It was a busy week with a couple nice floor inspections. The most interesting one was a factory-finished floor that had significant overwood and underwood issues. Corners and edges were higher than adjoining boards, and in some spots sections of boards were lower than adjoining boards. Measurements on removed boards show some significant thickness variations in the flooring. The sad part was that a section of this flooring was replaced to get rid of the over/underwood issues, but the replacement flooring wasn't any better.

I followed another inspector on a different house. That inspector found joist moisture levels near 25% in the crawl space under the floor. I found moisture levels significantly less, but also found evidence that the inspector didn't go in the crawl space. In this house, you had to crawl under an addition to get to the part with the wood floor issue. Then you had to crawl in a trench dug out for the furnace. Here's a photo of the trench pathway.

Craig_Dewitt_Crawl_Space.jpg

This part of the job isn't for the big guys or those with claustrophobia. I envy all of you with with basements and slabs.

The gang building the new shed here is one truss shy of a roof. I think that's similar to being a few cards short of a full deck, or not having the elevator go all the way to the top, but in this case, it's also literal. We are at a standstill until they get a new truss delivered. Friends and money are not a good mix. Friends and construction are also not a good mix. How and when do you pull the plug on a friend who's not doing a good job?

Craig DeWitt, PhD, PE, is president of RLC Engineering LLC in Clemson, S.C. Craig has a PhD in engineering and specializes in wood, moisture and indoor environments. He has provided inspection and consulting services for over 20 years.