Between rain, public holidays galore and short brickies the estimated 3 weeks to complete our second storey of bricks turned into 7. Just kidding about the brickies, but we do have a few high sections of brickwork at the front of our house, which meant that an extra lift of scaffolding was required to access the work. Extra scaffolding = extra time.
The roof carpenters then took their turn and worked like Trojans (on a public holiday)! Chippies, I owe you beer.
When the roof carpenters finished last week, our air-conditioning installer popped by to check everything was set to accommodate the air-conditioning ducts in the roof. He’ll be back once the roof is on to install it. The roof sheets were measured up and ordered which left me a little confused about why they are not pre-ordered based on the house drawings. Not to worry, it is not holding the process up and our Site Supervisor expects the roof to be on by the end of this week.
Before the roof goes on, there was an opportunity to inspect the brickwork and roof carpentry. We hired an independent building inspector to take a look and assess the work completed against building codes and/or Australian Standards. We are pleased that overall the inspector found a “good industry standard” on site. There are a few non-compliant issues:
- Absent weep holes (to let any moisture between the double brick walls escape)
- Sloppy mortar bridging the space between the double brick walls (which can lead to moisture build up and mould)
- Inadequate mortar filling where toothing occurs in the brick work (creating weak spots)
- Absence of parging on the recessed slab, as per drawings. OK, I had to look this one up. Parging is “a thin coat of a cementitious (!!!) or polymeric mortar applied to concrete or masonry for refinement of the surface.” (Thank you Wiki). Parging is applied for various reasons, e.g. termite deterent, air barrier, but I’m not sure of its purpose in our case.
Webb and Brown-Neaves have the report now and I feel confident that the brickies will be sent back to site to fix up these issues before it’s too late. Speaking of too late, probably we should have had a building inspection before the suspended slab was poured. Much of the sloppy mortar in the cavities will be inaccessible by now.
I have a new found appreciation for Australian building standards following the recent disappearance of our carpark. Yes, that’s right. Our car park, here in Brazil, along with a 10 x 2 meter brick wall and several other car parking spaces, recently fell about 10 metres down into the neighbour’s excavated site. My unqualified opinion on the matter is that they cut too close to our residence and should have reinforced the wall, especially before the rainy season. Luckily, my husband and I had taken note of the rather close excavations and had started parking a little further away from the wall. One of our neighbours was less fortunate.
I added a new page to the blog today for the serious build followers. You can view our build Time Line by clicking on the link in this sentence or by using the page menu on the left side bar. This page contains links to all my blog posts about the building process. I’ll update the Time Line as we progress.