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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Should I caulk/seal the gap between the roof skirt and my full brick walls? An insulation guy said it needed to be done, while a brick guy said it would be harmful.

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Learning that brick has a complicated relationship with water, so hesitant to do something that could lead to new problems.

Appreciate any help/perspectives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
What was the problem the insulation guy was trying to solve?
Just getting the house (especially that top floor) in a good place for temperature control (gets hot up there in summer and about to find out what it's like during Chicago winters). I assume that sealing would mainly help in winter, but he didn't actually mention how it would help specifically.
 

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retired framer
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Just getting the house (especially that third floor) in a good place for temperature control (gets hot up there in summer and about to find out what it's like during Chicago winters). I assume that sealing would mainly help in winter, but he didn't actually mention how it would help specifically.
Is it attic space or a room up there? I don't think that spot is usually a problem , even with wind, air needs some where to go, insulation inside should look after that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Is it attic space or a room up there? I don't think that spot is usually a problem , even with wind, air needs some where to go, insulation inside should look after that.
No attic - that is a 2nd floor of livable space where an attic would be. That is the floor with the master bedroom/bathroom as well, so hoping to keep it comfortable if possible.

I'll be attempting to determine what insulation currently exists up there by taking down a light fixture, but that insulation (if any) actually sits higher than the area he suggested gets sealed (along the roof skirt).
 

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retired framer
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No attic - that is a 2nd floor of livable space where an attic would be. That is the floor with the master bedroom/bathroom as well, so hoping to keep it comfortable if possible.

I'll be attempting to determine what insulation currently exists up there by taking down a light fixture, but that insulation (if any) actually sits higher than the area he suggested gets sealed (along the roof skirt).
It is all siding on the outside, siding isn't air or even water tight, it is weather tight, it stops rain and snow, behind the brick there is a drain plan that moves water down to the weep holes at the bottom of the brick, I would expect that drain plain to go up to the roof.
See the tar paper or what ever behind the brick.
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Bugs will crawl in the crack to go dormant or to nest. I would not caulk it, though, because it will be a chronic maintenance issue keeping the caulk clean and crack free.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
It is all siding on the outside, siding isn't air or even water tight, it is weather tight, it stops rain and snow, behind the brick there is a drain plan that moves water down to the weep holes at the bottom of the brick, I would expect that drain plain to go up to the roof.
See the tar paper or what ever behind the brick.
View attachment 712836 View attachment 712837
Not sure if this changes your opinion, but the home was built 1890s or so - no weep holes for moisture management that I am aware of. Just multiple layers of brick.
 

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retired framer
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Not sure if this changes your opinion, but the home was built 1890s or so - no weep holes for moisture management that I am aware of. Just multiple layers of brick.
Now you are talking about things where I should not be talking because I do not know enough about brick houses.
 

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Should I caulk/seal the gap between the roof skirt and my full brick walls? An insulation guy said it needed to be done, while a brick guy said it would be harmful.

Pictures:
View attachment 712818
View attachment 712819

Learning that brick has a complicated relationship with water, so hesitant to do something that could lead to new problems.

Appreciate any help/perspectives.
I'm going with no but tough call. New building methods say don't trap any water that might/could get in.
 

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With a tudor style house there is lots of stucco and wood trim over the stucco. I try to seal tops and sides of things, and leave the bottoms open. Wood and other materials may move at varying rates or be effected different by moisture. Originally none of the wood trim was sealed to the house, and there are gaps behind every wood piece with cordage stapled up for a drain plane. Professional painters years ago however sealed up everything with caulk, top, bottom, side … which did not last all that well, missing some areas etc. and in some case tops were open, trapping water now instead of releasing it at the bottom. When we looked over the and did some major weatherization years ago, all the way around, we re-sealed tops and sides; and let the bottoms be.

Now you don’t have a tudor home, but I see no benefit from sealing the bottom of that piece. Whether for weather or “ insulation “. Your house will have thermal bridging. There is a vapor barrier behind the trim. Cold air is not going to rush through that little gap. Nor is heat going to escape faster or slower.

The only time I’d seal the bottom of trim is if it is extremely wet, maybe next to the ground with a lot of splashing, and there’s a risk of standing water wicking up or working its way up and in when there’s standing water of a certain height.
 

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I kind of agree with leaving bottom open to release any trapped moisture and let it dry out.
However there is a foam "rope" for purpose of insulation that is about 1/2" diameter used to fill voids. It appears that it would have longevity. If you feel that you want to fill the void, you could stuff that into that space. I would prefer this rather than caulking.
 

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As the others have said, this is just a frieze board. There is solid sheathing behind the brick veneer, so caulking it would be a continuous maintenance problem with little benefit. It won't be an area where bugs can enter the dwelling, just a trim board to hide the edges of the brick.
 
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