How to approach builder's problem?

I've had building work carried out on my 1860 house/cottage. There is one item left which is scheduled to be completed on Friday.
One of the main items of work was:
Item 3. Front water ingress
This related to water coming inside from both the bedroom and the lounge. The bedroom window is a gable type window. Both windows had been altered in the house's history, enlarged, and originally set back within an arch they had been moved as far forward as possible with the arch filled but no supporting lintel.
All this work has been completed, lintels installed*, brickwork redone and checks for flashing and tiles. Ridge tiles refixed etc.
As I watched yesterday's rain pelt down I had this smug "my house is now fixed" feeling smashed as I went upstairs and saw a stream of water, in a new location, to the side of the window. Fortunately we hadn't yet redecorated.
Before the rain I had agreed with the builder to pay for the remainder of the work that had been completed (ie before Friday's scheduled work).
Once I saw the leak I called the builder and to his credit he came straight out to see it but he doesn't know where it's coming from and plans to investigate it when he comes on Friday. Nonetheless he still sent the invoice for the previously agreed amount.
Should I pay - withhold? The value is less than the value of the work undertaken on that window. How will I know it's fixed if there is no heavy rain for a few weeks?
Worried.
* Lintels. Heavy angle iron was used. About 1.5" of lintel is visible and the bottom is rusting through the white paint work. The upper is just rusting. I accept this is surface rust but that can't be right can it?
--
AnthonyL

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Withhold, because the work was not done properly, because it still leaks.

You don’t. You could try hosing it and see if it leaks, but if it doesn’t that doesn’t prove that it wont when you get heavy rain again.

Yep, it should have been galvanised if they can't ensure that water can't get onto it. None of mine have rusted in the 40 years since they were done and they are just painted steel and I know that because I was the one who painted that steel.
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On 12/05/2014 13:30, AnthonyL wrote:

Pinning down the source of penetrating damp is a bugger, so I wouldn't be too hard on the builder. Windows reset on the outside of the opening often cause problems. Water penetrates the masonry above the window and ends up inside instead of outside (the original design). Sometimes the lintel diverts it to the side of the window. Is the wall rendered?
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.. rain leaking in ... } How will I know it's fixed if there is no }heavy rain for a few weeks?
Use a hose now to determine how to reproduce the effect of the rain. Then when an alleged repair is done, apply the hose in the same manner and see if the leak has stopped.
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On Tue, 13 May 2014 01:17:19 +0000, Charles Bryant

He had suggested a "suck it and see" approach. I have proposed your suggestion thanks otherwise we will never know for sure what was the source and what was the cure.
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On Mon, 12 May 2014 20:10:14 +0100, stuart noble

His remit was to stop the water ingress. It wasn't damp, it was a stream running down. You could see the water flowing and then soaking into the new plaster which he had done to repair the old plaster damage.
As part of the attempted solution to the original problem the window, which was flush to the outside wall, has now been inset approx 1.5". It is that 1.5" of untreated angle iron that is visible.
That part of the wall (the gable arch) had been rendered in an old attempt to stop ingress. The rendering has been removed as part of this job.
At one point he had the whole window out and the brickwork removed so that he could rebuild it properly.
I've told him that I am deferring payment which amounts to about 70% of that part of the job.
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AnthonyL

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On 13/05/2014 12:57, AnthonyL wrote:

Often water starts coming in a long way from the affected area, and moves through the masonry till it finds a weak point. The fact that it's a "stream" should in theory make it easier to pin down. Possibly 1.5" isn't enough of an inset? Nobody wants to lose an interior sill but... A picture might prompt some suggestions.
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On Tue, 13 May 2014 13:46:03 +0100, stuart noble

That's what worries me. The work started at the ridge tiles on top of the roof, cracked/missing tiles and continued down. The roof is felt lined under the tiles and I worry that it is coming down that way.
The water is coming in from above the inset. I have some photos including some of work in progress but I need another one with the finished outside job which I'll take tomorrow and put up somewhere and post a link.
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On Tue, 13 May 2014 22:54:20 +0100, Phil L wrote:

Assuming it's a cavity wall.
But yes, from the description, water ingress at top of window now moved to sides indicates that the water is getting in above the window flowing down inside(*) the wall until it gets to the new lintel that diverts it to the sides.
The actual ingress could be a a considerable distance from the window and quite possibly not directly above it either. All depends on the wall and how water can travel through it.
(*) Inside as in through the mortar joints rather than down the cavity of a cavity wall.
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On Tue, 13 May 2014 20:32:52 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@please.invalid (AnthonyL) wrote:

The builder is coming tomorrow, though he did come last Sunday to see the water ingress during the downpour.
I've uploaded a series of photos to:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/79018230@N05/sets/72157644255441508
The photos are full size in case anyone wants to zoom in on any detail. I've got more and can take more.
A few notes:
1) From inside the bedroom looking at the window the main leak is to the top right and the staining of the ceiling paper can be seen. There is also a smaller and slight staining of the ceiling paper to the top left of the window.
The vertical new plaster line to the right of the window is where the plaster was repaired from damage due to previous water ingress. The stream of water last Sunday was down this same line.
On the ceiling the paper can be seen to be coming away. The paper has been up since the late 1980's and that part was definitely coming away in 1997 when I re-stuck it on (I remember the year because I had an important visitor). The paper isn't stained but we started to pull it off on Sunday then decided to leave it till there was more time.
2) Other photos show the overall view of the job and the work on the window gable. It is frustrating that the scaffolding has since been removed and the whole of the inside of the gable had been exposed.
3) There are shots from the loft of the gable. Whilst up there this morning I noted I could see bits of daylight through the odd tear in the roofing felt. Is this normal? I expect there must be more light visible if I removed the felt.
4) For those that have commented on cavity walls, this is an 1860 Victorian building - no cavity wall.
5) The exposed rusting angle iron lintel is clearly shown in one photo as well as a close up of the roof.
Thank you for your help to date. I've procrastinated for years about getting someone in to do this work for the very fear of some of the problems I've now encountered with this job and the rebuilt arches are nowhere near what the Victorian bricklayers could do.
--
AnthonyL

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snipped-for-privacy@please.invalid (AnthonyL) wrote:

So... at the corners, rather than at any mid-point along the lintel. Quite a lot of water will flow down the flashed valleys (if that's the right term) that join the dormer roof onto the main roof. When that water reaches the bottom of the valley and flows down the main roof, see:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/79018230@N05/13997350109/sizes/h/
there looks to me as if there may be some sort of void back up and behind the bottom of the flashing on the dormer side? Maybe it's blocked by something, and I can also see (further out) vertically-applied flashing where the edge of the main roof is next to the window. But how far up under the tiles/valley does that vertical flashing go? Is there any scope for wind-blown water to go back up into this space? (Though I suppose that would be unlikely to produce a stream of water.)
I notice that the ridge tiles on the dormer look to be recently pointed but in the same picture the main roof's ridge tiles look much less well pointed. Was that checked?
Does your local weather tend to blow water in any particular direction?

When the gable was totally exposed, I suppose no stained wood was sufficiently damp (eg along the line where the dormer meets the main roof) to excite comment... Having it ventilated wouldn't make wetness easier to detect I suppose.

It is with my roof, but the tile style is different. I get strong winds from the west blowing rain up under the tiles (which lift a bit in high wind) and there's certainly ingress of modest amounts of water, if only through nail holes. I have a floored attic and in the worst places just catch the water in plastic tubs. It nearly all evaporates again in the breeze that blows through the space.

Yes, and even more if you took the tiles off too!
I know nothing about roofing... but I wonder what's the norm for felt when it is laid on a main roof joining a dormer. I kind of expect that it would be folded to cross the junction (and of course later the valley flashing would lie on top of that fold). But it would be bad news if the felt fold at the junction was weak and no longer waterproof, if it meant water flowing down the outside of the main roof felt met the fold and penetrated through it. The trouble is that this is too hypothetical and I have no idea how you could test if something like that was the problem let alone easily fix it.
Maybe one of the tiny cameras-on-a-bendy tube / endoscope things could be poked through some cautiously made slits in the felt to see if there's any sign of water on the outside of the felt. But you'd not want to make hundreds of extra slits... If you're going to have to replaster or reppaer the bedroom ceiling it might be worth peeking into the gable space the same way when there actually is a downpour in progress...
I don't know what I'd do.
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On 14/05/2014 14:45, Jeremy Nicoll - news posts wrote:

I don't either. To me it looks like the valley(s) aren't long enough, so that maybe water doesn't make it to the gutter but gets blown across towards the window. Can't see how you could lengthen them though. I'm guessing an experienced roofer might have a solution
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On Wed, 14 May 2014 14:45:57 +0100, Jeremy Nicoll - news posts

Last Sunday's rain was pretty well straight down with no wind. As far as I could see the water was streaming down the flashing into the gutter with no problem.

Ridge tiles was part of the remit. The builder says that he thinks the scaffolders must have knocked it as they took the scaffold down. Would have been nice to have picked it up before the scaffolding was gone. He says he's going up a ladder to fix it if I stand my foot on the bottom of the ladder (to the roof I assume).

Obviously most of the weather is from the West which is at the back of the house. We are exposed facing East ie we see the sunrise through the bedroom window.

It was a horrible windy day when they had the void open hence the tarpaulin and I didn't pay a great deal of attention. It is a big void which they filled with pieces of insulation. That clearly was the opportunity to look for where there might have been signs of ingress.

I was amazed at how clean the windows were when they had been removed!

The ceiling lath's(?) to the gable space were not moved as far as I know. The felt has been in place since 1986 or thereabouts when the roof was re-slated.

Neither do I, and neither I suspect does the builder who came into the trade late after being a white collar professional.
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On Wed, 14 May 2014 20:01:45 +0100, "Phil L"

Well 154 actually - and yes he had a problem with recreating the arch. Quite a disappointment.

I'm not too sure what you mean here. The felt surely shouldn't be part of the equation? The felt under the tiles was put in around 1986 but surely is not there for waterproofing?

Again not sure where we are. I think lead is right - will check. The sides as it passes the windows are just tiles vertically fixed.

Part of the same project. The main chimney pot was cracked and the chimney sweep for the past 6 or 7 years has refused to put his brush through it. This builder fiddled with it without warning and we had a lounge full of soot. The fire is our main heating source and in winter is on 24/7.
I must say I hadn't realised how poor the pointing was. This guy as I've said elsewhere was a white collar professional up until around 15yrs ago. I then learn he's 'picked up' brick laying from working with bricklayers. He's used his mates as assistants and I suspect one of them (another ex-white collar professional) to do some of this work.
He really tries hard but he is also quite trying. He's also very busy.
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AnthonyL

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snipped-for-privacy@please.invalid (AnthonyL) wrote:

In a perfect world if all water hitting the roof arrives from directly overhead, and there are no cracked, slipped or missing tiles, you might be right. But if any water gets behind the tiles the felt is definitely going to play a part in waterproofing the roof (and draught-proofing it).
Once water can run down the topmost surface of the felt, it matters what happens when the felt has an abrupt change of direction (eg at a valley). Also the nails that secure tiles to battens may penetrate the felt; rusty nails or broken ones can leave holes. Tiles (on my roof certainly) sometimes lift a little in strong (eg gale force) winds, and apart from the noise this produces, it can also stress the nails, and certainly loosen them.
Having said that, your loft pictures showed the underneath of the felt, so the battens must be further out. Maybe the battens are nailed on through the felt into the roof timbers? My main roof has sarking (ie planks) on it, then felt, then battens, then tiles, I think. The felt (if it exists) is not visible from the attic.
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On Tue, 13 May 2014 19:50:37 +0100, "Phil L"

I'm still struggling to follow what you are trying to say. Are you suggesting I should ask my doctor?
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On Wed, 14 May 2014 19:52:47 +0100, "Phil L"

He's had a go at it today then got a roofing mate to have a look. They sat above and got the hose and poured it down to emulate rain. No affect.
The roofing mate couldn't see any problems with tiles, went right up to the ridge and repaired the mortar plus some work on the chimney. The splashed cement won't now cleanly come off.
Not happy with this and true to uk.d-i-y principles I went up with the hose pipe and sprayed upwards and into the roof tiles to the side of the valley (gully?) which is fairly flat. The other side which meets the window gable is quite steep. Anyway I got a damp patch exactly where the wallpaper is discoloured.
So my theory is that when there is a deluge and the water is streaming down the roof the water that hits the top of the window gable where it joins the roof gets deflected sideways and pushes the flow horiziontally a bit and under the roof tiles where it finds a path into the ceiling.
I'm not sure the builder is convinced and he has wanted to concentrate lower down but that doesn't match where the ceiling was getting damp/wet. I've pulled the paper away and there is a crack in the plaster which is presumably where the flow of water came from last Sunday.
He's going to squirt some sealant that adheres to lead between the tiles and the flashing. When is the next downpour due?
--
AnthonyL

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Can't get the staff eh?..

I did wonder if that was the route myself but I'd have thought that bit of flashing had a depression at that point along its length to force the water down the flashing as it were.
Perhaps a few close up's of that bit of the roof might be an idea?...

Bodge;(..

Might help but this property has been in existence for a very long time and presumably in that time has been water free?..
Did they have to use sealant's when it was built?..

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snipped-for-privacy@please.invalid (AnthonyL) wrote:

Of course there may be more than one route for water to get to that point, but solving any of them will be a good thing.
There's one bit of one of my roofs where tiles (to my eye) seemed to be standing a bit proud of flashing at a valley, and that happened to be just above a point of modest water ingress; eventually I squirted some expanding foam into that void - carefully because I didn't want the foam as it expanded to push the tiles up even more - and the problem ceased. The foam also blocked the possibility that small birds were getting into the roof there.
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wrote:

How do you find the right people?

I've put this one up.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/79018230@N05/14007192128/in/set-72157644255441508
It is hard to get the perspective. The flashing is horizontal to the left and vertical to the right.

Suggestions?

The problem is that over that long a time the window is no longer the window that was originally built. The whole roof was re-tiled and felted in around 1986. They should have dealt with how the flashing met with the tiles/felt then.
At the time the work was being done the windows themselves really needed replacing and some of the frame was rotting. These were Magnet & Southern frames from around 1975 and the windows had been enlarged and brought out flush to the outer wall instead of being inset by the depth of one brick.
I had assumed leaks were due to the frame. There certainly were draughts.
In 2000 I had double glazing put in. With no lintel under the top arch for the outer course (another story) the result was that some of the mortar was cracked. A later attempt at rendering didn't work.
I was expecting that putting a lintel in and rebuilding the brickwork would fix it but as we see it didn't. The problem wasn't (or wasn't only) the lack of a lintel but possibly the re-tiling/felting which isn't very obvious though now I realise that this is why we were susceptible to the weather coming from the East as even light rain with and easterly would be driven under the tiles.
Certainly the work on the downstairs window appears to be successful and there wasn't a drop of water coming in whereas we would have had dripping on the window sill. But we haven't had those horrible easterly driving rains since the job was done.
My neighbour had some ingress last Sunday at what sounds like a similar point. He says it happens once every 2 or 3 years.
So what is the non-bodge solution other than remove all the tiles and refit? And why won't the right sealant work?
Finally the builder is trying his best but ... I suppose it could be worse.
--
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