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BCC Ruling No. 94-16-394

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

AND IN THE MATTER OF Sentence of Revised Regulation of Ontario 1990, Regulation 61, as amended by O.Regs. 400/91, 158/93 and 160/93 (the "Building Code").

AND IN THE MATTER OF an application by David and Cathy Porco for the resolution of a dispute with Ted Marecak, Chief Building Official, Township of Pittsburgh.


David and Cathy Porco


Mr. Ted Marecak
Chief Building Official
Township of Pittsburgh


Sarah Maman, Chair
Remus Tsang
Sang Shim


Toronto, Ontario


July 7th, 1994


  1. The Applicant

David and Cathy Porco are the holders of a permit under the Building Code Act, 1992 to construct a cottage at 2609 Tiller Lane, R.R.# 2, Kingston, Ontario.

  1. Description of Construction

The applicant constructed a summer cottage with a cathedral ceiling. The ceiling construction consists of 38mm x 235mm roof joists spaced 600mm on center. The applicant installed Heatlok R240, site manufactured spray-in-place rigid cellular plastic thermal insulation to the under side of the roof sheathing. A ventilation space was not provided between the insulation and the roof sheathing.

  1. Dispute

The dispute between the Applicant and Respondent concerns sufficiency of compliance with Sentence of the Building Code. At issue is the lack of a ventilated space between the underside of the roof sheathing and the top of the insulation throughout the joist space.

  1. Provision of the Building Code

Sentence Cross Purlins

Cross purlins required by Sentence (1) may be omitted where the roof slope is 1 to 6 or steeper provided the roof framing members run in the same direction as the roof slope and a minimum clearance of 75 mm is maintained between the underside of the roof sheathing and the top of the insulation throughout the length of the roof joist.

  1. Applicant's Position

The applicant stated that it is normal procedure for insulation installers to spray Heatlok R240 directly to the underside of roof sheathing without providing an air space for ventilation. This product was designed to be sprayed directly to clean surfaces and once cured forms a permanent airtight seal. Sentence of the Building Code was written for the purpose of addressing conventional fibreglass insulation. It did not take into account technological advances in building materials such as Heatlok R240.

  1. Chief Building Officials Position

The respondent stated that the Building Code clearing requires a minimum clearance of 75 mm between the underside of the roof sheathing and the top of the insulation.

The respondent does not have the authority to accept a condition that deviates from the Building Code and the use of equivalents regulated by Section 2.7 is not applicable.

  1. Commission Ruling:

In favour of the APPLICANT. It is the decision of the Building Code Commission that the material used in the manner constructed shows sufficiency of compliance with the Building Code provided that:

(a) Two coats of vapour barrier paint are applied to the under side of the ceiling.

(b) All penetrations in the ceiling membrane such as for light fixtures must be adequately sealed off.

(c) Sufficient humidity control fans should be provided in the ceiling space which will activate automatically when the relative humidity exceeds 40%.

(d) An exhaust fan controlled by a dehumidistat should be installed on the ceiling in the area near the bathroom or kitchen.

Dated at Toronto this 7th day in the month of July in the year 1994 for application number 1994-24.

Sarah Maman

Remus Tsang

Sang Shim