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  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    I haven't jhad my coffee this morning so excuse me if this is a dumb question. I have read IRC information and elsewhere about the attic firewall requirements between an attached garage and the main residence. I am in Texas and hardly ever see this enforced or being a part of construction practices here, in single family homes. My question is why is this not enforced in (Dallas area) Texas ?? Am I missing something ?

    (When I see attic firewalls, they are in condo/Townhouse/multifamily buildings), not single family.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Georgetown, KY
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Call the local building official and ask them?

    We can speculate. They can answer.


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    Erby Crofutt, Georgetown, KY - Read my Blog here: Erby the Central Kentucky Home Inspector B4 U Close Home Inspections www.b4uclose.com www.kentuckyradon.com
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  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Gene, can you cite the portion of the code you are talking about?
    From what I understand, fire walls, are not required IF there is a separation with a minimum of 1/2 gypsum over the common walls and ceiling on the garage side of the attached garage.
    Got to run.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  4. #4
    Bob Spermo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Gene

    I don't believe the IRC requires that separation. It requires 1/2" gypsum on the garage side between the garage and living spaces. It also requires 5/8' gypsum on the garage ceiling if the room above is habitable. See R309.2 of the IRC.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    McKinney Texas
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Hi Jim, I see you are in Allen so you know in the DFW area we see garage attics and house attics as one combined attic space all the time. Sometimes the garage hatch is the only attic access for the main house. My question was whether there is a firewall code to separate the garage attic from the main residence attic ? I think there is not because thousands of DFW houses are built with one common attic covering the house and attached garage and it is unlikely that many homes would be built out of code unless there is something that I am missing. The reason this came up in the first palce is I got some info from ASHI, that lead me to believe it was a code and they also mentioned it would be reinforeced in the 2006 IRC code. So the ASHI info lead me to ask the question. That is all I know. I did not read it in the 2003 IRC.

    Thanks

    Gene


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Gene South View Post
    My question was whether there is a firewall code to separate the garage attic from the main residence attic ?

    Yes and no, or, it depends.

    *IF* the garage ceiling has 1/2" gypsum board installed on it, then no.

    *IF* the garage ceiling is open trusses, then the 1/2" gypsum board on the wall to the house must extend up into the attic to the bottom of the roof sheathing.

    The requirement is to separate the garage from 'the living space and its attic', installing 1/2" gypsum board on the garage ceiling does that.

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

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    R309.2 Separation required.
    The garage shall be separated
    fromthe residence and its attic area by not less than
    1/2-inch (12.7
    mm) gypsum board applied to the garage side. Garages beneath
    habitable rooms shall be separated from all habitable rooms
    above by not less than
    5/8-inch (15.9 mm) Type X gypsum board
    or equivalent. Where the separation is a floor-ceiling assembly,
    the structure supporting the separation shall also be protected by
    not less than
    1/2-inch (12.7 mm) gypsum board or equivalent.
    Garages located less than 3 feet (914 mm) from a dwelling unit
    on the same lot shall be protected with not less than
    1/2-inch (12.7
    mm) gypsum board applied to the interior side of exterior walls
    that are within this area. Openings in these walls shall be regulated
    by SectionR309.1. This provision does not apply to garage
    walls that are perpendicular to the adjacent dwelling unit wall.



    There is a solid bar beside this section so this means the section had a technical change to it!

    The garage does not need a separation wall between the attic and garage!




  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Carlisle View Post
    The garage does not need a separation wall between the attic and garage!
    Wayne,

    Actually, that answer is *not always* correct.

    Your answer *is not* correct if the ceiling in the garage is open to the garage attic. As I stated above, if that is the case, then the garage wall DOES need to extend up into the attic.

    This is the 2003 IRC code. (underlining is mine)
    R309.2 Separation required.
    The garage shall be separated from the residence and its attic area by not less than 1/2-inch (12.7 mm) gypsum board applied to the garage side. Garages beneath habitable rooms shall be separated from all habitable rooms above by not less than 5/8-inch (15.9 mm) Type X gypsum board or equivalent. Where the separation is a floor-ceiling assembly, the structure supporting the separation shall also be protected by not less than 1/2-inch (12.7 mm) gypsum board or equivalent.


    WHEN the separation is not a floor-ceiling assembly ... you go back to the first requirement: "The garage shall be separated from the residence and its attic area by not less than 1/2-inch (12.7 mm) gypsum board applied to the garage side."

    "the garage side" goes from the floor to the roof sheathing above.


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

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Location
    Texas
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    Default Re: Why is this not enforced in Texas ??

    Jerry. I knew that! I guess I shoud have been a little more clear. I was refering to (which I didn't say) a separation wall going from the top plate of the wall between the garage and the living space up to the deck like they are required to do in townhomes.

    I post comments thinking that everybody should know what I am thinking! You mean you guys can't read my mind?

    I will be more specific on my comments from here on out!

    I'm not going to say you are right because there may be "someone" that might get offended by your knowledge! I wonder who????

    Thanks for catching me on my thoughts that weren't totally expressed! Dang....now I'm confusing myself!!!


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