My house is 3 stories - The bottom level is a basement with 3 exposed sides that is bricked and the main and upper level have fiber board siding original to the house(27 years old). The siding is in good shape. Between the main level and the basement I had a wooden drip edge that was recently replaced with a drip edge made from hardy board. When this was done, the bottom row of the fiber board was replaced with new fiber board. The siding that was replaced for the most part was in good shape except for rotten areas that was located at the base of my chimney and under one window. All my siding runs behind my corner boards.
Where the siding runs behind my corner boards has never been caulked. When the crew was working on my house, they suggested this area be caulked. I have read and heard some builders say do not caulk here because it allows the water to drain down and out and others that say this area definitely needs to be caulked. Those who say do not caulk also stated if caulking does break down it may trap water behind the trim board. With parts of my house being 30 feet of the ground, I know I would not be able to inspect the caulk lines in some areas.
When the new row of fiber board was installed, the crew did caulked where the boards run behind the trim so now
I worry with this bottom section having caulk and all the boards above them not, it may serve to trap water. All the corner boards over the 3 exposed sides of the basement do extend down over the brick for 12 inches with a 12 inch trim board between them so the water does have a way out at the end of them.
So what do I need to do. 1. Have all the corner boards caulked where the siding goes behind them or just leave this area with no caulk as it has been for 27 years. 2. The caulk that was placed between the corner boards and the bottom row of the new siding - if I do not caulk the corner boards above this new section should I remove this new caulk for it will not trap water or will it be ok since the water does have a way out at the base of the corner boards.