Well-built houses don't leak

13 Jul 2005

The forest industry is concerned that the debate over T1.2 treated timber is shifting focus away from the real cause of leaky building problems — design and building standards.

It is also highly critical of Auckland City Council’s moves to ban the use of T1.2 treated timber.

"Once again we see an intense focus on a particular building product when the real issue is that if we designed and built our houses correctly, thousands of New Zealand homeowners would not be experiencing the trauma of leaky building syndrome," NZFIC chief executive Stephen Jacobi said today.

"The building industry needs to remain focused on the need to achieve high design and build standards and to lift training and performance.  The industry and the Department of Building and Housing have put a lot of focus on that in recent times and this debate should not shift people’s attention," NZFOA chief executive David Rhodes added.

"If builders and architects do their job properly, water shouldn't get behind cladding."

Mr Jacobi and Mr Rhodes said the industry had confidence in the Department of Building and Housing whose predecessor, the Building Industry Authority, approved T1.2 as an alternative solution. 

The DBH is the authority for determining whether this product works or not and their accreditation process is rigorous.

The industry was also very concerned about the action of Auckland City Council in banning T1.2.

"This is a bizarre and possibly unconstitutional measure.

"Auckland City Council has no legal ability to ban any product that is approved as an alternative solution — in fact they are obliged to accept it as achieving compliance with the Building Code.

"Auckland City would be better served putting its energy into ensuring its inspection and certification practices are as rigorous as possible to help lift building standards.  Placing blanket bans on building products is an admission that their inspection processes aren’t up to it."

Source: Joint NZFIC/NZFOA media release