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Is there a code for garage walls not against the house?

Discussion in 'Residential Building Codes' started by BrianBurke, Mar 23, 2020.

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  1. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    Hi everyone. I have a ranch house with an attached garage. I recently started removing the drywall on the three sides not against the house in order to insulate them. I'm debating options for a wall covering. Could I leave it with just the insulation? It's faced fiberglass batts. Could I cover it with plywood? I'm getting conflicting information for local guys. One says it needs to be fire retardant while another says there's no code for the walls not against the house. I'm searching online but most things talk about the wall between the house and garage. Any help is appreciate. Brian Burke
     
  2. Rick18071

    Rick18071 Sawhorse

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    You cannot have the paper on the insulation uncovered and the paper needs to be towards the inside of the garage.
    Any wall that supports the living area of the house needs drywall. If you have drywall all the way to the roof ( not just to the ceiling) in your ranch house between the living area and the garage you should be OK depending on your local codes.
     
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  3. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Welcome.
    You are right as long as none of those three walls touch the house, you should be able to use whatever finish you want.

    And there is no part of the house on top of the garage?

    How about common attic between the garage and house?
     
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  4. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    If the space in the garage attic is under 300-sf no requirement for attic access, If Two- car garage probable going to exceed that SF on a ranch garage with no rooms above the garage and will need an access. The main house would require an attic access for sure.

    Resale of a house should be considered, I thank a garage with no interior finish materials would be unsightly and an expense for the future buyer that may or could prevent a sale.
     
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  5. Inspector Gift

    Inspector Gift Sawhorse - Made in USA

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    If you insulate the garage walls, then a vapor barrier must be installed on the "warm side" of the insulation. Typically, any exposed vapor barrier in this area is a rated plastic that has a smoke-developed index rating of less than 450 and a flame spread index of 25 or less. Also, keep in mind that any NM-nonmetallic sheathed cable (romex wiring) in the walls must also be protected from physical damage, up to 8 feet above the floor level,. That is why we usually see sheet rock, or wood panels on the garage walls.
     
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  6. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    Thanks for all the replies. The garage does share an undivided attic space with the main house. When you say wood paneling, would you ever use a finished plywood? Could you recommend a specific type of paneling?
     
  7. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    My answer ::: Your choice on finish material

    We should have asked what year was the house built??
     
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  8. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    1963.
     
  9. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    It would be interesting to know the code that it was built too or if the garage even required interior wall coverings or a covered ceiling?

    I suspect not required at the time.
     
  10. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    So today's code..

    If it were a detached garage,,, Would the interior walls have to be finished??

    Or something like this, where only one wall touches the rest of the house, do the exterior facing walls have to be finished????
     
  11. Rick18071

    Rick18071 Sawhorse

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    No not required in my state. We also allow romex in-between the studs in an unfinsihed garage.
     
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  12. TheCommish

    TheCommish Sawhorse

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    new work, new issues, 2015 IRC house, and house attic separated from garage

    upload_2020-3-23_20-17-1.png
     
  13. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    In general, do municipalities have an information on the original construction of houses? I would love to see the original blueprints of the house just out of curiosity. I don't suppose they exist anywhere?
     
  14. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    I appreciate everyone chiming in. Thanks, fellas. The reason I'm against drywall is I'd like a most workable area and if I went with no wall covering or plywood, I'd have more options like a French cleat system or any number of ways to hang things. I also think drywall doesn't "fit" in a garage where I'm kick up dust and grease all the time.
     
  15. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Not plans and more than likely back than not much more than a House was built.

    So one or two other things,,

    You are not doing any work that needs or you got a permit for???

    If answer is no, than the city eyes will not see what finish you have on the walls.

    From the responses I think you can put up whatever you want.....

    One last check you might do and should not matter,,,, your insurance company,,, see if they care.

    If my house, I would make sure the ceiling is type x drywall, to try to keep the fire out of the attic or slow it down.
     
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  16. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    No permit work. Just pulling off the drywall and insulating the stud cavities.

    Not a bad idea to check with ins. Re. the ceiling, there's drywall up there but it's so old that it's only 3/8" and I doubt Type X. Is guess I could upgrade that too.
     
  17. ADAguy

    ADAguy Registered User

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    So, Drywall for fire and overlay sheet metal or paneling over it.
     
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  18. my250r11

    my250r11 Sawhorse

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    You could put plywood behind drywall and have the hanging opinions and the fire requirement.
     
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  19. BrianBurke

    BrianBurke Registered User

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    I love both ideas and can't decide which I like more, plywood over drywall or the other way around. Great ideas.
     
  20. Pcinspector1

    Pcinspector1 Platinum Member

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    BB,

    In the old days, they made a drywall for garages with a paneling look, now days you'll probably want ship lap:)
     
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