exterior hard plastic weather stripping along channels (kerfs) in the metal of the sash frame. We tried this on one window as a test. It didn't really work. So then they sort of gave up and suggested we buy all new windows.

This leak is only on two windows. The rest are dry. We have a thermal imaging guy come out the last time we had water to check all the windows. Walls were dry. Just a little wet on the floor under two windows. Seems nuts to replace them all. But to fix them we're lost.

Will take a post a photo soon. Thanks for your help.
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Old 03-15-2009, 12:40 PM   #7
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


sure does sound like missing or plugged up weep holes
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Old 03-15-2009, 01:33 PM   #8
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


There are no weep holes in these windows. Nothing.

Here are the photos I took. You can see the black rubber seal on the frame of the window. There is none on the moving sash of the window. It has a kerf cut into it, but no seal. I was told this window was made this way. Obviously top construction quality.....

The water gets in mostly at the corners and a small amount across the front. It just blows over that bottom black seal.

Jeld Wen told us to caulk the bottom corners to seal the weatherstripping. We did this and it didn't do anything really. The window stop is so small that anything other than a perfect fit makes the water come right through.

I hope these photos help. I know these aren't the best windows (or probably even good ones) but I'm sure they must be fixable. My husband would like to make the bottom black weather strip "taller" to block all moisture coming in across the bottom. That little black bulb isn't doing the trick.

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y10...DSC07255-1.jpg

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y10...DSC07256-1.jpg

Last edited by mariein lz; 03-15-2009 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 03-15-2009, 02:57 PM   #9
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


not to doubt you as you say there are no weep holes,i would remove that big bead of sealant on the bottom between the brick and the window to convince myself there are no weep holes
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Old 03-15-2009, 05:29 PM   #10
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


could you post a pic of the window closed and a view of the whole window. I would like to see if there was a sweep on the bottom of the sash, that would seal when the window was closed as with an Anderson casement. The photos you displayed just shows the inside frame of the window. If the house settled the window would not operate properly ( open and close ) and with the gap (clearance) around frame and sash the sash would bind. I'm thinking there was some type of sweep that should of be installed on the sash that sealed the sash once closed.
Also the brick window ledge seems not to have enough pitch.
Another cause could be a warped sash?. BOB
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Old 03-15-2009, 06:16 PM   #11
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


The is no sweep on the bottom of the window. Nothing. There is no weatherstripping on the sash except at the very top, a hard rubber piece cut and slipped into the kerf to keep rain off the side of the house from dripping on top of the window. I'd like to get a rubber sweep to install on the bottom, but how to know what size and where to buy it??

This window did bind. It was hard to open. A window guy came a filed a bit on the bottom of the sash to make it open and close. I'm sure this did not help the situation and only made it worse. The sash may be warped. Didn't check for that. But it definately was messed up since it wouldn't hardly budge. This is the same as the other window that has the same problem. The sash may be warped or the frame.

The brick sill is not pitched properly I agree. None of them are. The brick work is poor at best.

The caulk is not covering weep holes. These Norcos were not designed with them.

I will take and post another photo.
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Old 03-15-2009, 11:21 PM   #12
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


i wouldn't try to hard to ''fix'' poorly designed windows they might be leaking more than you think
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:14 AM   #13
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


Tom, I understand what you are saying but the facts don't show a major tear out is in order.

We are fixing what is broken. Nothing else shows signs of leak. Sure, brand new casement would be lovely, but I have over 54 casement windows in this home. I cannot imagine it costing less than $50,000 to replace them all. Surely this costs less than $50,000 to repair.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:39 PM   #14
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


HI Mariein, if you could post a picture of the window from the outside with the sash closed to the point where it starts to bind. standing back to show the complete window, then I can zoom in to see what we can come up with Thanks BOB
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Old 03-17-2009, 02:02 PM   #15
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Adding weatherstripping to fix leak?


I also have Jeld Wen Siteline casements in my house (less than 2 years old), and I have the same problem as you. I personally installed 28 units, mostly double casements, flashed them correctly, installed window tape correctly, then my stucco contractor applied a second window tape when they installed the building paper. I had a Jeld Wen repairman out to my house on three separate occasions, first trip he caulked the corners where the weatherstrips are mitered together. The second time he did nothing, the third trip he, a co-worker, and his boss over the phone told me that it was the wind driving the rain between the window and stucco, around their weather strip, somehow past my window tape, back up to the sill.

Mine also leak only with a strong wind. Upon my inspection I have found that
1. Many of the windows do not seal tightly to the weatherstrip, especially if they have only one lock.
2. The corners where the weatherstrip come together do not seal tightly.
3. In extreme climates such as Minnesota where I live, the aluminum sill is exposed to cold temperatures on the outside and also warm air on the inside. As the temperature outside drops the frost builds up on the aluminum which holds the weatherstrip. This is usually never seen by most people because it is hidden by the trim piece that covers the crank mechanism and most people do not open their windows when it is below zero outside. I have had enough frost to actually freeze shut my windows making my egress bedroom windows inoperable. (Jeld Wen told me my humidity level of the house was to high. My kitchen humidity was around 29% at the time of the problem). In the picture you can see the frost starting to build up and see that the shim under the corner of the window has started to rot from the frost melting and draining into the framing area.

I have yet to come up with a good solution to the leaking window but will be trying some ideas this spring and will post if any of them work. For the frost buildup I plan on caulking with silicon a large bead between the wood jamb and the weather strip sealing that area from any air but yet letting the weather strip be flexible. If anyone finds a larger weather strip that will fit in these windows, please post where you found it.

Good luck
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