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  1. #1
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Dyer View Post
    They were cut off twice and are still too short?

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    They looked at two of them in the store and, not seeing any difference between the two, they bought the cheaper one ... then they go home and realized the difference between the two was in the height of the ceiling each was designed for.

    OOPS!

    What to do ... drive all the way back to the store or just install the one you already have ... I think we are looking at their answer to that question ...

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

  4. #4

    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    That's the problem. The floor was installed too low!

    PROFESSIONAL CONSULTING AND INSPECTION COMPANY INCLUDING FORENSIC INVESTIGATIONS

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Even when it is closed and up at the ceiling it still isn't right ...

    ... not with just that thin wood cover.

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

  6. #6

    Wink Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    A small household step ladder should do the trick

    Jeff Zehnder - Home Inspector, Raleigh, NC
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Zehnder View Post
    A small household step ladder should do the trick
    Don't trust any portion of a ladder like that.
    That ladder is intended to lock in place and transfer a good bit of the load to the ground, which obviously it cannot.
    I set my own ladder along side and use the opening but not the stair in situations like this.
    That stair this is an inspector killer!
    After winding up sprawled across the hood of a nearby car using the homeowners ladder, I am particularly suspicious of other peoples equipment!

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  8. #8
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    Mar 2007
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    Knoxville, TN
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    I agree with Jim. I never use a pull down ladder that is not properly installed. I just place my ladder along side the opening.


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Zehnder View Post
    A small household step ladder should do the trick
    One which is tall enough to allow getting up to the open ... after that pull-down stair is removed, right?

    There is no way that stair should remain in place, it needs to be replaced with a proper length stair or be removed in its entirety.

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

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    Lansdale, PA
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    876

    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    I have seen this where the owner built a small wood "landing" that could be placed on the floor.


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Massacusetts
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    149

    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    You just need to empty those two milk creates (you know the two that you keep that junk in your truck) and stick them under the ladder

    I agree with Jerry , it is not safe and your going into a confined space (I assume only one way in) - not worth it, List it as access pull down stair way (location ) improper installation , access to dangerous to inspect at the time of inspection - you not making thousands of dollars on this - it is not worth it , tell your client you will be more than happy to inspect the area once the stairway is removed or replaced with a correct unit for an additional fee to cover additional travel time.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Dwight Doane View Post
    You just need to empty those two milk creates (you know the two that you keep that junk in your truck) and stick them under the ladder

    I agree with Jerry , it is not safe and your going into a confined space (I assume only one way in) - not worth it, List it as access pull down stair way (location ) improper installation , access to dangerous to inspect at the time of inspection - you not making thousands of dollars on this - it is not worth it , tell your client you will be more than happy to inspect the area once the stairway is removed or replaced with a correct unit for an additional fee to cover additional travel time.
    I'm not saying don't inspect the attic but don't use their ladder/ Use your own along side the broken one. It is usually pretty easy to lay on top of or at a right angle to the opening.

    And yes if I can't figure a way to SAFELY access ANYTHING then I don't.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    Arizona
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    84

    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    I'm sure this has been discussed before in another thread, but what are your thoughts on breaching the firewall design with this ladder installation?

    Aside from that topic, does anyone know of repairs that can me made to this design that can restore the firewall without removing the ladder?


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stichter View Post
    I'm sure this has been discussed before in another thread, but what are your thoughts on breaching the firewall design with this ladder installation?

    Aside from that topic, does anyone know of repairs that can me made to this design that can restore the firewall without removing the ladder?
    I recommend building an insulated drywall box in the attic with a tight insulated lid. A counter-weight can help to raise the lid with less strain on the crappy ladder. I wouldn't own one of those myself.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  15. #15
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    Mar 2011
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    Greene Va
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Ladder is unsafe; leg is too short, feet should be in substantial contact with the floor; recommend contact manufacturer for further information.

    Do not assumed that the garage ceiling is the required separation; it is also allowed to have the wall above the garage to be separated from the residence with inch gypsum applied on both sides.

    A home inspector should possess one's own ladder and could inspect to verify this separation.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stichter View Post
    I'm sure this has been discussed before in another thread, but what are your thoughts on breaching the firewall design with this ladder installation?

    Aside from that topic, does anyone know of repairs that can me made to this design that can restore the firewall without removing the ladder?
    First, let's address terminology (it matters in many cases, not as much in other cases, but should be consistent anyway): the garage ceiling is not a firewall, not anything even close to it, it is merely a "separation", as in 'the garage is separated from the house and its attic by 1/2 inch gypsum minimum'. It may seem like a minor point, but when your report gets to a contractor and they see "firewall", especially when used when referring to a ceiling, but even when referring to the separation wall, the contractor may very well presume that one does not understand what they are referring to.

    With that said - yes, there are ways to correct it - such as John provided:

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    I recommend building an insulated drywall box in the attic with a tight insulated lid.
    And, in rare cases (extremely rare from my experience, but 'allowed' by the code, is to find a wall extending up and a garage ceiling) another option is sort of what Francis described:

    Quote Originally Posted by Francis Vineyard View Post
    Do not assumed that the garage ceiling is the required separation; it is also allowed to have the wall above the garage to be separated from the residence with inch gypsum applied on both sides.
    The 1/2 inch gypsum is not required on both sides of the wall of the house extending up to the underside of the roof sheathing, the gypsum board is only required on the garage side of that wall.

    Typically, when you do find that the wall continues up to the underside of the roof sheathing you will also find that the garage does not have a ceiling (a garage is not required to have a ceiling), that wall serves the same 'separation' purpose. If you find the wall extending up and a ceiling, my guess would be that the wall was there first, then someone added the ceiling later for cosmetic appearances as both are not required, but a garage ceiling makes the garage more inviting for use as a place to park your cars (helps reduce the dust and dirt from falling from above).

    Other rules apply if the space above the garage is living space - 1/2 inch gypsum is no longer allowed for the separation to what is above, 5/8 inch Type X (actually, Type C for ceilings) is required for that separation, and 1/2 inch gypsum is required to protect all walls, columns, and supporting structures which support that living space above.

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

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Jerry with all due respect you may be technically correct in how one may interpret the code.

    It states 1/2 inch gypsum or equivalent shall be applied to the interior side of the exterior walls within the area that the garage is less than 3 ft. from the dwelling (or residence if you will) located on the same lot. Hence my statement gypsum on both sides.

    For other than habitable space is not above the residence attic shall be separated from the garage with 1/2 gypsum on the garage side. This would also apply for a wall above the garage storage area. Is this what you are referring too?

    Thanks for your consideration.

    Have a nice weekend.

    Last edited by Francis Vineyard; 10-23-2015 at 11:33 AM.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Francis Vineyard View Post
    It states 1/2 inch gypsum or equivalent shall be applied to the interior side of the exterior walls within the area that the garage is less than 3 ft. from the dwelling (or residence if you will) located on the same lot. Hence my statement gypsum on both sides.
    Actually, that's not what the IRC says:
    - R302.6 Dwelling/garage fire separation. - - The garage shall be separated as required by Table R302.6. Openings in garage walls shall comply with Section R302.5. This provision does not apply to garage walls that are perpendicular to the adjacent dwelling unit wall.
    (duplicating a table is not easy here, so I placed the right hand column ("Material") under the left hand column ("Separation") and offset the material to the right on "- " space)
    (underlining is mine)
    - TABLE R302.6 DWELLING/GARAGE SEPARATION
    - - SEPARATION/
    - - - MATERIAL
    - - From the residence and attics/
    - - - Not less than 1/2-inch gypsum board or equivalent applied to the garage side
    - - From all habitable rooms above the garage/
    - - - Not less than 5/8-inch Type X gypsum board or equivalent
    - - Structure(s) supporting floor/ceiling assemblies used for separation required by this section/
    - - - Not less than 1/2-inch gypsum board or equivalent
    - - Garages located less than 3 feet from a dwelling unit on the same lot/
    - - - Not less than 1/2-inch gypsum board or equivalent applied to the interior side of exterior walls that are within this area

    For other than habitable space is not above the residence attic shall be separated from the garage with 1/2 gypsum on the garage side.
    The code does not refer to "other than habitable space", the code refers to "From the residence and attics" ... which is all inclusive ... and says "applied to the garage side" (not both sides).

    The code addresses habitable space "above" the garage differently "From all habitable rooms above the garage".

    The code next addresses the supporting structure for that "habitable rooms above the garage".

    Lastly, the code addresses detached garages which are less than 3 feet from the residence and addresses them in the same way it addresses attached garages "applied to the interior side of exterior walls" (not both sides, and not the walls which are perpendicular to the residence).

    Hope that helps clear up the way you are interpreting the code - the above is the correct way.

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

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Jerry,

    Thanks for the clarification;



    - - - Updated - - -


  20. #20
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    They looked at two of them in the store and, not seeing any difference between the two, they bought the cheaper one ... then they go home and realized the difference between the two was in the height of the ceiling each was designed for.

    OOPS!

    What to do ... drive all the way back to the store or just install the one you already have ... I think we are looking at their answer to that question ...
    Ha ha ha ha. The typical consumer.

    Robert Young's Montreal Home Inspection Services Inc.
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  21. #21
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    I agree with Mark who replied to this. Suggest a platform be built for the ladder that's to short to rest on. As far as the firewall issue: Recommend upgrading to meet current firewall standards. Unless it's a brand new home, which it's obviously not.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I agree with Mark who replied to this. Suggest a platform be built for the ladder that's to short to rest on. As far as the firewall issue: Recommend upgrading to meet current firewall standards. Unless it's a brand new home, which it's obviously not.


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Any thoughts on this attic access??

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Stolba View Post
    I agree with Mark who replied to this. Suggest a platform be built for the ladder that's to short to rest on. As far as the firewall issue: Recommend upgrading to meet current firewall standards. Unless it's a brand new home, which it's obviously not.
    That would be recommending a liability hazard be constructed to take the place of replacing the pulldown stair with a properly designed unit.

    Additionally, taking care of the ceiling separation issue (not a firewall issue) would be solved at the same time.

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

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