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Question DetailsAsked on 5/6/2017

water coming in under sliding glass patio door rotting hardwood floor

door has been caulked many times........under around.....and on top. When it rains water comes under the door into the wood floor. and runs down the boards rotting wood in several places. Siding has been nailed down around window and caulked also. The door operates....slides easily...but it leaks.

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There are a number of causes for this - many of whiich you might be able to debug when it it is raining or with a small amount of discrete sprinkling of the outside of the door:


1) leakage from poor/failed caulk and/or flashing over or around the door, leaking down to the bottom of the door and then out onto the floor


2) poor seals on the door itself


3) water running off the door falling down on the track as it is supposed to do, but then the drainage slots (holes through the track leading to the outside) or drainage pasaages (through the interior of the track itself) are blocked or someone cauylked off the outlet point, so the water cannot escape and fills the track, then overflowing to the inside. You would think in 100 years or more of track-type sliding doors the manufacturers would wise up that the inside track should be higher than the outside, but not so far.


4) lack of dripedge or weatherstrip on the door to keep the water from flowing to the inside as it runs off it


5) lack of dripedge under the threashold outside lip, so the water runs off the threshold (commonly integrated with the track on sliding patio doors) but instead of droppiong onto the patio or deck, runs back underneath it and wets the sill, eventually getting through to the interior though gaps in the sill/threashold interface, between the sill and the foundation, or by the sill or wood threashold rotting out.


6) patio or deck or porch too high, or not providing drainage outside in front of the foundation wall, so water hits/pools on it and runs in under the door or under the sill plate.


Try to follow where the water will go - when it hits siding, when it hits door, when it hits door frame, when it accumulates on the threshold or patio/porch/deck , and see if any of the flow paths (by gravity or by wicking along relatively tight interfaces) allows entry into the house.


Contractor to do this sort of diagnosis and repair - Door and Window contractor ideally, and if rotten frame is the problem, but generlaly hard to get most of them to come out on a leak job like this - they tend to only want to do replacements. Otherwise, Handymen - finding one inclinded to track the source rather than just gob a bunch of caulk all over.

Answered 1 year ago by LCD




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