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Old 01-26-2010, 08:03 PM   #1
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Water Issue...Please Help!


Please help! I have a water issue that is ruining my floor. Water must be coming in under the back door sill somehow such that it is wicking/ruining my pre-engineered wood floor. So I was going to try to find out how water was coming up under the door sill (thinking it may be a flashing issue) and try to fix it, then try to fix my floors.

So I was going to remove the door sill. My buddy helping me ended up striping the head of the screws so after trying very hard to get the striped screws up we had to resort to prying the wood threshold up. I still couldn't get the screws out so I had to cut them with bolt cutters, allowing the door to shut (it's cold here today).

So the door is shut but I still need to remove the aluminum sill so I can see what's going on under it. The first step is to remove this sill. Nothing has gone right so far as you can see in the pictures.

The next step will be to diagnose the root problem, then fix the problem, then replace the sill, then call a flooring guy to fix the wood floors.

Please take a look at the pictures and tell me how to remove and replace the aluminum sill.

Thanks for all your help!
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Old 01-26-2010, 08:49 PM   #2
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Water Issue...Please Help!


Well, to start, a screw extractor set would be a good investment. Sears sells a nice set for like $20 or so.

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Old 01-26-2010, 09:32 PM   #3
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Water Issue...Please Help!


The door probably wasn't flashed at the base or sealed. You might also have issues with the cap flashing or a lack of sealant on the sides. The door is raised up an inch or so from the exterior level. Does water pool outside the door? If not, the issue is higher up. You will need to remove the door and frame to seal it correctly.
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Old 01-26-2010, 09:36 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
The door probably wasn't flashed at the base or sealed. You might also have issues with the cap flashing or a lack of sealant on the sides. The door is raised up an inch or so from the exterior level. Does water pool outside the door? If not, the issue is higher up. You will need to remove the door and frame to seal it correctly.
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Water does not puddle outside the door. So there's no way to remove the door sill, flash the door and install a new sill?

Last edited by jmed99; 01-27-2010 at 02:07 PM.
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Old 01-26-2010, 09:39 PM   #5
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Water Issue...Please Help!


Great pics

along with the above posts and maybe coattailing with one of them, is that stoop sloped away or toward the door. If you have water pooling there, you might be able lever the slab up and fill below it unless it is large or tied in to the first floor slab there. (it looks like a slab on grade to me, let me know if I am seeing something not there.)

Oh wait, I see that this is not the case. More than likely a flashing issue then.

Last edited by Energyrater; 01-26-2010 at 09:42 PM. Reason: updated post
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Old 01-26-2010, 09:47 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by jmed99 View Post
Water does not puddle outside the door. So there's no why to remove the door sill, flash the door and install a new sill?
This will take a more experienced eye to deal with. If you can't figure it out, call someone who has the experience to diagnose and repair.
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Old 01-26-2010, 10:52 PM   #7
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Water Issue...Please Help!


The sill & door frame are installed as one piece
Is there concrete under the wood floor ?
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Old 01-26-2010, 11:09 PM   #8
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I agree with the other guys... From the picture it looks like you have somewhat newer vinyl siding and aluminum trim. I think it is highly likely that there is no drip cap on the door. It doesn't have to be removed to fix this if that is the problem, but who knows what damage is behind there. Also, as mentioned, that aluminum sill is manufactured with the frame. If you rip that out you will have to hack something together to replace it..... I'm not sure what your experience is, but if your up for it, remove some of the siding and j-channel above and around the door. Then show us some pictures... or hire an experienced guy in your area (unless you are very familiar with metal flashing)
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Old 01-27-2010, 01:51 PM   #9
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Unfortnately- -the screws which you have stripped the heads of do not hold the door sill onto the floor. Those screws are adjust the sealing surface of the sill up and down. By getting wet, these screws do often rust into the "T-nuts" into which they are threaded for the adjustment. Those particular aluminum sills I am familiar with are stapled into the door framing (jambs) from underneath when the door is assembled. The sill can be removed, it appears you need a new one now anyway. I have cut them in half, then carefully remove each half by pulling up from the middle to facilitate pulling out the long staples. You may tear the jamb some, but it will be repairable. This is a good time to inspect the wood beneath the sill for water damage. This may be where you solve your problem. Fit the new sill into place, then remove it. Use a plenty a high silicone content caulk, both on the top of the wooden sill plate and the underside of the new sill. I'd rather clean up excess caulk and know I've applied enough. As others have states: you need to address the water infiltration problem also. Good Luck, David
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:09 PM   #10
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The sill & door frame are installed as one piece
Is there concrete under the wood floor ?
The house is on a slab so yes it's concrete under the floor.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:16 PM   #11
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I agree with the other guys... From the picture it looks like you have somewhat newer vinyl siding and aluminum trim. I think it is highly likely that there is no drip cap on the door. It doesn't have to be removed to fix this if that is the problem, but who knows what damage is behind there. Also, as mentioned, that aluminum sill is manufactured with the frame. If you rip that out you will have to hack something together to replace it..... I'm not sure what your experience is, but if your up for it, remove some of the siding and j-channel above and around the door. Then show us some pictures... or hire an experienced guy in your area (unless you are very familiar with metal flashing)

Thanks for your help! The house was built in 2004 so it is newer vinyl siding and aluminum trim. I was hoping I could remove the sill and see what kind of damage is under it and diagnose it (prolly just redo the flashing) then replace the sill.

I do not think I'm ready to remove any siding around the door.

Do you think there may be some damage behind the siding in addition to under the sill?

What would I look up in the yellow pages for an experienced guy with this type of knowledge? Would a flooring repair guy know how to do this as well? If so, I'll just call a local flooring guy to come out.

Thanks!
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:19 PM   #12
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Water maybe coming in from any number of locations. Usually when I see this it is a combination of issues. Remove the door completely from the opening. It's your choice as to whether you want to only replace the sill or the entire unit. Either way the proper way to do it is to remove the door. Thurman did a good job explaining about how the sill is installed and the adjustment screws.

Remove the door and inspect the opening for signs of damage and repair if necessary. Install a door pan on the floor per manufacture installation instructions. Install the door (after replacing the sill). Flash the door. Make sure to flash the sides first then the head jamb. Also make sure to adhere the flashing to the sheathing not the house wrap. The door you have has a channel in it to receive the siding when you flash the door make sure the flashing is installed over the nailing fin. Apply three lines of builders adhesive underneath the thresh-hold/sill or whatever the door manufacturer recommends. The drip edge should not be necessary in the style of door you have if it is properly installed. Fill any voids with door and window foam and re-install the interior casing. Caulk the casing and fill any nail holes.

After looking at the pictures a little closer it appears that you have j-channel if that is the case then you should install a drip cap.

Last edited by ARI001; 01-27-2010 at 02:26 PM.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:32 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thurman View Post
Unfortnately- -the screws which you have stripped the heads of do not hold the door sill onto the floor. Those screws are adjust the sealing surface of the sill up and down. By getting wet, these screws do often rust into the "T-nuts" into which they are threaded for the adjustment. Those particular aluminum sills I am familiar with are stapled into the door framing (jambs) from underneath when the door is assembled. The sill can be removed, it appears you need a new one now anyway. I have cut them in half, then carefully remove each half by pulling up from the middle to facilitate pulling out the long staples. You may tear the jamb some, but it will be repairable. This is a good time to inspect the wood beneath the sill for water damage. This may be where you solve your problem. Fit the new sill into place, then remove it. Use a plenty a high silicone content caulk, both on the top of the wooden sill plate and the underside of the new sill. I'd rather clean up excess caulk and know I've applied enough. As others have states: you need to address the water infiltration problem also. Good Luck, David
Thanks for your help!!!

I should have never tried to remove those screws.

So I can cut the sill with a circular saw and replace it? I just looked at lowes.com and found this...

http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?...1&cmRelshp=sim

Maybe I could replace the sill with the item in that link. Or does the whole door have to come out to replace the sill? hmmmm.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:40 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by ARI001 View Post
Water maybe coming in from any number of locations. Usually when I see this it is a combination of issues. Remove the door completely from the opening. It's your choice as to whether you want to only replace the sill or the entire unit. Either way the proper way to do it is to remove the door. Thurman did a good job explaining about how the sill is installed and the adjustment screws.

Remove the door and inspect the opening for signs of damage and repair if necessary. Install a door pan on the floor per manufacture installation instructions. Install the door (after replacing the sill). Flash the door. Make sure to flash the sides first then the head jamb. Also make sure to adhere the flashing to the sheathing not the house wrap. The door you have has a channel in it to receive the siding when you flash the door make sure the flashing is installed over the nailing fin. Apply three lines of builders adhesive underneath the thresh-hold/sill or whatever the door manufacturer recommends. The drip edge should not be necessary in the style of door you have if it is properly installed. Fill any voids with door and window foam and re-install the interior casing. Caulk the casing and fill any nail holes.

After looking at the pictures a little closer it appears that you have j-channel if that is the case then you should install a drip cap.
Great write-up! Thank you! So the door must come out to replace the sill. I'm not sure I'm comfortable taking the door out. I may try to find a guide to do this online or a video on youtube to get an idea of how to remove the door. The more I do myself the more money I save on the whole repair.

Maybe I'll attempt removing the door. I'll wait until it gets a little warmer so I wont be rushed due to the cold weather.
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Old 01-27-2010, 05:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmed99 View Post
Thanks for your help! The house was built in 2004 so it is newer vinyl siding and aluminum trim. I was hoping I could remove the sill and see what kind of damage is under it and diagnose it (prolly just redo the flashing) then replace the sill.

I do not think I'm ready to remove any siding around the door.

Do you think there may be some damage behind the siding in addition to under the sill?

What would I look up in the yellow pages for an experienced guy with this type of knowledge? Would a flooring repair guy know how to do this as well? If so, I'll just call a local flooring guy to come out.

Thanks!
Just to make sure that we are clear about the flashing work, I am talking about the drip cap on the top of the door. This is the single most important piece to keep water out of your home. This piece really can't be installed properly without taking of the j-channel and siding above the door. I'd look for a reputable exterior remodeling company in your area to fix your problem. Be careful as there are a lot of hacks in this industry who will just come out and caulk the door capping (aluminum trim) to the j-channel. This isn't going to fix your problem as water can get behind vinyl siding. In truth, the right way to fix this problem is to completely remove the door, assess the damage, repair, re-install and flash.

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