Welcome to your (Dangerous) new home! Pt. 2

Hi guys,

Part one dealt with radon and other VOCs and offgassing. In part two we’re going to quick highlight some structural concerns to be aware of. We’re going to talk about TJI’s. Now the point of these articles isn’t to elicit fear. We want to show you that we care about your home safety. We’ve done research, and we have advice we want to share to make sure whoever you build with, you get the safest house possible!

TJI’s are the new OSB webbed floor joists that you see in the majority of new home construction. With the advent of TJI’s came quieter, stronger floors with longer spans and a lower cost than engineered wood web truss floors. It was exciting times for the building industry! We could build better, for cheaper!

Lately however there have been some disconcerting stories emerging about fire safety and TJI’s. Studies on burn time and fire failure are coming back with a bleak picture. I joists are shown to be failing in approximately half the time as dimensional lumber. Now the argument from the I joist industry is that glues and resins actually burn at a higher temperature than wood does.

However two strikes counter that claim. One is that when house fires occur, the 26 degree difference from glue’s burn point and wood’s burn point is statistically insignificant. The other issue is that the biggest factor in fire fail time is the actual cross section area. Both these issues point to proven better results with conventional nominal floor joists or engineered wood trusses.

Now thankfully houses are being built to better fire codes, we’re installing more smoke and fire alarms, and more sprinkler systems which is allowing fire fighters to catch and fight the fires in earlier stages. Construction methods on all components of a home are getting better every year. But you’ll never be able to replace the bones of your house.

Come talk to Dueck Builders about how to build a safer home for more peace of mind.

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