Can someone tell me, is it normal to have all kinds of air leaks and drafts
throughout a condo that is brand new?
For example, any time I take the plates off from the plugs or light switches
I have crazy drafts; I have cold air coming in from the oven hood exhaust as
well as cold air coming in from the air exchanger vents; I also have leaks
around some of the window frames. I don't think this is normal
The builder is quite difficult and responds ever so slowly to these issues
(as well as other open issues). It just kills me that these a$$hole
contractors/builders can get away with such things and the consumer is stuck
with no recourse.
Any ideas would be appreciated on how to deal with him; I don't think that
ALL contractors are like this, but the ones who actually care are surely in
If all the units have this sort of problem, then you may be able to sue
the builder as a group, and pressure him into fixing the problems.
Unfortunately, the way they throw up new buildings now, the stucco
covering the crappy underpinnings will last just long enough for the
builder to go out of business.
I hope that there are no balconies or decks.
Leaks should not happen in new buildings but you have proven nothing.
To prove leaks are excessive and pinpoint problems a 2-300$ Blower Door
test is necessary, leaks are pinpointed with a chemical smoke stick and
air exchanges per hour are computed and printed out. Get together with
condo managers to get a test and act as a group to do what is needed.
As an electrician I feel drafts coming from outlets and switches quite
often. I have even felt air movement on interior wall outlets. I don't
know if you have a leg to stand on with this situation. Most housing today
is built to minimum standards and unless the code requirements call for
draft protection, the builder didn't do anything wrong. Have you tried
calling your local building department to get their opinion. They are the
ones who should have inspected the construction as it progressed.
Plus, he says the outlet drafts occur when he takes off the cover
plate. Well, duh! Stop taking off the cover plates. It's not
unusual to have drafts with the cover off. Also, there are sealing
widgets available in the electrical supply area at home stores to seal
The range hood should have a flapper type seal on the outlet.
Perhaps it's stuck. Many of these are cheap crap and you may be able
to replace it with a better one, they only cost a few bucks.
Air exchanger leaks, can't help with. IMO, unless you have a house
specifically built to be airtight for energy conservation, you will
have enough air infiltration that you don't need anything else to
bring in outside air. Sounds like you;re seeing that and the
exchanger is just another energy waste. Especially if it's not a hear
recovery type, which if it's typical cheap condo construction, it
Wow! where you two live? Ever heard of building code and air tight
house? In this day and age who builds drafty house? I thought U.S.
is most modern high tech country where everything is up-to-date and
exemplary. How about spending money on building better houses than
throwing money on questionable war? I read somewhere, one year war cost
in Iraq can cover everyone's health care there with some money left
over. I remove any electrical box cover, not a sign of draft!
House was custom built in '94 with my supervision on R2000 spec.
There is no building code in NJ, nor any other area that I'm aware of
that requires an air tight house.
In this day and age who builds drafty house?
Being drafty and getting enough air exchange via some leakage, opening/
closing doors etc are too different things. I've seen lots of new
construction recently, and not one of them had an air exchanger.
I thought U.S.
And now, like a real schmuck, you want to drag politics into a simple
discussion on air leakage and slam the USA. Wherever you live, you
probably have lots of extra govt money. You don't spend much on
military, because you know if the world gets really screwed up, the
good old USA will be there to deal with evil and save your ass.
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