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BCC Ruling No. 96-48-531

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BUILDING CODE COMMISSION DECISION ON B.C.C. #96-48-531

IN THE MATTER OF Subsection 24(1) of the Building Code Act, 1992.

AND IN THE MATTER OF Article 9.30.6.3. of "the Building Code" (Ontario Regulation 419/89 as amended by Ont. Reg. 183/88, 581/88, 11/89 and 115/89)

AND IN THE MATTER OF an application by Mr. Virgil Marques, President, V.Marques Construction Ltd., Kingston, Ontario, for the resolution of a dispute with Mr. Terry Willing, Chief Building Official, Township of Kingston, Toronto, concerning whether the installation of the ceramic tile provides sufficiency of compliance with Article 9.30.6.3. of the Building Code at 798 Marsh Crescent, Kingston, Ontario.

APPLICANT

Mr. Virgil Marques
President
V. Marques Construction Ltd
R.R. # 3
1579 Centennial Drive
Kingston, Ontario

RESPONDENT

Mr. Terry Willing
Chief Building Official
Township of Kingston

PANEL

Mr. Roy Philippe, Chair
Ms. Susan Friedrich
Mr. Michael Lio

PLACE

Toronto, Ontario

DATE OF RULING

November 13th, 1996

APPEARANCES

Mr. Virgil Marques
President
V. Marques Construction Ltd
Kingston, Ontario
The Applicant

RULING

  1. The Applicant

Mr. Virgil Marques, President, V. Marques Construction Limited is the holder of a permit under the Building Code Act, 1992 for construction at a one storey house at 798 Marsh Crescent, Kingston, Ontario.

  1. Description of Constrution

The subject building has a kitchen floor which has been built with ceramic tile over 9.52mm (3/8 in) plywood, screwed on 15.9mm (5/8 in) plywood, and glued on the 38mm x 235mm (2 in x 10 in) joists at 400mm (16 in) o.c..

  1. Dispute

The dispute between the Applicant and the Respondent concerns sufficiency of compliance with Article 9.30.6.3. of the Ontario Building Code. At issue is whether the use of adhesive at the junction of the 15.9mm (5/8 in) plywood and floor joists, the screwing of the 2 layers of plywood, and the 2 rows of bridging will stiffen the assembly and provide a level of performance equal to the requirements of the Building Code.

  1. Provision of the Building Code

Article 9.30.6.3. Reinforcement for Panel-Type Wood Sheathing

  1. When ceramic floor tiles are set on panel-type wood sheathing, one of the following assemblies for reinforcing the floor assembly shall be used

    1. 20 mm (13/16in) thick plywood or waferboard with all edges supported by at least 38 mm by 38 mm (2 in by 2 in) blocking with floor joists spaced not more than 400 mm (16 in) o.c., with 6 mm (1/4 in) underlay,
    2. sheathing thickness which conforms to Table 9.23.14.A. and having an underlay consisting of 15.9 mm (5/8 in) plywood or waferboard with offsetting joints. A 4 mm (5/32 in) gap shall be provided between sheets, or
    3. sub-floor sheathing reinforced with close spaced 38 mm by 38 mm (2 in by 2 in) blocking at spacings at least half that of the floor joist spacing.

  1. Applicant's Position

The Applicant submitted that the past performance of installing ceramic tile in this manner (glue on every floor joist and screws every 89mm) provides a level of performance that would be achieved by conforming with the requirements of the Building Code.

  1. Chief Building Official's Position

The Respondent submitted the top layer should have been the 15.9mm (5/8 in) plywood.

  1. Commission Ruling:

It is the decision of the Building Code Commission that the kitchen floor beneath ceramic tile provides sufficiency of compliance with the requirements of Article 9.30.6.3. of the Building Code provided 38 mm by 38 mm blocking is installed, at spacings at least half that of the floor joist spacing, under no less than 70% of the kitchen floor area.

  1. Reasons:

i. Closely spaced blocking installed beneath the floor and subfloor gluing to the floor joists enhance the stiffness of the floor system.

ii. The subfloor is a tongue and groove variety providing significant edge support.

iii. Subfloor and underlay have been screwed together in a 150mm x 150mm fastening pattern improving the load sharing characteristics of the floor system.

iv. Evidence was provided that a written warranty could be made available to the homeowner from the ceramic tile installer.

v. The applicant stated that this method of ceramic tile floor construction has demonstrated acceptable past performance.

Dated at Toronto, this 13th day, in the month of November, in the year 1996, for application number 1996-54.

Roy Philippe

Susan Friedrich

Michael Lio