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Rook Home Inspections LLC - Glossary of domestic engineering
Category: Architecture and Buildings > Home inspection
Date & country: 16/01/2008, UK
Words: 1350


Cap Flashing
The portion of the flashing attached to a vertical surface to prevent water from migrating behind the base flashing.

Cap Sheet
A top layer in built-up roofing.

Cap Sheets
In roofing, one to four plies of felt bonded and top-coated with bitumen that is laid over an existing roof as a treatment for defective roofs.

Cape Chisel
Tool used to clean out mortar joints on brick.

Capital
The principal part of a loan, i.e. the original amount borrowed.

Capital and Interest
A repayment loan and the most conventional form of home loan. The borrower pays an amount each month to cover the amount borrowed (capital or principal) plus the interest charged on capital.

Capped Rate
The mortgage interest rate will not exceed a specified value during a certain period of time, but it will fluctuate up and down below that level.

Carbon Monoxide
CO. A colorless, odorless, highly poisonous gas formed by the incomplete combustion of carbon.

Casement Frames and Sash
Frames of wood or metal enclosing part or all of the sash, which may be opened by means of hinges affixed to the vertical edges.

Casement Window
A sidehinged window that opens on hinges secured to the side of the window frame.

Casing
Molding of various widths and thicknesses used to trim door and window openings at the jambs.

Cast Iron
Heavy metal formed by casting on molds. The metal is covered with a porcelain enamel coating to make fixtures such as the cast iron tubs.

Cast-Iron Pipe (Plumbing)
Drain and vent lines. Most older drain-waste venting systems are made of cast-iron pipes. Now increasingly supplanted by ABS and PVC. Pipes were originally joined with molten lead, but most plumbers now join them with no-hub couplers.

Cat's Paw
A variation of a pry bar used to pry up deep set (counter sunk) nails.

Catch Basin
A drain for a low or wet spot, with pipe exiting the side and a pit at the bottom to collect sediment.

Caulk
The application of sealant to a joint, crack or crevice. A compound used for sealing that has minimum joint movement capability; sometimes called low performance sealant.

Caulking
Material used to seal exterior cracks and openings such as windows or foundations.

CCA (Chromated Copper Arsenate)
A pesticide that is forced into wood under high pressure to protect it from termites, other wood boring insects, and decay caused by fungus.

Ceiling Joist
One of a series of parallel framing members used to support ceiling loads and supported in turn by larger beams, girders or bearing walls. Also called roof joists.

Cells (Masonry)
The hollow spaces in concrete blocks.

Cellulose Insulation
Ground-up newspaper that is treated with a fire retardant.

Celotex
Black fibrous board that is used as exterior sheething.

Cement
The gray powder that is the 'glue' in concrete. Portland cement. Also, any adhesive.

Cement Mixtures
Rich - 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 3 parts coarse aggregate. Used for concrete roads and waterproof structures. Standard - 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 4 parts coarse aggregate. Used for reinforced work floors, roofs, columns, arches, tanks, sewers, conduits, etc. Medium - 1 part cement, 2 1/2 parts sand, 5 parts coarse aggregate. Used for founda …

Centerset
A style of faucet that is installed on a lavatory with 4' center-to-center faucet holes and that has the spout and handle(s) combined into a single part.

Ceramic Disk Valve
A type of valve that relies on two-part revolving disks in a sealed cylinder. Each disk has a port in it that, when aligned with the other, will allow water to pass through.

Ceramic Tile
A man-made or machine-made clay tile used to finish a floor or wall. Generally used in bathtub and shower enclosures and on counter tops.

Certificate of Occupancy
A document stating that a building is approved for occupancy. The Building Authority issues the Certificate of Occupancy.

Certified
Having a formal document testifying to qualification or completion of requirements.

CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute)
Measure of volume of air. When testing systems, find the CFM by multiplying the face velocity (amount of air passing through the face of an outlet or return) times the free area (the total area of the openings in the outlet or inlet through which air can pass) in square feet.

Chair Rail
A molding that runs horizontally along the wall at about 3 feet from the ground. In storefront, window wall, or curtain wall systems, a chair rail is an aluminum extrusion applied horizontally to the inside of the system 3 feet from the floor to create a barrier in floor-to-ceiling glazing applications.

Chalk Line
A line made on the roof by snapping a taut string or cord dusted with chalk. Used for alignment purposes.

Change Order
A written document which modifies the plans and specifications and/or the price of the Construction Contract.

Channel Glazing
The installation of glass products into U-shaped glazing channels. The channels may have fixed stops; however, at least one glazing stop on one edge must be removable.

Chapter
A local group of members of a larger association, as in a local NACHI Chapter. A local branch.

Chase
A framed enclosed space around a flue pipe or a channel in a wall or through a ceiling for something to lie in or pass through.

Checking
Fissures that appear with age in many exterior paint coatings. At first superficial, but in time may penetrate entirely through the coating. It produces a pattern of surface cracks running in irregular lines. When found in the top pour of an asphalt built-up roof, checking is the preliminary stage of alligatoring.

Checkrails
Meeting rails sufficiently thicker than a window to fill the opening between the top and bottom sash made by the parting stop in the frame of double-hung windows. They are usually beveled.

Chemical Injection Grouting
Leak repair technique usually used below grade in cracks and joints in concrete walls and floors that involves the injection of sealant (usually urethane) that reacts with water to form a seal.

Chink
To install fiberglass insulation around all exterior door and window frames, wall corners, and small gaps in the exterior wall.

Chip Board
A manufactured wood panel made out of 1'- 2' wood chips and glue. Often used as a substitute for plywood in the exterior wall and roof sheathing. Also called OSB (Oriented Strand Board) or Wafer Board.

Circuit
A network of wiring that typically commences at a panel box, feeds electricity to outlets and ultimately returns to the panel box.

Circuit Breaker
A protective device which automatically opens an electrical circuit when it is overloaded.

Cistern
Reservoir for water. Common in houses built prior to the fifties in the Midwest.

Class "A" Fire Resistance
The highest fire-resistance rating for roofing per ASTM E-108. Indicates that roofing is able to withstand severe exposure to fire originating from sources outside the building.

Class "B" Fire Resistance
Fire-resistance rating that indicates roofing material is able to withstand moderate exposure to fire originating from sources outside the building.

Class "C" Fire Resistance
Fire-resistance rating that indicates roofing material is able to withstand light exposure to fire originating from sources outside the building.

Class B Door
A fire resistant rating applied by the Underwriters Laboratories Classification for a door having a 1 to 1 1/2 hour rating.

Cleanout
A plug in a trap or drain pipe that provides access for the purpose of clearing an obstruction.

Cleanout (Plumbing)
A drain fitting, usually a wye or a tee, with a removable plug to permit inspection and access for an auger or snake.

Cleat
A wedge-shaped piece (usually of metal) which serves as a support or check. A strip fastened across something to give strength or hold something in position.

Clip Ties
Sharp cut metal wires that protrude out of a concrete foundation wall that at one time held the foundation form panels in place.

Closed Cut Valley
A method of valley treatment in which shingles from one side of the valley extend across the valley, while shingles from the other side are trimmed 2 inches from the valley centerline. The valley flashing is not exposed.

Closet Auger
A flexible rod with a curved end used to access the toilet's built-in trap and remove clogs.

Closet Bend
A curved fitting that connects the closet flange to the toilet drain.

Closet Bolts
Bolt whose head is fitted to a closet flange and protrudes up through a toilet base. A nut is tightened around it on the toilet base. Two (or four) bolts serve one toilet.

Closet Flange
An anchoring ring secured to the floor. The base of the toilet is secured to this ring with bolts.

CO
An abbreviation for 'Certificate of Occupancy.'

Coal Tar
A viscous liquid mixture of hydrocarbon compounds, derived, along with coke, from the destructive distillation of coal.

Coal Tar Pitch
A bituminous material, which is a by-product from the coking of coal. It is used as the waterproofing material for tar and gravel built-up roofing.

Code of Ethics
Ethical standards of conduct for home inspectors.

Cohesive Failure
Internal splitting of a compound resulting from over-stressing of the compound.

Cold Air Return
The ductwork (and related grills) that carries room air back to the furnace for re-heating.

Cold Applied
Products that can be applied without heating. These are in contrast to products which need to be heated to be applied.

Cold Patch
In roofing, a roof repair done with cold-applied material.

Cold Process Adhesive
Mastic prepared with SBS modifiers to adhere laps, flashing and joints of built-up or low-slope roofing without hot-mopping or torching equipment.

Cold-Method or Lap Cement
Special multipurpose adhesive for low-sloped, cold-applied roof construction. Bonds 19' selvedge, mineral surface and cap sheets to the underlayment. Doubles as an adhesive on 2' selvedge lap of mineral-, granule- or smooth-surfaced roofing. Available in both summer and winter grades.

Collar
In roofing, a conical metal cap flashing used in conjunction with vent pipes or stacks usually located several inches above the plane of the roof for the purpose of shedding water away from the base of the vent.

Collar Beam
In carpentry, a tie that keeps the roof from spreading. They serve to stiffen the roof structure. Connects similar rafters on opposite sides of roof.

Collar Tie
A horizontal board attached perpendicular to rafters.

Column
In architecture: A perpendicular supporting member, circular or rectangular in section, usually consisting of a base, shaft, and capital. In engineering: A vertical structural compression member which supports loads acting in the direction of its longitudinal axis.

Combination Doors or Windows
Combination doors or windows are used over regular openings. They provide winter insulation and summer protection and often have self storing or removable glass and screen inserts. This eliminates the need for handling a different unit each season.

Combustion Air
The duct work installed to bring fresh, outside air to the furnace and/or hot water heater. Normally 2 separate supplies of air are brought in: one high and one low.

Combustion Chamber
The part of a boiler, furnace or woodstove where the burn occurs; normally lined with firebrick or molded or sprayed insulation.

Common Rafter
Rafter that extends from the top plate to the ridge. Generally set 12, 16, or 24 inches apart.

Compatible
Two or more substances, which can be mixed or blended without separating, reacting, or affecting either material adversely.

Component
A permanently installed or attached fixture, element or part of a system.

Composite Board
An insulation board which has two different insulation types laminated together in 2 or 3 layers.

Compression Fitting
Used to join or connect pipes and conduit by causing a ring to compress against the connecting tube when tightening with a wrench.

Compression Gasket
A gasket designed to function under compression.

Compression Set
The permanent deformation of a material after removal of the compressive stress.

Compression Valve
A type of valve that works by raising or lowering a stem. Water passes through the valve by turning the faucet handle, which causes the stem to drop or rise.

Compression Web
A member of a truss system which connects the bottom and top chords and which provides downward support.

Compressor
A mechanical device that pressurizes a gas in order to turn it into a liquid, thereby allowing heat to be removed or added. A compressor is the main component of conventional heat pumps and air conditioners. In an air conditioning system, the compressor normally sits outside and has a large fan (to remove heat).

Concealed Nail Method
Application of roll roofing in which all nails are driven into the underlying course of roofing and covered by a cemented, overlapping course. Nails are not exposed to the weather.

Concrete Block
A hollow concrete 'brick' often 8'x8'x16' in size. Often used in low rise commercial and some residential construction. The original design and use is attributed to the architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

Concrete Board
A panel made out of concrete and fiberglass usually used as a tile backing material.

Concrete Board or Wonderboard (TM)
A panel made out of concrete and fiberglass usually used as a tile backing material.

Concrete Grout
A mixture of 3/8-inch pea gravel, sand, cement and water which is poured into the cells of concrete-block walls to reinforce them.

Concrete Plain
Concrete either without reinforcement, or reinforced only for shrinkage or temperature changes.

Condensate Line
The copper pipe that runs from the outside air conditioning condenser to the inside furnace ( where the A/C coil is located).

Condensation
Water condensing on walls, ceiling and pipes. Normal in areas of high humidity, usually controlled by ventilation or a dehumidifier.

Condensing Unit
The outdoor component of a cooling system. It includes a compressor and condensing coil designed to give off heat.

Condition
The visible and conspicuous state of being of an object.

Conduction
The flow of heat from one part of a substance to another part. A piece of iron with one end placed in a fire will soon become warm from end to end due to the transfer of heat by the actual collision of the air molecules.

Conductivity
The rate at which heat is transmitted through a material.

Conductor
In roofing, a pipe for conveying rainwater from the roof gutter to a drain, or from a roof drain to the storm drain; also called a leader, downspout, or downpipe. In electrical contracting, a wire through which a current of electricity flows, better known as an electric wire.

Conductor (Electrical)
Anything that conducts or carries electricity.

Conduit
A hollow pipe casing through which electric lines run.

Conduit (Electrical)
Tubing used to protect wiring.