Forum Title: Board Cracking in House with an Outside Wood Heat Box
Wall cracking in home with external wood heat. We completed a home a little over a year ago. Fourteen months later we fixed 12 wall cracks. Mostly header cracks. Most taking off at an angle similar to what you might find with settling. All were cracked through the drywall, not just the mud. We used mesh tape and quick set. Two months later the cracks came back. Right after the heating system was turned on. Iíve worked for the builder for a long time and he knows his stuff. This house is unique in that it is heated from a wood burning fire box that sits outside the home. The wood heats liquid that is routed over the furnace. The fan from the furnace circulates the heat throughout the house. The builder is convinced an unbalanced heating system is causing drastic humidity and heat differences between rooms. He took readings and found the heat to vary as much as 27 degrees between rooms. The humidity differences vary about 20%. At one point he took heat readings at the vent in the basement which was 121 degrees while the reading upstairs was 112 degrees at the vent. We picture cut drywall around doors to avoid header cracks so I was amazed there was a problem. Both incidents of cracking occurred, according to the builder, after the heating system was started for the season. There are no other signs that might lead one to think there is settling other than the builder said all the doors in the home required adjusting which he did not do right away. He came back a few months later and all the doors had corrected themselves. I know I can go along with the builder and agree it is the heating system. However, I am not one to leave a home owner hanging. I know I would not like to be left with permanent cracks in my new home. The heating contractor, as you can imagine, is not cooperative. The homeowner hired the contractor and the outside system was installed after the builder finished the home. Should I fix the cracks again, this time cutting back into the cracks a little? If the actual rock is cracking, I'm not sure that the repaired joints would hold any better if the root cause of the problem is not addressed. Does anyone have experience with this type of heating system and if so, did you have issues with cracking. Thanks,
Category: Drywall Post By: Jonty Griffith (Tampa, FL), 02/28/2018

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