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  1. #1
    Alan C Grubb's Avatar
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    Default Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Attached is a chimney I called back in August. It had a Gas Boiler venting into an unlined chimney. My recommendation was for class 2 chimney inspection. Now I am being forced to witness in court case (I am a hostile witness) because they did not line the chimney correctly according to the owner. Would like to do my home work. Does anyone know what the code is on this?

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    I have no idea what a "class 2" inspection is. I do know what a "Level II" inspection is (as defined by NFPA 211).

    Last time I checked, "I don't know" was still an acceptable answer, if you don't know!
    Obviously you didn't "know" then, don't "know" now, how does trying to become a pocket expert between now and then going to help you in an adversarial proceeding?

    By the way, since certain cities and counties have autonomy in Md - you'd have to be specific regarding location of the subject (not just "maryland") for anyone to answer your question, and your BEST resource is the office of jurisdiction and an actual code authority in same jurisdiction.

    Since HI is NOT code inspection, why do you care?

    It might be a good idea if you did know what you recommended, such as what the heck a "class 2 inspection" is or was supposed to be/mean/etc.


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Quote Originally Posted by H.G. Watson, Sr. View Post

    Since HI is NOT code inspection, why do you care?

    Is it necessary to be insulting?

    Maybe he wants to know to better his knowledge.
    Or maybe he is curious.
    Or maybe it's none of our (and your) business.

    If you don't want to answer, then don't answer. Hurling insults isn't helping anyone.
    You have a great deal of knowledge to share, so either share it or don't share it, but try to be a little more professional.

    Dom.


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dom D'Agostino View Post
    Is it necessary to be insulting?

    Maybe he wants to know to better his knowledge.
    Or maybe he is curious.
    Or maybe it's none of our (and your) business.

    If you don't want to answer, then don't answer. Hurling insults isn't helping anyone.
    You have a great deal of knowledge to share, so either share it or don't share it, but try to be a little more professional.

    Dom.

    I was being professional, not the least bit INSULTING but INFORMATIVE regarding the advisarial proceeding in the jurisdiction unnamed, only indicitating somewhere in "Maryland".

    Which if you bothered to read my post, you might have a clue that is not state wide code authority, that certain counties and cities have autonomy, for example, baltimore city, vs. baltimore county, neither of which are subject to state "code" adoptions.

    He said he was a hositle witness in an advisarial proceeding. If he doesn't know now, and didn't know then, he's better of NOT KNOWING, and simply responding "I don't know" and sticking to what Home Inspection IS, and not delve into what it is NOT.

    If he's got an indemity, he should notify same, even if he's not being directly NAMED in the proceeding as a defendant (depos and hostile witness escapades often lead to additional parties enjoined as ammended complaints are common).

    He said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan C Grubb View Post
    Attached is a chimney I called back in August. It had a Gas Boiler venting into an unlined chimney. My recommendation was for class 2 chimney inspection. Now I am being forced to witness in court case (I am a hostile witness) because they did not line the chimney correctly according to the owner. Would like to do my home work. Does anyone know what the code is on this?



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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Slow down and read your own posts once in awhile, the one we're speaking about has a clearly derogatory tone in your question.

    Since HI is NOT code inspection, why do you care?



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    Cool Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    The first building code in 1927 required a liner in all chimneys-period. Virtually all combustion appliance mfrs. state in their manuals their appliance can only be vented into an "approved" chimney or get even more specific stating it must comply with a certain code or standard such as the local state building code or NFPA 211.

    Look up the installation manual for that boiler then compare with what you see.

    I'm not aware of a single combustion appliance approved for use in any unlined chimney and I'm not aware of any building code that approves any unlined chimneys.

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan C Grubb View Post
    Attached is a chimney I called back in August. It had a Gas Boiler venting into an unlined chimney. My recommendation was for class 2 chimney inspection. Now I am being forced to witness in court case (I am a hostile witness) because they did not line the chimney correctly according to the owner. Would like to do my home work. Does anyone know what the code is on this?
    Unless you are being paid for your expert opinion, and it seems as though you are not, then all you can do (because you are not being produced as an expert, which would require them to pay your high dollar expert witness fees, which hopefully are high dollar) ... all you can do is attest to FACTS.

    FACT 1: The chimney is unlined.
    FACT 2: It had a gas boiler venting into it.
    FACT 3: You state "The report which was written on (state month/day/year) for (state the property address) and included a recommendation that a Level II chimeny inspection be done."

    Those are THE FACTS as you know them. ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING ELSE is "opinion" and for that they need to pay you for your "expert opinion"

    DO NOT ... I repeat ... DO NOT ... DO NOT let yourself answer any question which is something like "and what did you think", "and why did you make that recommendation", etc., as all of that information is "your opinion" and they are not paying for your "opinions", so all they get are FACTS.

    When, and the opposing attorney should, when you are questioned on why did you report state "class 2" and now you are stating "Level II", you respond with "that was a scrivener's error, level 2 is what was being typed". Also note that that there is absolutely no difference between "Level II" and "level 2" when it is stated verbally - the only difference is when it is written, and when written the difference is negligible as "II" and "2" are both ways to write "two" - everyone will understand what is being said or written either way. Technically, "II" is correct as in "Level II", but that is like the difference between "L" in "Level" and "l" in "level".

    Scrivener's errors are made all the time by attorneys and the courts, and in other legal documents. Scrivener's errors are forgivable "typos" if you will.

    statute: 36. -SCRIVENER'S ERROR.

    Supreme Court declines to review Verizon scrivener's error case - Lexology

    With the meaning of "class 2" and "level 2" meaning the same thing, I doubt there would be any repercussions from that scrivener's error.

    Watson will now likely jump in and give a thesis on scrivener's error.

    Bob gave excellent advice should your questioning be extended to include "opinions", otherwise just stick to the FACTS.

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

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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    When you ask "Does anybody know the code on this?" that is a pretty wide open question. Could you be a little more specific with your question?


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    We have no specifications on the "gas boiler", nor the building or structure it is installed in (ex. apartment bldg with 6 or more units, mixed occupancy, public gathering, etc.). +/= 40,000 btu? Cat. I? size? we don't know. SF home? wasn't said. Antiquated boiler? we don't know, nothing said about it. Pressure, steam or hot water, again not described. There is too much unknown and unsaid. Md also has a "boiler code" which may or may not apply. We have nothing indicating that venting up this unspecified just pictured and described unlined chimney, apparently later lined with unknown material in an unspecified manner would be appropriate for this unspecified, non-descript "gas boiler" of unknown location, distance, etc. from unspecified chimney with now unspecified liner, breaching, height, size, etc.

    NFPA 211 as indicated in my initial response, addresses the "chimney" issue/concern subject referral to an expert professional.

    Notifying one's imdemnity (insurer) essential.

    Seeking legal advice from one licensed practice law in your jurisdiction, and interested in protecting and respresenting your interests, and advising/educating yourself regarding such matters, especially for the "less than two years practicing HI, who authored the OP as phrased & ambiguously presented, recommended.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan C Grubb View Post
    Attached is a chimney I called back in August. It had a Gas Boiler venting into an unlined chimney. My recommendation was for class 2 chimney inspection. Now I am being forced to witness in court case (I am a hostile witness) because they did not line the chimney correctly according to the owner. Would like to do my home work. Does anyone know what the code is on this?
    Try this link for Montgomery Co.:

    http://permittingservices.montgomery...gChecklist.pdf

    Baltimore County:

    http://resources.baltimorecountymd.g...lls/b04710.pdf

    Liner question may be multi -facited as to age of construction and age of Gas Boiler.

    Sounds like the seller had a liner installed and the new owner is now questioning the installation.

    Also, good advice to only state what you saw at the time of the inspection. Which is probably all that they are looking for in court.

    And for the Class 2 as opposed to Level II Inspection, if a Chimney Inspector was called they would have understood and corrected the nomenclature with the caller. Bottom line is that any person who should know would know what you meant with Class 2 inspection.

    H.G. new exactly what you were saying, demonstrating an understanding and correction.


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    No one has asked yet so i will,
    How do you know the liner was installed improperly.
    Or are you just taking what the owner says as fact?
    Did you look at it, or did a licensed chimney specialist determine that fact.
    If they did, why do they need you?
    Have any pics?
    Something smells fishy here to me


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    I'm a bit confused here - you identified a potential problem, and recommended additional action. You did your job. Why are you part of a lawsuit over whether or not someone properly installed an appropriate liner? Did you describe what work should be done, what materials were to be used, etc? Were you called back to verify that the work was done properly? If not, then you should limit your "testimony" to what you saw, and what you recommended. Unless you want to learn the specifics of what code was in place in that community at the time the work was done, I'd suggest spending your time and effort on drumming up more business.


  13. #13

    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Jerry’s post is on the money...
    Just giver the fewest facts that you can...
    You are not being paid so they are attempting to add to their testimony on your dime.
    The chimney was unlined...that’s it.
    If they ask why you gave the recommendation you gave - answer the chimney was unlined.
    Stick with that answer and resist the temptation to elaborate.
    Each time you are asked question repeat the mantra in your head - I am not being paid and then give an answer.
    If they ask a different question that you cannot say the chimney was unlined as an answer just state you don’t know.

    Jeff Zehnder - Home Inspector, Raleigh, NC
    http://www.jjeffzehnder.com/
    http://carolinahomeinspections.com/

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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    I may be wrong, but is that not a Brick lined chimney?
    In 1927, would a brick lined chimney be considered a lined chimney? I think so.

    I think the point is the chimney needs a Metal liner or repair to the mortar of the brick liner to make it safe, no?

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

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    Cool Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    for a chimney to be lined with brick, it must have at least one wythe outer wall then lined with firebrick and refractory mortar in lieu of a terra cotta tile flue liner.

    We have been given no info. on the firing data and appliance collar size for the attached boiler nor chimney height or what size liner was installed. We don't know what the alledged defect is or if there are any operational problems documented.

    If the OP is unwilling to provide further details, then this thread is dead.

    Keep the fire in the fireplace.

  16. #16
    Alan C Grubb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Watson, my only comment to you is I would like to buy your opinion for what it is worth and sell it for what you think it is worth. I could retire. “Since HI is NOT codeinspection, why do you care?” Because I like to learn and unlike you I will admit to not knowing everything.

    Jerry, Thank you, just looking for clarification and some education and you did that.

    Dom, Thank you as well for being clear headed.

    Garry, Thanks for the links I will check them out.

    Wayne, Not trying to determine if it was done correctly, as many on this site have said “not my job,” but unfortunately sometimes when your taught to “call”something you want know why so it can be explained to client. That is what my question was about. In essence just wanted to know what dangers it caused. It all smells fishy to me and would prefer to stay away from it and still might if I can.

    Reid, Yes I did my job, and I am, as of now, not part of the suit, just a subpoenaed witness. Thanks for the advice, I plan on keeping my mouth shut and answers short.

    John, Correct and I am not trying to answer that. The chimney “appeared to be unlined and should be evaluated by a licensed professional” which is what was stated. Unfortunately my post was to determine what the dangers of a gas powered appliance going into an unlined chimney may be and why it is to be called on aHI report. However, my wording was totally off judging on the comments.

    I thank all for your comments, it gives a lot perspective, except for “Watson” whose comments just get everybody off track. I don’t know what happen to you to make you such a condescending A but you need to get
    over it. You’re the reason new guys like me don’t post here more often.


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    Thumbs down Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    I notice you completely ignored Bob Harper in your multi-directed individual response diatribe.You asked a question, I provided the answer - and directed you to NFPA 211. You didn't ask the WHY you asked for the code for an unnamed jurisdiction and unspecified equipment.Yes, there is no doubt you are indeed "hostile". Good luck with that.


  18. #18
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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    While the reply is late I will try to answer the one question no one answered. Some of the dangers of venting into a unlined and miss-sized chimney are
    1) if the exhaust is mixed with too much cold air it will stop rising. This can lead to exhaust spilling into the home, and if the combustion process is affected elevated CO levels in the house or at the least excessive moisture in the home.
    2) The cold bricks and mortar will likely lead to condensation, which is acidic and will damage the mortar. This could lead to exhaust leaks and\or the structural failure of the chimney


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    Default Re: Anyone know the code for unlined chimney?

    Here's two pics from a 90 yr old house. A chimney with a red brick lining is venting a gas water heater. Pic 1 is looking down from the top. It was also corbelled in the attic bedroom. I called for a metal liner to be added.

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

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