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RE: New home noises - need some advice?

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Laura,
Is your home metal stud construction? I do agree that there is humidity and
temperature changes that affected everything from the cracking of drywall
seams that are improperly taped (or not taped at all), to face nailed joist
or truss connections which expand and contract by heat. However, in this
case, the changes in temperature and humidity are minor as it is in the
desert and the last six months have been fairly consistent with no more than
a 30 degree change in temperature.

The fact that the client describes the noise as a "metallic" pop leads me
back to metal studs. In support of your idea, the winters here in the Palm
Springs area can have a much greater temperature range - say 90 during the
day and 40 at night. A 50 degree swing can account for some of it, but the
noises occur inside the home, not at exterior walls and the temperature and
humidity changes are much less - I would guess less than a ten degree
difference daily.

However, please let me know if your home is steel stud construction.

Thanks,
Dennis

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Laura Watson [mailto:lwatson(--nospam--at)alltel.net]
> Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2001 2:47 PM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: Re: New home noises - need some advice?
>
>
> Our house has done this ever since we built it and moved in (13 years). It
> happens in the living room area where we have a cathedral ceiling. I've
> inspected the connections, rafters, etc. I can get to and have not found
> any visual damage after I hear these noises. It usually happens
> in the late
> spring to early fall time period. The house we lived in prior to this one
> did it when it was extremely cold and dry - not only the roof but the wall
> studs. I'm pretty sure it is all due to temperature changes, and maybe
> insufficient insulation!
>
> ----------
> From: Mark D. Baker <shake4bake(--nospam--at)earthlink.net>
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: Re: New home noises - need some advice?
> Date: Thursday, May 03, 2001 5:35 PM
>
> This won't solve your problem, but will relay a similar story.
>
> I was conducting a framing construction observation in a custom home last
> year, about 2:00 p.m. on a very hot day. Roof was framed with heavy ridge,
> valley, hip beams. While inside the home, a loud (very loud) popping noise
> occured coming from the roof area. My immediate reaction was uhoh,
> something is wrong with my design.
>
> The framer thought it was pretty funny that I had never experienced this
> before since he sees (hears) it all the time. He convinced me it
> was due to
> temperature changes and the resulting expansion/contraction of wood at
> connection locations.
>
> To date I have not been contacted by the owner about loud popping noises
> after they moved in. I have been living happily ever after beleiving what
> the framer said to be true.
>
> Mark
>   ----- Original Message -----
>   From: Structuralist
>   To: SEAINT Listservice
>   Cc: aec-residential(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc
>   Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2001 1:50 PM
>   Subject: New home noises - need some advice?
>
>
>   I received a call from a homes owner who is experiencing popping noises
> fourteen months after moving into a new home. The home is part of a tract
> development by Del Webb. The homes are one story, wood exterior,
> metal stud
> interior walls, slab on grade with tile roofs. The property has been
> confirmed to be appropriately compacted and on certified fill. The soil is
> sand with no clays present.
>
>   The owners are former contractors and understand normal
> settlement sounds
> of a new home, but this, they claim, exceeds what was typical for a new
> home. There is a hollow soft sound that they thought was coming from
> ducting or near light switches. I asked about electrical
> problems, thinking
> a short may be arcing to the metal studs and this may account for the
> popping noise (but would normally produces some smell as well). There does
> not seem to be a problem in this regard.
>
>   I keep going back to the metal stud interior partitions as the possible
> cause. Assuming settlement of the roof trusses which would place some load
> on the interior non-bearing metal stud partitions, I have a feeling that
> some of the softer sounds are the studs stressing and the pops may be some
> of the screws backing off or popping against the gauge thickness of the
> studs.
>
>   I am in need of some confirmation from others who have design
> conventional homes with metal stud interior walls. Does this sound like a
> possible cause and effect? I believe that the walls act similar to a
> speaker diaphragm. When the screw pops, the sound is radiated through the
> gypsum wall panel like a speaker cone. I don't know what physical
> examination I can perform to locate the cause of the problem other than to
> confirm that differential settlement is not the issue. There is
> no damage -
> just some loss of sleep by the homeowner.
>
>   Any advice from those of you with metal stud experience would be greatly
> appreciated.
>   Regards,
>   Dennis S. Wish, PE
>   The Structuralist Administrator for:
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