Weird red powder on side of my house - how to I seal this back up?!

Can you tell me what this is? (new home owner here)
It's a sealed spot on the side of the house that has red powder in it:
http://img462.imageshack.us/my.php?image 03564jf6.jpg
What would I use to seal that back up?
The red powder irritates my hands when I touched it.
TIA!
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wrote:

You likely will need more help than you can get in a newsgroup. Take a photo and a sample to your local building inspector and if he can't identify it, then ask the chemists at a local college for help. The fact that it appears to be an irritant means you should use common sense, like wearing laex gloves and a respirator. With luck, it may turn out to be totally innocuous and the fix could be use a shop vac to get the powder out, then fill the opening with mortar or an appropriate filler for the structure.
Whatever , it looks like something unique HTH
Joe
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That looks like a plug on a drain or vent line. What is on the other side? Could be a disconnected pipe and the residue is leaking. Buildup of chemicals from water, buildup of residue from a drain line. Follow the pipe and let us know what you find. If the plug is leaking, it may just need some Teflon tape.
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wrote:

Is the siding material melted? If so, I'd consider moving.
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First time home owner wrote:

Could that be well rusted steel wool? Maybe the steel wool was stuffed around the cleanout to keep mice/rats out of the house and then caulked/painted over and has since rusted. Can you get to the other side of the wall?
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M Q wrote:

That was my thought as well. Rust can be irritating to the skin not from a chemical standpoint, but from a physical one (many tiny metal slivers).
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...

Looks like a clean-out plug surrounded by normal, or somewhat degraded fibreglas wall insulation, then sloppily painted over with spraypaint. Fibreglas can be itchy and irritating to skin. It would be normal for your walls to be filled with this material. Take a utility knife and cut away all the caulk and paint, back to the fresh cement board, then pull out the old insulation. Use that spray insulation in a can, like Handi-Foam, to re-fill the void (fibreglas is not weather resistant), let dry awhile, trim back to 1/4 inch below your hardiboard siding, then finish by troweling on a good paintable white silicone seal/adhesive. Next day, paint to match house. Roger
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On Wed, 22 Aug 2007 22:31:12 -0700, "Roger Taylor"

!!! I understood it can also be VERY BAD for the lungs! Particulate matter is harmful like asbestos. T/F?
Shouldn't OP be using a mask??!!
Aspasia

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aspasia wrote:

Mostly false. Long term exposure to most any particulate is bad, short term is generally not an issue. Inhaling a few fiberglass particles can certainly cause some irritation, but the body will purge out the particles after a short while. Asbestos particles don't get purged which is one of the reasons they are a problem.
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aspasia wrote:

Nah.
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First time home owner wrote:

It looks like partially discolored fiberglass insulation.
Looks like someone punched a too big hole in the wall to put in a cleanout, stuffed insulation around it and then slathered over with a now disintegrating caulk. It is a hack job, bet the previous home owner fancied himself as a skilled do-it-yourselfer.
How to fix it depends on what the wall material is. What is it? It would be nice if the cleanout pipe/plug extended an inch or so beyond the wall so a close fitting escutcheon could be fitted around it.
--

dadiOH
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My guess would be the powder is disintegrated insulation. Clean out the existing caulk. Use some Bondo household putty (Lowes or Homedepot carry it in the paint department) to cover the large voids. Be careful to maintain the angle of your siding when repairing with the Bondo. Don't apply the Bondo directly to the pipe as you need an expansion joint between the siding and the pipe. Maintain at least a 1/4" gap between the two. Fill in the gap with good caulk and then paint. You'll probably find all sorts of stuff like this in your new house if the previous homeowners did their own repairs. It's amazing what some people will do when repairing their houses. Every time I repair a job done by the previous owner of my house I have a good chuckle. And the previous owner worked at Homedepot!
Fortunately for us you can repair almost anything like this with Bondo.
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Thanks, so do I scrape out all the red material first before applying it?

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