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Old roofs & shingles


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I've never commented on it. Don't think I ever will.

Plenty of fuel in a house; does a square of shingles in the attic matter?

Access for firemen......wouldn't they be on the roof opening it with their axes instead of inside the attic crawling around?

From my view, seems like this is an inspector working OT to talk about stuff that's not really stuff.

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Fair enough. I got that from a fire fighter that had trouble putting out a fire. In fact, the place burned to the ground, once those dry shingles started burning.

Yes, firemen would be on the roof, but not knowing there are two separate sections, maybe not getting the water on the fire.

Access - if I can get thru to the other end, great, if not, it needs a hole cut in there.

We had a fire in the roof of our house one time, and the volunteer fire fighters were there in about 10 minutes and put it out. I was away, and my wife got the kids out of the house. It's scary when asphalt starts burning, the fire gets out of control pretty quick.

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Oh, I know. I'm not trying to go easy on fire safety. When asphalt gets fully engaged, it's bad. But....houses are tinderboxes full of flammable and toxic materials. By the time some shingles in an attic engage, it's all over. Hopefully, there's a fire crew set up for containment.

I was just thinking about a home inspection report. Commenting on stuff like that puts ideas in peoples heads they don't need.

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I don't always mention the attic fire thing, but I always report the presence of the old roof in the attic, with pictures, so there's no shock factor sometime down the road.

Then I explain that this is common practice. The old roof keeps the house dry while they are building the new wing.

And I always make sure there is access to both sections.

Ventilation is a good point. Usually, it's an old drafty attic with an addition. In this area, the old part will be OK, but yes, we should check for ventilation problems.

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I don't put it in the report. I'll usually mention it - particularly if it's a 90 year old home and I find an interesting type of shingle or shake under there.

Wish I'd been taking pictures bach then - I remember a house I did my first year in this gig where I went up into the attic and looked down on three separate additions with three different roofs. They'd expanded the house again and again and finally put a huge roof over the top of all of those changes. Climbing around that attic was like exploring Carlsbad caverns - all nooks and crannies - old construction techniquest and products. Very bizarre to look down upon that from the uppermost attic.

I've never seen it be a ventilation issue as long as the bottom of the slope is opened up to allow airflow from old attic to new.

I don't believe it causes a fire to spread any faster. Hell, if there's a fire in there I don't think it's going to make that much of a difference, if any.

Those are architectural grade asphalt shingles. Later roof so it's probably Class A fire rated isn't it? The framing and roof deck will burn faster.

I think we've got bigger fish to fry than imagining something terrible is going to happen 'cuz there's a roof in there.



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the old shingles will trap in moisture coming from the original attic if the ventilation in that area is not adequate.

If the ventilation is inadequate, moisture will be "trapped" anyway. The presence of some shingles won't make a damn bit of difference.

That is one of the problem we see here up north with wall shingles on older houses that were remodeled and put siding over it. The sublayer will tend to rot.

That's a different mechanism entirely.

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