Sealing at Windows and Door Frames

Detecting Leaks Around Your Windows

seal leaking

Seals that are broken, pulling away, missing or which are damaged as a result of ageing or long-term weather exposure will cause windows and doors to leak. Furthermore, the sealant or window putty used to seal the glazing beads on wooden windows may crack and allow moisture into the gazed areas of your windows. In addition, when the glazing putty on your steel windows cracks or a section falls out moisture will corrode the steel window frame.

These are the most obvious areas where leakages occur!

However, the most undetected area for leaks at windows is the junction between the window frame and the brickwork, plasterwork and window sill. As a matter of fact, it is one of the most common defects that I have found in both new and older homes.

There are multiple ways to detect leaks around your windows and doors:

  • On the outside of your home, check the areas where two different materials meet. This includes your door and window corners and frame.
  • Look for cracks in the door itself and in window panes.
  • Examine the existing caulking (sealing) and window weather stripping and weatherboards on doors. Make sure both are in good condition. In addition, leave no gaps or cracks.
  • If you can see daylight around a window or door frame, there will be a leak.
  • Shut a window and check for gaps in which you can insert the paint scraper. If you can easily insert the scraper under the closing part of the window, it is probably not watertight!
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Leaks at Window Sills

Moisture Intrusion at Window Sills

window sills

During many property inspections, I keep coming across moisture problems associated with water leaking into window sills and at windows.

Moisture absorbed into brickwork and plasterwork causes them to expand slightly. When the brickwork and plasterwork dry they contract slightly. The water absorbed by the bricks and plasterwork usually causes a slight vertical crack at the edges of the internal sills. The paint then starts to bubble along the vertical crack. This crack may continue around the length of the window sill before you notice it. What started as a small vertical crack then became a horizontal crack along the bottom of the window sill on the interior face of the wall.

The cracks are usually not significant unless allowed to continue unabated.

Rising Damp

Sometimes the moisture intrusion at sills is mistaken for rising damp! Water leaking in at the window sill may bypass the damp proof course (DPC) built in under the sill as a water-resistant barrier. The moisture may then appear as bubbling paint or crazing cracking of plasterwork, or both, below the window, extending down to floor level.

On external face-brick walls, this may appear as efflorescence (a white powder).

Internally, this may appear as bubbling paint above the skirting or discolouration of the skirting itself.

How do you prevent moisture intrusion into window sills?

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Winter Home Maintenance

Winter Home Maintenance in Gauteng

roof inspection
A roof inspection of your roof is most important because it protects you against the elements.

Maintain your home, especially the roof, on an annual basis. If you don’t do the small repairs they could end up as expensive repairs.

The roof

Your roof is the most important component of your home, protecting you, your belongings and the structure of the building. Damage to the roof can occur due to rain, wind and hail. You should regularly check the roof of your home for any leaks. Also inspect the ceiling, walls and the area around your home for any water spots, standing water or mould. Dampness on ceilings or walls can mean that there are leaks that you will have to attend to.

Check the chimney

Loose flashings, damaged masonry and loose bricks will allow rainwater in a house. Be sure to give the area around the chimney an inspection to ensure everything is fine. Refit loose flashing or replace as necessary. Furthermore, chisel out the damaged mortar joints, rejoint, and also repair loose bricks.

Loose, dislodged or broken roof tiles or ridge caps

If you have the ladder long enough, inspect the roof for loose or crumbling mortar along the ridge cap. At the same time, check for cracked or damaged roof tiles while you’re up there. However, if you do discover problems and can’t deal with it yourself, call in a professional roofing contractor.

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What I Inspect

inspections of properties

I Inspect All Of The Following Components

property inspections, building inspection, home inspection
Some of the components inspected in your house and property inspection report

My Comprehensive, Snag (New Home), Maintenance and Commercial Inspection include all of the above. Also included is the stand condition, property boundary and courtyard walls, swimming pools, garages, decks and so on on the property. To clarify, an itemised list is provided below.

Your property inspection

Firstly, I am a trained and skilled InterNACHI Certified Property Inspector. Therefore, you will receive a thorough and professional, non-intrusive, visual inspection and report of the property.

Moreover, I inspect the property you wish me to report on, inside and out, from the boundary walls to the top of the roof. Following that, I produce a detailed thorough report of all the components inspected.

All my inspections are in full accordance with InterNACHI’s Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics.

My inspection process

Outside the building, I will inspect the property boundary walls, the garden, the building’s walls and roof, the driveway, the deck etc. Moreover, if you request it I will inspect your swimming pool. Then I will move inside to inspect the walls, ceilings, floors, doors, and windows. In addition, I also inspect the heating, air-conditioning, plumbing, and electrical systems to ensure that they work as intended. Likewise, bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms also receive a thorough check. Following on, I will check the roof (ceiling) space and basement, if any.

Following that, I will prepare a detailed building inspection report of all the items inspected, including photographs. Furthermore, the report will be clear and easy to read.

Moreover, as The Home Detective, I strive to ensure my house and property inspection services and reports are the best. I also value customer service above everything else.

Items inspected in your house and property:

  • Air Conditioning systems
  • Boundary walls
  • Ceilings
  • Cupboards, kitchen tops and units
  • Damp in walls, floors and ceilings
  • Decks (all types)
  • Electric fencing
  • Electrical boards & components (DB, plugs, light switches and lights)
  • External finishes (faced, plastered and timber and steel framed)
  • Fireplaces and braais
  • Floors finishes (tiling, carpets, timber, laminated etc.)
  • Foundation, floor, wall and roof structure
  • Garages, carports and external buildings
  • Garden sheds
  • Geyser installations 
  • Gutters & downspouts
  • Heating systems
  • Insulation
  • Interior finishes (faced, plastered and timber and steel framed)
  • Leaks and damp (rising, falling and penetrating damp)
  • Maintenance issues
  • Mould and mildew
  • Paving (driveways, courtyards, walkways)
  • Plumbing system & fixtures (baths, basins, showers, sinks, toilets etc)
  • Problem vegetation and foliage
  • Roof space (area above the ceiling)
  • Roof systems (tiled, sheeted, concrete and composite roofs)
  • Safety aspects
  • Steps and stairs
  • Stoves and hobs
  • Surface drainage
  • Swimming pools
  • Ventilation
  • Walkways and driveways
  • Waterproofing systems
  • Windows & doors
  • Wood-destroying organisms and pests (termites, rodents etc.)
  • Yard and courtyard walls
  • and much more!

In addition, I invite you to come along and watch as I inspect your house and property. Furthermore, you are free to ask questions at any time during your property inspection

Finally, for more information on property inspections and your property, please browse the rest of my website.

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 Inspected Once, Inspected Right!®

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THE HOME DETECTIVE » Windows

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