Who doesn’t like those flaming, charred clouds of sweetness known as marshmallows?
I am pretty sure that most things will burn or melt if one gets them hot enough.
I am also pretty sure that “most” plastic materials typically found within ones home are susceptible to burning and/or melting. Take your average Corian type “plastic” countertop. While they are pretty resistant to heat, if we get the material hot enough, it will melt—-even if it does not catch on fire. Of course the wood cabinets below the countertop might not fare as well.
This countertop is in a commercial kitchen—but I see the same type of installation in residential kitchens as well.
Because the countertop is higher than the adjacent stove, the overhanging pot was able to direct flames and heat onto the countertop—-making it look more like a marshmallow over a camp fire—-than an appropriate countertop material.
Plastic water piping for homes is becoming the standard and these too need proper clearances from heat sources.
Take the exhaust hood on your water heater—-you certainly don’t want anything plastic near that. The same goes for the vent pipe from furnaces and water heaters. Even double wall vent pipe like B-vent, typically requires at least an inch of clearance. In this next picture we see the plastic PEX-type pipe right next to the draft hood of the water heater and jammed right between the single wall vents of both the furnace and the water heater. Single wall pipe requires at least 6” of clearance to plastic pipe.
This is all a fairly new installation—-but, over time the piping will succumb to the heat—-and those nice white fittings will look more like marshmallows too.
By Charles Buell, Real Estate Inspections in Seattle
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