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  1. #1
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    Post Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary Heral

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    Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building &#39;envelope&#39;
    Calgary Herald
    Even with a home inspection, it&#39;s not like opening a hood of a car. Trust is placed that the job was done right. Often, years of expensive legal wrangling is the only recourse. Al Sajan with Seven Sevens Corp., the project developer who&#39;s named in a ...




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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary H

    I see major problems with building envelopes at least once a week - moisture intrusion inspections now account for more than half my income.

    It can be really heartbreaking to inform property owners of the extent of these problems, but as a guy I once hired to tell me how market my business suggested (tongue-in-cheek) as a possible slogan the plaster on my truck, on my letterhead, on my website and perhaps to tattoo on my forehead:

    "Your leak is my luck"

    Because at least here in Chicago, they way they built over the last 15 years is going to keep me busy for the rest of my life.

    Michael Thomas
    Paragon Property Services Inc., Chicago IL
    http://paragoninspects.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary H

    My specialty is moisture intrusion/inspecting EIFS/Stucco, and I see this all the time. Although the responsibility falls on the builder/developer, and the "buck" rightfully falls with him, it is the architects responsibility to incorporate proper drainage into the plans of the building... few do, especially when it comes to residential housing.

    Even though most builders are (have to be) good at keeping the cost of construction down, I really don't think they consciously skimp on moisture protection. I do believe they get the plans, and pass them on to the contractors for bidding and building. I think most don't even have a clue, and rely on their contractors to do a "good " job.

    Everybody blames EIFS (etc) for failures, when in fact it is seldom the EIFS that fails. It is usually a flashing or interface problem. When the EIFS installer arrives to install his portion of the job, I don't see them shutting down and sending the crew home because the roofing or window contractor did not install proper flashings, and in an age where who gets the job is usually dependant upon price, unless it is specified in the plans (ahead of time), few contractors are going to submit a higher price for something his customer does not even know exists.

    If a building is "lucky", the builder has enough knowledge and experience with moisture intrusion to understand that from day one, every precaution, including failsafes and backups must be incorporated into the design.

    There really should be one person that is responsible for coordinating, and as a liasion between all of the trades to ensure that the end product is an efficient watershed.

    I see the silliest, most basic faults cause oceans of problems. In most cases, an ounce of prevention would have saved a kilo of cure.

    Michael, I have to remember your motto: "your leak is my luck." I don't know if I could say that to a client that is cursed with a water intrusion problem, but it does ring a bell.

    Last edited by Steven Turetsky; 06-30-2011 at 06:12 PM. Reason: Typos
    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
    eifsinspectionsnewyork.com

  4. #4
    hershfieldtwo's Avatar
    hershfieldtwo Guest

    Default Re: Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary H

    The envelope is made up of all of the exterior components of the building, including walls, roofing, foundations, windows, and doors. Finish materials like siding and decorative items are not usually considered a part of the envelope. Insulation, building paper, and other components aimed at controlling moisture and airflow are typically included in the building envelope design.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary H

    This is not the first article on Canada's building problems with moisture intrusion. It's an issue that builders, contractors, muni inspectors and even home owners lack interest in. There seems to be this mindset that if the exterior looks nice it's acceptable. The interest doesn't kick in until the symptoms arise. And even then there's not much effort to be sure the repairs are done correctly. So when people have problems there's not a lot of empathy from me.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  6. #6
    hershfieldtwo's Avatar
    hershfieldtwo Guest

    Default Re: Editorial: Tougher inspections needed of critical building 'envelope' - Calgary H

    Of course it is generally acknowledged that the elements contained in the building envelope systems tremendously important and vital components of these modern building systems.




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