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Thread: Painted Attic

  1. #1
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    Default Painted Attic

    Hey there lads,
    Was in a house attic which is painted lime green. Everthing, rafters joists, sheathing. The fiberglass batts appear to have been removed to accomplish this, then a 2-3 mill plastic draped over the joists and insulation re-inserted.
    First thing comes to mind is post fire painting.
    Never seen an attic like this. Odd thing is too, this is a steep pitched cedar roof on slats that are over top of OSB.
    Any offers gents?
    Rick

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    If the paper facing of the batts is exposed, or only covered with plastic, that's a no-no. Can't speak to the possibility of a previous fire.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Suspect previous fire............

    Jerry McCarthy
    Building Code/ Construction Consultant

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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Hey John,
    Ya thanks, the insulation is paperless, however the plastic is pretty loosely draped over the joists.
    No signs of fire in the structure...did lots of probing, but I'm wondering whether it is an aluminum impregnated paint used for improving thermal value.
    Anyone seen that stuff before?
    Like most of us, just bugs my backside when I can't explain something.

    Thanks
    Rick


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Hey Jerry
    Yep, that was the first thought of course. Did some digging but found nothing throughout the house to indicate that. Realtors disclosure came up empty as well.
    Rick


  6. #6
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Had a young kid set up the attic of the house with plastic over all the rafters, joist and then had racks with pot plants, heat lights. the house was in ecsrow. when i came out of the attic and informed the buyers and sellers of the pot plants the owner had no idea what was up there.

    the buyers back out of the deal as he was a school teacher and did not want anything to do with house or the pot plants.

    Kids.

    Best

    Ron


  7. #7
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Hi Ron
    Thanks,
    This is a definite possibility, though the space is pretty confined and I dug around quite a bit looking for damage.
    Should have occurred to me actually, but so small an attic and so big a house, that I overlooked it.
    No wonder the three bathroom vents empty into this space.
    Police don't even bother with grow ops around here unless they're large.
    I've inspected numerous past grow operation houses, but they've been elaborate sizable set-ups.

    Where I am situated is the pot growing capital of North Amerca....you know, BC Bud.
    Thanks for that

    Rick


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Souter View Post
    Was in a house attic which is painted lime green. Everthing, rafters joists, sheathing.
    Sprayed wood treatment. such as borates with that blue-green dye?

    Odd thing is too, this is a steep pitched cedar roof on slats that are over top of OSB.
    That's one of the approved methods of installation for cedar shakes and shingles.

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

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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Jerry,
    Thanks for that.
    Been in many cedar roofed attics....thats a first for me, though this is likely the steepest.
    So your speculation is that the paint is a wood treatment?...for?
    R


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Souter View Post
    So your speculation is that the paint is a wood treatment?...for?
    Don't know. Possibly to resist high moisture levels expected to be in the attic?

    Have a photo?

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

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Hey there
    back again briefly
    Got photos, having trouble posting them.
    I'm not doing something right and I've never posted a photo before.
    ?????


  12. #12
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    HAD THIS INSPECTION TWO DAYS AGO---FIRE IN BASEMENT--WHOLE HOUSE WAS GUTTED AND REPLACED--ATTIC AND CRAWL SPACE PAINTED-SUGGEST CALLING LOCAL FIRE DEPARTMENT AND ASK ABOUT ADDRESS AND FIRES REPORTED--ALSO CALL CITY AND SEE IF ANY PERMITS WERE PULLED IN THE LAST YEARS--TO FIX ANYTHING--SORRY ABOUT THE CAPITOL LETTERS GOT STARTED AND COULDN'T STOP

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  13. #13
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Thanks Charlie and for the pics.

    Ya, I'll call FD in the morning to see.

    What I'm looking at in this attic is thick, quite limey green paint, and no evidence anywhere else in the structure of fire.

    Ta Ta for tonight.
    Rick


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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Thought I'd present this image of what I've been talking about.
    Rick

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  15. #15

    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I wonder if there was a moisture mold problem in the attic. That would explain the removal and replacement of insulation. And they could have painted the attic with a special paint to encapsulate any mold. I have not seen the paint myself but Home Depot sells it ask them what color it is.

    Steve Reilly


  16. #16

    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I have nothing to add about the lime green paint, but hey.. where did the other half of the ridge board run off to?


  17. #17
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Brandon,
    Guess the builder thought that all he'd need was the same dimension lumber.


    Steve
    Yes, I'm leaning towards the attic horticulturist theory, or the Aluminum impregnated paint theory. Whadaya think guys.....paper, rock, scissors?


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    What color is that lighter color in the photo? Silver or white? The end of that rafter (where half of the ridge board fell out) looks to be the lighter color also.

    As soon as you said "thick paint" I knew it was none of the reasons I thought of, but it did bring up another "thick paint" (white, though, not green) condition I've seen before - supposedly some type of treatment for "mold" ... it was sprayed on *THICK* ... and on everything, including the NM cables, PVC drains, CPVC supply piping - and there are a lot of non-compatibility issues with those items and things they come in contact with, much less are "thickly coated" with.

    I'm thinking less and less 'fire' or even 'grow house' (there is no reason to paint everything green for a grow house, that's just a waste of money), and thinking ...

    I have no friggin' idea.

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

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Ya Jerry, thanks....
    It's a head banger for me. When I originally thought fire, I did quite a bit of scraping here and there, but its difficult to tell much even by scraping....not like the paint will peel off so you can get a good look.

    As you commented, that is a lighter colored patch up there as well...almost whitish, but it was over top of the green. Another piece of sheathing (no Photo) showed a purplish color.

    Mold could have been a factor because as I said earlier, the three bathroom vents empty into this space. The ventilation is very good with gable and roof vents, but I also know moisture will do its thing if it can.

    Getting a scab on this old head from scratching!

    Think I'll have to let this one go....so I can sleep

    Thanks for everyones input, I appreciate the help!
    Rick


  20. #20
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Encapsulation.

    I believe it to be a type of encapsulation or preventative measure of possible;
    • Smoke damage
    • Mold issues
    • Lead based paint
    • Moisture build-up preventative measure
    This wasn't done for fun or a hobby. Something was there that needed encapsulating-- I'd recommend that the buyer request disclosure why the need was present and who recommended the preventative measure.

    Rich


  21. #21
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Richard,
    Thanks, yes, I made it clear to the client (he saw the attic too) in the report that it was painted for unknown reasons. Some of the possibilities were also put forward. FD hasn't responded yet (weekend) and the realtors property disclosure says nothing about events or conditions previous. Of course not!
    Rick


  22. #22
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Could be the grow house issue. The paint may be an effort to foil thermal imaging equipment that the PD might use. I've heard all kinds of things that these guys will try to keep their operation clandestine. In my other job with the Fire Dept. I have seen a couple of attics that were very nearly completely lined with aluminum foil. Growing operations tend to produce lots of heat and subsequently fires often follow.
    Alton Darty


  23. #23
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Hey Alton
    Thanks, guess were brothers then. I used to do the other thing too, retired a couple years back.
    Ya, I'm thinking the grow thing as well. I've inspected a few previous grow ops where remedial stuff has been done so you wouldn't know. This attic......hard to get rid of that paint.

    Rick


  24. #24
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Souter View Post
    Thought I'd present this image of what I've been talking about.
    Rick
    hmmm...I was going to say borate treatment like Jerry. But that looks like plain ol' "I'm trying to hide something" green paint.


    Bruce

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

  25. #25
    Aric Outlaw's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I dunno about this grow house theory guys. Growers want to increase light to their plants and painting the wood green wouldn't increase the proper "spectrum" to the plants. All the grow rooms I've seen used a reflective mylar film or white coverings. If indeed this was a grow room you would probably find a hole for the venting equipment to take the hot air from the grow lights somewhere other than the grow space especially if it's a small space. Was the attic wired for electrical? Exhaust fans? Fiters? Water access? The grow room just doesn't add up.


  26. #26
    PETER W BENNETT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Souter View Post
    Hey there lads,
    Was in a house attic which is painted lime green. Everthing, rafters joists, sheathing. The fiberglass batts appear to have been removed to accomplish this, then a 2-3 mill plastic draped over the joists and insulation re-inserted.
    First thing comes to mind is post fire painting.
    Never seen an attic like this. Odd thing is too, this is a steep pitched cedar roof on slats that are over top of OSB.
    Any offers gents?
    Rick
    Mold and/or soot remediation


  27. #27
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Aric Outlaw View Post
    I dunno about this grow house theory guys. Growers want to increase light to their plants and painting the wood green wouldn't increase the proper "spectrum" to the plants. All the grow rooms I've seen used a reflective mylar film or white coverings. If indeed this was a grow room you would probably find a hole for the venting equipment to take the hot air from the grow lights somewhere other than the grow space especially if it's a small space. Was the attic wired for electrical? Exhaust fans? Fiters? Water access? The grow room just doesn't add up.
    I can understand your thinking about a grow room theory. but!!! Please keep in mind the wack jobs that live in attics or at lest grow stuff in attics. some kind of a mental defective thing going on. Not the norm.

    I just happen to find a grow room set up in an attic of a house. Its was covered with black plastic. no vents. no water used a bucket system and had an extenion cord from a bedroom. No paint but hey he had plants to grow. No to for painting.

    Best

    Ron


  28. #28
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    For those still wondering.....
    Got the lowdown from the original owner of the green attic.
    They CLAIMED to have painted the attic in order to use it as a finished room.
    Hmmmm.... whats that lump in my cheek?.......why my tongue of course!
    Rick S


  29. #29
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I did a home two months ago. The attic and basement were painted. Got thinking, went back up in attic, got way back in corner.I found out somebody was hidding a bad case of mold. Electric had been turned off no sump pump( flooded basement)that explained basement paint New roof which explained mold in attic. The kitchen was gutted down to studs after rain water came thought kitchen ceiling from bad roof Other than termites eating one whole wall (about 10 foot) house was in good shape ( Drywall was laying on floor) from bad roof


  30. #30
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Here's another painted attic after having an electrical fire.

    Wonder why?

    rick

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  31. #31
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    Paint hides alot of stuff I am seeing a lot of shady stuff by property managers ( foreclosed house owned by banks)


  32. #32
    Linda Swearingen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I have no idea about the green paint (though I understand being "green" is very fashionable these days). HOWEVER--the lack of end support for those rafters will make them more likely to split. This tends to happen when people decide to go with larger rafters than the original plan, too, and then they don't enlarge the ridge board. I always recommend blocking those ends to improve the overall support. It doesn't have to be continuous, but it does need to extend to the bottom of the cut and fill the whole space between the two boards.


  33. #33
    Mike Truss Guy's Avatar
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    Talking Re: Painted Attic

    Maybe their Feng Shui consultant recommended a green attic.


  34. #34
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    I may have missed a comment on the plastic over the joists, but that would definately get my attention and a note. A good job of covering the joists with an impermiable cover can trap otherwise vented away moisture that will cause wood rot, mold, wet insulation, etc. I'd be very adamant that that be removed or sliced up.

    JLMathis


  35. #35
    Rob Yarboro's Avatar
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    Default Re: Painted Attic

    It looks like part of the ridge board has been replaced. If you look at the bottom right of the pic you can see where there appears to be a full sized piece of ridge board. May be my old eyes this morning though. I haven't had my first beer yet, I ment coffee.


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