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Thread: Fire Damage

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
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    Default Fire Damage

    I was in an attic of a townhome today and found damage from a fire in the adjoining unit.
    It looks like the damage was repaired next door, however, it also looks like someone decided that the damage to the unit I was inspecting was not going to be fixed.
    I'm going to reccomend that any component that was affected by the fire / smoke be removed and replaced including the pvc vents, the insulation, and scorched/stained drywall and roof decking.

    Overkill????

    The last picture, of a hvac duct, looks like the stuff that was recalled due to the covering disintergrating. All I have to go on is the grey coloring. Any insight?

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Fire Damage

    Quote Originally Posted by Victor DaGraca View Post
    Overkill????
    Absolutely not overkill.

    Gypsum board has a fire-resistive rating, it is good for one time and one time only, it needs to be replaced. Properly. Obviously, that is not a proper fire-resistive rated wall in that attic.

    The last picture, of a hvac duct, looks like the stuff that was recalled due to the covering disintergrating. All I have to go on is the grey coloring. Any insight?
    My insight is first to ask: Do you look at it closely? If so, you probably would have seen the outer covering cracking, but if not, no name, no anything else and I would write it up and let the HVAC person shoot it down, telling my client that the HVAC person may say there is nothing wrong with it, but *it sure looks like that Owl Flex crap which is known for its outer covering falling deteriorating and coming apart*, meaning *replace it anyway*.

    If it is not falling apart, does the attic any proper ventilation? Proper ventilation lets in enough sunlight to finish killing that stuff after it was exposed to sunlight during installation.

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

  3. #3
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Fire Damage

    Quote Originally Posted by Victor DaGraca View Post
    I was in an attic of a townhome today and found damage from a fire in the adjoining unit.
    It looks like the damage was repaired next door, however, it also looks like someone decided that the damage to the unit I was inspecting was not going to be fixed.
    I'm going to reccomend that any component that was affected by the fire / smoke be removed and replaced including the pvc vents, the insulation, and scorched/stained drywall and roof decking.

    Overkill????

    The last picture, of a hvac duct, looks like the stuff that was recalled due to the covering disintergrating. All I have to go on is the grey coloring. Any insight?
    Damaged drywall, PVC and such yes. The rest is obviously impossible to tell unless the drywall comes of. I would probably write it to replace the obvious items and cut the rock out in a few places and check damage behind to the framing. I am sure it is not a support wall but just a fire separation wall. It is not doing much separating with the seems not taped and the drywall not secure or the pipe not boxed around and such. Tough call but does stand to be evaluated by the appropriate contractor for the job.

    As far as the duct covering it is hard to tell in the pic but just does not look like that same covering of the (can't remember off hand the manufacturer) type that deteriorates. Thinking of excess heat build up in the attic and the covering is not destroyed as of yet I would venture a guess that it is not the same type.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
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    Default Re: Fire Damage

    That was my thinking.
    Anything that is designed and manufactured, when used in a specific application, is placed according to calculated specifications.
    Once that material is exposed to conditions that accelerate its calculated failure rate, it no longer meets the specs for the application it was designed for.

    Therefore, rip it out and start again.

    As for the duct, no markings, no cracking, just the telltale dull grey color.
    Other duct runs were of a different material which leads me to believe that there had been some replacement in the past.

    Critical Home Inspection Services
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
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    4,170

    Default Re: Fire Damage

    I have seen some "good" (meaning it showed none of the tell tail signs of UV damage, yet) gray duct. The good stuff does seem to be a bit more shiny and deeper gray than the stuff that is disintegrated.
    Exposure to UV is the killer, even a roof vent nearby will let in enough sunlight to cause real damage, but enclosed in a dark chase will let it survive longer.
    I would still write it up as "looking like the defective stuff..." just as a CYA.

    Drywall on a separation wall should be replace if it was damaged by heat or water without question.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

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