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To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - TFM - 10-28-2019

[attachment=21418]Hi all.  I'm in the midst of preparing to repaint my 140 yr. old Victorian era home.  The house has the typical lap and gap wooden siding and we've pulled off most all of the calk as part of the prep to repaint.  I would believe that these homes originally way back when didn't have any calk or calk like products, but instead depended on the lap and gap grooves to repel water.  And, this allowed the home to breath and not trap moisture - at least that is what I  think.  So, should I calk horizontally along the lap and gap joints?  I will calk vertically where the boards meet the trim.  My painters are all for calking everything up tight, but I'm not so sure.  How about you Old House Guys?  What say you?


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - Phil Thien - 10-28-2019

Pictures may help.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - Splinter Puller - 10-28-2019

(10-28-2019, 05:05 PM)TFM Wrote: Hi all.  I'm in the midst of preparing to repaint my 140 yr. old Victorian era home.  The house has the typical lap and gap wooden siding and we've pulled off most all of the calk as part of the prep to repaint.  I would believe that these homes originally way back when didn't have any calk or calk like products, but instead depended on the lap and gap grooves to repel water.  And, this allowed the home to breath and not trap moisture - at least that is what I  think.  So, should I calk horizontally along the lap and gap joints?  I will calk vertically where the boards meet the trim.  My painters are all for calking everything up tight, but I'm not so sure.  How about you Old House Guys?  What say you?

I would not do the bottom lap if its reasonably tight.  The sides where they meet trim... yes.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - jteneyck - 10-28-2019

I've never seen Tommy Silva, et al, talk about caulking the bottom seam of lap siding, only the ends where they butt against the trim.  Seems like all that would do is trap moisture.  

John


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - Stwood_ - 10-28-2019

(10-28-2019, 06:33 PM)Splinter Puller Wrote: I would not do the bottom lap if its reasonably tight.  The sides where they meet trim... yes.

+1


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - Snipe Hunter - 10-28-2019

The bottom lap has to move. No caulk there. Do caulk the ends. Caulk has been around for a long long time.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - TFM - 10-28-2019

(10-28-2019, 07:21 PM)Stwood_ Wrote: +1

So are you saying no calk at all on any horizontal boards?  Because one boards' bottom abuts another boards' top....

On another note:  If we could all paint when the boards are very dry and most shrunk across the grain we'd be assured that future shrinkage and expansion with painted  boards would not show bare wood.  In the real world am I overthinking this?  I'd hate to paint now and in some months when it's dry(er) see unpainted horizontal board edges.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - CLETUS - 10-29-2019

(10-28-2019, 09:30 PM)TFM Wrote:  I'd hate to paint now and in some months when it's dry(er) see unpainted horizontal board edges.


It's going to happen. 

Also, the word is caulk.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - daddo - 10-29-2019

No matter what you do, the wood will move, the paint will spot peel and the home will need painting again- sooner than you think. Caulking will just push out and look bad at the horizontal seams.

I had no particular interest in "historic" reference to my home so I covered it with vinyl. Not going to worry about painting in my older age- ever again! I'd rather go fishing.


RE: To calk or not to calk......THAT is the question - TFM - 10-29-2019

Thanks for all the responses guys. I'm not going to CAULK the horizontal edges, but everything else, and not worry about the paint issue.