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#43841 - 10/22/04 07:42 PM Marengo, Illinois
Dave55 Offline

Registered: 05/08/04
Posts: 666
Loc: Crystal Lake, Illinois, USA
I did an addition in Marengo a few years ago and they had an interesting addition to the NEC. I'm fuzzy on the details (I'll see if I can dig them up),but when the inspector comes into the project he can require you to fix any violations within sight.

The entire unfinished basement was in view and had quite a few violations. I actually liked it. It was extra work and I felt better about fixing them rather than not being able to fix them.

I was wondering what your opinion is on this as contractors, and inspectors?


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#43842 - 10/23/04 08:09 AM Re: Marengo, Illinois
Active 1 Offline

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 684
Loc: Grayslake IL, USA

Carpentersville was big on the fix all or nothing idea. I would say a lot of homes there were built below the standards of the 50's and 60's. Add 40-50 years of HO upgrades and repairs to that. Being it's a lower priced area the HO don't have much money for needed repairs or doing thing right. If someone needs work done like a service replacement the following will happen:

1. A sucker EC not familuar with the town will quote the the service. Pull the permit do the work and fail inspection. They will end up rewiering and updateing the whole house for free. I seen this happen to a few. Good for homeowner.

2. A EC not familuar with the town quotes and does the work with the permit. Fails inspection because of upgrades not done and refuses to do more work for free.

3. An EC tries to cover all the bases installs smokes all over, new grounds, GFI's, lights in attic & crawel, relocates service. The service is 100x better then the unsafe set up before. Still fails because they missed some cloth ungrounded wires that must be replaced with pipe. That one happened to us. We had a diclaimer on quote about unforseen code violations. HO had no more $ and or did not want to pay more. Last I knew he still had his meter bypased and a temp drop from old location because utility could not do anything with out inspection aproval.

4. The EC goes to the home and waist time quoting the job and fixing everything and the HO ends up going with #5.

5. The HO finds someone to do it cheep with out a permit or upgrades. I am guesing it would not be done so well.

6. They call me. I give them some crazy number and reasons. Customer hangs up and I go back to work.

Lets face it. If every violation is repaired and everything is up to todays standards in all of marengo or C'vill it would keep a lot of guys busy. Oh, but no one has any money in those towns.

A twist on this is some places the village inspects your home before it's sold.


#43843 - 10/23/04 09:00 AM Re: Marengo, Illinois
Dave55 Offline

Registered: 05/08/04
Posts: 666
Loc: Crystal Lake, Illinois, USA
Carpentersville sounds worse than Marengo, Tom. I just found the contract and the items added because of the city were: Softner outlet, freezer outlet, furnace circuit and smoke alarms on each level. I was already doing a service upgrade with the kitchen addition. I put in the contract that the owner is responsible for fees of the building department. I think they made a point of mentioning fees to reinspect.

I always itemize the project in contracts like this, so it's obvious what's included. I can see how it would lead to huge problems with the wrong homeowner. As I recall the inspector gave me a correction notice for using 4 ga. copper on the 100-amp service instead of 3 ga. I led him to the page in the NEC that allows that & he said something like, "OK, but next time use 3 ga.". So all-in-all it was a no-problem job.


#43844 - 10/23/04 02:52 PM Re: Marengo, Illinois
DougW Offline

Registered: 06/08/03
Posts: 1083
Loc: North Chicago, IL
Another way of dealing with this is to have a "the bid amount shown includes only the work listed - additional work (outside the scope of this bid) to meet code compliance required by the inspector/AHJ will be performed on a T&M basis" clause in your bid and/or contract.

North Chicago had a similar attempt a few years ago - as part of their occupancy inspections, they would require compliance with the '96 NEC, and the NCEC - little things like no exposed BX in basements longer than 2', hardwired smokes, GFCI's in kitchens and baths.

It was a great time to be an EC in North Chicago - unfortunately I was a pirate at the time, and couldn't pull permits for that kind of work .

Somebody finally challenged that behavior, under the argument that if it was compliant with the NEC/NCEC at the time it was built, as long as there were no IDLH threats, the City couldn't force compliance to a newer Code. Don't know if it ever actually made it to court or not, but that type of service call has really diminished in town.


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