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Wind Certification

Wind Certification

Wind Certification

(OP)
Does anybody know what is involved with wind certifying a house for the insurance comapny? Are there special forms or requirements? How would a PE provide wind certification to a home owner that does not require a full fledge inspection/analysis?
Thanks,
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RE: Wind Certification

I assume that the subject house is already built.

If you do not have house plans with all kinds of details and materials specifications, as a structural engineer I would never certify it based on visual observation. to demonstrate the complexity:

1. The roof construction, material, grade, fastening pattern, nail size, nail type
2. Roof truss construction, spacing, roof truss design parameters. These could be obtained from the truss engineer if you know who supplied them.
3. Roof truss hold downs to resist uplift. This is not easily accessible and if accessible, it is very hard to ascertain that they have been installed per manufactures’ recommendations.
4. Wall construction type, grades, strength, framing sizes, masonry (if used) strength, is it vertically reindfoced or plain, is the bars placed where they supposed to be and wall anchorage to foundations.
5. Foundation size to resist uplift and overturning effects.

It sounds like you want an engineer to reverse engineer a residential structure. This is not easy for the reason cited above. There are so many critical variables that will impact the wind rating.

One solution is to go back and see if your residence was designed by engineer and see if he is willing to certify it. In Florida, all residential plans are required to be designed by professionals. This was imposed shortly after Andrew.


 

Regards,
Lutfi

RE: Wind Certification

IBC chapter 15 discusses roof design requirements

RE: Wind Certification

I don't believe the purpose of the insurance forms to be as exhaustive as the other replies have insinuated.  At least in Florida the underwriters are simply looking for certain mitigation features being in place.

You might check out:
http://www.intrarisk.com/Certification.htm

RE: Wind Certification

As an engineer...I have never, nor will I ever, certify anything.  Certify comes from "certain" and you cannot be certain about a house construction unless you were there watching every nail pounded in.

RE: Wind Certification

That sounds like a good question for your own insurance company.  They'll probably tell you the same thing JAE did.  As soon as you certify it, you just "bought" it and all the mistakes it came with.  It sounds like a good way for another insurance company to have someone to blame if something goes wrong.  

RE: Wind Certification

Not knowing the exact nature of the original post, I'm only commenting with regards to the insurance forms prevalent in Florida.

To alleviate concerns about liability fort "certification" there is a disclaimer on some forms which presumably remove liability for signing such forms.  An excerpt from a sample form is included below from the Citizens form (http://www1.citizensfla.com/pdfs/CIT-26.07_04.pdf)

My understanding is that the insurance companies do not want to bear the cost themselves to go out and certify what features exist at an insured structure.  They are passing the cost onto the insured by making them pay to have someone certify the features.  Some agencies (like intrarisk.com) are lobbying that insurance companies should just go ahead and standardize the inspections and absorb the cost burden (lobbyists claim everyone (insurer and insuree) should benefit from that approach).

The excerpt from Citizens form CIT-26:
"This Affidavit and the information set forth in it are provided solely for the purpose of verifying that certain structural or physical characteristics exist at the Location Address listed above and for the purpose of permitting the Named Insured to receive a property insurance premium discount on insurance provided by Citizens Property Insurance Corporation and for no other purpose. The undersigned does not make a health or safety certification or warranty, express or implied, of any kind, and nothing in this Affidavit shall be construed to impose on the undersigned or on any entity to which the undersigned is affiliated any liability or obligation of any nature to the named insured or to any other person or entity."

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