• FreeAdvice has a new Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, effective May 25, 2018.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our Terms of Service and use of cookies.

I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO

Accident - Bankruptcy - Criminal Law / DUI - Business - Consumer - Employment - Family - Immigration - Real Estate - Tax - Traffic - Wills   Please click a topic or scroll down for more.

charmstone

New member
What is the name of your state?Pennsylvania. My sister and I hired a contractor a year ago to install a wood burning stove in our home. We got the permits that were needed and the code inspector came out and inspected it, not once but twice. I then received the certificate letter of approval. However, yesterday the inspector came to my door telling me that I have to rip out the stove that we just paid thousands of dollars to install because we were blocking our neighbor's heat through the chimney with our liner. The chimney is on my roof. The inspector tells us this has to happen in the next few days because it going to get cold. That wood burning stove is the only heat my sister and I have so if we rip it out of our chimney our neighbors will be warm but my sister and I will freeze. The inspector didn't seem to care. So I told him that the chimney is on my roof not theirs. He said that they have been sharing it for 50 years.I got a hold of my contractor who installed the stove and he said he has nothing to do with it because it was inspected and approved so it was now up to the neighbor to installing their own chimney or up to the inspector. The inspector who is telling us all of this is the same one who inspected it and now they are saying I am in violation. I don't know how I am in violation when I thought I did very thing right. I didn't know I shared the chimney with the neighbor. I don't understand why the inspector didn't see this when the contractor was installing it. I am so lost and confused. My sister and I are disabled and on a fixed income the wood burning stove was and is our only heat Sources.That was all the money we had. We don't have any money to have it remove or for any other heat Sources. Please Help
 


HRZ

Senior Member
Many an older row home had common chimney or sewer or water feeds ....and these rarely meet current codes. The issues of who is required to do what when things change often requires the wisdom of Solomon and more . I suggest you get a second opinion quickly . I doubt it is within the inspectors powers to require that a chimney be undone ....but that common prior chimney is a big open issue ...and it's not entirely clear if there was one flue or two in that chimney ...last chimney I went up ( a week ago ) there were three flues . IT is highly likely that neighbor has some sort of easement of necessity to continue to use that prior flue ...BUT modern codes may prohibit its replacement once disturbed. I have seen exactly that issue on common sewer lines from a row home in PA and massive bills to run a new line(s) . Sorry no easy answer .

BTW what was your prior heating system and where did it exhaust. Are you on / near a natural gas line ?
 

adjusterjack

Senior Member
We got the permits that were needed and the code inspector came out and inspected it, not once but twice. I then received the certificate letter of approval.
Well, one option is to make copies of those papers (hope you still have them), give them to the current inspector and say "Sorry, not gonna do it. Here are my papers approving the installation."

Then wait and see what happens.
 

quincy

Senior Member
You may also want to invest in some electric heaters on the offchance your wood burning stove use is not allowed.

You also might look into converting your wood burning stove into a gas stove.

Or, as adjusterjack says, do nothing and see what happens. You have the permits to fall back on if challenged.
 

not2cleverRed

Obvious Observer
Perhaps off topic, but... The purpose of a chimney flue is to allow exhaust out, not to funnel heat to the great outdoors. Semantics, I know.

The inspector really said that your flue is blocking their heat from chimney?!

Since it seems that 2 units share the same chimney, how has this been handled in the past? Separate or joint flues? I would think separate would be better, so that each party is responsible for maintaining their own flue.

How did they heat their unit last winter?
And, as HRZ observed, what was your heat source before obtaining the wood stove?
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
Perhaps off topic, but... The purpose of a chimney flue is to allow exhaust out, not to funnel heat to the great outdoors. Semantics, I know.

The inspector really said that your flue is blocking their heat from chimney?!

Since it seems that 2 units share the same chimney, how has this been handled in the past? Separate or joint flues? I would think separate would be better, so that each party is responsible for maintaining their own flue.

How did they heat their unit last winter?
And, as HRZ observed, what was your heat source before obtaining the wood stove?
I don't disagree, but I suspect that the OP is paraphrasing. It's much more likely that that inspector said something to the effect of "it's preventing the proper exhaust of head and gasses from the other chimney".
 

quincy

Senior Member
How the house was heated prior to installation of the wood burning stove is an important question that still needs to be answered.

I am actually surprised a permit was issued for a wood burning stove.
 

Zigner

Senior Member, Non-Attorney
How the house was heated prior to installation of the wood burning stove is an important question that still needs to be answered.

I am actually surprised a permit was issued for a wood burning stove.
Perhaps the OP was referring to a wood pellet stove?
 
Sponsored Ad

Top