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This help desk is a free resource intended for discussion purposes only. Neither BOMA, its chapters, affiliates, or Extreme Measures Inc.® are responsible for the information, comments or opinions expressed herein. For complete information, refer to the official publications of the standards themselves.

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Russ Mitchuk
Literal concepts
October 23, 2012

I was hoping to get some clarification. On a multi unit town house, or appartment, it is virtually impossible to determine what the wall widths are for common walls. Is it correct to assume that the walls between units are the same widths as the hallway walls or outside walls? Is there a width that you can use universally?
Also, am I correct when I go by the net method for measuring and deduct half the width of the wall for hallway and party walls, but include the full width for outside walls?

Russ Mitchuk
Literal concepts
October 23, 2012

Sorry I meant Gross method above not net method

David Fingret
Extreme Measures Inc.
October 25, 2012

Hi Russ,

We find that there is almost always a way to determine the thickness of any given wall and we employ a number of measuring "tricks" to achieve this. However, if you cannot determine the thickness of a wall, I believe it would be best to make your best educated guess, based on other information you have at the site. The current standard does not provide a default / universal thickness. I do recall reading something in the previous ANSI residential standard that 6 inches should be used for an unknown wall thickness. If you must make an assumption, I think it would be good idea to note this on your documents.

In a residential unit, the Gross Method (Method A) measures the full thickness of all walls (exterior and common area) except for demising walls which is half thickness.

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