Urgent advice needed re loft extension

Lawrence001

Active Member
Hi all this is my first post on this area but I've been active in the classifieds for years. We've gone ahead with a loft extension and were told we'd have a tin hat but the sub contractor told us they get in the way and he can work faster without, and that he would ensure it remained watertight and not exposed to the elements.

However I woke up this morning with the first rain since the roof was taken off with water dripping from the lights in the bathroom. I was (and still am) very stressed getting the kids ready for school with water dripping from the ceiling. He has used a tarpaulin to cover the roof but the side gable is exposed. The V bit he built in the gable is wobbling in the wind and the tarp is acting like a sail. There's more bad weather due this week.

Also I noticed he has not replaced the roof joists but just extended the current ones in the new hip to gable section with new wood.

He turned up this AM briefly and added a small tarpaulin and drove off. It seems he hasn't got enough diesel to return. The tarpaulin is flapping in the wind. I'm concerned the house will flood and the electrics blow and we can't stay here. I really don't need this right now. I can't work (from home still) with all this going on. I've given up smoking but had to but a pack of fags this morning just to cope.

So I'm wondering how concerned should I be, and has anyone got any advice for me? I can't sleep tonight with all the worry and what if water comes in on the children's beds in the night? Will the joists support the new roof if it's built like this? Any help and advice will be really appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

IMG-20210924-WA0001.jpg

IMG_20210927_091355.jpg
 

Russa

Well-known Member
Looks interesting.

What did the structural engineer say? Has the LABC officer inspected?
 

Lawrence001

Active Member
It's only just started, have had engineering plans and specs but beyond my understanding. BC haven't been yet. Have been assured it's now watertight. Will find out in the next day or two...
 

Russa

Well-known Member
As long as its done to the engineers plans then don't worry too much.

I wouldn't do it that way, but that's not to say its done wrong.
 

Pavey

Well-known Member
Absolutely no reason why a tin hat should get in the way. I’d put your foot down at this point and say unless one is provided then the next valuation is going to be withheld.

Was a tin hat mentioned in their quote? I work in London and a tarp is generally taboo as the neighbours always pull up about the flapping noise.
 

Pavey

Well-known Member
For peace of mind can you get up there yourself with a hose and do a controlled water test?
 

Lawrence001

Active Member
Yes tin hat was in the spec. I don't like heights and don't have a reliable hose pipe at the moment more seems to come out of the tap!

More rain due tonight will find out if it's been solved or I'll be up all night.
 

WeegyAVLover

Distinguished Member
I am not sure what "a tin" is but if I had to guess I would assume it is a solid cover over the roof that prevents the elements from getting into the house and causing an issue like you are seeing.

If it was quoted for then you are paying for it, I would request/demand (politely) that you are paying for that and the stress to you and your family is worth the money you are paying to have it setup.

Just remember I know builders are the experts for this work but it is your money that you are spending and requesting something that you are paying for that would hopefully give you a water tight house and peace of mind is also important.

You do not have to have a confrontation, just be calm and insist on the "tin" being setup.
 

Pavey

Well-known Member
Tin hat = the metal roof covering of a scaffold. Totally dependant on the size of the house/roof with regards to cost. See attached though, can cost more than the main scaffold.
 

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John7

Well-known Member
I'm no expert but there is no way I would consider the method used to extended those rafters adequate. The overlap to the existing rafers should be at least 2x the ovehang length AFAIK. You should get the LABC to inspect ASAP IMHO.
 

27neth

Distinguished Member
I'm no expert but there is no way I would consider the method used to extended those rafters adequate. The overlap to the existing rafers should be at least 2x the ovehang length AFAIK. You should get the LABC to inspect ASAP IMHO.
I don’t think you can join rafters, unless maybe they are joined on top of a Purlin. Put any weight on them and they will give way
what has he done? Cut the old hip rafter out and joined the old jack rafters to the new rafters
 

Russa

Well-known Member
I don’t think you can join rafters, unless maybe they are joined on top of a Purlin. Put any weight on them and they will give way
what has he done? Cut the old hip rafter out and joined the old jack rafters to the new rafters

As long as they are joined properly as per the engineers plans then they will be fine.

From that photo they are not joined properly, however they are mid way and not finished.

Like I said before, it's not how I would do it. I'd do it properly, but some people prefer cheap.
 

27neth

Distinguished Member
Yes they probably can be joined if done to plans by a engineer. They look like they are probably held together with a few Paslode nails.
They might get done properly, but why bother? It must be easier to rip them out and replace with new.
 

thekilljoy

Active Member
I remember when I was having a loft conversion I said to one chap I obviously wanted 6 inch joists to replace the current 4 inch - his reply was that he could just put 2inch wood on top of the existing ones ! Needless to say I didn't go with him.
 

wilco1uk

Active Member
With regard to the tin hat. You need to check your contract. It may have been in the specification, but the contract may give the builder the ability to deviate from the specification to save you money. Check the contract for exclusions, scope or bill of quantities. If the tin hat is listed, or if the specification is referred to in the contract (and teh tin hat not specifically excluded) then you are paying for it and the builder is excluding it to make himself extra profit. In that case you are well within your rights to demand a cost reduction (and remediation for any damage caused by water leaks). This may all be covered in teh builders offer / quoatation.

You should also check your contract to understand how damages caused to the rest of the property by the works are dealth with.

One thing I picked up on was that you said "sub-contractor". This infers that you have a main contractor on site controlling all the works, who has engaged this sub -contractor. In pure commenrcial terms, unless you have agreed teh contract with teh sub-contractor directly (never a good idea), you should be dealing with teh main contracor only.
 

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