Caulk and Sealant – Common Home Inspection Findings
Preventing rain or melt water from intruding behind siding and roofing coverings is important. Water damage can cause deterioration of OSB, plywood, buffalo board and other construction materials. During new construction, residing or reroofing projects, contractors apply new caulk and sealant around siding and roofing penetrations. Common penetrations through siding include electrical conduit, cable, gas lines, and air conditioning refrigerant lines. Some siding installations require it to be applied to joints. It is often applied to nails and other fasteners used to secure vents and flashing to roof components.
Sunlight and Minnesota weather cause caulk and sealant to weather, crack, separate and deteriorate over time. It is used to cover roof flashing/vent fasteners and fill gaps between siding materials and electrical conduit, cable, gas lines, and air conditioning refrigerant lines, etc. eventually deteriorates, cracks, or falls out of the opening. Rain or melt water may seep through the cracks and holes and cause deterioration of interior components. Insects may find the holes and enter the interior.
Once per year, check penetrations and joints for deteriorated/separated caulk/sealant. Homeowners can proactively maintain it by properly applying recommended products to penetrations and joints that show evidence of cracking or deteriorating.