The Simple Repair That Was Anything But

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We have a section of gutter on the back of our house that is tucked into a nook. The roof line changes there and the combination of nook, roof line and nearby trees results in the gutter always overflowing with leaves. I’ve installed some sponge-like gutter guard stuff on other parts of the house. It seems to work pretty well. While installing it in the nook I noticed the trim board at the end of the gutter was soft and spongy. Its pretty easy to cut a new piece of trim, screw it in, caulk and paint. This was the simple repair that was anything but.

Demo

What was supposed to be the removal of one small piece of trim board quickly turned into 2 or 3 needing to be removed. Once they were starting to come off…..ants, carpenter ants, EVERYWHERE.

These little bastards had tunnels running through the trim boards, the stucco panel, the rigid foam insulation on the exterior of the house, the cellulose blown insulation in the walls. As I pulled more off, more of them scattered either going down behind the brick or up into the roof and attic area.

Exterminate

After using the shop vac to clean up behind the brick I placed some gel poisonous bait stuff in the openings down behind the brick and up into the attic. I then sprayed ant killer in all the cellulose insulation. After not seeing any ants for a while I decided it was safe to start rebuilding.

Rebuild

A layer of house wrap covered by new rigid foam insulation then OSB (in place of stucco panel). I sprayed foam in the gaps all the way around.

After cutting and installing the new trim pieces I caulked and painted it all. I left the paint to dry for a few hours before reinstalling the small gutter section.

In total it took nearly 2 days to dismantle, kill ants and rebuild mainly due to all the trips to Home Depot and Ace. I also spent a good amount of time waiting for ants to stop appearing from various tunnels/holes.

The final step will be reinstalling the gutter sponge thingies and setting several ant traps in the attic.

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MyEndless

Husband, Dad, Engineer and Saw Dust Aficionado
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One thought on “The Simple Repair That Was Anything But

  1. Wow! If they were so numerous in that area, do you think they could be in the rest of the walls? Icky! What a mess. Sorry you had to deal with them! Great job, though.

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