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  #11  
Old 10-04-2010, 09:42 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,446
Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

Keith,
My preconceived notion about WA (Seattle) is that it rains alot (not sure what months), much like it does here in FL. May thru Sept here means daily rains, high temps, dreadful humidity. Along with that comes TONS of mold and mildew. I literally have to clean/pressure wash every square inch of hard surface outside of my home at least 3 times a year. I'm sure you are familiar. I have to believe you are dealing with mold, just can't believe it is soot or any kind of ash fallout.
I do considerable smoking with my oven, not to mention that I am still burning through a huge batch of free poplar that creates huge clouds of acrid black smoke (even when the oven has gone 'plasma').......never have I found soot or ash on my home (15' away) or on my neighbors (30' away).
I feel for you, neighbors like that are exactly why I am not very sociable within my neighborhood. I think you are damned either way - this lady has decided to be a pain in the ass and will find find something to pin on you, even if you demolish your oven.

As long as you are not breaking any laws, I say put the burden of proof on her.....keep firing that baby up.

RT
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  #12  
Old 10-04-2010, 09:59 PM
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Location: Tampa, FL
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

I think Gianni is spot on with the artliiery fungus. A quick google search brings up a wealth of info as well as pictures. This stuff is exactly what you have described. Your neighbor won't be happy, but you will be off the hook.
Don't be surprised if your crackling fires are too noisy (sleep deprivation) or the food smells too good (causing her to excessively snack/eat, jepordizing her health).
Good luck buddy.

RT
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  #13  
Old 10-05-2010, 04:59 AM
Journeyman
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: MN, USA
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

I want a 'like' button for RT's last post.
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  #14  
Old 10-15-2010, 11:55 AM
Serf
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Scarborough, ME
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

Take a sample of it off her house and have it analyzed. It may cost you a few dollars, but I don't imagine it will be anywhere near the cost of repainting her house if it is just a common mold. Make sure she knows what you are doing and that she observes the samples that you take so that when the lab report comes back, she has no argument. If it is mold, tell her politely to shut up and go inside so that you can enjoy your WFO.

BTW....I can't imagine fungus and mold being a foreign concept in Seattle.

Last edited by Neal; 10-15-2010 at 11:59 AM. Reason: add comment
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  #15  
Old 10-15-2010, 03:21 PM
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Location: Virginia
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

I have an odd question. It sounds like she want's something for free like a house painting or she just want to make trouble. So here is my odd question.
Where you live do they have any regulations or restrictions about wood fired outdoor furnaces for home heating. Some places don't allow them due to the low chimney output unlike a house chimney 20' up. So I don't know how that translates to a WFO but if she is looking to make trouble can she go that rout to shut your oven down?

I don' know the elevations involved but if you went higher with your chimney would that help the smoke to pass her house?
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  #16  
Old 10-15-2010, 05:24 PM
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: saugerties, ny
Posts: 193
Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

Frankly I think she's asking for trouble with press-board (a.k.a. particle board; chip board) as her siding. Isn't press-board usually an under layer for proper siding? I mean, couldn't one more or less poke a #2 pencil into that stuff? Ok, with some effort. It's held together with a glue/resin that, if I recall from my days messing with cheap construction, will fall apart if left to the elements. It's susceptible to mildew, moisture, bugs, bad jokes & curious questions about why anyone would finish a house like that? So I guess I'm suggesting that logic alone dictates mold of some sort. How long has she had this siding as the primary siding? Could its installation coincide with your oven and her problem?
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  #17  
Old 10-16-2010, 02:08 PM
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Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Location: Seattle, WA, USA
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

Well, that's it. She has made it clear that if I so much as light up the oven again she'll call the fire department and then start legal litigation.

I have no idea what to do. I don't know if I'm causing it or not. Admittedly, it looks a lot like mold or fungus, but it also looks a lot like tiny spots of charcoal or ash. The most damning evidence, although this is from her pov, is that it is significantly more serious the day after I use the oven. That might not actually be true, but it doesn't matter.

My yard is very low relative to hers. Smoke from my chimney admittedly hits her house pretty hard.

She has also been pretty thorough about repairing the damage which leaves very little evidence...although she claims to have photos; I haven't seen them.

I'm at a loss. I'm just not the kind of person to entertain drawn out legal battles...
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  #18  
Old 10-16-2010, 03:39 PM
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Location: Texas
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Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

You need to test the 'black spots'...if it is mold, she can threatens all she wants, smoke does not cause mold.

If she is so sure it is soot, I see no logical reason why she would object to either a company that specializes in mold remediation taking a look at it and testing it, or sending off a sample to a lab.

You are in a situation where you are being intimidated and the only way out is to get down to the facts...no more speculation. Why spend anymore time not knowing?
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  #19  
Old 10-16-2010, 04:32 PM
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Posts: 720
Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

Look it costs a lot of money and time to take someone to court. So I hope she has bunches. Most lawyers wont even deal with something like this so at best small claims court and she will need to have proof and you can drag this thing out.

I would add a section or two of pipe to your stove and try to get it over her house then light it up and let her call the fire department, Police, social services or the dog catcher. If your not breaking the law there is not much they can do and she will learn quickly that she does not have many options. Don't let her bully you.

Best of luck
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  #20  
Old 10-16-2010, 04:41 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: saugerties, ny
Posts: 193
Default Re: Neighbor is complaining about soot damage

would getting a regular building inspector have a look help? It seems like there's a lot of guessing and no one is expert enough to give a qualified opinion. It shouldn't take much or cost much to just have a qualified person have a look before it gets crazier than it has.

I look forward to the outcome. Many of us have ovens in neighborhoods and this could be an important bit of knowledge for us. Best of luck.
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