08:57PM | 05/28/04
Member Since: 05/27/04
3 lifetime posts
We are in he midst of having a new patio cover built onto our home. This is to replace a homemade job that came with the house and was very poorly done and nailed to the facia (sp?) without joist hangers and 3 4x4 posts. It was cedar trellis-like 1x2 with wavy metal thrown on top and screwed down. It is being replaced with treated 6x6 posts and 2x6 pine(I don't know the word.......rafters?) framing. The underside is enclosed. It is wired for two ceiling fans and six recessed lights. It is supposed to have a 1/12 pitch and will have torch down roof. We were really excited about it!

Our home is a 1973 brick rectangle with a hip roof. We have pine 1x6 t&g decking. Here's the problem. This is the first of three contracts we have signed for the house. The same contractor is installing 2 skylights and replacing our 3 tab with deminsionals and a ridge vent. I really don't want to P. O. him after only 2 days. However, the new structure is possibly not tied-in right. The 2x6 were cut at angles and set on top of the decking. OUr roof has a 6/12 pitch. The very tip of the 2x6s are resting over the wall but it looks like the whoe thing slid off some before it was attached because it is only touching the roof for about 1 1/2-2 inches. The 2x6s are spaced further apart than the roof's and are not lying over or nailed to them in any way. There is 2xsomething nailed to the decking just back from the fasia and 2x4 nailed upright, perpendicular to that.(at the very front edge of the existing roof). It appears that all of the weight is resting on this 2x4 which is cracking around the nails on 3 of 6 ends ( but nowhere in the middle). In the center of the soffit there is some sagging. There was a small amount of rot there due to a small leak around a plumbing exhaust pipe and the t&g was cut out here (and replaced with scrap non- t&g from the torn down cover) The small amount of rot in the support was left and I was told that it didn't matter as it was close to the end and would be enclosed and under new patio roof anyway. In our attic two of the large supports for the roof have pulled out apprx 1/2 inch. This side of the house has a cathedral ceiling and all of the AC vents run along its edge there so it does not have the 4 ft. perlins (sp?) supporting the roof like the other side does.

I talked to the contractor about my concerns and he said not to worry, that he was aware of what I was talking about and it would be fixed (but how? and why did they go ahead and enclose most of it and do the electric after he looked it over in the morning without fixing any of what was wrong? Can it be fixed without being rebuilt? ) Then, less than an hour after I spoke with him, his carpenter called rather upset and said he had just been "reamed out" because I had called, and said I was angry about his work--which I was not, I was merely concerned and had some questions. He was really defensive and said he didn't know what I was talking about and for me to make a list and show him Tues. when they are due back. (The roof is supposed to start then too--I think). My neighbor said they should have cut into the roof and nailed the patio 2x6 to the roof's 2x6 and that I should make sure they don't have the weight resting on the very edge--like it appears to be. Is he right or, am I being paranoid and causing problems for the carpenter? Also, inside we have noticed that the cathedral ceiling's drywall (with thick popcorn) is about 1/8 lower on the side of where the new cover is attached. (I don't know if it was like that before, but we have never noticed it and it is very close to where the skylights are going, so I think I would have seen it). This is our first home and we have no experience with anything like this. Any advice/explanation would be really appreciated. PS should we have a building permit for this work? If so, who is resposible for getting it, me or the contractor?


02:14PM | 05/30/04
Member Since: 11/06/02
1281 lifetime posts
Well, from whatr I can see here, everything might be all right, but then again, it might be all wrong. You probably have some reason to be concerned, but lack the terminology to describe it accurately here.

My first advice is to get out the camera and start shooting pictures of these scary details. If you have a digital, my e-mail is [email protected] please don't send large files tho or it will choke my email program. Or find onew of those spaces that post photos free online like HP has, and link to it here.

Even if I never see the photos, you have a documentation of things before they are entirely hidden. Try to shoot the pics after hours so as not to make the carp any more defensive or have him pose with a detail in the viewfinder by "accident" if you know what I mean. Just say "Smile!" when he is standing next to it.

with documentation you can show things to another professional later.

which leads to my next suggestion. Hire a home inspector who is familiar with framing and roofing to check the job out. a couple of c-notes can be cheap insurance for his advice, and if he finds that things are wrong, his professional testimony along with the photo docs can help you later should it come to a court claim.

For free - is there no building department to inspect the work in your locale? Many rural areaa are like that but if this work is subject to permitting and inspection, the public employee should beable to help you out in getting a proper job.

I don't know your area or the span of this structure, but 2x6 are rarely strong enough for a roof with a low pitch like this, especially when spread further than the roof framing. I presume that sionce this sounds like it is stick framed, that the roof of the house has the framing at 16" OC which is good.

Finally, unless the skylights are extremely narrow, it is almost impossible to install them in a finished roof/ceiling system without tearing it apart. If a roof rafter is cut, then the pair on either side of it must be doubled up from top to bottom with what we call a sister. Then a header is placed at top and bottom of the shylight, perpendicular to the rafters. To do all this, either the ceiling or the roof sheathing must be removed. From what I can tell of your description, they have just cut in the roof and it is sagging from the damage they did.

There are plenty of hacks in this trade. One way to avoid them is to check references before signing and see some of their other work or talk to previous customers. Then check that they have liability insurance and a workman's comp policy in case any workers get hurt on your property.

Excellence is its own reward!



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