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shawnvf92985 05-26-2013 09:56 AM

I need advice! Moisture barrier between brick and studs.
We just purchased a home with a converted carport. It was bricked in like the rest of the structure. There was carpet on the concrete slab and paneling on the walls. Our plans were to pull carpet up and sheetrock the walls.

After pulling the paneling off, I found sheathing and insulation that had previously been wet. There are areas where the moisture barrier is still in tact, others where I was able to just pull out by hand. My question is how can I replace the moisture barrier in this wall? It seems it would be extremely difficult to do from the inside if not impossible. Can I have foam insulation sprayed in? Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

CallMeVilla 05-26-2013 07:42 PM

The big question is where did the moisture come from? Vapor barriers are intended to stop water vapor inside a home from passing through the drywall and into the wall -- which would then condense on the inside of the cavity. As you probably know, vapor barriers always go on the warm side of the wall. In this case that is on the face of the stud wall where the drywall gets applied.

Spray foam is both an insulator and a vapro barrier. So, you could have it applied to rebuild the wall. However, is the exterior wall the source of the moisture? You need to find out before re-sealing the stud cavity.

nealtw 05-26-2013 09:23 PM

In a cool or cold zone the vapour bearer is always on the inside of the studs. In a warm zone where you run air conditioning most of the year, different rules.

Now lets just make it clear, you had no vapour bearer, what you have removed is the out side sheeting of the structure.
Your question would indicate that you think the brick was there and then they put up a 2x4 wall inside. The opposite is true, they built the 2x4 structure, with sheeting and then built the brick in front of that as siding, you can see the ties coming from between the brick and nail to the stud.
They failed to put house wrap or tar paper over the sheeting as a secondary rain stop from the outside. In your first photo I think you can see light coming from outside at the end of the wall so the outside will need to be sealed up properly. Foam might be your best bet, but you need it to get between the brick and structure you you will hace to remove the rest of the sheeting, or you havn't solved the problem. The biggest problem they gave you was they alowed the brick and mortar to touch the wood and didn't have a route for water to get out.

shawnvf92985 05-26-2013 09:52 PM

Thanks guys! I'll remove the rest of the sheathing and get the insulation company out next week. I'll make sure and tell them to coat in between studs and brick. I will post pics once the insulation is complete.

nealtw 05-26-2013 11:17 PM

The sheeting as bad is it was, was part of the structure holding the building square and ridged. The bricks may do that job but as it wasn't built that way, trusting them may be risky.
About half way down the page on this site they talk about angle braces, you should install them.

WindowsonWashington 05-31-2013 06:52 AM

Where is the home located?

shawnvf92985 05-31-2013 11:37 AM

The home is located in Huntsville, AL.

WindowsonWashington 05-31-2013 12:51 PM


Vapor control should go on the warm side which would be at the brick.

Ideally, you would have some sort of vapor control layer against the stud to prevent any solar vapor push from wet bricks while still providing some vent space for the brick to dry out in either direction.

Looks like the particle board was tight to the framing and the brick tight to that. That was flawed from the start.

If you pull it out, try to slip a thin foam layer between the two to keep the vapor push down.

I would also make sure the brick is protected from the exterior and it would be ideal to seal it with some sort of penetrating sealant that allows it to still breath. We use Siloxane with good results up here.

neilorrick 05-31-2013 10:40 PM

Good advice but I want to ask the question that have you any experience with this vapor control layer. Is this working great ? In my opinion there should be a leakage from the exterior and bricks are not protected first seal it from outside if problem persists then install the layer.

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WindowsonWashington 06-01-2013 07:16 AM

What do you mean?

Vapor control layers go towards the outside wall in that climate and not towards the interior.

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