The house was built in 1965 and some of the windows are original wood
but most of them are newer vinyl replacements which I'm guessing are
about 10 years old. As of late in learning about home ownership, I've
noticed that the aluminum flashing looks somewhat sloppy and worn. I
wonder because of the way it looks if it's even doing it's job.
Each window has a 4 inch wide strip of aluminum flashing on its
The sides are just tacked on the outside on the frame without any
contact to the window itself and loosely cover up the wood. I can pull
them back sideways to look at the original wood underneath which is
painted but not rotten thank god.
The top piece of flashing starts below the drip edge and corners down
much like the side pieces.
The bottom piece however seems to be attached to the window on all of
them, which is installed as it should be from what I've gathered, but
the corners don't meet or reach the side flashing and some of them have
Bottom line question is, is there a way to replace the aluminum
flashing so that it performs as it should without removing/replacing
the windows ? The siding is cedar shingles.
the most critical thing is to have head flashing at the top, which is
tucked behind the siding and directs water to the outside of the trim.
the 4" flashing you describe is mainly put on to cover old trim (and
are you sure it is aluminum? typically would be coil stock--painted
galvanized steel). repairs at this point would involve getting some
good high quality oil based caulk and caulking any gaps and also making
sure the replacement window is caulked properly. a good lumberyard
should be able to order you color matched caulk. i wouldn't go beyond
that unless there were signs of water intrusion--leaking windows,
rotted wood, etc.
if you really want to fix it right, rip out the old window, trim, and
replacement window and install a window with fins and flash it
properly. not a cheap option however.
There is no leakage or stains on the interior that I can see, but
some of the caulked seams of the flashing corners have come apart and
they look rather sloppy and loosely fit. I see it as a potential
problem and am just checking if this existing flashing shouldn't be
touched or if there are practical ways to replace it.
I believe the white flashing strips are aluminum as they were
installed on the vinyl window frames and are extremely light and
I'm currently leaning towards leaving in the bottom flashing if
possible as they go underneath the windows as they should and giving
some attention to the weathered drip sills. The rest sounds as if it
can be replaced as-is since it's just attached to the window frame and
yeah, I'd love to fix it right but removing all of the windows to get
proper flashing installed sounds nuts.
Thanks for the feedback.
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