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  1. #66
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    ST and Others:

    Whew, that was quite a read. Here's my take on the discussion regarding the very large gray area that exists between "wringing of hands over building codes" and "common sense":

    In my area, and under my state SOP, the building code is the crux of the issue. Even in states with lesser SOPs (non-Texans bow yo' heads and divert yo' eyes) , and as JP and others have said, the adopted model code sets the benchmark or minimal entry level into the building construction game. You must consider the code if you are a home inspector. Anyone who thinks otherwise is living in a dream world which is kept inflated by his lack of knowledge of the code. It is a self-perpetuating BS argument.

    Obviously, in a new construction setting, the code is everything. You can write all of the "common sense" arguments you wish in a report to a builder and all for naught. If your comments do not address the building code you have just wasted your time and your client's money.

    In a a contract for resale inspection you will still be dealing with the code even if you are not fortunate enough to be working under the Texas SOP. Think about it. You find a water heater that was just installed last year, last month, last week or yesterday to be improperly installed. On what do you base this theory? Common sense? Certainly not. You can use the manufacturer's installation instructions, but new mechanical equipment installations are required to be code-compliant. Some of the issues involved in the code are not listed in detail in the installation instructions.

    What about electrical cable installations that are wrong? How do you deem them to be so? You cannot dig into a roll of NM to find the installation instructions, right?

    Or, let us say that you find a brick veneer home, of whatever age, without weep holes (this is being hotly contested on another thread) and you report it as deficient. Upon what do you base this gem of wisdom? Ever see an Acme brick with installation instructions chiseled into it? Sure, you can fall back on BIA, ACI, or other industry standards as well, but nothing has quite the authority of the adopted model building code.

    When you get the inevitable phone call(s) from the Sparky, Wrench Slinger, or Hammer Monkey, decrying your inspection and reporting abilities by saying this or that is just not so, in which harbor do you seek refuge? The building code, if you plan to prevail in the argument. Try talking common sense to a tradesman who has been doing a certain thing wrong for 20 years and you'll be handed your hat on the way out of that conversation.

    Simply put, if you are not acutely aware of and intimately familiar with the adopted building codes in your area, you are not a competent home inspector. You are merely doing your little jig on very thin ice.

    Inspection Referral SOC

  2. #67
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    HOME INSPECTORS ARE NOT CODE INSPECTORS,


    CC: Some of us are. Suffering from authority envy? Buy a dog.



  3. #68
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Wow, some of you guys should really consider taking the blinders off, putting your egos aside and learning something here. I continue to be stunned by some of the responses to this thread.
    HI of course are not Code inspectors or enforcers. Nonetheless it is folly to think that a HI is not, to some extent at least, a Code inspection.
    Some of what we see and write during a regular HI can come under 'common sense', especially in older homes. A lot of it however should be coming from knowledge of approved construction methods, manufacturer standards and THE CODE. If you are doing a lot of NC inspections, the Code should be your friend.
    I don't usually cite Code during a regular HI because there generally is no need to. Most of the time the contractor knows what he did is BS. Once busted they will often fix it with not too much argument or the seller will give a credit. Others will however argue and then it is important to be able to cite Code to assist your client.
    As dumb as clients seem to be sometimes, especially 1st time buyers, they can often understand a reasonable explanation. Your client probably won't remember that you told them but they sure as hell will remember that you didn't.
    Some of us do more than just regular HI and that may be where some of the differences of opinion are coming from. I was in Housing Court yesterday for a client, I don't think I would get very far in serving my client using some of the rationale put forth by some on this thread.

    www.aic-chicago.com
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  4. #69
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Good morning AD & others,

    AD, if I'm reading you correct, you are saying that if something is "to code" you do not call it... even if in your opinion it is "bad" building practice. I don't necessarily agree.

    I understand that if an item is "to code" you cannot present it the same as if it were "to code," but they should still be presented. Sure, they can be argued but they are still presented.

    GFI's, FP panels, and in this case moisture being exhausted into the structure. OK, you may get an argument... bring it on.

    AD, do you think it is ok to vent into the attic? If you say no, then my next question is; do you call it?

    AD, I have read a number of your posts, and although we may not always agree, your opinion is definately one that deserves respect. Even when we don't agree, I still listen very carefully to what you have to say. I just never pictured you as someone that will let a little thing like the "law" stop you when you think something is bad.

    Last edited by Steven Turetsky; 01-13-2010 at 09:00 AM.
    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
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  5. #70
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    I understand that if an item is "to code" you cannot present it the same as if it were "to code," but they should still be presented.
    Steve,

    I am having trouble understanding that sentence. Could you explain it to me?

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  6. #71
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    AD, if I'm reading you correct, you are saying that if something is "to code" you do not call it... even if in your opinion it is "bad" building practice. I don't necessarily agree.
    ST: No, you did not read or interpret my post correctly.

    I understand that if an item is "to code" you cannot present it the same as if it were "to code," but they should still be presented. Sure, they can be argued but they are still presented.
    ST: This can be a slippery slope if not properly traversed. Unless one can solidly support a finding with industry standards, the comment becomes just so much subjective blather. So then, I am not a supporter of HIs reporting their unsupported opinions.

    AD, do you think it is ok to vent into the attic? If you say no, then my next question is; do you call it?
    ST: No and yes respectively.

    I just never pictured you as someone that will let a little thing like the "law" stop you when you think something is bad.
    ST: Good call, but I will always be able to produce at a minimum one or two written industry standards or opinions from authorities prior to committing a comment to writing. Well, usually always . . .


  7. #72
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Breedlove View Post
    Steve,

    I am having trouble understanding that sentence. Could you explain it to me?
    BB: ST may have been toking prior to writing that sentence.


  8. #73
    Lawrence Transue's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    I guess it comes down to different ways of "calling out" or "writing up" the same things.

    Here is a real life example: Recently I Inspected a home with a one year old water heater. At the end of the TPR discharge pipe are threads. Installed Last year by Joe Plumber. (not his real name)

    When Joe plumber calls and asks why this is not safe,

    I could

    A. Tell the plumber that I purchased a book for $100.00, then committed it to memory. And in the $100.00 book on page 438 section P2803.6.1 it clearly says "The discharge pipe SHALL NOT have a threaded connection at the end of the pipe. Afterward s, tell the buyer, real estate agents, and other Home Inspectors that "Boy, I sure set that plumber straight."

    Or

    B. Say Joe, you know I’ve seen people put threaded caps or ball valves on the ends of these things when they start to leak. This could create an very unsafe and life threatening situation. Why not go over there with a hacksaw and cut the end off?

    I think the second choice is the more likely to achieve the desired result. I could make a similar argument over anything I call out.

    The bottom line: Is the installation unsafe because it was not installed to code? Or Is it not installed to code because its unsafe?


  9. #74
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Lawrence Transue View Post
    I guess it comes down to different ways of "calling out" or "writing up" the same things.

    Here is a real life example: Recently I Inspected a home with a one year old water heater. At the end of the TPR discharge pipe are threads. Installed Last year by Joe Plumber. (not his real name)

    When Joe plumber calls and asks why this is not safe,

    I could

    A. Tell the plumber that I purchased a book for $100.00, then committed it to memory. And in the $100.00 book on page 438 section P2803.6.1 it clearly says "The discharge pipe SHALL NOT have a threaded connection at the end of the pipe. Afterward s, tell the buyer, real estate agents, and other Home Inspectors that "Boy, I sure set that plumber straight."

    Or

    B. Say Joe, you know I’ve seen people put threaded caps or ball valves on the ends of these things when they start to leak. This could create an very unsafe and life threatening situation. Why not go over there with a hacksaw and cut the end off?

    I think the second choice is the more likely to achieve the desired result. I could make a similar argument over anything I call out.

    The bottom line: Is the installation unsafe because it was not installed to code? Or Is it not installed to code because its unsafe?
    LT: While I appreciate your Wrench Slinger fable, the fact remains that plumbers and all other tradesmen not only can, but will argue with the theoretical concept of a stump. Common sense, contrary to your somewhat naive beliefs, is not wide-spread. Once confronted with the code citation, the argument stops - well, usually . . .


  10. #75
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    Wink Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    AD.

    I guess in the Northeast, maybe we have more intelligent tradesman. Guess that's why I don't have to club them with a book.

    Seriously, though, I am very thick skinned and have a good sense of humor but
    "somewhat naive beliefs" C'mon.

    The "Confrontational Code Citation" That stops all the arguments, is this like a ticket they get in the mail?


  11. #76
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Lawrence Transue View Post
    ...

    When Joe plumber calls and asks why this is not safe,

    I could

    A. Tell the plumber that I purchased a book for $100.00, then committed it to memory. And in the $100.00 book on page 438 section P2803.6.1 it clearly says "The discharge pipe SHALL NOT have a threaded connection at the end of the pipe. Afterward s, tell the buyer, real estate agents, and other Home Inspectors that "Boy, I sure set that plumber straight."

    Or

    B. Say Joe, you know I’ve seen people put threaded caps or ball valves on the ends of these things when they start to leak. This could create an very unsafe and life threatening situation. Why not go over there with a hacksaw and cut the end off?

    I think the second choice is the more likely to achieve the desired result. I could make a similar argument over anything I call out.
    ...
    So, to summarize your argument, there are two choices. If you mention code you must act like a jerk. If you don't mention code, you are free to act like a decent human being.

    I'd like to suggest a third alternative. You nicely explain to Joe that the reason the threaded end violates code is that Harry Homeowner has been known to cap it, thereby blowing up his house.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
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  12. #77
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    I guess in the Northeast, maybe we have more intelligent tradesman.
    LT: Give that man a cigar!

    Guess that's why I don't have to club them with a book.
    LT: It always helps though.

    but "somewhat naive beliefs" C'mon.
    LT: Nature of the beast . . .

    is this like a ticket they get in the mail?
    LT: Sort of like the ticking bomb in that package.


  13. #78
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    I'd like to suggest a third alternative. You nicely explain to Joe that the reason the threaded end violates code is that Harry Homeowner has been known to cap it, thereby blowing up his house.
    JA: It works, sometimes. Sometimes not. That is when the gloves come off . . .


  14. #79
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Breedlove View Post
    Steve,

    I am having trouble understanding that sentence. Could you explain it to me?

    Gee, it makes perfect sense to me...

    What I meant to say was; I understand that if an item is "to code" you cannot present it the same as if it was NOT "to code," but they should still be presented.

    Meaning, if somethng is done to code, but is still bad construction, it cannot be presented the same way as if it were not to code and bad construction.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
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  15. #80
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    What I meant to say was; I understand that if an item is "to code" you cannot present it the same as if it was NOT "to code," but they should still be presented.

    Meaning, if somethng is done to code, but is still bad construction, it cannot be presented the same way as if it were not to code and bad construction.

    That is a good way to put it, although a bit more complex than this way:

    A) It does not meet minimum code and is bad construction. I.e, it is 'bad bad'.
    B) It does meet minimum code and is bad construction. All I did was remove the word "not". I.e., it is 'minimum bad'.

    Or, for a code inspector ...
    C) It does meet minimum code. I.e., it is signed off as meeting code, which is not the same as saying it is 'good construction'.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    LT, Maybe when you graduate from the 'hand over the check box report at the end of the inspection' remedial class, you'll realize that in your example, it isn't an either or. You should be providing BOTH of your answers to the client.

    www.aic-chicago.com
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  17. #82
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    Thumbs down Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Markus,

    I have no idea what this even means

    "graduate from the 'hand over the check box report at the end of the inspection' remedial class"

    I have never done a check box report.

    If you are suggesting that as a home inspector you have to explain in your report why something is deficient, as well as quote the particular code reference that deals with alleged deficiency, That is the most ridiculous thing I have read in a long time.

    Spare me this B.S. I have real work to do.


  18. #83
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    Wink Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    I see a fine line here on reporting styles and common practice methods used in different areas.
    While I agree with the fact that this picture is the wrong way to do it, I also understand that it differs from common practice in many areas. I would also realize that it is better than many I see in my travels. Still the client needs to be told that it's wrong.

    I would tell my client that current standards would require these to be dedicated connections to the outside and not just near an exhaust vent opening. I would also tell them the concerns are with condensation running back down the vents and damaging the ceiling (insulate them), mold/fungus growth on sheathing if they do not exhaust properly, and being unaware when these vents decide to fall and vent elsewhere.
    I am aware of the codes that say this but will not quote it because I am not qualified to do so. Sure, I can give them chapter and verse if requested, but will not shove it into their face until they ask for it.
    Much of an inspection is common sense that we can also back up with the code if we are qualified to use it. We can still say "I don't do code inspections but here it is for you to consider".
    Many of the "realtor" friendly inspectors out there would never bring it up in the first place. That's where we differ. We don't care who we piss off in the process as long as our client is well informed to make his or her own decision to fix it or let it go. From there it matters whether they got a realtor with balls enough to ask for the fix or whether they want the quick and quiet sale.

    I respect the differing opinions on this site and pick your brains more than you realize. I use what you teach me to better educate my clients (and myself) and realize there are many different ways to say the same thing, depending on who you are talking to and the impression you want to leave.
    I can always go to my picture file to impress on them what happens when it doesn't work right. This seems to convince them faster than me telling them they need to fix it.

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  19. #84
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Gainey View Post
    While I agree with the fact that this picture is the wrong way to do it,

    That not only is done wrong, as you have said, it is also "done wrong" "using the wrong material" for the air duct.

    That white plastic stuff is not approved for any use. That is one of those things which they are allowed to make, are allowed to stock in stores, are allowed to sell, and people are allowed to buy ... and then set on their mantel and show off the modern work of art as they are not allowed to install it any where for any use.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  20. #85
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    If you are suggesting that as a home inspector you have to explain in your report why something is deficient, as well as quote the particular code reference that deals with alleged deficiency, That is the most ridiculous thing I have read in a long time.
    LT: I am aware of no requirement for inspectors to explain or support their findings. I would further advise against it, as it appears to be in your case, where the inspector neither knows how to make the explanation nor find the supporting documentation.

    Last edited by A.D. Miller; 01-17-2010 at 10:31 AM.

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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    I totally agree Jerry. Not only did they use the wrong type of vent hose, but they conveniently left a water trap before it exhausts so they an catch all the water it will generate.


  22. #87
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    Smile Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Hi All
    Just my two cents worth !!!
    That venting detail is correct as per IRC. It is to be vented TOWARDS the exterior. A soffit vent can also be used, they make a special small cap flashing for those that are not with in reach of a roof or soffit vent. As for the remark as a cheap way I've build res. & commerial on the UPPER end and this is a common practice and is not cutting any corners. The most important detail missed is does it or did it have a S-trap in the vent pipe. This practice prevents the typical or common water stain and or water dripping from the bath fan.
    Have a GREAT DAY
    Brad - Tri City Inspection Agency, LLC


  23. #88
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Brad Peterson View Post
    Hi All
    Just my two cents worth !!!
    That venting detail is correct as per IRC. It is to be vented TOWARDS the exterior. A soffit vent can also be used, they make a special small cap flashing for those that are not with in reach of a roof or soffit vent. As for the remark as a cheap way I've build res. & commerial on the UPPER end and this is a common practice and is not cutting any corners. The most important detail missed is does it or did it have a S-trap in the vent pipe. This practice prevents the typical or common water stain and or water dripping from the bath fan.
    Have a GREAT DAY
    Brad - Tri City Inspection Agency, LLC
    BP: It is not according to either the IRC or the manufacturer's installation instructions. As for common practice, well we all know what that argument amounts to, don't we?


  24. #89
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Brad Peterson View Post
    That venting detail is correct as per IRC. It is to be vented TOWARDS the exterior.
    Brad,

    Being as you are sure that is code compliant ... you must know what section it is compliant with, so, for our education ... please post the code section which makes that compliant with the code.

    Not sure what sections of what code you are looking at, but my copies of the IRC (which you referred to) do not agree with you, so I would like to compare what I have with what you have.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  25. #90
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    Default Re: Sorry, different subject - Mercedes Homes

    Jerry Peck. I have a Florida Mercedes Home, 2005, 2 story. 1st level has poured concrete walls on a slab. Baseboards are wet & stained on the entire 1st level east wall ( living room, office, & 1/2 bath ). Baseboards are wet & stained in the SW orner of the family room. Drywall just above tests dry with a probe moisture meter. Been wet at least 3 months, bank owned home. Any ideas?
    Wade Johnson


  26. #91
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    Default Re: Sorry, different subject - Mercedes Homes

    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Johnson View Post
    a Florida Mercedes Home, ...
    Is the opposite of a Mercedes car ... which is known for being well built and trouble free, well engineered.

    A Mercedes home, on the other hand ...

    First some questions:
    - Did you look at the grade outside in relation to the floor height inside?
    - What are the exterior walls covered with, stucco?
    - Any other information you have? Photos?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  27. #92
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    The walls are stucco all the way to the soffit. The grade is flat. The slab is about 1" to 4" above grade. There are white blotches coming out of the stucco in random places on all sides.


  28. #93
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Johnson View Post
    The walls are stucco all the way to the soffit. The grade is flat. The slab is about 1" to 4" above grade.
    About what I expected.

    Probably wicking moisture up from the ground into the concrete, especially if there has been much rain and the ground is wet.

    There are white blotches coming out of the stucco in random places on all sides.
    Efflorescence indicating there is moisture in the wall behind the stucco.

    Could be from leaks above if they are high enough, but could also be from moisture wicking up from the ground if they are near the bottom.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  29. #94
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    Smile Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Thank you much. Thats what I think as well.


  30. #95
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Inspectors don't even look in the attics in my area. Or crawlspaces. Be careful.


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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Lawrence Transue View Post
    If you are suggesting that as a home inspector you have to explain in your report why something is deficient, as well as quote the particular code reference that deals with alleged deficiency, That is the most ridiculous thing I have read in a long time.
    Lawrence,

    I see you conduct inspections in NJ.

    The NJ SOP states- Prepare a home inspection report which shall:

    v.State the significance of findings where any material defects in the systems and components of (c)1 above were found; and

    vi. provide recommendations where material defects were found to repairs, replace or monitor a system or component or to obtain examination and analysis by a qualified professional, tradesman, or service technician without determining methods, materials or costs of corrections.

    __________________________________________________ _______________

    Now, let's look at some books on home inspections:

    'The Complete Book of Home Inspections' (Norman Becker)
    "Sometimes the exhaust fan from a bathroom discharges its moisture-laden air into the attic. This is undesirable because the moisture can cause condensation problems."

    'Inspecting a House' (Rex Cauldwell)
    "If possible, try to locate where the fan exhaust discharges from the house- it should discharge through ductwork to the exterior."

    'The Home Reference Book' (Carson-Dunlap)
    "The fan should discharge directly to the exterior."

    'International Residential Code- New Jersey Edition' (ICC)
    "Ventilation air from the space (bathroom) shall be exhausted directly to the outside."

    I have shown you 4 difference references on it being wrong. The NJ SOP now requires you to tell you client it's wrong, what problems it will cause and how (or who) to fix it.

    Now if anyone doesn't agree with the above comment, then show me where it is documented that you can vent an exhaust fan to the attic.

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

  32. #97
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    This should not even be an issue. I am posting 2 of the dozens of photos that I have that clearly show the problem with this type of installation.

    M1501.1 Outdoor discharge. The air removed by every
    mechanical exhaust system shall be discharged to the outdoors.
    Air shall not be exhausted into an attic, soffit, ridge vent or
    crawl space.







  33. #98
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    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    In essence, reading through this thread it appears as though every single person agrees that the installation in the OP's photo is wrong.

    Wrong from a code standpoint and wrong from a common sense/installation standard and wrong from the manufacturer's installation standard.

    How we choose to write up our report or describe a defect is our business, as long as it meets the SOP that we are bound to.

    There are several methods:

    1) The factual method with a reference to a code for clarity legitimacy.
    2) The opinion method with an explanation.
    3) The combination method in which gives the opinion and states it is a defect and also state that the defect would be a code violation under today's standards.
    4) The realtor friendly mention of a potential problem by masking the installation under the "see it frequently", "common practice" veil.

    We have all had phone calls from builders, remodelers and tradesmen who have questioned our report when it made them look bad.

    They have their own responses:

    1) "That will never cause a problem".
    2) "That is your opinion, I am the expert".
    3) "I have been doing it like that for 20 years"
    4) "You tell me how that is wrong!"
    5) "The code official approved it"

    Why bother beating up the subjective opinion argument? Simply state it violates a code which is a MINIMUM standard and move one. You get less arguments with that.

    I don't reference code sections in home inspection reports unless I am doing a new construction or the code applied when the house was built or remodeled. When I do, I always make a statement letting them know that I am not the AHJ (unless I am) and specific references to codes are for clarification purposes.

    In other words, it is easier to defend a code than an opinion.

    My mind is going faster than my typing so I will stop now.


  34. #99
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,252

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Remas View Post
    In essence, reading through this thread it appears as though every single person agrees that the installation in the OP's photo is wrong.

    Wrong from a code standpoint and wrong from a common sense/installation standard and wrong from the manufacturer's installation standard.
    Not quite ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Brad Peterson View Post
    Hi All
    Just my two cents worth !!!
    That venting detail is correct as per IRC. It is to be vented TOWARDS the exterior. A soffit vent can also be used, they make a special small cap flashing for those that are not with in reach of a roof or soffit vent. As for the remark as a cheap way I've build res. & commerial on the UPPER end and this is a common practice and is not cutting any corners. The most important detail missed is does it or did it have a S-trap in the vent pipe. This practice prevents the typical or common water stain and or water dripping from the bath fan.
    Have a GREAT DAY
    Brad - Tri City Inspection Agency, LLC
    Brad thinks it is okay, and admits to doing it that way, even on upper end construction.

    Hopefully ... by now ... hopefully Brad no longer thinks that way ... hopefully.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  35. #100
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Read thru this thread again, I for one, may or may not call this a material defect.

    This site gets hung up on codes their interptation, modifidations and enforcement, and how that relates to he HI and how the SOP affects the HI report

    There is a large amout of varaiance as to what is in a HI report and what must be in a HI report per SOPs

    Due to this most on the post on this thread (as well as many others) are opinions, nothing more, reguardless of some clams ("wrong is wrong"?)


    Many SOP use: ‘‘Material defect’’ means any condition that significantly affects the value, habitability or safety of the dwelling.

    This allows for a opinion from the inspector on some system and components. For example a 14ga on a 20 amp breaker, wrong is wrong.

    Now to the grey area of the current thread, untill recently the irc required bath exhaust to vent to outside air (currently it is required to be vented directly to the outside)

    Many AHJ's considered a well ventlated attic to be outside air. There are homes that have had 40+ years of performemce with a fan vented of the attic.

    I see no material defect.

    There are homes (as some posted photos show) were the moisistue has caused problems in less than 1 year.

    This is a material defect.

    Do we use historical performence and the presceptive code in place at the time the home was built, to determine if a material defect exist, or do we use the current codes prescreption. disreguarding the historical performance, of a older home using this as a threshold for defination of material defect.

    I offer cliets the following information of what to expect from MY HI

    The generalist (General Home Inspection) type of inspection is different from a specialist's inspection, which can be costly, may take much longer (even days to complete), involve the use of specialized instruments, the dismantling of equipment, video-scanning, destructive testing, and laboratory analysis. .
    We evaluate systems/components and report on their general overall condition. A comment of "INSPECTED" does not mean that the item is perfect, but only that it is either functional or met a reasonable standard of operation on the day of the inspection. We try and take into consideration when a structure was built and allow for the predictable deterioration that would occur through time, such as the cracks that appear in concrete or in drywall surfaces around windows and doors, scuffed walls or woodwork, worn or moderately damaged floors, stiff or stuck windows, and cabinetry that does not function as well as it did when it was new. Therefore, we will often ignore insignificant and predictable defects and don't often note these, particularly those apparent to a casual observer or the average person without any construction experience.

    Building Codes change every 3 to 5 years. Any building more than 5 years old will have areas that do not conform to all current code requirements. You should not expect a pre-existing structure or its components to meet current code standards. We will make an effort to point out significant safety issues, but we are not the city or county code inspectors and our examination is not a code inspection.  It is common that structures of any age, may have had repairs, additions, or renovations done that don't "conform to current code" or may appear amateurish. Our report is not a grade card of the repair. It is common to see old plumbing or mixed plumbing materials. Sometimes moisture stains or water leak signs could be years old from a problem that no longer exists. Or, they may still need further attention and repair. Determining this is not usually possible in just one trip to the property. Issues like this may need to be monitored over a period of time


    This is how I think most good inspectors report and what we teach in our HI school

    We add disclaimers becuase of law suits. Mine, for older homes without problems, for bath fans venting to the attic, is this


    Bathroom exhaust vent(s) terminate in the attic. Although this is commonly seen and is often done this way, building standards currently recommend extending these to the exterior for reasons such as: helping to lower humidity levels in the building; move condensation outside; reduce the likelihood of mold; etc.

    This topic should not be as hard or complex as this thread is making it



  36. #101
    Jeff Remas's Avatar
    Jeff Remas Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Wow, somehow missed that post.

    Brad, did you ever read the IRC or did someone tell you that?


  37. #102
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,549

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Stacey Van Houtan View Post
    Read thru this thread again, I for one, may or may not call this a material defect.
    We add disclaimers becuase of law suits. Mine, for older homes without problems, for bath fans venting to the attic, is this
    Bathroom exhaust vent(s) terminate in the attic. Although this is commonly seen and is often done this way, building standards currently recommend extending these to the exterior for reasons such as: helping to lower humidity levels in the building; move condensation outside; reduce the likelihood of mold; etc.

    This topic should not be as hard or complex as this thread is making it
    This 60 year old attic had a recent upgrade. They added a bath fan and a chunk of hose. Maybe it comes down to how much the fan gets used for how many showers. We can't predict how much moisture there will be.

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  38. #103

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Hi John,

    Did you attribute the cause of that mold growth to the bath exhaust fan venting into the attic, or was it a combination of problems? I would be shocked if that attic were adequately ventilated. Isn't that mold a sign of a grow operation Man, I hope you caught that.


  39. #104
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Succasunna NJ
    Posts
    574

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Stacey Van Houtan View Post
    R


    Bathroom exhaust vent(s) terminate in the attic. Although this is commonly seen and is often done this way, building standards currently recommend extending these to the exterior for reasons such as: helping to lower humidity levels in the building; move condensation outside; reduce the likelihood of mold; etc.
    Stacey,

    You have no idea who is going to occupy the house you are inspecting. There may be 5 teenagers who take 30 minute showers.

    If I purchased the house you inspected and found a problem a year later, I'm going after you. You may have written what you believe to be correct, but you didn't address the issue. Did you tell your client it's OK the way it's installed or did you tell your client to extend the vent to the exterior?

    If you mean to tell your client to extend the vent, just say at the end of the above paragraph, 'I recommend you have the vent extended to the exterior'.

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

  40. #105
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    3 ducts into one vent that is clearly designed by the manufacturer to exhaust 1 duct...hmmm


  41. #106
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Come after me on this one, Take a home inspectiion as a whole, some items are easy oversized breaker, this is wrong, has always been, I recommened repair by a contractor,

    Other Items EIFS- Further evaluation needed

    Up- grades - Some up grades fall into Good, Better, Best For a simple example: 100 year old house with fusebox- good= new box better= new box with all new branch wires- best =new box, branch wires and fixtures

    Other up-grades fall into this One is Bath exhaust,
    I consider my job is to educate the client on this type of issues, Some is done verbaly at the inspection. Then they can make there own decesion and risk anaylsis,

    And if you have had experience building in more than one climate, you can also understand that this exhaust issue depends on location of the home to some degree. Size of attic, age of house, etc. If i am inspecting a brand new house in on the gulf coast, on the shore. Yes this is a wrong

    A 50 year house in KC with a 12-12 pitch well vented attic, 1-1/2 bath the vents tied to the rafters near soffit vents, no stains, no mold,
    this is a Good - Better -Best

    Add that, this may be a newly diviorced single guy, YOU dont know where this client is currently living or any History about his situtaion dont make decesion for him.

    I use a summary page to put the house in perspective.

    The new house on the coast= summary page item listed a suggested repair
    50 year house in KC = stays in the body of the report and listed as suggested upgrade.



    I don't leave things out.

    I do try to put things in persepective.

    In my opinion resposible report writing is doing as I described above.

    FYI- Over 15 yrs inspecting. I never have been sued successfly,
    I have acted as a expert witness for several engineers, and other home inspectors defending THEM in several law suits. One I won on a summary judgement (if you know anything about lawsuits you will know this is almost unheard of)

    I teach report writing at PITI home inspection school in KC (by the way our first class since the Kansas HI law went into effect is comming up), I have thought about reporting many issues. On another thread I have gleaned some very good info on ventless heaters, from this site and am changing my report.

    i hope this helps explain, my persepctive on what i consider a serious problem in our industry, poor report writing


  42. #107
    A.D. Miller's Avatar
    A.D. Miller Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    You should call it out.
    JP: If he is inspecting to IRC standards, he SHALL call it out.


  43. #108
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    IRC 50 yrs ago?


  44. #109
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Mr. Houtan,
    Below I have made necessary changes to your post in light of how detrimental you hold proper report writing:

    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']Come after me on this one[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']:[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] Take a home [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']inspection[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] as a whole, some items are easy, [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']such as an[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] oversized breaker. [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']T[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']his is wrong, has always been, I [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']recommend[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] repair by a contractor.

    Other Items [/FONT]
    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']such as[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] EIFS- Further evaluation needed

    Up-grades[/FONT]
    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']:[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] Some [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']up-grades[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] fall into Good, Better, Best[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'].[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] For a simple example[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'];[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']A [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']100 year old house with fusebox- good= new box better= new box with all new branch wires- best =new box, branch wires and fixtures

    Other up-grades fall into this [/FONT]
    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']scenario[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] is Bath[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']room[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] exhaust,
    I consider my job is to educate the client on this type of issues[/FONT]
    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'].[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] Some is done [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']verbally[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] at the inspection. Then they can make [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']their[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] own [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']decision [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']and risk [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']analysis[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'],

    [/FONT]
    [FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']Now,[/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif'] if you have had experience building in more than one climate, you can also understand that this exhaust issue depends on location of the home to some [/FONT][FONT='Verdana','sans-serif']degree, size of attic, age of house, etc. If i am inspecting a brand new house on the gulf coast shore, thenyes this is wrong.

    A 50 year
    old house in KC with a 12-12 pitch, well vented attic, 1-1/2 bath,vents tied to the rafters near soffit vents, no stains, no mold,
    this is a Good - Better –Best
    scenario.

    Also add that this may be a newly divorced single guy, you dont know where this client is currently living or any History about his situation,don't make decision for him.

    I use a summary page to put the house in perspective.

    The new house on the coast= summary page item listed a suggested repair
    50 year house in KC = stays in the body of the report and listed as suggested upgrade.



    I don't leave things out.

    I do try to put things in
    perspective.

    In my opinion
    responsible report writing is doing as I described above.

    FYI- Over 15 yrs inspecting. I never have been sued
    successfuly,
    I have acted as a expert witness for several engineers, and other home inspectors
    , defending them in several law suits. One (?) I won on a summary judgement (if you know anything about lawsuits you will know this is almost unheard of)

    I teach report writing at PITI home inspection school in KC (by the way our first class since the Kansas HI law went into effect is
    coming up), I have thought about reporting many issues. On another thread, I have gleaned some very good info on ventless heaters, from this site and am changing my report.

    I hope this helps explain, my perspective on what I consider a serious problem in our industry; poor report writing.[/FONT]


  45. #110
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Is there a english fourm some where you can try sarge.

    As my kids say Whatever


  46. #111
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Now, I "shall" address your comment on the "IRC 50 years ago".

    The IRC was developed in 1994, not 1960 as you imply.

    "The International Code Council (ICC) was established in 1994 as a non-profit organization dedicated to developing a single set of comprehensive and coordinated national model construction codes. The founders of the ICC are Building Officials and Code Administrators International, Inc. (BOCA), International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO), and Southern Building Code Congress International, Inc. (SBCCI). Since the early part of the last century, these non-profit organizations developed three separate sets of model codes used throughout the United States. Although regional code development has been effective and responsive to our country’s needs, the time came for a single set of codes. The nation’s three model code groups responded by creating the International Code Council and by developing codes without regional limitations; the International Codes".
    ICC.safe.com (Home-History).

    The need for ICC was great due mostly in part to the call for a an unbiased development of building codes that would not be influenced by special interest groups.

    Also, the ICC has a code book on Existing Buildings that may be of interest to you.


  47. #112
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Stacey Van Houtan View Post
    Is there an english fourm some where you can try sarge.

    As my kids say Whatever
    I don't mean to be so anal, it's just that us lowly ICC inspectors are held at a higher level. That is not to mention that I was a teacher myself and I do understand how that once you label yourself as such, you are looked up to, as you well know in Kansas City.


  48. #113
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Now I will address your comment

    I know that, I rember when it was going to be 2000 and the IRC would consoladate HA HA

    I put that out there to be Facetious -adjective 1. not meant to be taken seriously or literally: a facetious remark. 2. amusing; humorous. this is as i take your correction post.

    If you did not understand the post explaing my report writing logic, then that is one thing, if you disagree another, I would continue this converstation if it was a to englighten You or if information is presented that would enlighten me


  49. #114
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    OK, I get it now. I apologise for stealing your thunder.
    This has been amusing and quite entertaining.

    On the books I am quite anal.
    In the field I am every contractors dream.
    In the office I am but a shadow delved deep into Plan Reviews.


  50. #115
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Richard would you teach Mr. Miller some of your wisdom.


  51. #116
    Stacey Van Houtan's Avatar
    Stacey Van Houtan Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Richard would you teach Mr. Miller some of your wisdom.


  52. #117
    Richard M. Pinkerton's Avatar
    Richard M. Pinkerton Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Stacey Van Houtan View Post
    Richard would you teach Mr. Miller some of your wisdom.
    The only thing I'm going to teach Mr. Miller, is the effects of gravity through a 1" I.D. opening. lol


  53. #118
    Terry Neyedli's Avatar
    Terry Neyedli Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Leung View Post
    In Vancouver, it is the standard practice to wrap the metal ducts with insulation material to prevent condensation water drip down to the ceiling fan in winter time.
    Daniel:
    Also look for the famous "Red Green" duct tape.
    Great for the first 6 months but.......
    It is best to use the metal tape as it last for 5 years or so.

    Terry Neyedli CHI
    www.alphahomeinspections.ca


  54. #119
    Michael Greenwalt's Avatar
    Michael Greenwalt Guest

    Default Re: BATH EXHAUST FAN TO ATTIC

    So there I was, standing at the toilet and suddenly it began to rain inside my toilet room. This rain was coming through the vent fan and onto my head. Previously I had seen water on the floor and we,,,being the stupid humans we are,,,thought that the cats were playing in the toilets while we were gone.

    This was not a a little amount of water here, passing through the electrical components of the fan and light fixture but a fairly heavy stream for a brief period.

    I have since fixed this problem and my bathroom vent exhaust (home built in 2004 in KANSAS) now route DIRECTLY to the exterior as they should. I was procrastinating the fix I knew should happen until I started to see some water damage in the attic space, I was wrong.

    So, when you think you know it all, you get another one of life's simple lessons; you don't.

    Do I write up the need to repair this problem in homes,,,you betcha. I have no desire to pay for repairs that could have been alleviated by simply reporting it to the client and letting THEM make the decision.

    Last edited by Michael Greenwalt; 02-04-2010 at 07:26 PM. Reason: stupidity

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