need advice: water getting behind siding

dcb1_2008September 11, 2011

I have an exterior wall with wood siding and a gutter on the top. I noticed that after a heavy rain, right in the middle of this wall (the wall is only about 15 feet long) the foundation is soaking wet and if I put my hand underneath the is wet there as well.

I'm having a small leak in my basement exactly where that wet spot is on the foundation. I've already moved my gutters away from the house and I'm thinking that the issue is water from the roof sliding behind the siding...then down the foundation wall and inside my basement.

What do you think is causing this and how can I fix it?

Thanks so much!

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No one is going to be able to tell you anything over the internet without some accompanying pictures from you. And you're going to have to deconstruct some of this to find out what's going on as well. Take some pics and post back.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 5:17PM
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I'll try to take some picks. The wall is about 15 ft long with about 2 feet of foundation above ground. the water is coming from behind the siding and dripping down to the foundation and I'm assuming down the inside wall and into my floor.

The gutter is a pretty standard gutter.

I was thinking that there are only a couple reasons why whater gets behind the siding and I'm assuming it is something to do with the gutter and/or roof.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 7:49PM
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Check that the drip edge (if you have one) or that the terminating edge of the shingle overhangs the gutter.

Check that the gutter downspouts drain, no clogs in the downspouts.

Check that the gutter is properly pitched and not sagging in the middle, resulting in water accumulating in and then water is overflowing out of the gutter. Is the roof area draining into the gutter overly large? Gutters do have volume ratings.

If water was getting behind the gutter, it really should just drip between the back of the gutter and the facia. As to it getting from there to behind the could be anyone's guess based on soffit an siding details.

If you had significant amounts of water getting behind your siding, there's a pretty good chance that if it was over long-term and not just recent, you'd have paint adhesion issues with the siding, as well as issues on the interior wall, or water wetting the basement wall on the interior side of the foundation, not just below grade, but above grade.

I'd venture that it might be water getting out of the gutter and running down the face of the facia, and then down the surface of the siding, but not behind the siding. That's less likely if you have a deep soffit.

But you never know.

Best of luck!

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 8:52PM
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Siding is not actually designed to exclude all water.

The drainage plane behind the siding serves that function (tar paper was used for years).

The siding is to protect the drainage plane from sun degradation and physical damage.

A gutter not draining correctly can allow water to run down the siding.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2011 at 9:25AM
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