Off my chest: I hate CAULKING!

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Yes, hate is the right word. These home builders use caulking like some miracle lifetime replacement for proper leak protection, but the new homeowner has no idea where or if they are cracked after the initial five-ten years of lifespan it has. Let's be honest here, caulking is simply introduced to cheapen out the home building process. Without caulking, houses would cost about 10% more to build properly, but it will be build better, at least on the exterior, and homeowners will have less rotting, water seepage issues, etc. Exterior caulking should be banned. If I were the president, I would decree exterior banned on all new houses! I am surprised they haven't figured out a way to create cheap houses out of just cheap caulking. Well, home builders, what are you waiting for? Sigh. Sunday night vent over.
 
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Something has to seal the area where two materials meet. Use "caulk" you will be doing it every five years. Use "sealant" and you will be an old man by the time it goes bad. There is a difference.
 
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i used "50 year" caulk 20 years ago on my windows and doors. It held up well but just recently had the windows cleaned out and recaulked. Some on the sunny side had cracked...partially due to normal settling of the house. I didnt for a minute expect it to last 50 years, but it was the best available at the time. $365 well spent for recaulk.
 
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If this were the 1800's you'd be down at the pub complaining about the use of Oakum. grin2 One other thing to keep in mind is that structures move and settle. Especially houses. The constant movement along with temperature swings cause caulk to break down.
 
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It's like we were separated at birth. grin I went back and forth with the builder of my former townhouse for *years* because I had water coming in over a window and their service manager's solution was always "more caulk" above the offending window. I remember telling him that I was concerned that there was so much caulk on that part of the wall that the weight would cause the foundation to collapse. Long story short, and ironically, the solution was actually more caulk, but it was needed on the fascia board over the unit next to me - wind driven rain would get in via that crack and once the water built up enough behind the siding that my neighbor's window couldn't drain all of it, the water migrated over to my window and came in there. Had anyone on the builder's side used any analytical skills, they'd have figured out after the second or third time that they needed to look elsewhere, but it was easier to slap more caulk over my window and pray that it held.
 
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Originally Posted by dinofish
Yes, hate is the right word. These home builders use caulking like some miracle lifetime replacement for proper leak protection, but the new homeowner has no idea where or if they are cracked after the initial five-ten years of lifespan it has. Let's be honest here, caulking is simply introduced to cheapen out the home building process. Without caulking, houses would cost about 10% more to build properly, but it will be build better, at least on the exterior, and homeowners will have less rotting, water seepage issues, etc. Exterior caulking should be banned. If I were the president, I would decree exterior banned on all new houses! I am surprised they haven't figured out a way to create cheap houses out of just cheap caulking. Well, home builders, what are you waiting for? Sigh. Sunday night vent over.
Outdoors projects I hate using the caulking gun too. I can never make my project look straight & neat. Then there's the mess it can create on fingers, gloves, tooling equipment, rags.... etc. Then 15 years ago or-so, I found rope caulking. Life is good again. Goggle it. Comes in a big fat roll..... different colors too. You make the seam wide or narrow real easily.
 

Bud

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Nothing I hate more than caulking and painting. I have done a bunch over the years, but now I pay someone else to do it all. Thank goodness,
 
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If builders only used OSI Quad (or something better) then it wouldn't be an issue. OSI Quad is amazing.
 
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I hate construction people using cheap caulk. Not the good DOW silicone stuff. I also cannot get the finished bead to look good and I have tried the various tools. I also hate when the previous owner did a major renovate and used nice cedar siding and for exterior trim, finger jointed pine. And I hate when the previous owner did not read directions for a Velux skylight that said a minimum of 12 degrees pitch in roof where they had 8. Building a curb would have cost an extra $50. Replacing the skylight when it leaks and has internal rotting costs probably $800.
 
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Originally Posted by Donald
I hate construction people using cheap caulk. Not the good DOW silicone stuff. I also cannot get the finished bead to look good and I have tried the various tools.
Saliva is the best thing for silicone caulk. Use painter's masking tape at the joint, caulk, and get a good pool of spit in your left palm, wet your right index finger and run down the caulk line. Immediately remove the tape. Once the silicone starts to set up, you're screwed. If you're a lefty, reverse the hands smile
 
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gathermewool

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Originally Posted by JerryBob
Originally Posted by Donald
I hate construction people using cheap caulk. Not the good DOW silicone stuff. I also cannot get the finished bead to look good and I have tried the various tools.
Saliva is the best thing for silicone caulk. Use painter's masking tape at the joint, caulk, and get a good pool of spit in your left palm, wet your right index finger and run down the caulk line. Immediately remove the tape. Once the silicone starts to set up, you're screwed. If you're a lefty, reverse the hands smile
My dad always did this, and now so do I. It works well. Just need to be careful not to lick your caulk finger...
 
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Originally Posted by AZjeff
Here in the SW builders use caulk instead of decent joints in baseboard and any other trim interior and exterior. Get it close and caulk the gap. Not just spec home builders either.
Years or decades ago a finish carpenter would run baseboard moulding from one wall to the other with no miter. Then with a hand jigsaw you cut the end with the jigsaw so it it will fit up against the one you first installed. If things expand or contract there is no gap. I think it's a lost art.
 

AZjeff

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Originally Posted by Donald
Originally Posted by AZjeff
Here in the SW builders use caulk instead of decent joints in baseboard and any other trim interior and exterior. Get it close and caulk the gap. Not just spec home builders either.
Years or decades ago a finish carpenter would run baseboard moulding from one wall to the other with no miter. Then with a hand jigsaw you cut the end with the jigsaw so it it will fit up against the one you first installed. If things expand or contract there is no gap. I think it's a lost art.
It's not a totally lost art, it's called coping and it's how I do inside joints on baseboard and crown molding. With a small electric angle grinder and a flap disk it doesn't take much more time than a miter joint.
 
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Caulking is required. If you install trim, baseboard, etc., it needs to be caulked between the two mating surfaces. You would use a paint-able latex caulking for that. The trim needs to be primed before installation and caulking, preferably one coat of finish. Windows probably should have a polyurethane sealant used due to the flexibility of the product for expansion and contraction. Silicone should be avoided completely. Most people don't know what product to use and how to use it. Caulking is not meant to hide poor workmanship or technique. Its also not used to fill nail holes or screw holes. Its an art. The best way to caulk using latex caulk is to use a bucket of water, sponge and properly cut tip. Apply a thin uniform bead to one small section, less than 8 feet. Dip your finger in the water bucket and run it along the bead. Don't over tool the joint or you will make it ugly. If using urethane use soapy water in a spray bottle and spray the joint before tooling. If caulking is required at corners in a bathroom tile, anywhere grout and tile are you use a specialty caulk made for it. This would be a colored, sanded or unsanded caulking depending on whether the caulk has sand or not. The art is not lost its those that choose the ones that have no art.
 
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