The wood siding on my chimney touches the shingles where it meets the
roof. You can see from the picture at
that when it rains, the
siding wicks up moisture, causing some peeling and rotting. The corner
pieces of the chimney box, which seem to be 1x2s and 1x4s, are also
rotting upward. However, once those corner pieces rot up enough, water
stops wicking and the rotting stops. The flashing under everything is
keeping water from leaking. When I took the picture, it hadn't
rained for two weeks, and the siding was not mushy.
I know if this were siding touching the ground, I would be open for
termites. But this is 35 feet in the air. Plus, the siding is not new
(I bought the 18-year-old house last year). I'm pretty sure it's
as old as the house.
What will happen if I do nothing?
I'm not sure why you are asking this question. It almost sounds like
you are looking for approval to discontinue required maintenance and
repairs. Ignoring roofing/siding/rot problems is not a wise idea under
any circumstances. I would sell furniture or a car if I had to before
I'd let the damage continue.
It will continue to rot as rot doesn't follow your logic. If it did,
no one would have to repair rot because "once those corner pieces rot
up enough, water stops wicking and the rotting stops." If only.
I don't understand why you wouldn't repair such localized damage as
soon as possible. Delaying such repairs is guaranteed to blow lots
more money down the road. You won't be saving any money. It's not the
right thing to do for the house or your wallet.
The fact that the siding is so close to the roof is always a problem.
There are a few things wrong in that picture - someone was saving some
time. Are you willing to bet large amounts of your money on your gut
feeling that the rot will stop and that the visible problems are the
worst of it? I'm in - I don't even care what odds you give me as it's
a sure bet and found money.
I don't know what will happen if you leave it alone. But, as with
everything, it will never get better, only worse.
Depending on the flashing you have beneath the wood, you could at least
cut away the bottom portion of the siding so it doesn't touch the
shingles. Then paint and caulk the heck out of it when it is nice and
dry. That should help some.
I second the opinions (most of them) you've gotten so far, you've got to do
Something that shouldn't be seen in this picture is, tar/caulking. When
properly flashed, there should never be tar visible at the juncture. Also,
the back pan (flashing)looks to be rusting out, which assuming the step
flashing is the same material, and probably in the same condition.
The siding appears to be masonite, but regardless, it's too close to the
roofline. This may be, because there is more than one roof on the structure
(?) Needless of the reason, you need to take corrective action, and also
possibly/probably new flashing.
On 25 Sep 2005 13:38:01 -0700, " email@example.com"
Ummmm.....does not look like wood siding.
I just went through this with my 23 year old cedar lap chimney chase
(box) above the roof line. I think that it was in such bad shape
because it is openly exposed to the weather continuously.
We had about 3 weeks of dry weather and I went up there with half a
tube of caulk -- I guess that was wishful thinking. I had used
nearly 3 10 oz tubes before i was ready to paint. One of the bottom
pieces was "spongy" (aka rot) and I rubbed
caulk into the face of that one, I broad spread it on with a putty
knife then worked it into the grain with my fingertip, let it dry a
day and then roughed it up with 60 grit sandpaper so it would not have
that "shiny" look. The bit of flashing that i can see in your picture
looks the same as mine -- and I wonder if that is rust or paint on it
-- mine has "autumn red" paint on it and looks at a glance like rust.
The construction of my chimney at the shingles looks much like yours.
(BTW, your shingles don't look 18 years old)
On the lower trim board on one side of the chimney near the ground i
had water rot more severe than any your picture shows. I went to home
depot and got a 1 x 4 x 3 foot piece of oak and scabbed in about the
last 10 inches of the trim board(the actual rot only went up about 4
inches.) What i quickly found was that a store bought 1 x 4 was fine
insofar as width (about 3.75) but the depth was off by about 3/8 inch.
Apparently the rough cut cedar was more like 1 1/2 x 4. Anyhow i
thickly spackled the back and side where it meets the siding and the
face matches -- done deal. I mention that because you could do the
same thing above the roofline though yours does not really look that
The answer to your question about "do nothing" is that you will
eventually develop leaks if the problem is not tended to -- that
really depends on what kind of construction is behind it, but why
(Btw, while you are up there, check your chimney cap -- the galvanized
cover for the whole chimney chase top. Might want to take a wire
brush and scrape any rust off and so long as you don't already have
pinholes in it, spray it good with rustoelum so you can rest easy
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