Oakville Homes

November 9, 2011

Did your builder leave a surprise for you? Mine did.


You know how pets can leave little surprises around your place – hair balls, little sausages, etc.  Well, builders can do the same thing when they rush a house and rush the construction.

Rush your investment.

Mattamy left me a number of surprises, one of which just keeps on giving.  I believe the first surprise was a little sausage (actually a big one) in the basement.

A house-warming gift maybe?  Other people got flowers.

Noisy heating and air conditioning duct work.

I have lived and visited a number of homes.  Mattamy seems to need an education on how to properly install heating and cooling ducts, at least in my case.

I did some research and found out it will cost me a bundle to get rid of the noise – noise a professional installer would have insured would not have happened.

And excerpt from “Ask the Builder” by Tim Carter.

“Our new home is now three years old. Ever since  move-in day there have been annoying ticking noises in several interior walls of  our home. Some of the noises start minutes after our furnace comes on. The  clicks then go away five minutes after the furnace shuts off. We also have  cracking noises when someone takes a bath or shower in a second floor bathroom.  The builder says all of this is normal and nothing can be done.

Yes, brings back memories.  Mattamy told me a lot of things were normal.

Tim’s response:

“You are a victim of simple expansion and  contraction……..Craftsmen who know that metal ducts and PVC plumbing lines move can do  various things to make sure that movement happens with little or no noise. The  trick is to isolate as much as possible the pipes from actually touching any  wood framing……..Exorcizing these demons from your walls is not going to be  easy. You will need to isolate and identify the exact trouble areas. Doing this  almost always involves removal of the drywall or plaster. ……….Great builders and craftsmen also account for lumber shrinkage. The lumber  used to frame the house can actually shrink over time. Openings that were fine  during the construction phase may become tight only 6 months later. There is no  substitute for experience and brains when it comes to small detail items such as  this.

The key words in the foregoing are: Craftsmen and Great Builders.  Both of which seemed to be absent when they built my house.  I still get to hear the musical tones of the contracting and expanding of the joints.

Here is another reason, which a professional builder would realize and have done during the construction of the home:

“at this stage it is a little late! whoever made up the ducts should have cross creased the long trunk lines. what cross creasing means is when the duct was made on a press brake, the side pieces of the duct are placed in the brake corner to corner and a slight crease is made, then flipped around again corner to corner and creased again. This gives the look of a large X on both sides of the trunk line. air going through the trunk line with any force expands out the sides of the trunk. without cross creasing the sides “pop” out and then “pop” back in giving you that noise.”
You’ll notice that they state it must be done during construction and that repairs afterwards are extensive.  Yes, if you’re lucky to have Mike Holmes come over, he’ll tear out those walls and correct the offending duct-work at little cost to yourself.  But the rest of us will have to pay the full freight.  Do you get used to the noise?  A little – like the train running behind your house.  But, guests will notice and visiting children will find the place a bit spooky.
Easiest fix – hire a house inspector to monitor the construction and point out these things to the obviously sub-standard trade putting in the duct work.  You either do it right or not at all.  Why should you, the homeowner, trust your builder to ensure a good build.  He is there for profit and will make short cuts.  Like Mattamy, who did the illegal wiring to allow a sale.  Hell, if they will break the building code on that kind of safety item, god only knows what they would try in other areas.  Yes, the illegal wiring is documented at the Town of Oakville.  But then, a donation works wonders.
Now tell me – who in their right mind would disagree that a homebuyer should have the right to hire (at his/her own cost) a house inspector to ensure their investment is built right?
Politicians, developers and builders, that’s who.  Funny how all three are in the donation circuit.
Right McGuinty?

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* The above is intended to show the reader examples of how to obtain a house inspector, no matter which builder you buy from. Remember, awards and advertising are designed to make you buy, not ensure you quality. We’ve shown that awards are not the standard on which to base your decision on. My use of my experiences are not made to embarass Mattamy Homes or Peter Gilgan but, are used because they are based on fact and show the larger picture that a house inspector is a requirement when buying a house, new or old from any builder. My experience only shows that in fact it can happen and is a fact of life. Your experiences with Mattamy may have differed.


1 Comment »

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