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Old 02-12-2013, 10:57 AM   #1
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I can see some light coming through around my basement windows. What should I use to seal them up? The previous owner thought a GALLON of caulk would do the trick but unfortunately it didn't. Foam? More Caulk?

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Old 02-12-2013, 11:15 AM   #2
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Is this a finished basement? If not, you could probably just spray foam the gaps where you can see light. Remove as much caulk as you can so the gaps are more fully filled with foam. But I would question why that much caulk didn't fix the problem.

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Old 02-12-2013, 11:26 AM   #3
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I'm in the process of finishing the basement now. I'm pulling out the caulk because the boss said it doesn't look good. She's right. I'll try and post a picture later. It looks like they tried to use foam but the foam had degraded over time.
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:43 PM   #4
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A quick anecdotal story. I bought my house almost 2 years ago. It was about 10 years old at the time. My daughter was down in the basement watching TV and was complaining about all of the LARGE bugs like moths etc flying around the TV at night. Wondering where they were coming from, I looked but couldn't find any obvious entry.

I stumbled upon the issue a few days later. We were shopvac-ing the french drain of bugs/spiders as well as the ceiling joists in the basement. When I got to one of the windows, I saw one of those stink bugs crawling from the top of the one window. Turns out the builder left a 1 1/2" gap at the top of both windows! The siding actually came down far enough to where the issue was obfuscated. So for 10ish years, a nice large gap was above both windows. No wonder there were so many spiders and bugs in the house! How the previous owners didn't see that, I'll never guess.
Anyway, I fixed them with 10 bucks' worth of PT wood and caulk. I placed the PT on the outside, caulked, and done.

Why not add wood framing around the window. PT or otherwise to fill in the gaps either on the inside or out. Preferably keeping the elements from entering the house from the outside is preferable but it depends on the situation. A similar framing on the inside should be done as well to complete the seal and can help dress up the window to boot
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Old 02-14-2013, 11:58 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dengle View Post
A quick anecdotal story. I bought my house almost 2 years ago. It was about 10 years old at the time. My daughter was down in the basement watching TV and was complaining about all of the LARGE bugs like moths etc flying around the TV at night. Wondering where they were coming from, I looked but couldn't find any obvious entry.

I stumbled upon the issue a few days later. We were shopvac-ing the french drain of bugs/spiders as well as the ceiling joists in the basement. When I got to one of the windows, I saw one of those stink bugs crawling from the top of the one window. Turns out the builder left a 1 1/2" gap at the top of both windows! The siding actually came down far enough to where the issue was obfuscated. So for 10ish years, a nice large gap was above both windows. No wonder there were so many spiders and bugs in the house! How the previous owners didn't see that, I'll never guess.
Anyway, I fixed them with 10 bucks' worth of PT wood and caulk. I placed the PT on the outside, caulked, and done.

Why not add wood framing around the window. PT or otherwise to fill in the gaps either on the inside or out. Preferably keeping the elements from entering the house from the outside is preferable but it depends on the situation. A similar framing on the inside should be done as well to complete the seal and can help dress up the window to boot
I suppose I could do that. Right now the windows are just below my brick and encased in concrete on all sides. I dont know where I would put wood if I decided to go that way.
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:41 PM   #6
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If you can, take a picture of the inside and outside so we can better provide suggestions. Depending on how big the gap is, perhaps a proper-sized window is in store or potentially taking the window out and inserting a frame of some type to fill in the gap.

Last edited by dengle; 02-14-2013 at 07:47 PM.
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Old 02-16-2013, 10:16 AM   #7
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If you can, take a picture of the inside and outside so we can better provide suggestions. Depending on how big the gap is, perhaps a proper-sized window is in store or potentially taking the window out and inserting a frame of some type to fill in the gap.
Ok heres those pictures.
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Old 02-16-2013, 06:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brockmiera View Post
I'm in the process of finishing the basement now. I'm pulling out the caulk because the boss said it doesn't look good. She's right. I'll try and post a picture later. It looks like they tried to use foam but the foam had degraded over time.
Are any of these windows going to be in the bedroom ?
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Old 02-16-2013, 07:29 PM   #9
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Are any of these windows going to be in the bedroom ?
Nope. No bedrooms at all. Until we sell of course
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Old 02-16-2013, 09:50 PM   #10
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Nope. No bedrooms at all. Until we sell of course
What exactly does that mean? You can't call a basement room a bedroom without a proper egress window.
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Old 02-16-2013, 11:05 PM   #11
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I don't know how many windows like this you have, but it might be worth replacing them for $50/shot.

The window bucks are doing you any good. I would look to get a window which is 1/2" smaller than the opening. Then you fit the window in the opening on 1/4" spacers and put a screw or two in each side jamb. I've also done it without screws.

Then you loosely fill the perimeter with fiberglass and put the foam caulk backer rod on both the interior and exterior. You can caulk over this on the exterior and finish the interior to your taste.

If you don't want to replace the windows, take them out and build a window buck which will leave you with the 1/4" all around space.i
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:22 AM   #12
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Nope. No bedrooms at all. Until we sell of course
Explain that please.
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:33 AM   #13
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Explain that please.
I just need to know how to seal windows from the outside. I was asked for pictures and ive provided them. We will install a proper egress window ina couple years when we sell. Can you add any insight?
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Old 02-17-2013, 01:49 AM   #14
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You caulk a window from outside. Inside WINDOW foam. Not just any foam. WINDOW.
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Old 02-17-2013, 07:14 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by brockmiera View Post
I just need to know how to seal windows from the outside. I was asked for pictures and ive provided them. We will install a proper egress window ina couple years when we sell. Can you add any insight?
Why would you install an egress window and then sell?? Unless you have a walkout basement, it will be an expensive project (think $5,000 or more). Unless you also go ahead a finish a bedroom down there, you'll never add that much value to the house.

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