I ended up where I started off. I started with a badly leaking roof in the big shed. I moved on to a leaky basement. Finally I paid 11,000 $$$ for a leaky roof.
It’s Jam Band Friday – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vo_0UXRY_rY
Now a traditional home owner would have been calling their lawyer and loading their shotguns, Cathy is an electrician and I am a carpenter so on the second leak we called Dean our roof guy and expressed our displeasure. In the mean time I had been trying to figure out what was going on. I had to take out a bunch of wet insulation. The more I tracked the water up the roof, the more it veered toward the gable vent that I had assumed was sealed and insulated.
Our 2 eve vents were the triangular ones listed at the bottom of the page. I got this horrible feeling in my gut. Slowly the horror grew. I had an energy monster living in my attic! Me an energy expert had the equivalent of a 4 x 4 ft. hole in my wall in my attic. I knew I had to kill it but the previous owners of the house (who should be shot) had presented me with serious problems. I tried to take the ceiling panel down to get a quick look and discovered that the panels were all beveled. That is the ceiling panel was trapped by the sloping panel which was trapped by the knee wall panel which was trapped by the carpet tack strips from the old carpet…%$&#@*! Is what I said over and over again..
YOU know exactly what I mean. Everyone has a friend that grew up in the attic. So by the time I basically got 2 whole 4 ft wall and side panels off I was a mixture of pissed, curious and freaked. But it got worse. I made the mistake of pulling the roof panel down with the slope pointing towards me and when I got about half the panel down I was hit in the face with dirt and dust like I had never seen. I let go of the panel and dashed downstairs to wash my face. Then I went out on the front porch, shook my clothes off and brushed my hair out. Now I was nearly out of my mind. I dashed back upstairs to see what in the world had just happened to me. There on the floor were thousands of hornets nests! I looked up at the open unscreened gable vent in disbelief. I mean open to the outside world and only stoppered by an 1/8th inch piece of cheap 1950’s wood paneling. 1953 to be exact. What idiots.
I got up in the ceiling and looked back the other way. What I saw was a long tunnel formed by the ceiling panels and the roof and ANOTHER unscreened totally open vent at the other end. Then I looked up at a light in the sky – open, though screened continuous ridge vent. I started throwing things around the room, stomped downstairs and called Cathy at work. I screamed for awhile until she got me calmed down. She said, can you fix it? I said yah but I shouldn’t have to. She said, yah right and hung up the phone. The woman has no sense of humor. So then I pulled down the other panel. I scooped up three trash cans full of bees nests.
At the west end of the house I even found 2 dinner plate sized wasp nests even though my biologist father claims that wasps and hornets will not cohabitate.
Then I sealed the vents with black plastic, caulk and staples. I stuffed the space with R-17 insulation and put the wood panels back in place. I have no idea how to seal up a ridge vent that should not be.
Here is how the pro’s do it:
Since gable vents usually are architectural elements, it generally is best to seal them from the interior with a piece of plywood, thus preserving the architectural integrity of the home and eliminating the need to make a siding patch.
More on getting rid of the ridge vent Monday.