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John Contractor
John Contractor, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 290
Experience:  Licensed GC, OSHA Certified, 25 Years Experience Commercial & Residential
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Our home was built in1966. Since riff shingle weigh much

Customer Question

Our home was built in1966. Since riff shingle weigh much than those made originally, The attic beams are old and far apart. The result is a sagging ceiling with cracks. Our home is not up to code now. Approximately what is the average cost for a structural
engineer to repair our issue?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Home Improvement
Expert:  Susan Latta replied 1 year ago.

Hi, my name is ***** ***** I've built many spec and custom homes. I'm trying to figure out the best plan of action in your situation and have a few questions for you first, if you don't mind. You say that you have riff shingles? Please tell me your definition of what those are: asphalt, clay, or other composition? Are these original shingles to the house or were these added after the house was built? Was this home built by a reputable builder? Have you seen the ceiling rafters and their spacing? What is that spacing? Is this a vaulted ceiling? Is the sagging and cracking in every room or 1 certain room? Have you seen cracking in the sheetrock in the walls or foundation within other parts of the house?

Attic beams or ceiling joists, will last 100's of years when properly cared for (no roof leaks or fallen tree limbs). Do you plan on keeping the riff shingles?

Thank you.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm sorry. I misspelled roof. The roof was replaced about 10 yrs ago. Thank you
Expert:  Susan Latta replied 1 year ago.

Are you wanting to continue with your original question or opting out, so I know how to proceed?

Expert:  Susan Latta replied 1 year ago.

Hi, my name is ***** ***** I can help you with this issue. Knowing how to use the flue correctly is very important to maintaining your fire and your enjoyment of the warmth it provides. Here are several ideas for you to try:

Can you see the flue open and close when you look up inside the firebox at the top? Usually as you move the lever up and down you can see or hear whether it's open or closed. You can hear a suction sound on a breezy day, like it's drawing air up, and that means the flue is open.

To determine if the flue is open or closed, have you tried holding a lit lighter near the top of the firebox, and then moving the lever up and then down and watching what the flame does in each case? If the flame acts like it is dancing, the flue is open.

Have you read the manual that came with the fireplace? It should tell you which way is open or closed. If all else fails you can call the fireplace's customer service phone number and they will be able to tell you.

I found this too, and on page 13 it tells you how to open and close the flue, except here it is a dial rather than a lever:

Does this answer your question? If not, we can try something else. Thanks,


Expert:  John Contractor replied 1 year ago.

The structural engineer will not be able to help you the only thing he can do for you is come out and assess what needs to be done to your house also he can get you in touch with a good contractor and the price usually runs between 500 to $750 for structural engineer to come out and do something like this hope this is helpful thank you and have a good day

Expert:  John Contractor replied 1 year ago.

I hope that giving you the cost of the structural engineer above and letting you know that the structural engineer will have to draw some plans to bring the house up to code and then the entire project will have to be referred out to a general contractor was helpful to you.


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