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Air intrusion

Post in 'The Green Room' started by DavidV, Feb 10, 2007.

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  1. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    As most of you I have become much more aware of the leakiness of my house. We pulled up all our carpet recently and are going to stay with the hardwood underneath with some area rugs. I pulled up the trim along the walls and in the mornings when it's really cold, I can feel cold air coming in along the edges of the walls/floors. I'm thinking of caluking all the areas where the walls meet the floors before putting the trim back in. Anybody else done this and are there any "gotchya"s to be aware of?

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  2. elkimmeg

    elkimmeg Guest

    sounds like a workable plan What happens is not all framing material it dry it could rain and soak the lumber before it is weather tight
    the bottom plate expands and contracts as it gets wet and drys its contact with the sub flooring is not that tight and it is another area of leakage.

    If only one more step was used sill seal attached, things would be so much tighter
  3. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Any possibility of tracking down the source of the cold air? Is it coming from beneath via a leaky sill or crawlspace wall? If so, fixing it at the source should be more effective than treating the symptom.
  4. restorer

    restorer New Member

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    WHOA!!! Don't seal or caulk that space. It's there for a reason, to allow the floor to expand and contract. If you stop the ability of the floor to move, it will find a way, usually buckling. To stop the air leak, you use a trim board setting on top of the floor. If the floor extends under the sheet rock, or wall covering and there is a gap, you might get away with putting the soft gasket type weather stripping as long as the floor can still move.
  5. GVA

    GVA Minister of Fire

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    Go to HD and get that caulk saver....
    It's a round foam type thing that you can push into the cracks you will find around those areas, and it wil not hinder the expansion of your flooring...
    It comes in sizes from somthing like 1/4" to 3/4"
  6. carpenter

    carpenter New Member

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    A problem with sealing all the air from getting in is the house becomes so air tight it can't breath, miosture is trapped in, the house sweats and you get mold. Find a happy medium where drafts are blocked or misdirected and the house sheds rain.
  7. Hogwildz

    Hogwildz Minister of Fire

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    If you use silicone or a non hardening caulk/sealant, expansion & contraction of the floor will not be an issue. After all, silicone does give, & leaves room for expansion & contraction. The floor is most likely nailed down to start with. And it still is able to expand & contract. Silicone is no wheres near as binding as nails.

    The round foam product is good, but its meant to be used with caulk, its backer rod, and used for filling (packing) larger gaps that sealant alone cannot bridge.
    Alone it will not offer as good a seal.
  8. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    I would love to find the source of all the air intrusion and fix it. I have a set of french doors in the stove room that goe out to the screened porch. I'm convicned that they used half the nails needed to put it in. Air comes thru under it, the seal on the bottom of the door is worn off because they didn't fasten the threshlold down to the frame......and I don't think it's sized properly. I've stuffed some pieces of hardy plank under there......yes I can actually slip a piec or two of hardly plank in at certain points. Today I will fill as many points as I can get to them pump a bunch of silicone in there and fasten the threshhold in properly. Don't think I will get a chance to go to the borg to pick up a seal for the bottom but if I do I'll replace that as well. It will make a big difference.

    I've crawled around the crawlspace with expanding foam sealing as much stuff as I can find down there. This house was not built well. Way too much sloppiness. I've fixed a ton of stuff but there is always so much more to do. No danger of making this fishnet too tight. When I do the siding next year (was planning for this year but the wife spent more on the kitchen that I expected) I'll be able to seal out air much better. the foam round stuff is a good idea. I'll try that.
  9. restorer

    restorer New Member

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    David, if you have that muck space, replace the whole threshold. You will take less time replacing than trying to fix the poor install. If it's not a double sweep, I'd say use that system, it gives a better seal. Also look at the mating of the doors, if it was that casually installed you may have a 3-4 square inch hole, equivalent with a 1/4 inch gap.

    Don't mean to beat the floor thing to death, but the foam strip would be the best if you want to install some barrier, but if you fill the space, regardless if it hardens or not, it restricts the movement. Physics here, two objects can not occupy the same space.
  10. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    I had thought about the expansion of the floor but didn't know it would be that big a deal. I'll go with the foam wadding stuff for around the floor/wall edges. As for the door, I placed additional shims in it. I then stuffed the flexi-foam stuff in there. in some spots it was hard to get any in....in others it seemed to swallow it up. I then applied silicone till no more would go in. And then I screwed it down. in one spot there was a screw hole that was designed into the plastic/fiberglass threshold that had no screw and it bowed upward there. I walked over to that spot just a few minutes ago and my toaes were not cold. Big smile on my face on that one. small victory. Don't know how much success that really is in the real world but it was motivational. YEah.....I should tear out the doors and replace or reinstall them.....but I can't. I can't keep up with the real issues around this place. I had a plumbing issue that I thought was just a case of replacing a wax ring and now I know that I have to tear out and upstairs bathroom floor and replace the subflooring......and perhaps some structural supports as well. Of course this is inconvenient to the wife, as her mother is coming for a visit so I'll be watching that area like a hawk for an extra couple weeks till her mother has left. Then I'll tear it up and replace it. The hits just keep coming.
  11. DavidV

    DavidV New Member

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    Let me throw a bit of kerosene on this fire also. wood expands outward across the width of grain and almost not at all length wise along the grain.....I have to wonder how that effects the result of sealing leaks.
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