In our experience house wraps don't perform well when they're subject to persistent wetting. Any areas subject to a lot of moisture - splash back zones, areas below intersecting roofs that dump accumulated rainwater, or tall beachfront houses, for example - can benefit from Enershield fluid-applied air/water-resistive barrier.
The reason we choose this over conventional Tyvek and other house wraps is because the installation process is too complex. When wrapping a house very few contractors can keep up with the ever changing dimensions of installation. This leads to leaks, mold and rot. Here is a list of common problems installers overlook.
Staples and Nails
This is putting a whole in your barrier as soon as it is installed. This common practice, although widely accepted and defended makes zero sense. With changes in temperature and friction caused by siding installation these areas can rip and tear.
All too often we see sloppy and incomplete house-wrap installations; the house wrap is installed any which way, with no attention to proper layering.
For some reason, builders often think they can get away without wrapping the gable ends. This may be because they're thinking of the wrap only as an air infiltration barrier but not as a weather barrier, and figure there's no reason to worry about air leaking into the attic.
This is a mistake, because the gable is one of the most exposed parts of the house. This drives rain behind the siding, runs down the sheathing, and winds up behind the house wrap.
Walls may be sheathed and wrapped while they're lying on the deck. Then, when the wall is lifted, the band or mud still remains unprotected. Splash back from below as well as water running down the house wrap from above can cause severe wetting.
Often house wrap doesn't quite make it around the corners. Like gables, corners get a lot of weather exposure, and any water that enters at this intersection of trim and siding then has direct access to the structure. A leak at this point may never show up inside the house, but can nonetheless lead to rot over time.
Mulled windows are another challenge. Many builders use the manufacturer's accessory mullion cover, but fail to provide a continuous head flashing across the top. The result is that water runs down between the units and often finds its way into the framing at the seal.
It's rare for a roofer to take the time to lift the house wrap or building paper and tuck the upper leg of the flashing underneath. Water runs down the house wrap, behind the flashing, and shows up as a roof leak.
If you're not careful, deck ledgers can provide a direct path for water to enter the structure. Framing crews install the deck ledger before the house is wrapped. In many cases, the band joist never gets sheathed at this point. The house wrap gets installed, but terminates just above the ledger. Unless the top of the ledger is properly flashed any water running down the wall gets channeled into the framing, leading to long-term saturation and rot.