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Old 06-25-2012, 08:04 AM   #1
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exterior wall rot


How do I determine if there is rot or moisture in the exterior wall of my home without ripping off the shingles?

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Old 06-25-2012, 08:16 AM   #2
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Is this a wall or a roof, reason I ask is your asking how to do it without removing the shingles, Shingles go on the roof not the wall.
What makes you think there may be rot?
It would be great if you posted a picture.

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Old 06-25-2012, 08:21 AM   #3
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Signs to look for are discoloration to the interior baseboards, drywall or ceiling or a musty smell.
At the exterior look for discoloration or mold. Use a brad or skinny screwdriver and probe around in likely places. If it is soft and penetrates easily, you probably have some rot issues. The causes can be many. I would try doing these tests then post photos of what you find.
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:25 AM   #4
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I've never done this---Many home inspectors and all Dryvit inspectors use a moisture meter,much like the testers used for wood---and test for elevated moisture from the inside of the house--
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Old 06-25-2012, 08:37 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by oh'mike View Post
I've never done this---Many home inspectors and all Dryvit inspectors use a moisture meter,much like the testers used for wood---and test for elevated moisture from the inside of the house--
Thanks, do you know if I could rent a moisture meter and if there are different ones which one is most reliable?
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:03 AM   #6
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There not all that expencive.
http://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=553270
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:07 AM   #7
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Sorry,but I do not know----A Google search for 'moisture meters' should help---

I'm a wood worker--so I use the type with pins--two little nails that poke into the wood--

this type might leave pin holes that you wouldn't like---there are non invasive testers but I can not vouch for their accuracy--the paint surface might be enough to insulate the electrodes and give you a false reading.

Wood moisture meters start at about $50---and go up to over $300--

A cheap one should be good enough for your purpose---look at Lowes--I read somewhere that they stock a pretty good cheap one---Mike---
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:11 AM   #8
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Joe beat me to it---I have heard that the 'General' brand is good for the money--No experience personally--but accuracy is not that important --
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:16 AM   #9
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So why do you think there may be a moisture problum?
If any of the signs mentioned are showing then there's a moisture problum that needs to be addressed. No meter needed.
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:30 AM   #10
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one way i use when i first look at a house is to look at the foundation where it meets the house,if i see staining i know there is probably an issue
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Old 06-25-2012, 10:56 AM   #11
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exterior wall rot


Start your moisture search from the inside. Use a moisture meter and a pencil to outline the high reading areas. The outline may sometimes help to pinpoint the moisture source like an "arrow".

If more needs to be determined, or, if you need to investigate further, start from the inside by removing an area, or a section of drywall (or plaster), and inspecting the insides of the wall bays or ceiling bays (the backside of the wall or roof sheathing can also be visible with water staining to lead you to the source of the leak).

Remember, its generally a lot easier (to do and to repair) and patch-up drywall, than it is to tear into your siding and wall sheathing, and perform repairs.

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