The title of this post grosses even me out—-and I love to blog about rats. I sort of lost all respect for rats when I had to deal with them in my barn in Cato, New York. I was trapping them, and one morning I found one part way out of a hole in the floor with its head in the trap. When I picked up the trap I discovered that the rest of its body was gone—-apparently eaten by its friends and relatives.
Every component of the home is composed of materials that are either right for the installation or not. For some components there is some “leeway” depending on what the component is, there are others that if you don’t use the required materials bad things can happen.
For example the use of water supply lines to hook up the gas dryer is NOT a good idea. When venting the dryer to the exterior the use of plastic type vent pipe is not an acceptable substitute for smooth-wall metal pipe. However exhausting the Powder Room fan to the exterior can be done with either plastic or metal and not present much of a problem.
Kitchen Range exhaust hoods are supposed to vent to the exterior with smooth wall metal pipe. The ducts from these hoods can get very greasy. Years of cooking bacon and hamburgers can build up in these range hoods and ducts, and can represent a fire hazard. For these reasons, plastic type vent pipe or even corrugated metal pipe, should not be used for venting kitchen ranges.
You want to be able to have these hoods and duct work cleaned, and if there are lots of “nooks n’ crannies” they cannot be easily cleaned—-save the nooks n’ crannies for English muffins.
A while back, I came across this installation of “foil-type” vent pipe installed on the Kitchen range hood. I must confess I couldn’t tell whether this had “melted” or was due to “grease-eating-rodents—-but either way, I was fortunate that it wasn’t buried in a wall where I wouldn’t have been able to tell what kind of pipe it was—-let alone what condition it was in. There is no “leeway” when it comes to kitchen range hood venting—-it must be smooth-wall metal pipe that cannot be damaged like this duct was.
Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector
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