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Deck construction code adoption?


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Hello,

I'm inspecting a second story deck for a Fire/Life safety report as the 1979 home it's attached to never got its final code inspection. My report is to be used to satisfy the local authorities for their needs before the owner puts this house up for sale.

Does anyone know when codes were adopted specifying deck construction methods? I have been unable to find anything going back that far online. Two local code officials, city and county, don't have that info, and the few copies that may exist in the state of OR are at least 150 miles away. One official thinks that the lag bolt method of attaching ledgers may have come into use after 1979.

Thanks for anything that may get me going in the right direction.

Tim

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I don't know the answers to your questions. However, I would not be concerned with if the deck met code when it was built 37 years ago. I would be focused on if the deck was safe today. From my experience a 37 year old deck should have been torn down and replaced years ago. I'd be interested in seeing pictures if you could post some.

I have never heard of a Fire/Life Safety report. Is that a OR thing?

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I'm not familiar with the codes that were generally used west of the Mississippi. But, prescriptive codes for deck ledges, etc. are relatively recent in the code (Scott may be correct about 2006). Anything otherwise would rely on engineering design. Nailed deck ledgers are unlikely to meet design requirements for withdraw (especially after 30+ years). I would also not look for old standards. If a deck collapsed I would hate to have said that it was ok based on 30 year old standards.

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Hello,

I'm inspecting a second story deck for a Fire/Life safety report as the 1979 home it's attached to never got its final code inspection. My report is to be used to satisfy the local authorities for their needs before the owner puts this house up for sale.

Does anyone know when codes were adopted specifying deck construction methods? I have been unable to find anything going back that far online. Two local code officials, city and county, don't have that info, and the few copies that may exist in the state of OR are at least 150 miles away. One official thinks that the lag bolt method of attaching ledgers may have come into use after 1979.

Thanks for anything that may get me going in the right direction.

Tim

Hi Tim,

In 1979, the construction of a single family home in Oregon would have been covered by the UBC. (We didn't start using CABO till 1986, when we adopted the 1983 edition.)

The 1976 UBC doesn't say squat about decks. (At least as far as I can see.)

If I were in your place, I'd apply the latest requirements.

Jim Katen

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Hello,

I'm inspecting a second story deck for a Fire/Life safety report as the 1979 home it's attached to never got its final code inspection. My report is to be used to satisfy the local authorities for their needs before the owner puts this house up for sale.

Does anyone know when codes were adopted specifying deck construction methods? I have been unable to find anything going back that far online. Two local code officials, city and county, don't have that info, and the few copies that may exist in the state of OR are at least 150 miles away. One official thinks that the lag bolt method of attaching ledgers may have come into use after 1979.

Thanks for anything that may get me going in the right direction.

Tim

Hi Tim,

In 1979, the construction of a single family home in Oregon would have been covered by the UBC. (We didn't start using CABO till 1986, when we adopted the 1983 edition.)

The 1976 UBC doesn't say squat about decks. (At least as far as I can see.)

If I were in your place, I'd apply the latest requirements.

Jim Katen

Jim,

Thanks for your reply. I talked to a state code guy in Salem, who said pretty much the same thing, with the exception of the guards having been covered in the UBC at that time. I've advised the owner of what I thought the best thing (tearoff) and he's going to bolt the ledger along with replacing the floorboards and anything rotten. This is in Bend, where, as you know, things are significantly drier than the west side, and is probably the only reason it has lasted this long.

Best regards!

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