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  1. #1
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    Default No Gutter building IN WA

    The property is in WA without gutter built . The following is the explanation from builder. IS it possible? Any opinion? I am going to request pictures

    As for gutters, the house and drainage for the yard are designed in an environmentally friendly manner so there should be no need for gutters.


    The purpose of the design is to ensure that the soil in the yard is recharged by the rain falling on the site, this effectively reduces the impervious surfaces from almost 2000 square feet to less than 1000 square feet. By recharging the soil onsite, the rain in the soil acts similar to if there was no development on the site, this is an important element to the environmentally sensitive design.


    I typically don't use gutters. If you do decide you wish to install gutters, please ensure the installers call me first...this is critical. The roof has a very specific design and the gutter installers will not know how to install the gutter properly.
    ------------------------


    There is a system of drains throughout the property as well as along the foundation to ensure the crawlspace and areas near the foundation remain dry even in severe rain events.

    Also, the walls are constructed in a manner called a 'rainscreen' so that when wet they will dry more evenly without water or water vapor passing into the body of the house.

    Environmentally minded construction is a systems approach so that the integrity of the house is the first priority to ensure a long life with less maintenance of the structure - which is one reason for the rainscreen walls and lack of gutters.

    All other parts of the system work in harmony to maintain the life of the structure while minimizing the environmental impact. At no point is the structure compromised for an environmental benefit since that would violate the basic tenet of green building which is to build structures that last.

    I hope that helps explain.


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  2. #2
    Stephen G's Avatar
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    If they engineered a way to move water off the roof and keep it out of the foundation great. When you write this up refer to the builder as your source and then call everything out . It may be correct, perhaps new technology. Kinda needs to be seen as well, eh.

    I would love to see the ground treatment,,send us those pics


    sdg


  3. #3
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    I am skeptical of the claims. Gutters/downspouts could be installed to direct water away from foundation while allowing the ground to absorb the water without it being directed to storm sewers.

    Also without gutters there will be splash marks at foundation caused by the roof drip line.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Go to Maine and you will see alot of homes without gutters. Why, ice and snow make them worthless and they also just get ripped off or damages so easily.

    Local building codes that require gutters is the product of small minds and poor design, just easier to require them than to deal with design.

    Think of it as the house not being there, where would the water go.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Being in th heart of snow country (yet,we have none this year), we mount the gutters so they dont fall off when they fill up with ice.
    The 'small minds' part doesnt come from this side of 49, gutters and downspouts arent code. Most builders dont put them on. You budget them in afterwards. You need them to stop trenching, stop the deck from eroding and to move it away from the block foundation.
    The left coast get more rain than Main or Ontario ever will so I will suggest that the snow and ice you speak of isnt the biggest worry. Its water.





    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    Go to Maine and you will see alot of homes without gutters. Why, ice and snow make them worthless and they also just get ripped off or damages so easily.

    Local building codes that require gutters is the product of small minds and poor design, just easier to require them than to deal with design.

    Think of it as the house not being there, where would the water go.



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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    If there are to be no gutters in the Pacific NW, then the overhang at the eaves hopefully is increased beyond the usual two feet or so. And there should be splash protection about three feet up the wall. If that has been done, it might be OK, but I too would be skeptical.

    It sounds like the builder did not cut an angle on the rafter tails, making it tricky to install gutters?

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

  7. #7
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    from the OP it sounds like the builder is explaining away his shortcomings. Still would like to see a pic of the trench line under the eave.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    I'd be interested in what the builder has designed. But, as already mentioned, there'd still be the splash back on the siding. And, unless it's been accounted for by providing mechanical compacting, the soil around the home will settle and what may be a decent slope away from the foundation may not be in a couple of years. I also wonder how hydrostatic pressure on the foundation has been anticipated - more of a concern for crawls and basements.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Barker View Post
    I'd be interested in what the builder has designed. But, as already mentioned, there'd still be the splash back on the siding. And, unless it's been accounted for by providing mechanical compacting, the soil around the home will settle and what may be a decent slope away from the foundation may not be in a couple of years. I also wonder how hydrostatic pressure on the foundation has been anticipated - more of a concern for crawls and basements.
    Nothing from the OP indicates the presence of any "siding" on the building walls - only that a system for drainage and drying has been employed.

    According to the OP the builder has stated:

    There is a system of drains throughout the property as well as along the foundation to ensure the crawlspace and areas near the foundation remain dry even in severe rain events.

    Permable cover, swales, trench/french or other drains, we have no idea what is adjacent to or under any existing overhangs. We have no idea the design of the building, the roof, nor the adjacent surroundings,

    From what the builder has represented, it seems requirements for drainage, etc. have been met, and a strategic avoidance of impervious surfacing at the lot, allowing for a minimum of run-off and lot-contained drainage and perk, and an avoidance of errosion.

    Nothing presented above indicates a failure to maintain elevations of sidings from/above finished ground planes.

    Ground covers (flora and other) and permable cover with sub-level drainage is an excellent choice - oft employed in midler (temperate)climatic regions with great success in areas with good "perk", even for those in areas of higher annual rainfall, such as the pacific NW.

    Frankly, I don't understand the concern regarding the mere absence of gutters as long as the code itself is followed regarding run-off, drainage, etc. and the topographical and geological (such as soil conditions, flood hazards, etc.) of the lot aren't overwhelmed. If water rights (yes, even to gutter "drainage") and local restrictions don't prohibit, collection and storage for irrigation is further becomming increasingly common in the mid-west to west, where it is restricted to do so, designing without gutters and otherwise retaining for perk upon the lot, rainfall, has been the norm.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 12-18-2011 at 12:34 PM.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    This is kinda like showing up after the car accident, we heard everything that happened but in reality we saw and witnessed nothing. Only what we heard (OP) and what we took away from the initial story.
    Then we stand around talking to everyone else who has the same limited info, and make leaps and the odd bound as to why whynot or the maybe and perhaps.

    This is further exacerbated by all of us homies wanting to figure out how the accident happened in the first place. It is human nature; to not only be correct, but in being the first correct.
    My take away from the builder statement is not good. Sounds like cya boiler plate, my spidey senses are tingling

    Are all these drains needed because he is in slash cut fill built into the side of the Rockies, bottom of the hill or other water prone areas. My inquisitive nature and the need for information would question all of the builders remarks. Pics pics and pics

    If the OP would kindly send us a couple of 8 x 10s


  11. #11
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    The OP after all is from BC. Do they know rain?

    We build houses here in Ontario with eavestroughs (gutters) and downspouts.

    Building code is minimum after all.


  12. #12
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    First supposedly the building indicated to be in WA, which would be generally understood to be Washington State, US.

    Next, Was there even an indication of a pitched roof in the OP? I think not.
    There is furthermore no indication of an overhang, eaves projection or otherwise, not that one would be required in the first place. The builder does caution that the roof has a very specific design, and that gutter "installers" wouldn't know where to correctly and safely install same, should such be desired, without consultation with the "builder".

    Finally, neither "gutters" (eavestroughs) nor downspouts are universially mandated in the unammended standardized building codes applicable to the region...

    A lot of assumptions flying around, bottom line, there are no pictures, and nothing from the OP otherthan what has been provided in the first post.

    Of course it is possible to build a structure, including a residential structure correctly, and in full compliance with the unammended building codes in WA without either the use of gutters or downspouts, and most especially as how accomodated as described by the "builder".

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 12-18-2011 at 01:36 PM.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA


    Thank you for your guys input.

    I have not got any pictures yet. This is my previous client who just boughtthe property in WA. I do not know he had the house inspected or not.Apparently, he has the challenge to the builder. I did not see any beneficialfrom the builder explanation.

    I did an inspection for this client in this August. That is why he sent me the post a few days ago. The House he just bought in WA not far away from BC Canada, should be in the same mild rainy climate. I have never seen any house built without gutter loacally. The builder got trouble in selling the house in the last 2 years. That could be due to the economic status or deficiency who knows. There are canadians buying US houses at this time as I knew. That is the whole story.

    But I am still waiting for the pics. who knows what's gonna happen.



  14. #14
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Normally, it was supposed to be a pitched roof. are there any reason they do not buid gutter? Any hurt to build gutter except $?


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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Just got the limited pics & section of inspection report. Per client he found drain pipes capped are on the ground of 4 corners. I thought aparently builder tricks.

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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    Just got the limited pics & section of inspection report. Per client he found drain pipes capped are on the ground of 4 corners. I thought aparently builder tricks.
    I see multiple rain chains in both pictures/views of the home, Both from the porch overhangs and the building corners at the 2nd story; and apparent splash/diversion blocks under at least one of same.

    I see no evidence of "capped" drainage. I suspect we are having a language translation issue. Inspection ports and cleanouts in drainage systems are normal, as are screens/strainers at intake locations, and as are pop-ups for storm water control, management.

    I suggest you get out of the gossip, inuendo, and out of the middle of a home buyer in WA of a property in WA whether or not the buyer is associated with BC; and point your former client over the boarder to the building and planning office and look up publicly available records and plans on file, the WA codes, and the inspector who actually performed the inspection, their real estate representative, and/or their real estate attorney who represented them at closing. If you're not sanctioned to perform HI in WA

    I most strongly suggest you do not get involved. There appears to be absolutely nothing supsect about anything you have pictured or described, whatsoever.

    There is no "do over" when buyers remorse sets in, in the lower 48. Nothing in what has been shared is an indicative of a misrepresentation, a misstatement of material fact, improper, "strange", or otherwise. If the owner wants to add gutters that is their choice to modify their home; and will be their own expense, and likely requiring a permit, plans, and inspection, and if not, certainly their responsibility to direct the flow/runoff as required by local law.

    The lot appears to be significantly built/covered, and zoning, etc. rules may have required certain storm water management provisions so as to afford such a high ratio of "coverage" for such a significantly small lot. The "bulider" offered knowledge/guidance/communication assistance and caution regarding gutter installation, and made mention of calculations, planning, design, and systems with a coordinated management plan regarding storm water and perm. I suggest that should be heeded, if not for present installation, acqiring the information for future considerations.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 12-18-2011 at 03:51 PM.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    yep rain chains, they need gutters to work. your inspection sheet is askewed as well. look at para 11 and 12. They contradict each other.



    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    Just got the limited pics & section of inspection report. Per client he found drain pipes capped are on the ground of 4 corners. I thought aparently builder tricks.



  18. #18
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen G View Post
    yep rain chains, they need gutters to work. your inspection sheet is askewed as well. look at para 11 and 12. They contradict each other.

    That is the report from the inspector the client hired in States. Yes, the upper story of the house needs gutter installed.


  19. #19
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    If there are capped rain leaders then the house was meant to have down spouts.

    Even the neighbouring house in the last picture appears to have a gutter and downspout installed.

    Also the crawlspace vents will be prone to water splashing in from lack of non gutters.


  20. #20
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    The report was all, click here to choose the proper boiler plate

    I also hate "The inspector suggests that" More boiler plate

    Lets see. They have all kinds of drains in place to move the water off the property and away from the home but they want the water to fall next to the home to recharge the soil ??????

    No gutters on the upper level and you see the eve line on the ground below where the rain has been running off the roof. You also have siding and trim almost right to if not to the ground in the front. The property appears to be relatively flat so I hope there are drains in the ground to move the water from the property. The vents should have been off the ground as much as possible and not almost on the ground. etc etc etc etc

    Anyway. I always recommend full gutters no matter what is in place and the key words are I recommend. Not " The inspector recommends".

    I address my clients just as though I were still standing right next to them.

    Just saying


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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    As much as I like the idea of green building, and can see the rationale behind some of the builder's remarks, it seems there should at least be gutters over the stoops and where water will drain directly onto lower roof surfaces. Other than that, it would be difficult to judge just how much of a problem splashing is without seeing it when it's raining. It is nice to see that plants can be grown under the eaves, which is not always the case with gutters. I like Watson's idea of ground cover - the lawn would be hard to mow as is.

    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
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  22. #22
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    You can bet there will be a lot of splash given the height of the main roof, and dependent on amount of rain falling.


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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond Wand View Post
    You can bet there will be a lot of splash given the height of the main roof, and dependent on amount of rain falling.
    Right. There is no mystery here, now that we have pics.
    The design dates back to 100 years ago or more. The builder's story about replenishing the soil is BS. Is there a chance this house is a 100-year-old polished turd?
    Houses built in this style were designed to have gutters.
    The two porch roofs have gutters. Apparantly the builder found them to be needed at the porches. Why? Because the porches would be getting wet without them.
    Tell the home buyer to have continuous metal gutters installed. There are no trees around, so gutter guards are probably not needed. He may want to have the drains inspected, to see where they go.

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

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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    No problem eating crow here. From the picture presented I would question what type of system the builder used. The house appears to be a rehab and the ground (grass) show no signs of being disturbed, as if an underground system had been installed. I would expect some telltale signs.

    From the house style/design.
    I would have to say that the builder is blowing smoke up the buyers skirt.
    I gave the builder a break on explanation as not all have the best language skills.

    The builder statement about hanging gutters being an issue may be valid. If the builder cut some corners the fascia may not hold any weight. It is possible that the original fascia was angled with 5" half round. The builder may have boxed out the original trim and that boxing has no structural integrity. I could go on, but no point.

    The client needs to have the builder prove the system is in place. I would ask the neighbors what the house looked like before the rehab. There is a wealth of knowledge in the neborhood, just have to ask.


  25. #25
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Builders say the darndest things, they think their clientele are not sophisticated enough to know any better.. bull baffles...


  26. #26
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    [quote=Garry Sorrells;185319] The house appears to be a rehab and the ground (grass) show no signs of being disturbed, as if an underground system had been installed. I would expect some telltale signs.


    Look at the third pic, right side of the house , the trenching is obvious. Even a modest rain coming off the roof over year would cause that.

    Mr Builder probably explained them as the drainage entry canal..hey I like that....good morning


  27. #27
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    [quote=Stephen G;185326]
    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    The house appears to be a rehab and the ground (grass) show no signs of being disturbed, as if an underground system had been installed. I would expect some telltale signs.


    Look at the third pic, right side of the house , the trenching is obvious. Even a modest rain coming off the roof over year would cause that.

    Mr Builder probably explained them as the drainage entry canal..hey I like that....good morning

    What I was trying to say was that the grass had not been disturbed enough to have a system installed. Unless they have some kind of super natural grass. The trench/depression shows evidence of water hitting the ground. This trough could be as the result of the original gutters overflowing.

    Long and short I do not see enough evidence of a drainage system that would work.


  28. #28
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    [quote=Garry Sorrells;185331]

    Unless they have some kind of super natural grass.


    Come on man this is BC, super natural grass, mushrooms and other stuff


  29. #29
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    As for gutters, the house and drainage for the yard are designed in an environmentally friendly manner so there should be no need for gutters.
    So what does that mean? In the photos of the house it certainly does not look as though the grading has any slope away from the foundation. In my view this home has an increased chance of water intrusion.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    you guys are amazing. Even a simple pic there is so much information coming out. I have told the buyer to have the gutter installed. This is a courtesy consulting. I think that is enough and I will stay away from here.

    But here a lot I can learn. Per buyer's information this house is new & has 1 year warrant other than the new houses in BC CAN, which are mandatory 2-5-10 warrant. Is this another story the builder made up to the buyer & proved Garry rehab Conclusion?

    My questions are:

    1. What does Rehab indicate? Just a fully renovated or something (fire, drug, grow-op) happend before which the builder covered up.

    2. Is it possible the new turf applied on the back fill?

    3. Can not see the proper grade.


  31. #31
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    As I posted on other thread early this year. All houses including LEED/Green houses need gutter to collect the water from roof, no matter you want to waste or reuse it. National Rain Gutter Contractors Association - NRGCA

    Roof Drainage Building Code Guideline References

    International Code Council
    International Residential Code 2006 Ch. 8 Roof-Ceiling Construction: Section R801
    R801.3 Roof Drainage - "In areas where expansive or collapsible soils are known to exist, all dwellings shall have a controlled method of water disposal from roofs that will collect and discharge roof drainage to the ground surface at least 5 feet (1524 mm) from foundation walls or to an approved drainage system."
    International Residential Code 2000 Commentary - Vol. 1
    "Saturated expansive or collapsible soils can lead to foundation failures because their additional loads are imposed on the foundation wall. To minimize the potential for the soil adjacent to the foundation wall to become saturated due to roof drainage, the code requires that the roof drain 5 feet (1524 mm) from the foundation."

    National Association of Home Builders
    NAHB Model Green Home Building Guidelines - click here Version I, Section 2.2 Enhance Durability and Reduce Maintenance
    2.2.4 Install drip edge at eave and gable roof edges.
    Intent: The drip edge directs roof runoff water into the gutters and away from the fascia and roof sheathing.
    2.2.5 Install gutter and downspout system to divert water at least 5� away from foundation and from there into the overall onsite drainage area.
    Intent: Moisture intrusion of foundations is avoided by moving runoff water beyond the foundation.
    U.S. Green Building Council
    LEED for Homes Program Water Efficiency: Credit #1 Water Reuse - Maximum Points: 2 There are no mandatory requirements. Optional requirements include:
    1.1 Design and install of rainwater harvesting system which includes the collection of surface and roof run-off for irrigation uses. (1 Point)
    1.2 Design and install gray water re-use system, with minimum of dedicated clothes washer with 2 inch drain directed to subterranean drain field for landscape irrigation. (1 Point)
    USGBC Rationale: 50% of potable water use in a home may be for maintenance of lawns and gardens. This credit promotes the re-use of indoor waste water and rainwater to help meet landscape water demands. Materials and Resources: Credit #4 Durability Plan - Maximum Points: 3 The mandatory requirement is:
    4.1 Prepare a detailed durability plan per the design process in Exhibit MR4-A.
    Optional requirement:
    4.2 Verify implementation of durability plan via third party inspection as described in Exhibit MR4-C.
    The synergy between durability, energy efficiency, and indoor air quality are inextricably linked in high performance homes. Moisture management becomes more critical as energy management reduces the buildings overall drying potential.�
    Moisture can be a major cause of indoor environmental problems (e.g., mold)�. The point value of this credit therefore reflects the related indoor environmental benefits of improved water management at the foundation, exterior walls, and roof.
    Water management of the property (i.e., both lot and structure) is a combination of surface and ground water management, with the dual goals of protecting the structure from water as well as keeping as much water as possible on the site in order to limit the burden on municipals infrastructure, recharging the aquifer, etc. To the greatest extent possible, the site and landscape should be designed with these goals in mind. The durability plan is intended to prevent damage to the home by water - both surface and ground - that can not be effectively managed at the site level, as well as to protect the structure from other damage functions.
    USGBC Rationale is that durability problems can substantially shorten the life of assemblies, systems, and/or materials in a home and indeed the home itself. While the development and implementation of a durability plan can not guarantee improved durability, there are a number of precedents in the insurance industry, in particular, supporting the premise that a prescribed process aimed at improving durability can indeed correlate to improved performance, as measured by decreases in warranty claims for durability-related building defects and failures.

    Energy Star
    Indoor Air Package Pilot Specification - April 4, 2005
    1. Moisture Control Required Measures References(s)
    Water Managed Roofs
    1.1 Provide Minimum No. 30 roof felt under layment or equivalent. - Copper Development Assn. Design Handbook, Sec. 4
    1.2 In IECC 2004 Climate Zones 5 and higher, provide self sealing waterprotection membrane ice flashing over the sheathing at the eave extending 2 feet inside the exterior wall plane. - Moisture Control Handbook
    IRC
    1.3 Provide metal drip edge at all exposed roof decking.
    1.4 Provide self-sealing bituminous membrane at all eaves, valleys and penetrations except in climates with less than 20 inches annual rainfall. - EBBA Builder Guide, Moisture Control Handbook
    1.5 Provide Insulated wind baffle or other air barrier to block wind washing at all attic eave bays in roof assemblies with soffit vents. - EEBA Builder Guide, EEBA Water management Guide
    1.6 Provide step flashing at all intersections of roof and walls with the exception of continuous flashing at metal and rubber membrane roofs. Metal kick-out flashing shall be provided at the end of roof/wall intersections to direct water away from wall. Drainage plane above shall be directed water flow onto and not behind flashing. Intersection wall siding shall terminate a minimum of 2 inches above roof. HUD/NAHB specs for gutters and downspouts - IRC code 801.c,
    EEBA Builder Guides
    1.7 Direct roof water from house with either:
    Guttering and downspouts shall empty to lateral piping that deposit(s) water on finish grade a minimum of 5 ft. from foundation, or in limited spaces, deposit to underground catchment system that carries water 10 ft. from foundation.
    In dry climates with less that 20 inches annual rainfall as shown in EEBA Builder Guides, provide minimum 18� roof overhangs that deposit water to grade sloped away from home. - HUD/NAHB specs for gutters and downspouts, Moisture Control Handbook, IRC



  32. #32
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    you guys are amazing. Even a simple pic there is so much information coming out. I have told the buyer to have the gutter installed. This is a courtesy consulting. I think that is enough and I will stay away from here.

    But here a lot I can learn. Per buyer's information this house is new & has 1 year warrant other than the new houses in BC CAN, which are mandatory 2-5-10 warrant. Is this another story the builder made up to the buyer & proved Garry rehab Conclusion?

    My questions are:

    1. What does Rehab indicate? Just a fully renovated or something (fire, drug, grow-op) happend before which the builder covered up.

    2. Is it possible the new turf applied on the back fill?

    3. Can not see the proper grade.

    Rehab: Rehabilitation: Existing house that has items replaced or defects corrected. It is possible to rehab by tearing everything out and down to the studs then rebuilt.

    People you flip properties come in and make repairs and alterations to the property to increase its visual presentation (for the most part.

    Peter, Clarification. Is this house a new construction home? Or is it an older home that may have been redone to a like new state?


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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    The buyer told me this is a new built house. Because this buyer is actually in Canada, plus the mean builder, I can not imagine he can get the truth & detail. Based on the design, appearance and neighbour house I think you are properly right.

    The buyer got cheated.


  34. #34
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Peter,

    Being a native of Western Wa I can tell you that boy should be taking to the whipping post. That is all bull, in my humble opinion.

    Most soil conditions in Western Wa as well as Western BC do not handle water conditions well in general and proper water management is paramount.

    What was the crawlspace like?


    Don Hester
    NCW Home Inspections, LLC
    Wa. St. Licensed H I #647, WSDA #80050, http://www.ncwhomeinspections.com

  35. #35
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    no idea.


  36. #36

    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    ...By recharging the soil onsite, the rain in the soil acts similar to if there was no development on the site, this is an important element to the environmentally sensitive design...


    ...Also, the walls are constructed in a manner called a 'rainscreen' so that when wet they will dry more evenly without water or water vapor passing into the body of the house...
    Seriously???

    If there was no development on the site then the 2,500 square feet of roof surface would not be pouring concentrated water onto grade at the foundation walls. As far as the rain screen, does this look like stucco, brick veneer or stone/masonry veneer? Why would a builder use a rain screen method behind horizontal wood siding? Common sense will always lead you to the truth.

    Rick Strand, CPI, CAHPI Associate - Strand Home Inspections Inc.
    Home Inspection Calgary Calgary, Airdrie
    Calgary Home Inspectors Okotoks, Cochrane, Chestermere

  37. #37
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Peter,
    Your friend may have serious problem lurking in the future.
    I would demand the drainage design in writing. Then have it revied. If there is any descrepency in the design (or llack of) head to an attorney,post haste .

    Builder may be commiting fraud. Connected to contract makes the difference.


  38. #38
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Strand View Post
    Seriously???

    ...As far as the rain screen, does this look like stucco, brick veneer or stone/masonry veneer? Why would a builder use a rain screen method behind horizontal wood siding? Common sense will always lead you to the truth.
    Rainscreen systems for cladding like this are common around Seattle. The cladding is held 1 1/2-2" away from moisture barrier. Air is allowed to circulate freely behind the cladding, evaporating moisture that hasn't drained away. Some systems allow air in but physically minimize water intrusion, others rely on differences in air pressure to keep most moisture out. Open joint rainscreen systems leave 1/2" gap between planks or panels. I have a nice photo of an example, but can't show it here.

    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
    - James Burgh, 1754.

  39. #39
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Is the rainscreen system the same thing as vent skin system?


  40. #40
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    I wasn't familiar with vent skin systems, but after a Google it looks to me like they're on the interior of the wall, a kind of insulation system with an air gap behind the wall covering. Is that what you mean? Rainscreen systems are on the exterior. I'm no authority on them, they aren't common in MN, but there's a good article here.

    Last edited by Kristi Silber; 01-02-2012 at 04:56 PM.
    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
    - James Burgh, 1754.

  41. #41
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Peter,

    The house looks like its in Bellingham. From my experience the building department requires gutters. The little bell thingies on the right and left are normally attached to gutters. If there are no gutters on the lower portion of the building I am wondering what the bells are attached too. Normally they would replace the downspouts. Normally if there are no gutters, the builder will at least install a diverter over the entrances.

    If this is in Bellingham, call the building department and ask. Let us know!

    //Rick

    Rick Bunzel
    WWW.PacCrestInspections.com
    360-588-6956

  42. #42
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    My goddness Rick, you can tell it is Bellingham from the 2 small pics. How? But probably, Bellingham is Canadians' favourite because of the Costco & shopping mall. I do not know the actual site of this building. There is gutter on lower part.


  43. #43
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Referring back to the second picture to what looks like a soil erosion line under the edge of the eave, can that not possibly be the outer edge gravel installed around the foundation? In some designs to reduce hydrostatic pressure on the foundation, a drainage plane is installed around the foundation. The drainage plane can be of various materials, including a layer of gravel extending from grade to the footing drain. Near the surface, the gravel layer could have been extended outward under the eave, in which case, the footing drain is also acting as a roof drain.

    As far as the soil recharging stuff, that sounds to me like the builder used slotted drain line under the soil with the end open to a drain someplace. With this kind of system, the soil could absorb what water it needed and then allow the overflow to be taken away by a drain line.

    Otherwise, the builder is just using a bunch of fancy salesspeak. Without knowing specifically what s/he did, everyone is just speculating. Personally, I would want the design specifics to make sure I knew exactly what was done. Around these parts (Ohio Valley), which broke all records for rainfall this past year, control of roof drainage and drainage around the home are the two most important factors for preventing water intrusion into basements/crawlspaces. BTW, I have never seen one of those rain chain things around here. It's pretty much all downspouts--or not.


  44. #44
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Klein View Post

    As far as the soil recharging stuff, that sounds to me like the builder used slotted drain line under the soil with the end open to a drain someplace. With this kind of system, the soil could absorb what water it needed and then allow the overflow to be taken away by a drain line.

    .
    Hi Matthew:

    Do the regular PVC & the HDPE drain tile do the same thing as you said on every house?


  45. #45
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Peter, essentially, those are the drain lines to which I was referring. Those are the only two I see most frequently being used. But, I admit that I am not as familiar with drain line construction outside of the mid-west. After all the structural headaches due to what seems to be increasing droughty summers in some areas, builders might be thinking more about maintaining soil hydration around buildings. I can see constrolled drain-off as being a method to maintaining soil hydration. But, again, I have no idea what this particular builder did because he is speaking in artsy sell-speak rather than plain engineering--the language I best understand.


  46. #46
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    After all the structural headaches due to what seems to be increasing droughty summers in some areas, builders might be thinking more about maintaining soil hydration around buildings.
    I was wondering about this kind of thing, or more particularly what the effect is of roof drainage being directed to relatively small areas by gutters and downspouts. Does anyone know of any studies or have personal experience of situations where concentration of runoff creates uneven pressure on a foundation, causing problems?

    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
    - James Burgh, 1754.

  47. #47
    David A. Keating's Avatar
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    The property is in WA without gutter built . The following is the explanation from builder. IS it possible? Any opinion? I am going to request pictures

    As for gutters, the house and drainage for the yard are designed in an environmentally friendly manner so there should be no need for gutters.


    The purpose of the design is to ensure that the soil in the yard is recharged by the rain falling on the site, this effectively reduces the impervious surfaces from almost 2000 square feet to less than 1000 square feet. By recharging the soil onsite, the rain in the soil acts similar to if there was no development on the site, this is an important element to the environmentally sensitive design.


    I typically don't use gutters. If you do decide you wish to install gutters, please ensure the installers call me first...this is critical. The roof has a very specific design and the gutter installers will not know how to install the gutter properly.
    ------------------------


    There is a system of drains throughout the property as well as along the foundation to ensure the crawlspace and areas near the foundation remain dry even in severe rain events.

    Also, the walls are constructed in a manner called a 'rainscreen' so that when wet they will dry more evenly without water or water vapor passing into the body of the house.

    Environmentally minded construction is a systems approach so that the integrity of the house is the first priority to ensure a long life with less maintenance of the structure - which is one reason for the rainscreen walls and lack of gutters.

    All other parts of the system work in harmony to maintain the life of the structure while minimizing the environmental impact. At no point is the structure compromised for an environmental benefit since that would violate the basic tenet of green building which is to build structures that last.

    I hope that helps explain.
    This is the most polished bunch of BS I have had the pleasure to read.


  48. #48
    Daniel Leung's Avatar
    Daniel Leung Guest

    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Kristi Silber View Post
    Does anyone know of any studies or have personal experience of situations where concentration of runoff creates uneven pressure on a foundation, causing problems?
    There are many related guidelines and research information on the CMHC website. You may find some useful information from the following links:
    Renovating Your Basement — Moisture Problems | CMHC
    Renovating Your Basement for Livability | CMHC
    Rain Gardens: Improve Stormwater Management in Your Yard | CMHC
    A Plan for Rainy Days: Water Runoff and Site Planning http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/odpub/pdf/65658.pdf?lang=en
    I just post some examples here, you can search more from thousands articles over there.


  49. #49
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Thanks for those links! There's a lot of good info on that site.

    I dunno...it seems to me some people are pretty quick to judge the builder as being full of it. Yes, you can see where the rain has fallen from the roof, but it's not muddy or anything - for all we know, there's a layer of pebbles there that keeps it from splashing the sides. The grass would help a lot, too. There's no evidence I can see of splashing apart from the boards leaning against the porch - and that's where there's a gutter (but no downspout...that seems to be a problem). Dude says there's something special about the way the roof is designed that would affect gutter installation, and we can only guess what that is. To me it does look like there's a slight slope away from the foundation - but if the drainage system is good enough, that shouldn't be as critical as it is otherwise. And it's obvious that there's value in keeping soils near the foundation evenly moist, especially if clay.

    That said, for all I know it could be a load of hooey. I just think it's hard to judge without knowing more. Sure, he didn't explain things like an engineer, but he didn't expect to be picked apart by a bunch of HIs, either.

    Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.
    - James Burgh, 1754.

  50. #50
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Krsti,
    You will find that many jump to a conclusion then as facts are presented conclusins change.
    Somethin like a flow chart of If - Then statements.


  51. #51
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Klein View Post
    Referring back to the second picture to what looks like a soil erosion line under the edge of the eave, can that not possibly be the outer edge gravel installed around the foundation? In some designs to reduce hydrostatic pressure on the foundation, a drainage plane is installed around the foundation. The drainage plane can be of various materials, including a layer of gravel extending from grade to the footing drain. Near the surface, the gravel layer could have been extended outward under the eave, in which case, the footing drain is also acting as a roof drain.

    As far as the soil recharging stuff, that sounds to me like the builder used slotted drain line under the soil with the end open to a drain someplace. With this kind of system, the soil could absorb what water it needed and then allow the overflow to be taken away by a drain line.

    Otherwise, the builder is just using a bunch of fancy salesspeak. Without knowing specifically what s/he did, everyone is just speculating. Personally, I would want the design specifics to make sure I knew exactly what was done. Around these parts (Ohio Valley), which broke all records for rainfall this past year, control of roof drainage and drainage around the home are the two most important factors for preventing water intrusion into basements/crawlspaces. BTW, I have never seen one of those rain chain things around here. It's pretty much all downspouts--or not.
    Actually, Matthew brought up the new idea which caused me thinking about the scenario. It could be a possibility in dry soil & climate but should be costly. Would builders do this on an average home?


  52. #52
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Louis View Post
    Actually, Matthew brought up the new idea which caused me thinking about the scenario. It could be a possibility in dry soil & climate but should be costly. Would builders do this on an average home?
    Actually discussed back at $10 & 16. Not just dry climates.

    Geologic reports, topography, soil tests, perm, perk, clay, storm water management, coverage of lot ratios.

    Yep all the time.


  53. #53
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    Default Re: No Gutter building IN WA

    "I was wondering about this kind of thing, or more particularly what the effect is of roof drainage being directed to relatively small areas by gutters and downspouts. Does anyone know of any studies or have personal experience of situations where concentration of runoff creates uneven pressure on a foundation, causing problems?"

    I have numerous photos of a downspout that empties next to a foundation area that has cracks. Usually, signs of soil erosion is present, which tends to indicate settlement as the reason for the cracks. However, such a conclusion is not a given because lifting due to freezing could also be a cause of or contributor to the cracks. The effect of roof drainage being concentrated in one area along a foundation might not be quick--or even major. But, it is there nonetheless and structural issues could develop over time. I believe more often, though, the major issue is development of a crack and then water getting through the crack into the crawlspace or basement. Given the way many builders improperly compact soil around the foundations of new buildings, I am surprised more foundation issues have not occurred, at least in this area.


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