Space Heaters

DonanEngineering Appliance, Product & Component Failures, Component Testing, Fire Investigation, Residential & Commercial Structure Fires

A space heater is a device designed to warm a small area.  These devices are typically portable, but the category does include gas- and wood-fueled models that are permanently installed; however, these are not the focus of this article. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reported that “in 2010, heating equipment was involved in an estimated 57,100 reported U.S. home structure …

Winter Perils in a Northern Climate

DonanEngineering Forensic Engineering

Winter weather can adversely affect properties in cold northern climates in many ways.  One such way is when lakeshore properties are constructed too close to the shoreline.  Ice heaving or ice jacking is a natural phenomenon that occurs in lakes where sheets of ice push on the shoreline soils and cause the formation of ridges.  The Minnesota Department of Natural …

Condensation: A Property Damage Culprit in Winter

DonanEngineering Articles, Commercial & Residential Roofing, Forensic Engineer, Forensic Engineering, Structural Damage & Collapse, Water Losses, Winter Storm

Most people know in a general sense what condensation and dew point are, or at the very least, have heard the terms while watching their local weather forecast.  But how many know why they are important? Unfortunately, a lack of understanding of these terms and the science behind them can cost homeowners thousands of dollars in damages resulting from condensation. First, A …

Ice Damming: Detection, Cause & Prevention

DonanEngineering Articles, Commercial & Residential Roofing, Forensic Engineer, Forensic Engineering, Registered Roofing Consultant, Structural Damage & Collapse, Winter Storm

Ice dams and their resultant leaks can be an expensive and even chronic problem in those regions where snow-covered roofs are a common occurrence. To understand their detection, cause, and prevention requires some understanding of the dynamics of a structure’s construction, insulation, and ventilation. Ice dams most commonly make their presence known when the owner or tenant of a shingle-covered …