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TOPIC: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question

Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43049

In pointing this fact out....Is it just a recommended upgrade as a possible safety hazard?

I mean the buyer is'nt required to replace the rails with new ones to meet the current standard?


David

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Re: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43057

Yes, I would identify as potential safety concern and recommend upgrade.

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Re: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43060

The reality is most clients will not make this upgrade and making any more of it than it being a recommended upgrade due to safety would be unnecessary. Brian is dead on.  Say that and you have addressed it correctly.

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Re: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43067

Thanks for the feedback...

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Re: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43073

The seller is not required to fix anything.  The buyer is not required to fix anything.  Homes for sale do not have to meet current code or be brought up to current code.

Anything a home inspector puts in their report is ultimately a recommendation, regardless of what athority or technical reference they use to explain the defect.

Hand and Guard rail spacing was developed so that babies bodies cannot fall through and their head act as a stopper and then strangle themselves.  The extra 3/8 inch for stairs is because it is difficult to fit 3 spindles on a minimun tread depth.  2 fit nicely with 4 3/8 inch spacing. 

Call it out everytime.  And while you are at it, don't foget to call out the oversized stair hand rails on almost every deck staircase.  Handrails diminsons are defined in building code to about 2x2 inches square.  2x4s and 2x6a are oversized and not graspable.  IRC 311.5.6.3

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Bruce Ramsey, ACI

Re: Rail spacing greater than 4 inches....Question 8 years 3 months ago #43075

Agree with others above.

Also, keep in mind that there are ways to improve the situation without replacing the spindles. A relatively simple method is installing glass (or plexiglass) panels. 

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Jeffrey R. Jonas
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