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Jakerw87
Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

I am looking at a 1000 square foot home to possibly purchase. Built in the mid 70's the 4x8 sheets of siding used are now failing and exposing insulation at a few points. There is no sheathing under the siding and no house wrap or vapor barrier that can be see from the exterior. I assume there is paper on the inside of the fiberglass insulation but I have no way of knowing for sure. The structure seems to be discolored but not rotten, probably because it has plenty of airflow and time to dry out between rains. My question is, if I were to remove the siding which virtually is the sheathing, and I find that the insulation needs to be replaced, what is the best method of doing this while still using a house wrap or vapor barrier. Gutting the interior is out of the question because it's in perfect shape. Is it possible to properly insulate and vapor barrier the wall from the exterior side only? It's a fairly simple house, one big rectangle with high gable ends over a block foundation plenty high above grade.

dj1
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

Quote: "Is it possible to properly insulate and vapor barrier the wall from the exterior side only?"

Yes you can. When you remove the exterior, you'll will see whether your insulation, electrical, windows/doors flashing, plumbing and other things actually need upgrades. My experience tells me that there could be additional hidden deficiencies in your exterior walls that are not known to you at the present time.

Keep in mind that being exposed to the elements for an extended period of time, is not a great idea, and you would need to line up your subcontractors to act fast, so you could at least wrap the house as quickly as possible.

Factor all possible repairs/upgrades (some may be required to be completed in escrow) and present the seller with an offer to include them.

If your market is soft, kind of "buyer's market", the seller may be able to absorb or split the cost with you. However, if the seller gets multiple offers, or if the house is offered "as is", he/she is most likely to dismiss any offer with many contingencies.

On the other hand, if you discover that the seller is not going to give you any allowances and there are just too many items to take care of (by talking to honest and qualified subs), you may decide not to make an offer on this house and to move on.

Remember this: You a hold all the cards, before you sign a purchase agreement or deposit receipt.

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

What DJ said plus;

Where are you located? Northern or southern climate?

When you remove the exterior sheathing, have some replacement sheathing on hand to install each day and remove the next if you are upgrading the insulation, vapor barrier, electric, plumbing....

Set up the various crews to follow each other around the building so you can close up the walls as fast as you can.

No more masonite.

Will adding plywood sheathing and hardie plank / siding affect the thickness around the winders and doors ?

Jakerw87
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

To answer the first question I live in northeast Pennsylvania. The second question, I would assume adding sheathing would not effect the width of the windows and doors too much. If I have to replace them or change jamb widths I don't think that would be a problem, there's not that many of them. My idea was to go with a rough cut vertical board and batten siding because this structure while it was never meant to be a barn really has the shape and landscape to pull off a barn style look. In other words exterior trim can be simple and rustic looking, doesn't have to be perfect. I don't see why strapping would be necessary to hang the boards as it is in true board and batten siding since I could potentially install it directly over the new sheathing as long as that wouldn't cause problems.

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

Masonite isn't known for being the best siding in the world. If it were my house I'd rip it off as fast as I could.

ed21
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

Taking off the siding/sheathing and putting back sheathing, house wrap and siding will be quite an undertaking. Unless the windows are removed and reinstalled or replaced they may not set properly in the wall and you won't be able to flash around the windows. Also since the original siding is probably acting as sheathing for lateral stability the sheathing at the corners should be replaced first so the building won't rack. Of course if the siding is off the insulation and wall should be inspected and repaired if required.

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

Yankees want a sheet plastic barrier on the heated side of the wall assembly. Putting sheet plastic on the outside will cause condensation problems leading to mold, mildew and all manner of nastiness. You'd want a moisture barrier that lets vapor escape. Tyvek makes that claim;

How It Works

The unique nonwoven structure of Tyvek® HomeWrap® makes it breathable, allowing moisture vapor to pass through. This helps promote drying in wall systems, to help prevent mold and water damage. In addition, Tyvek® HomeWrap® stops air movement through the walls, helping insulation perform closer to its full R-value, to provide a more energy-efficient home.

Jakerw87
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

If I have to replace or reset the windows that's ok theirs only a few of them. As far as the tyvek on the outside, this was my concern since getting a vapor barrier on the living space side could be difficult or impossible, would the tyvek suffice on the outside. Thanks for all the good info.

Sombreuil_mongrel
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

I can't imagine that the windows they used in 1970 in a house destined for Masonite were any great prize. You have the chance to upgrade the whole thing at once, it may be wise to draw up a master plan and take everything into account, like exhaust fan locations, outside pipes, wiring, etc., while the walls are open.
Casey

ed21
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

While an interior side vapor barrier is what's generally recommended, I wouldn't tear of the existing drywall to do it. A vapor barrier paint should suffice.
I'm sure Casey's right about the Windows being sub par to say the least.

Jakerw87
Re: Failed Masonite siding, possible insulation damage.

Yea the windows aren't great anyway, and I don't want to tear anything out of the inside. There's actually so few windows I would want to add a few anyway. I'm going to have someone look at it to give me a rough estimate soon, they are asking 80k, but they would have to move that significantly for this to be worth it for me.

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