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Caulking Failure

Caulking failure is when caulk cracks or detaches from the surface that it is supposed to adhere to and seal. This happens more around doors and windows and results in water seepage.

The Cause
There can be a lot of vibration around the door and window areas causing the caulk to loosen and fall off with time. The outside heat sometimes makes caulk brittle and it therefore cracks and becomes ineffective. This is especially true of poor quality caulk that contracts on drying and cracks or loosens. There are many types of caulk that are designed for different materials. If you use caulk of the wrong type, it is bound to detach itself as it may not be suitable for that material. For example, vinyl or latex caulk would better suit areas that require waterproofing.

The Solution
For areas of low humidity and areas that don’t get wet, a good acrylic or latex-based caulk will do. If you want to waterproof an area, or if there is vibration between the surfaces that are to be sealed, silicone caulk is the best. Silicone caulk, although more expensive than other types of caulks, prevents water from getting in between two surfaces. It is rubbery and therefore does not crack even if the two surfaces vibrate a little. Above all, silicone caulk is durable and can last for as long as 20 years. Silicone caulk adheres well to ceramic, concrete, wood, glass and untreated aluminum, but it does not adhere to painted surfaces.