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Disaster in the making? Advice needed please

Discussion in 'Building' started by hillster, 2 Dec 2011.

  1. hillster

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    Hi all,

    I've recently had a doorway knocked through from my hallway into my integral garage. The builder has now finished and I was examining his work this evening and I concerned about the lintel he's put above the new door.

    The door has been put in a thermalite dry lined wall, I was assured it wasn't load bearing by the builder but I now have a horrible feeling it is.

    The lintel is supported by thermalite, I should have thought the builder would have used a bed of mortar underneath at the ends? He has above it.

    As you can see on the picture I'm able to move part of the thermalite out of the way on the right hand side, this is when the alarm bells rang.

    Surely this cant be right?

    I'll admit I've been very naive about this and never got the building regs checked out. I'll be on the phone first thing in the morning regarding this.

    At least the builder hasn't been paid a penny, he's popping in for his cheque over the weekend. Would it be reasonable not to pay him until I'm 100% happy?

     
  2. ColJack

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    whats above?
    which way do the joists / rafters run?
    I'm no builder but I don't think that thermalite can be load bearing can it? given that you can cut it with a saw and dig out socket backboxes with a butter knife ( well nearly.. )..
    surely it's too soft to support any kind of load and would only be used for internal partitions?
     
  3. Space cat

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    There's something behind that gap above the top of the door. It appears dark red in your pictures. Any idea what it is? :?: :?: :?:
     
  4. hillster

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    It'll either be the architrave or plasterboard sheet on the other side of the wall.
     
  5. hillster

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    Above is a bedroom. I'm unsure which way the joists run.

    I agree, I'd imagine thermalite is too soft to support much, hopefully it's just an internal partition. I've got a couple of days off next week, I'll take a look to see what way the joists run.
     
  6. Mrdjc

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    Thermalite can support loads properly but they have to be spread adequately with a wide enough lintel.

    How far is it overlapped onto the walls?

    If the lintel was a pre-fab, there should be instructions on how wide a gap it can span maximum, along with how much of the lintel edges should be resting on a supporting wall.

    In any case, the only cracking of one brick indicates that there was a greater load on that one brick compared to the rest, so perhaps the area the lintel is sitting on wasn't quite level. (Mortar should have levelled it out so the load is even throughout the area that is carrying it.)
     
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  7. leew2

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    Something else which looks worriying is that gap around the doorframe. As it's a garage I belive that should be a FD30 fire door (is it?) and thus that gap should be filled with fire rated expanding foam or simular.
     
  8. ibby

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    coorect!
     
  9. hillster

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    Yes it's a FD30 fire door. I'll pick up some fire resistant expanding foam and get it sorted. Thanks.
     

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