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I have an 84 yo Tudor style home in Hawaii that looked fantastic when we first bought it. Living area is 2500 sq ft. It's quite unusual to find such homes because many don't survive the termites.

On one of our walls we noticed water marks the previous owners said resulted from leaving windows open. When a tropical storm came through, we soon realize it's not a matter of open windows.

We recently discovered water seeping into the wall from the gable vents. We believe the wood frame became very porous from the 84 years of weathering.

We recently put in one solar fan on our roof. I'm wondering if we can just seal off the vents, refinish the wall and paint on water proof coating the entire face of that wall would do the job of preventing water from coming in. And if the closing off the vents would change much of the ventilation now that I have a solar fan removing hot air from the attic.

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If your solar fan is working, it's pulling air out of the attic. That air has to be getting into the attic from somewhere. If you seal off your gable end vents, where is the air coming in from? Your soffit vents, if you have any. If you do, then fine, case closed, remove the gable vents, no problem. If you don't, then the air is probably coming from inside your house! If you air condition that air you are now air conditioning the attic too. That's one way to cool down the attic…

If you only have gable end vents, you have two options. The first is to seal them up and add soffit vents. The other is to replace them or fix them so that the louvers of the vent are much steeper and overlap each other more. See how easy the water can get in when it's blowing almost horizontally when the vent louvers are arranged like this:

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Compare that to a vent with much steeper louvers that overlap more:

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