Go Back   InterNACHI Inspection Forum > Specific Inspection Topics > Structural Inspections

Notices

Structural Inspections Contains discussions about the structural portion of a home inspection. This includes foundations, framing, etc.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 9/17/06, 10:04 PM
Joe Funderburk, CMI's Avatar
Joe Funderburk, CMI Joe Funderburk, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Hickory Grove, SC
Posts: 9,868
Send a message via Yahoo to jfunderburk
Default Living in a creosote house

1960 house. Entire floor system (joists and subfloor) treated with creosote. Would you have concerns about moving your family into it? Is the potential chemical hazard only relevant to skin contact?

living-creosote-house-090906-235-small-.jpg.jpg
Views:	1017
Size:	63.5 KB
ID:	5614



“The things that will destroy America are peace at any price,
prosperity at any cost, safety first instead of duty first,
the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life.”
Theodore Roosevelt


Joe Funderburk, CBO, CMI
Alpha & Omega Home Inspections, LLC
Inspecting Upstate SC & Charlotte Metro, NC
Angie's List Super Service Award Winner 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010.
Ph: 704-351-1776
NACHI ID: NACHI05120170
www.aohomeinspection.com

Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 9/17/06, 10:25 PM
Andrew Shick's Avatar
Andrew Shick Andrew Shick is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Grain Valley, MO
Posts: 773
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

I just did a quick Google search, and found this. More than I needed to know about creasote:

Quote:
According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) (2003), creosote is the generic name for a variety of chemical mixtures commonly known as wood creosote, coal-tar creosote, and coal tar, among others. Creosote mixtures have a smoky odor and vary in color from yellowish to black to dark brown. Creosote is composed of many substances created through burning beech and other woods, coal, or from the resin of the creosote bush (ATSDR 2003). Coal-tar creosote is the most widely used wood preservative in the United States, and was also used in early embalming. This lesser-known embalming agent was sometimes used as an anti-putrefactive, but had an objectionable odor. Creosote has also been used historically as a disinfectant, laxative, cough suppressant, and as a treatment for skin disease. ATSDR (2003) states that components of creosote that do not dissolve in water remain in place in a tar-like mass.

During a search of published literature, no reference to a cemetery excavation in which creosote was identified in the graves was found. Aside from its occasional use as an embalming fluid, it is also possible that creosote was used to treat coffin wood, as it has long been used as a wood preservative. Eating or drinking substances with high levels of creosote may cause a burning sensation and stomach pain. In addition, herbal remedies composed of creosote may cause liver or kidney damage. ATSDR (2003) suggests that brief direct contact with large amounts of coal tar creosote may result in a rash or skin irritation, chemical burns of the eye surface, convulsions, mental confusion, kidney or liver problems, unconsciousness, or death. Longer direct skin contact with low levels of creosote mixtures or vapors may result in increased light sensitivity, corneal damage, and skin damage. Vapor exposure can cause irritation to the respiratory tract. It is suspected that creosote is carcinogenic to humans, and major, long-term exposure (such as wood treatment or manufacture of coal tar creosote treated products) may be related to skin and scrotum cancers. OSHA has not established a substance-specific standard for occupational exposure to coal-tar pitch volatiles (creosote), thus exposures are regulated under the Air Contaminants Standard (29 CFR 1926.55, 1926.1102, and 1926.1129).


It's some pretty bad stuff, but it looks like if the Creasote is only on the bottom of the floor, and no one is having direct daily contact with it, it probably wouldn't hurt you.

Last edited by ashick; 9/17/06 at 10:28 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 9/17/06, 10:45 PM
Joe Funderburk, CMI's Avatar
Joe Funderburk, CMI Joe Funderburk, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Hickory Grove, SC
Posts: 9,868
Send a message via Yahoo to jfunderburk
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

Scrotum cancer?



“The things that will destroy America are peace at any price,
prosperity at any cost, safety first instead of duty first,
the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life.”
Theodore Roosevelt


Joe Funderburk, CBO, CMI
Alpha & Omega Home Inspections, LLC
Inspecting Upstate SC & Charlotte Metro, NC
Angie's List Super Service Award Winner 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010.
Ph: 704-351-1776
NACHI ID: NACHI05120170
www.aohomeinspection.com

Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 9/18/06, 5:38 PM
Frank Nihei Frank Nihei is offline
New User
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 7
Please Note: Frank Nihei is a non-member guest and is in no way affiliated with InterNACHI or its members.
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

You asked...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jfunderburk
Would you have concerns about moving your family into it?
Yes. I would have serious concerns. My theory is that if you can smell it, you are constantly being exposed.

They used to use coal tar as the active ingredient in dandruff shampoos, but last I heard that was now banned as a use. (Some little detail about skin cancers.)

It's amazing what uses industry has found for its waste products, which is what this is. That way, they don't have to pay for hazmat disposal fees, but actually make a profit off disposing of waste.

The power company down the road has stacks of ready-to-use utility poles in their yard and on a warm day when the wind is blowing across the road, the smell is horrible and dizziness as well as an instant upset stomach can often be the result. And that's just driving past the place.

Interesting when you consider that more than half the power production in the country is from coal-fired plants. I'd bet that's the ultimate source of coal tars.

I'd shudder at the prospect of living atop that toxic pile.

jmo
Frank
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 9/18/06, 6:29 PM
Michael Larson's Avatar
Michael Larson Michael Larson is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Hudson, WI including the Twin Cities of MN
Posts: 49,255
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Nihei
...They used to use coal tar as the active ingredient in dandruff shampoos, but last I heard that was now banned as a use. (Some little detail about skin cancers.)....Frank
Coal tar is used in products to this day. BTW - there are thousands of chemicals in creosote.

Determining if creosote in the foundation framing is a "material defect" would be difficult for the HI to determine. This condition should pointed this out in the report but the determination of any possible adverse effects should most likely be deferred to a specialist.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 9/18/06, 6:36 PM
Joe Funderburk, CMI's Avatar
Joe Funderburk, CMI Joe Funderburk, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Hickory Grove, SC
Posts: 9,868
Send a message via Yahoo to jfunderburk
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

This is what I said in my report, much of the text compliments of InspectVue:

"Wooden components within the foundation crawlspace have an odor and brownish tinge which is similar or identical to wood that has been treated with a preservative known as creosote. Creosote is a possible human carcinogen, or a chemical that is capable of causing cancer. However, we do not have the expertise or the authority to identify or comment on chemical carcinogens, or exposure levels and recommend that if this is a concern to you that you consult with an industrial hygienist. More information may be obtained here: http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxprofiles/tp85.html."



“The things that will destroy America are peace at any price,
prosperity at any cost, safety first instead of duty first,
the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life.”
Theodore Roosevelt


Joe Funderburk, CBO, CMI
Alpha & Omega Home Inspections, LLC
Inspecting Upstate SC & Charlotte Metro, NC
Angie's List Super Service Award Winner 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010.
Ph: 704-351-1776
NACHI ID: NACHI05120170
www.aohomeinspection.com

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 9/18/06, 7:25 PM
Marcel R. Cyr, CMI's Avatar
Marcel R. Cyr, CMI Marcel R. Cyr, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Winslow, ME
Posts: 24,903
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

Back in the 60's, Creosote was a common wood preservative, and used mostly for retaining walls comprising of 6"x6" or 8"x8" or the sort. I could not stand the product when it was fresh and in hot temperatures and anyone that would want to smell the product everyday in a Home is got to be out of their minds.

I used to use # 2 diesel fuel for form oil on concrete forms, because we had nothing else to work with, but I will tell you what, combined with 90 degree temperatures it would cook my skin. Another bad improvised product to accomplish what we had to do back then. So I guess modern Technology is not all that bad when you think of it. ha.

Marcel
</IMG></IMG>
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 9/18/06, 10:51 PM
Kenton Shepard, CMI's Avatar
Kenton Shepard, CMI Kenton Shepard, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 4,605
Send a message via ICQ to kshepard
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

I like the smell of creasote if it's not too strong. I'm attracted to women who put a little dab behind each ear (their ear, not mine).




Kenton Shepard, CMI
InterNACHI
Director of International Development
Director of Green Building
EXPERT WITNESS SERVICE

+52 777 154 5451
INSPECTION SERVICES WORLDWIDE
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 9/18/06, 10:55 PM
Joe Funderburk, CMI's Avatar
Joe Funderburk, CMI Joe Funderburk, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Hickory Grove, SC
Posts: 9,868
Send a message via Yahoo to jfunderburk
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

I prefer vanilla extract behind the ears. You're very strange!



“The things that will destroy America are peace at any price,
prosperity at any cost, safety first instead of duty first,
the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life.”
Theodore Roosevelt


Joe Funderburk, CBO, CMI
Alpha & Omega Home Inspections, LLC
Inspecting Upstate SC & Charlotte Metro, NC
Angie's List Super Service Award Winner 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010.
Ph: 704-351-1776
NACHI ID: NACHI05120170
www.aohomeinspection.com

Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 9/18/06, 10:58 PM
Doug Edwards Doug Edwards is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,118
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

I prefer WD-40 myself





Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 9/24/06, 5:02 PM
Kenton Shepard, CMI's Avatar
Kenton Shepard, CMI Kenton Shepard, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 4,605
Send a message via ICQ to kshepard
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

Uh-oh, getting into lubricants here. This thread should end before it crosses the line into bad taste.




Kenton Shepard, CMI
InterNACHI
Director of International Development
Director of Green Building
EXPERT WITNESS SERVICE

+52 777 154 5451
INSPECTION SERVICES WORLDWIDE
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 10/1/06, 10:01 PM
bandag bandag is offline
Active Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 137
Please Note: bandag is a non-member guest and is in no way affiliated with InterNACHI or its members.
Smile Re: Living in a creosote house

got a good laugh out of those last few posts!! good thing I wasn't eating anything at the time or my monitor would have got blasted.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 10/6/06, 2:19 PM
Mark S. Elliott Mark S. Elliott is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Celina, TX
Posts: 68
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

The question I would ask myself about the presence of creosote in a house is; would I like my kids to live with it. The answer is a very big NO. I studied Industrial Engineering at university in the early 70’s and we were told then that we should not recommend that it not be used due to its cancer related illness found in workers with long exposure to the product.

Creosote contains NAPHTHALENE (http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/chan12.htm ) which is a particularly nasty chemical used as in dyes and pesticides. Creosote itself contains volition products that some people can become addicted. I must be addicted because I also like the smell of it but I will not go near it now and would never recommend its use and certainly not live in a house that’s been treated with it wherever it was.

Just to drive home my point here is the advice given by the British Government to employers regarding NAPHTHALENE which creosote contains.

What should employers do?

You should give priority to preventing your employees being exposed to naphthalene by any route (ie inhalation, ingestion, or contact with the skin).

Where preventing exposure to naphthalene is not reasonably practicable (eg by using a different substance), then you should adequately control exposure by a combination of engineering and process control measures. HSE recommends that, although the legal obligation is to reduce exposure to the OES while it remains in force, it would be prudent for you to control exposure to as low a level as is reasonably practicable below the OES.

Once the OES is withdrawn, your legal obligation under COSHH remains to achieve adequate control. Since a safe level of exposure cannot be determined it remains our recommendation that you should control exposure to as low a level as is reasonably practicable.

In dealing with exposure, whether before or after the OES is withdrawn, the number of people exposed and the duration of their exposure should be minimized as required by good hygiene practice.

You must give all your employees who are, or who may be exposed to naphthalene, sufficient information, instruction and training to understand the potential problems and the precautions they need to take.

You should make sure that employees, safety representatives or representatives of employee safety are aware of this information and consult on any action that you propose to take as a result.
Reply With Quote
Need a home inspection in Wisconsin? Check out InterNACHI's listing of Wisconsin certified home inspectors. Or, find a home inspector anywhere in the world with our inspection search engine.
  #14  
Old 2/16/11, 10:41 PM
Nina Hodges Nina Hodges is offline
New User
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1
Please Note: Nina Hodges is a non-member guest and is in no way affiliated with InterNACHI or its members.
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

We lived in a home made of creosote treated wood for 6 months. It has horrible health effects. It has stolen my families lives and future. I would seriously advise anyone to run as fast as you can away from anything treated with creosote. www.screamwithme.org a cautionary tale!
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 2/16/11, 11:14 PM
Mike G. Howard, CMI's Avatar
Mike G. Howard, CMI Mike G. Howard, CMI is offline
InterNACHI Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 192
Default Re: Living in a creosote house

Good luck to you and your family Nina. Good info.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Meth House? tallen General Inspection Discussion 27 4/6/09 6:21 PM
Stupid ASHI legislatin in Washington DEAD. gromicko Legislation, Licensing, Ethics & Legal Issues for Inspectors 20 1/29/08 9:05 AM
Houses for Sale Stand Vacant jburkeson1 Miscellaneous Discussion for Inspectors 2 1/21/07 8:09 PM
Family's house is infested with mold rspriggs Ancillary Inspection Services & Additional Topics 6 1/28/06 2:05 AM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 4:58 AM.
no new posts