Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Proposed Changes To Treated Timber

Bia Proposes Changes To Treated Timber And External Moisture Management

The Building Industry Authority has announced proposals for significant changes to its Approved Documents that set out how timber should be treated and the way external moisture should be managed in residential dwellings.

“Our overriding goal in proposing these changes is to put in place a robust regime that provides a sufficient level of protection for consumers,” BIA chief executive Richard Martin said.

“Timber treatment and external moisture management have been identified as important issues in the weathertightness problem – these proposals are important steps in the wider body of work being undertaken by the BIA, other parts of Government and the industry to help resolve that problem.”

Approved Documents provide a prescriptive but non-mandatory means of complying with the New Zealand Building Code. Buildings built to the method described in an Approved Document are automatically deemed to comply with the Code. Buildings can be built using design or construction methods that differ from an Approved Document but these must be considered on their individual merits by a territorial authority or building certifier using the approved documents as a benchmark.

Treated Timber The current regime allows the use of untreated kiln-dried timber in the framing of buildings. The changes proposed will require all timber framing to be treated to a minimum level of H1.2 to protect against insect and fungal attack.

This will take us back to a pre-1990s like regime for treated timber when there was a greater level of safety, or margin for error, built into the system.

Proposed changes to the use of treated timber include: A requirement that all framing timber in residential constructions must be treated to a minimum level H1.2, sometimes known as H1 Plus. This includes framing for external walls, internal walls; sub-floor framing; roof frames and trusses and ceiling and inter-storey joists. The minimum level of treatment required for parapets and balconies exposed to the weather or covered by cladding, and for all cantilevered parapets, balconies or decks will be H3. Increased identification requirements for treated timber to avoid confusion and mix ups on building sites and ensure correctly treated timber is used in the right situation.

The proposed changes are consistent with the already announced proposed changes to the New Zealand Standard for treated timber.

External Moisture The proposed changes to the Approved Documents for external moisture management provide more extensive prescriptions for complying with the external moisture requirements of the Building Code. Changes include Providing more detail in prescribing how certain building materials (including some so-called “monolithic claddings”) should be used to help prevent buildings from leaking. Broadening the range of claddings covered by the Approved Documents. Providing more direction regarding the design and use of flashings. Introducing a requirement that cavities be built behind claddings in situations that are considered to be a high risk for leakage (cavities provide an opportunity for moisture to drain or evaporate before causing damage to building materials).

Mr Martin noted that the external moisture management and treated timber proposals were very closely linked.

“The moisture management proposals are in large part about keeping the rain out. But they also acknowledge that at some stage during the life of a building it could leak. Elements such as the cavity proposals and the treated timber proposals are about helping a building to manage or cope in the event of a leak.”

He stressed the importance of seeing the treated timber proposals as mitigation measures in the event of buildings leaking, not as a total answer or as a preventative to the so-called leaky building syndrome.

“Treated timber may still rot following prolonged exposure to moisture, even at the treatment levels being proposed.

“However, the spread and rate of decay and fungal growth will be slower than with the untreated framing timber currently used. This improves the prospect of leak-related problems being identified and remedied before major structural damage occurs.

“So, what we are doing is working on the assumption that all buildings have the potential to leak and these measures are designed to help the building cope with that eventuality and to allow owners or occupiers more time to spot problems before major structural problems occur.”

Consultation Process Mr Martin said the BIA has now begun an eight-week consultation process on the proposed changes.

“That consultation process is very important. The proposed changes are significant and we are encouraging all parts of the industry and other interested people including consumers or consumer groups to participate.”

Once the consultation period closes the BIA will review and consider all comments received and the Authority will then make its final decisions.

The closing date for submissions on the proposals is 8 August 2003.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news