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Moisture breaks at posts


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I am have a discussion (argument) with the builder of a new construction I just inspected in Kirkland WA.

What I said in my report - "Support posts are sitting directly on the concrete pier footings in the crawl space. The posts should rest in metal brackets above concrete piers or should be separated from the concrete below by impervious membranes such as composition shingle scraps. Even if the posts are made of treated wood, the cut ends may not have been field-treated, leaving little or no preservative at the post center."

What the City of Kirkland building department said about this concern "As per permit code, the post must have a metal bracket or shingle, regardless of it being pressure treated or not."

The builder still is arguing that it does not violate the code and will not repair this concern. He wants to have a conference call with me, the buyer and the RE agent to discuss it. Looking for advise on how to proceed to get the builder to perform this repair.

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tn_20141121171054_Bahar%20post.jpg

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Once it has passed muni inspections, it's left between the buyer and the builder. You brought it to the buyer's attention, so you've done your job.

The difference between code compliance and passing muni inspection is politics. Oops, I said the 'P' word.

Marc

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It is not your battle to fight. You just report what you find and then it is up to the buyer. If you have supporting documentation to support your recommendation then that is all that is needed on your part. I would simply end the discussion by telling the builder to supply documentation that supports what he has done. I don't get into pissing contest with builders....

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That's a goofy connector he used there, but maybe nothing was required on the plans. I always use a Simpson base of some type to connect a post to a pier, which provides a capillary break, but it may not be required to meet code, depending on how tall the concrete is.

http://publicecodes.cyberregs.com/icod/ ... par232.htm

That style of connector is common practice with new construction in my area. I rarely see the metal base plates used.

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I would not be concerned with that. The pier is elevated enough so it is very unlikely that deterioration would occur IMO.

In an older house I would agree, but this is new construction and very expensive new construction. IMO the builder should correct the problem.

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What code is the AHJ citing? Am I missing something in the IRC? I see it as a common sense issue but doesn't appear to be in the book.

It seems to be in the code of immemorial custom.

I do not have a code number to quote. I am going on how I was taught to build houses and common building practices in my area. This would be the first new construction or even five year old construction which a moisture break is not installed under the posts. I have observed capillary water damage to many floor posts which do not have a moisture break.

I did send it back to the AHJ after receiving their statement but they now are not responding and will not send out an inspector. The buyer and builder are now looking to me to be judge and jury.

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What code is the AHJ citing? Am I missing something in the IRC? I see it as a common sense issue but doesn't appear to be in the book.

It seems to be in the code of immemorial custom.

I do not have a code number to quote. I am going on how I was taught to build houses and common building practices in my area. This would be the first new construction or even five year old construction which a moisture break is not installed under the posts. I have observed capillary water damage to many floor posts which do not have a moisture break.

I did send it back to the AHJ after receiving their statement but they now are not responding and will not send out an inspector. The buyer and builder are now looking to me to be judge and jury.

Let it go. This is no big deal any which way.

Just say you don't agree with this. And drop it.

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Looking for advise on how to proceed to get the builder to perform this repair.

Sounds like you're taking on some sort of enforcement role. Good luck with that.

That column seems to have some notable height to it and if moisture is wicking up that high then there's a larger concern going on.

From the photo I would pay it no mind.

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Thanks guys! These are exactly the opinions I was looking for. I did remove myself from the discussion by stating this is my opinion and not a review of the building code. New construction builders have a statement in their contract with the buyers of not fixing anything which is not a code violation. They use this statement on any item they do not want to fix or address.

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You stated earlier that the AHJ had said this was a code violation. Why can't they give you a code citation to use?

Good question. The AHJ was not responding anymore to my clients request for a field inspection. The builder now only wants to hear from the AHJ, which is fine with me. I knew it was not the right position to be in, but I was trying to protect my clients and their interests.

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