DISCLAIMER: I don't read, understand, or interpret the code book. That's Hubs' job. I just bought the dang book and got it home. I may have mis-quoted the code in this post -it may be slightly more lenient than what I say here- but the general idea is close. Whatever the code may actually say, Hubs is adamant that these guys were "wrong, dead wrong."
First, I'll give y'all a quick little lesson in carpentry code. Hubs will be my assistant for this lesson. Our house is 24 feet from front to back. There is a major support running side-to-side in the middle of the house, and each of the joists in the kitchen rest on the back wall of the house and on that center support. (Another set of joists rest on the center support and the front of the house.) Carpentry code says that you are absolutely, under NO CIRCUMSTANCES, allowed to drill holes or cut notches in the middle 1/2 of joists. Hubs will now illustrate the no-cut zone in our kitchen.
|Gonna make fun of his respirator? I'll break your face! Did you miss what was up in that ceiling???|
|That's a 10"-thick joist (top to bottom). That's a 3" drain pipe. And a 4-5" deep notch. They took HALF it's structural strength away, IN THE NO-DRILL ZONE!!! What the hell!!!?|
|They did it TWICE. This is the same joist, farther over. As right as it gets, but refer to Lesson 2A for why it's still wrong Wrong WRONG!|
Let's take this whole don't-notch/drill-the-top thing to a whole new level. Joists are structural support, right? And where you need extra support, because you are supporting extra weight, what do you do? Add more joists! Double or triple them up - they are stronger that way. So. If you NEED more support to the point that you add an extra joist.... WHY WOULD YOU CUT IT UP!?!?????? In the MIDDLE of the run AND the TOP of the joist, nonetheless!
|Look below that 3" pipe, you can see a lighter-colored joist, then a darker-colored one, and they're RIGHT next to each other. A part of our roof rests on these joists, that's why there are two of them.|
On to Lesson 2. Code doesn't only dictate how far over on each joist you can drill. It also tells you how far up and down you can drill. IN THE MIDDLE. It has to be drilled IN THE MIDDLE of the joist. Notches in the top and bottom or holes that aren't in the middle weaken it and make it want to buckle on itself.
|See that pipe that's drilled at the bottom? Structurally bad. See the little chunk of drywall still attached to the underside of the joist?|
|That's right, they did it TWICE. (Maybe even 3 joists... I didn't take any more pics of this stuff... you get the idea.)|
On to Lesson 2A. You can only drill in the middle AND you can only drill the middle 1/3. First, for anyone who doesn't work with lumber, a 2x10 isn't really 2" by 10". It's more like 1-1/2" by 9-1/4" or 9-1/2". So code doesn't care that you CALL it a 2x10. Code cares that the lumber is 9-1/2" thick. Divide that by 3 and you get a little over 3". So you canNOT drill in the bottom 3" nor the top 3", nor can you drill MORE than the middle 3" - such as centering a 4" hole and drilling out all 3 middle inches, plus 1/2" into the top 1/3, and 1/2" into the bottom 1/3. Can't do it. ONLY the middle 3". Well this is all 3" drain pipe we're looking at here, and typically you want to drill a LITTLE bigger than the pipe - say, a 4" hole for a 3" pipe! Therefore, by code, by this math, YOU CAN'T RUN 3" DRAIN PIPE THROUGH ANY OF THESE JOISTS!!!!!!!!!!
|You can see the overview of the bathroom plumbing here.|
Now, back to this part:
|This is called a sanitary T. It is designed to be used in the VERTICAL position, not horizontal. No wonder our toilet doesn't always flush well!|
|This is the entryway to the kitchen in the (front-to-back) center of our house. This is a load-bearing wall. The weight is carried by... A ONE-BY-FOUR?????? WHAT?|
|That 1x4 I just showed you? This is the bottom of it. Who or what chewed/drilled a hole here in the floor and why....? We have NO CLUE.|