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Pac-Van Modular Building Construction Glossary
This glossary is provided by Pac-Van and the Modular Building Institute. It provides basic and advanced terminology that is used both in the modular building and site-built construction industries. Since the building techniques are similar, many of these terms apply to both construction methods. If you need a more detailed explanation of any of these terms or need to know the meaning of a word that isn't in this list, please call 800.587.1784 and one of our modular building specialists will be happy to assist.
A passageway or means of approach to a room or building; a corridor between rooms; also a term used in building construction referring to points at which concealed equipment may be reached for inspection and repair.
The condition resulting from the inclusion of appropriate architectural elements to permit unrestricted entrance to, exit from, and use of buildings and facilities.
Folding doors supported by carriers with rollers which run on a track; the doors fold up in a manner similar to the bellows of an accordion, hence the name.
Any type of special material, such as insulating boarding, used in the control of sound or to prevent the passage of sound from one room to another.
Any tile composed of materials having the property of absorbing sound waves, hence reducing the reflection of sound; any tile designed and constructed to absorb sound waves.
The science of sound. In housing, acoustical materials used to keep down noise within a room or to prevent it passing through walls.
Architect/Engineer; normally engaged by an Owner.
An apparatus that can heat, cool, clean, and circulate air.
Air Conditioner – Window
Self-contained room conditioner arranged to be supported in, or connected with a window opening, circulating outside air over the high side and room air over the low side.
Lumber that is left in the open to dry rather than being dried by a kiln.
A pipe usually made of sheet metal that conducts air to rooms from a central source.
A recessed space connected at the side of a larger room.
A glazed window with aluminum sash and muntins.
The unit in the measure of the rate of flow of electricity.
(1) In pre-stressed concrete, to lock the stressed tendon in position so
that it will retain its stressed condition; in pre-cast concrete construction, to attach the pre-cast units to the building frame; in slabs on grade or walls, to fasten to rock or adjacent structures to prevent movement of the slab or all with respect to the foundation, adjacent structure or rock. (2) That bolt or fastening device which attaches to the anchorage. (3) An egg-shaped ornament alternating with a dart-like tongue used to enrich a molding.
In post-tensioning, a device used to anchor the tendon to the concrete member; in pre-tensioning, a device used to anchor the tendon during hardening of the concrete; in precast concrete construction, the devices for attaching precast units to the building frame; in slab or wall construction, the device used to anchor the slab or wall to the foundation, rock, or adjacent structure. Sometimes called a deadman.
A threaded rod inserted in masonry construction for anchoring the sill plate to the foundation.
A structural piece of rolled-steel shaped to form a 90 degree angle.
Device installed on piping coming from hot water heater that prevents excessive hot water temperature should thermostat of hot water heater fail.
A person who plans and designs buildings and oversees their construction.
Any physical condition in a building or facility which creates unsafe or confusing conditions or prevents accessibility and free mobility.
A soft, fibrous, fireproof mineral fiber used in fireproofing building materials.
A fire resistant sheet made from asbestos fiber and poured cement.
A type of shingle made for fire proof purposes. The principal composition of these shingles is asbestos, which is non-combustible, non-conducting and chemically resistant to fire.
Composition roof shingles made from asphalt-impregnated felt covered with mineral granules.
The space between the roof and the ceiling. See roof cavity.
An out swinging window hinged at the top.
Device installed on underside of trailer frame to which tires are installed for over the road transportation.
A hand rail.
The finish of a room at the junction of the walls and floor.
The finish board covering the interior wall where the wall and the floor meet.
The lowest story of a building partially or entirely below the ground.
A plate, usually of steel, upon which a column rests.
A molding used next to the floor in interior baseboards.
A blanket insulation material usually made of mineral fibers and designed to be installed between framing members.
A narrow strip of board, used to cover cracks between the boards in board and batten siding.
Frequently used as “back up” power supply for emergency lighting and exit signs.
A window projecting out from the wall of a building to from a recess in the room.
A horizontal structural member that carries a load.
A ceiling in which the ceiling beams are exposed to view.
A plate that provides support for a structural member.
Bearing Wall or Partition
A wall supporting any vertical load other than its own weight.
Usually a 1x3 wood member installed perpendicular to the exterior side of a stud wall for the fastening of aluminum siding.
Shingles or other siding board thicker on one edge than the other. The thick edge overlaps the thin edge of the next board.
A threaded faucet allowing a hose to be attached.
Bill of Material
a parts list of material accompanying a structural drawing.
Angle cut in roof rafter that allows rafter to rest on top plate of wall.
Insulation in rolled-sheet form, often backed by treated paper which forms a vapor barrier.
Light wood sections in the form of doors to close over windows to shut out light, give protection, or add temporary insulation. Commonly used now for ornamental purposes, in which case they are fastened rigidly to the building.
Small Wood framing members that fills in the open space between the floor and ceiling joists to add stiffness to the floors and ceiling.
Blocking Points Plan
Indicates points of support at frame when finished unit is located at permanent site.
An architectural drawing used by workers to build from. The original drawing is transferred to a sensitized paper that turns blue with white lines when printed.
A system of lumber measurement having as a unit a board-foot. One board-foot is the equivalent of 1 foot by 1 inch thick.
A material used to prevent adhesion of newly-placed concrete to the substrate or additional concrete.
Asphalt impregnated paper usually .040” think installed between frame and wood floor system. Used to secure insulation and rodent protection.
The bottom member of a truss.
Bottom member of a row of studs in a frame wall. Plate is attached to floor system.
“Bow” shaped truss commonly used in single wide roof construction.
Bow String Truss
A roof structural member having a bow shaped element at the top and a straight or combined element connecting the two ends. A preassembled unit consisting of a horizontal bottom chord and a curved top chord. The top and bottom members are secured by either metal web members of lumber. The width of the bow truss is equal to the unit width and is normally 16” on center.
A covered passage, open at each end, which passes through a house or between two structures increasing ventilation and adding an outdoor living effect.
The outside facing of brickwork used to cover a wall built of other material; an outer covering of a four inch brick wall tied to a wood-frame wall.
Abbreviation for British Thermal Unit, a standard unit for measuring heat gain or loss.
Frame for a door, usually made of metal, into which the finished door fits.
A collection of legal requirements for buildings designed to protect the safety, health, and general welfare of people who work and live with them.
A heavy, water-proof paper used over sheathing and subfloors to prevent passage of air and water.
A beam constructed of smaller members fastened together.
A roofing material composed of several layers of felt and asphalt.
Armored electric cable wrapped in rubber and protected by a flexible steel covering.
Concrete Masonry Unit – Type of building construction such as cinderblock, concrete block, etc.
The finish interior woodwork.
In a steel frame or roof truss am engineered configuration that allows the frame or truss to be level once dead loads are applied.
Housing for a recessed fixture.
A projection over windows and doors to protect them from the weather.
An angular board used to eliminate a sharp, right angle on roofs or flashing.
Metal strip installed at (A) where carpet terminates to another type of finished floor covering (B) sometimes shipped with units that comprise complex for covering space between floors of units.
The number of pile tuft rows, per inch, for the length of the carpet.
The number of yarns across the width of the carpet expressed in yarn ends per 27 inches of width.
Casement Door (French Door)
A hinged door or pair of doors almost completely glass.
A hinged window that opens out usually made out of metal.
A metal or wooden member around door and window openings to give a finished appearance.
Tape like material of either black butyl or gray composition material used to water proof metal seams.
A waterproof material used to seal cracks.
A hollow wall usually made up of two brick walls built a few inches apart and jointed together with brick or metal ties.
Roofing and siding shingles made from western red cedar.
Center Peak Truss
Designates truss configuration of the truss installed in the middle unit of a three unit complex.
Central Air Conditioner
An air conditioner which provides service to an entire structure from a single, central, source.
A single source of heat which is distributed by pipes or ducts.
A thin, flat piece of fired clay, usually square and attached to walls, floors, or counter tops with cement or other adhesives creating durable, decorative and dirt-resistant surfaces.
A plain or molded strip on wood or plaster wall as a protection against chair backs.
A string that is heavily chalked, held tight, then plucked to make a straight guideline against boards or other surfaces.
A vertical space within a building for ducts, pipes, or wires.
Sometimes used as term for steel frame.
Splits or cracks in a board ordinarily caused by seasoning.
A valve that permits passage through a pipe in only one direction.
A vertical flue for passing smoke and gases outside a building.
A group of flues in the same chimney.
The principal members of a roof or bridge truss. The upper members are indicated by the term upper chord. The lower members are identified by the lower chord.
The path of an electric current. The closed loop of wire in which an electric current can flow.
A device used to open and close an electrical circuit.
The distance, or clear and unobstructed opening, between two supports of a beam; always less that the effective span.
Usually 1”x1” dimension lumber used in framing cabinetry and plan rack holders.
To bend over the protruding end of a nail.
A small connecting angle used for fastening various members of a structure.
Cohesion of Soil
The quality of some soil particles to be attracted to similar particles. It is manifested in a tendency to stick together, as in clay.
In architecture: a perpendicular supporting member, circular in section; in engineering: a vertical structural member supporting loads acting on or near and in the direction of its longitudinal axis.
Used to define buildings that are comprised of more than one unit. i.e., 4 unit complex means 4 units that are joined together.
The formation of frost or drops of water on inside walls when warm vapor inside a room meets a cold wall or window.
In architecture: a drain pipe leading from the roof; in electricity: anything that permits the passage of an electrical current.
A channel built to convey water or other fluids; a drain or sewer. In electrical work, a channel that carries wires for protection and for safety.
Projection at the top of a wall; a term applied to construction under the eaves or where the roof and side walls meet; the top course, or courses, of a wall when treated as a crowning member.
A long passage wall or hall connecting parts of a building.
Device welded to the hitch assembly of a steel frame (Chassis) for the purpose of attaching to a 2 5/16” diameter ball type hitch of a truck.
A concave molding, the curved junction between a ceiling a sidewall.
Made of vinyl, rubber and/or metal in a variety of heights and shapes for a wide range of sheet goods and tile installations.
In cases where houses have no basements, the space between the first floor and the surface of the ground, large enough for a man to crawl through for repairs and installation of utilities. Also called a crawl way.
A structural member that is cut less than full length, such as a studding piece above a window or door.
Boards nailed diagonally across studs or other boards to make framework rigid.
Bracing between floor joists to add stiffness to the floors.
Steel members or assemblies installed between and perpendicular to the main I-beam members of a steel frame (chassis). Usually at 4’ on center.
On a drawing, that shows a view cut through the interior of a unit.
Metal grid work of suspended ceiling system designates part of system framework that’s usually 2’ or 4’ in length.
A molding used above eye level; usually the corner molding under the roof overhang.
A very low wall.
Designates side of unit when being transported that’s on the curb or shoulder area of a highway. When facing unit at hitch end, this is the left side of the unit.
Notch in exterior wall stud usually 3/4” deep by 2 1/2” long for installation of belt rail and electrical.
Metal plate or “J-shaped” metal from installed in exterior wall stud for protection of electric wire.
A movable plate which regulates the draft of a stove, fireplace, or furnace.
Placard located near or on electric panel that designates design criteria of unit.
Locking device installed in a door usually operated by thumb type mechanism from interior side of door.
Construction intended to prevent the passage of sound.
All the weight in a structure made up of unmovable materials. See also Loads.
An unsheltered floor of wood construction.
Sometimes used to define plywood installed over floor framing and plywood installed over roof framing. i.e., 3/8” plywood roof decking.
The number of people living in a calculated area of land such as a square mile or square kilometer.
Designates a type of hitch that’s bolted to the steel frame (chassis). See Hitch.
To provide specific instruction with a drawing, dimensions, notes, or specifications.
Lighting fixture with plastic or acrylic type lens over bulbs.
Light reflection from a surface, such as smooth, matte, white paper reflects light equally in all directions. Light reflection from a surface rather than radiating directly from a light source.
Installed in a supply air duct opening which directs flow of air.
The use of two sheets of glass with rarefied – air space between, serving as insulation against passage of heat.
Dimension Building Material
Building material which has been precut to specific sizes.
A line with arrowheads at either end to show the distance between two points.
In electricity, an insulated board from which connections are made between the main feed lines and branch lines.
Electrical device usually installed in conjunction with heating cooling equipment that allows manual shutdown of equipment and provides over current protection.
The strips on the door-jambs against which the door closes.
A structure projecting from a sloping roof to accommodate a window.
When (2) two I-Beams are welded parallel with each other in the construction of a steel frame (chassis).
A pane made of two pieces of glass with air space between and sealed to provide insulation.
Two or more timbers joined for strength.
A window having top and bottom sashes each capable of movement up and down.
Roof rafter that is angle cut from center point of span to form slope.
Pipe carrying rainwater from the roof to the ground.
A pipe for carrying waste water.
Lumber machined and smoothed at the mill. Usually 1/2 inch less than normal (rough) size.
A molding placed on the exterior top part of a door or window to cause water to drip beyond the outside of the frame.
A false or lowered ceiling.
A term applied to many types of decay, especially an advanced stage when the wood can be easily crushed to a dry powder. The term is actually inaccurate because all fungi require considerable moisture for growth.
Interior wall covering other than plaster, usually referred to as gypsum-board surfacing.
A HVAC System using two ducts, one for hot and one for cold air. The air from these ducts is blended in mixing boxes before distribution to each location.
Sheets of fiberglass material that is grooved and formed to fabricate supply and return air duct system.
(1) In post-tensioning, a hole made in a post-tensioned member to accommodate a tendon. (2) In a house, usually round or rectangular metal pipe for distributing warm air from the heating plant to rooms, or air from a conditioning device.
The part of a roof that projects over a wall.
Screened area for ventilation located in the bottom side of an eave.
An L-shaped pipe fitting.
Device attached to hitch of a unit for the purpose of raising or lowering the height of unit and allowing it to balance.
The drawings of the front, side or rear face of a building.
Lighting system usually operated by self contained battery pack to provide light in event of electric power failure.
Electrical panel board separate from main panel board and wired to incoming power supply with purpose to provide power to emergency type equipment or systems.
Electrical metallic tubing, light gauge tube used as pullway for electrical conductors. Sometimes referred to as “conduit”.
Paint with a considerable amount of varnish. It produces a hard, glossy surface.
Exterior wall located at front or rear of unit. Can be 8’, 10’, 12’, or 14’ in nominal width.
The hardware on a door to accommodate the knob and keyhole.
Can be either illuminated or placard that designated route of exit from building.
Work done on parts of a structure at the factory before delivery to the building site.
The face or front elevation of a building.
False Wall Plenum
Wall construction in area of heating/cooling equipment for the purpose of providing return air to the equipment.
A vertical board nailed on the ends of the rafters. It is part of the cornice.
Engineering calculations shown on blueprints that show electrical amperage of selected voltage for unit.
Papers, sometimes tar impregnated, used on roofs and side walls to give protection against dampness and leaks.
A building board made with fibrous material-used as an insulating board.
A loose insulating material poured from bags or blown by machines into walls.
Usually referred to as the dimensions of an opening i.e., door after jamb is installed.
Device, usually installed in supply and return air ductwork that stops air flow in event of fire.
A door that will resist fire.
A partition designed to restrict the spread of fire.
Any material or combination of materials built to protect structural members so as to increase their fire resistance.
Obstruction across air passages in building to prevent the spread of hot gases and flames. A horizontal blocking between wall studs.
Any wall which subdivides a building to resist the spread of fire and which extends continuously from the foundation through the roof.
A piece of electric or plumbing equipment.
Rating assigned to a material after it’s tested for certain fire resistance characteristics. Usually floor, wall and ceiling finish material is rated.
A window set beside an outside door which is often used to light a hallway.
The material used for and the process of making watertight the roof intersections and other exposed places on the outside of the house.
Flexible Metal Roofing
Roof covering of flat flexible metal sheet.
Finish material installed over floor deck, i.e., carpet, tile, etc.
The top view of a building at a specified floor level. A floor plan includes all vertical details at or above windowsill levels.
An electric outlet flush with the floor.
Concrete or clay tiles set in cement mortar, bituminous or other adhesive. For a sounder absorbent, heat-insulating, decorative or comfortable walking surface, linoleum, glass, cork, rubber, asphalt or plastic tiles are used.
the opening in a chimney through which smoke passes.
Terra-cotta pipe used for the inner lining of chimneys.
A light source in which light is produced by a fluorescent power, phosphor coated on the inner surface of a glass tube. A mercury vapor arc between electrodes sealed into each end of the tube generates ultra-violet radiation which is changed by the phosphor into visible light.
A door, any size not paneled, has two flat surfaces; flush-doors are frequently of various types of hollow core construction.
A tank that holds water for flushing one or more plumbing fixtures.
Foil Faced Insulation
Batt insulation with aluminum foil type facing.
The assembly of two or more hinged leaves which, when straightened in a line, can close the opening.
Foot Candle (Ft-C)
A quantitative unit for measuring illumination. It is approximately the illumination produced by a plumber’s candle at a distance of one foot.
Rectangular cut outs in a steel frame that allow forks of a lift truck access for the purpose of lifting a unit.
Steel strap wrapped around main beam of steel frame to provide a means of anchoring unit to ground at site.
The wooden skeleton of a building.
The trade name for a hard durable plastic sheeting used for table, sink, and counter tops or for wall covering; resistant to heat and chemicals.
A wall below the floor nearest grade serving as a support for a wall, pier, column or other structural part of the building.
A subordinate space between an entrance and the main interior to which it leads into the building.
Narrow strips of board nailed upon the wall and ceilings to form a straight surface for the purpose of attaching wallboards or ceiling tile.
A ridged roof which terminates either at one end or both ends in a gable. The end of a ridged roof which at its extremity is not returned on itself but is cut off in a vertical plane which above the eaves is triangular in shape due to the slope of the roof.
Truss shape consisting of 2 rafters (chords) meeting at a peak with a continuous ceiling joist (bottom chord) below the internal web members.
A lead and zinc bath treatment to prevent rusting.
Sheets of 30 gauge galvanized steel seamed together in crimp press to make a light weight and economical roof material.
A type of roof which has its slope broken by an obtuse angle, so that the lower slope is steeper than the upper slope; a roof with two pitches. Also referred to as a mansard, half-hipped or curb roof.
Sheet glass that has been made translucent instead of transparent. It is sand-blasted or molded to make the surfaces irregular.
Glass in which wire mesh is embedded to prevent shattering.
General term applied to material installed in openings such as windows, and although normally used in reference to glass, also includes materials such as rigid.
A short length of metal or plastic bar attached to a wall in a bathroom, near a toilet, in a shower, or above a bathtub.
Symbolic representations used in drawing which simplify presentations of complicated items.
Lumber that still contains moisture or sap.
A mixture of cementations materials and aggregates to which sufficient water has been added to produce pouring consistency without segregation of the constituents.
A plywood or metal plate used to strengthen the joints of a truss.
A trough for carrying off water.
A board made of plaster with a covering of paper.
Handicap Water Cooler
A water cooler set low and operated by push-bars or levers for convenience to persons in wheelchairs.
An iron strap used to support a joist beam or pipe.
Wood fibers joined together under pressure to form a sheet of material.
The upper frame on a door or window.
The horizontal supporting member above openings as a lintel. Also one or more pieces of lumber supporting ends of joists. Used in framing openings of stairs and chimneys.
A refrigerating system employed to transfer heat into a space. The condenser provides the heat while the evaporator is arranged to pick up heat from air, water, etc. By shifting the flow of air or other fluid a heat pump system may also be used to cool the space.
Heat Pump-Cooling and Heating
A refrigerating system designed so that the heat extracted at a low temperature and the heat rejected at a higher temperature may be utilized alternately or simultaneously for cooling and heating functions respectively.
Located in electric heating equipment resistance type coil(s) that provide heat source. Similar to coils in a toaster.
The low end of a truss or an angle cut rafter.
Abbreviation for hem-fir lumber specie.
Hi-Lo Return Air
Method of returning air in building to heating/cooling equipment.
High Pressure Sodium Lamp
A sodium vapor lamp, operating at a partial vapor pressure of 0.1 atmosphere, that produces a wide spectrum yellow light.
A roof which is raised by inclined planes from all four sides of a building; the line where two adjacent sloping sides of a roof meet is called the tip.
Steel ‘A’ shape assembly welded or bolted to the steel frame (chassis) for the purpose of transporting the unit.
A flush door in which plywood or hardwood for both faces is glued to a skeleton framework. It is lighter and less expensive than a solid door.
Hollow Metal Door
A hollow-core door constructed of channel-reinforced sheet metal. The core may be filled with some type of lightweight material.
A reinforcing bar with the end bent into a hook to provide anchorage.
Device that measures humidity in building and controls equipment that adds more moisture to environment i.e.., humidifier.
Abbreviation for heating ventilation and air conditioning.
A steel beam with an I-shaped cross section.
A light source consisting of a glass bulb containing a filament that may be kept incandescent by the transmission of an electric current.
Artificial light that is bounced off ceiling and walls for general lighting.
Parquet flooring fixed in blocks about two feet square to a wood backing and then attached to floor boards.
Usually used to designate a type of interior trim where walls meet.
A label or placard issued by a state building department which signifies compliance with the state building codes. Usually applied to the electric panel board of a unit.
Any board suitable for insulating purposes, usually manufactured board made from vegetable fiber board.
Materials for obstructing the passage of sound, heat, or cold from one surface to another.
General term for all the finish molding, casing, baseboard, etc.
A type of window consisting of a number of long, thin, hinged panels.
The sides of a doorway or window opening.
Similar to a table where wall and roof assemblies are fabricated.
The meeting of two separate pieces of material for a common bond.
A horizontal structural member which supports the floor system or ceiling system.
Aluminum extrusion shaped like the letter “J” used to secure galvanized roof to sidewall or unit.
A rectangular metal box used as a protective area where electrical wires are spliced in circuit runs.
Derived from fibrous plant native to India and the Far East. It is shredded and spun into yarn, which may be used as the backing yarn for woven carpets, or woven into a backing fabric for tufted carpets.
Door latchset that can be locked and opened by a key.
A heating chamber for drying lumber.
In a roof truss, the central upright piece.
A corner brace, fastened at an angle from wall stud to rafter stiffening a wood or steel frame to prevent angular movement.
Low wall resulting from one-and-one-half-story construction.
Batt insulation with a treated paper facing.
A beam made by bonding together several layers of material.
Laminated Fiber Wallboard
Fiber board made in thin layers cemented together. It is used for paneling walls, ceilings, etc. and is made with a surface which is smooth or pebbled, painted or prepared for painting.
A piece of wood built up of laminations that have been joined either with glue or mechanical fastenings.
A platform in a flight of steps.
A joint produced by lapping two pieces of material.
Lap Siding – (Clapboard)
The finish siding on the exterior of a building. It is usually manufactured by dry square-surfaced boards diagonally to produce two wedge shaped places. These pieces commonly run from 3/16 inch thick on the thin edge to ½ to ¾ inch thick on the other edge, depending on the width of the siding.
A washbasin or a room equipped with a washbasin.
Attached to axle as means of absorbing vibration during transportation of unit. (See overslung and underslung axle).
A wood strip nailed to the lower side of a girder to provide a bearing surface for joists.
Connection to branch circuit, made in a protective box, to which a light fixture or lamp holder is directly attached or from which wires are extended to fixtures
A measurement of 1 foot along a straight line.
Walls that support weight from above as wells as their own weight.
Term used the same as panel board for center controlling electrical circuits.
Live Load: The total of all moving and varied loads that may be placed upon a building.
Dead Load: The weight of all permanent, stationary construction including a building.
A complete system including all the mechanical parts and accessories of a lock, such as knobs, reinforcing plates and protective escutcheons.
Term used to designate a type of floor or roof system.
Adjustable louvers on slanted outside blinds to control the amount of shade or sunlight entering windows.
A mechanical means of completely shutting off electrical service to the entire building.
Metal grid work of suspended ceiling system designates part of system framework usually 12’ in length to which cross tees are connected to.
Architectural treatment of exterior of unit that resembles a mansard roof.
A roof with two slopes on each side, with the lower slope much steeper than the upper.
An exterior vertical raceway extending above the roof with electrical feeder conductors installed from the local power distributor.
Located in roof system of complex type units. Usually fabricated of multiple layers of plywood to which trusses or rafters are attached.
Term used to designate location where complex type units are to be joined together.
Mate Line Wall
Interior wall located on mate line of complex type units.
Rectangular steel plates with elongated bolt hole welted to steel frame (chassis) of complex type units for the purpose of bolting units together at site.
Metal Clad Fire Door
A flush door with a wood core or stiles and rails and heat insulating material covered with sheet metal.
A type of attached gutter prefabricated of sheet metal.
A strip of corrugated metal used to tie a brick veneer wall to framework.
Metal Wall Ties
Strips of corrugated metal used to tie a brick veneer wall to framework.
The finish woodwork in a building, such as cabinets and trim.
Steel or wood partitions installed in restrooms for individual privacy.
Buildings that are constructed in sections or component parts in a factory, and then assembled at the site. (See also Prefabricated Buildings).
An ornamental strip of material used at joints, cornices, bases, door and window trim, and most commonly made of wood, plaster, plastic, or metal.
A truss slanting in one direction.
A material such as specially treated paper that retards the passage of vapor or moisture into walls and prevents condensation within the walls.
A mixture of cement, sand, lime and water used in masonry construction. Used in binding CMUs together.
A vertical bar in a window separating two windows.
Narrow Light Door
A door with a narrow vertical light near the lock stile.
Abbreviation for non-metallic copper cable commonly referred to as “Romex” wire.
Dimensions for finished lumber in which the stated dimension is usually larger than the actual dimension. These dimensions are usually larger by an amount required to smooth a board.
A dividing wall that does not support a vertical load other than its own weight.
Metal containing no iron, such as copper, brass, or aluminum.
A thermoplastic polyamide resin derived from coal tar base, air and water.
Sheet glass that is made translucent instead of transparent.
Abbreviation for “On Center” used in dimension of framing or roof members. i.e. 16” O.C.
A roof on which the rise is not an even fraction of the run.
Any kind of electrical box allowing current to be drawn from the electrical system for lighting or appliance.
A window that may be opened and shut to accommodate ventilation needs, as opposed to a fixed light or fixed sash.
Formed steel members of a steel frame (chassis) welded to main ‘I-Beam’ usually at 48” O.C. used to support exterior sidewalls of unit.
Type of steel frame (chassis) utilizing outrigger and cross member as components.
Usually to designate a type of exterior or interior trim used where walls form right angle.
The horizontal distance that a roof projects beyond a wall.
Over the Roof Tie Down Strap
Galvanized steel band or strap, usually 1 1/2” wide, installed over roof truss or rafter and extends below exterior wall to be used as anchor method when UNH is located at site.
Method of installing leaf spring on tube of an axle. Mounted on “top” side of tube.
Packaged Air Conditioner
A factory assembled air conditioning unit ready for installation. The unit may be mounted in a window, an opening through a wall, or on the building roof. These units may serve an individual room, a zone, or multiple zones.
The center for controlling electrical circuits.
A door which consists of raised or indented panels. Also referred to as a “colonial door”.
Type of door hardware on emergency doors and other doors when specified.
A reflector shaped to control the light in a narrow beam.
A low wall or railing around the edge of roof.
An interior wall that separates two rooms.
A composition board consisting of distinct particles of wood bonded together with a synthetic resin or other added binder. Also called chip-board
Interior walls of the unit used as close off spaces such as rooms, closets, etc. Normally a non-load bearing wall.
Door latchset operable from both sides of door. Cannot be locked.
A roof rising either to a point or ridge.
A term for the length of a nail, abbreviated d.
A roof with a slope on one side only.
Perforated paper joint tape approximately two inches wide; used to cover the joints in gypsum wall board.
Type of steel frame (chassis) where main beams are located under exterior sidewalls and cross members are usually at 48” O.C.
A solid support of masonry construction.
Extra electric wire installed in a junction box for the purpose of continuation of an electrical circuit in a multi-unit complex.
The height of piles in a rug measured from the top surface of the barking to the top of the pile.
A horizontal, graphic representational section of a building, show the walls, doors, windows, stairs, chimneys and surrounding objects as walks and landscape.
Installed in a unit for the purpose of holding blueprints.
The top horizontal member of a row of studs in a frame wall to carry the trusses of a roof or to carry the rafters directly. Also a shoe or base member, as of a partition or other frame. (See Top Plate and Bottom Plate).
The cut in a rafter which meets upon the plate. It is also called the seat cut or birdmouth.
A high-quality sheet of glass used in large windows.
A system of heating or air conditioning in which air is forced through a chamber connected to distributing ducts.
Said of an object when it is in true vertical position as determined by a plumb bob.
A piece of wood made of three or more layers of veneer joined with the grain of adjoining plies at right angles.
Post and Beam Construction
Wall construction consisting of posts rather than studs.
Single or multi-section modular buildings that are easily assembled, moved, and reassembled for temporary space needs.
Power Roof Vent
Electrically operated and thermostat controlled fan used for ventilation of roof cavity.
Buildings that are constructed in sections or component parts in a factory, and then assembled at the site.
Used to designate a material usually installed in the interior of a unit that has a surface that is finished prior to installation, i.e.., wall paneling, and vinyl covered gypsum board.
Door latch set that can be locked from one side by thumb type latch. Usually used in bathroom.
A structural member spanning from truss to truss and supporting the rafters.
Door hardware installed in lieu of latch set, designates push plate one side and pull handle other side of door.
A measure of a construction material’s ability to retard the flow of heat. The rating of insulation material. The higher the R-value, the higher the ability to insulate.
Route or path of electrical or plumbing branches within a unit.
Structural members used to frame a roof. Several types are common, hip, jack, valley, and cripple.
Abrupt transition of roof from a given height to an increased height.
Abbreviation for “Rough Swan Cedar Embossed” imprint on aluminum siding or trim material.
Concrete manufactured for delivery to a project site in a plastic and unhardened state.
Recessed Lighting Fixture
A lamp fixture which has its bottom edge flush with the ceiling.
The open end of a duct in a room for warm or cool air.
Return Air Grill
Metal grill specifically designed to be installed in an opening of a return air system.
An instrument for regulating electric current.
Ribbon Footing (Grade Beam/Strip Footing)
A narrow strip of concrete upon which walls are constructed.
The top edge of the roof where two slopes meet.
A wood or metal cap used over roofing at the ridge.
Located at the ridge of a truss. It is a sheet metal configuration, designed to allow the air within the roof system to vent.
The vertical height of a roof.
Designates side of unit when being transported that’s on the center line of the highway. When facing unit at hitch end, this is on the right side of unit.
An insulating material that looks like wool but is composed of such substances as granite or silica.
Roofing material of fiber and asphalt.
Room Air Conditioner
A factory encased air conditioner designed as a unit for mounting in a window or through a wall, or as a console. It is designed for delivery of conditioned air to an enclosed space without ducts.
The space between the ceiling and the roof decking of a unit.
A liquid sealant used to cover a galvanized roof.
Rectangular framework installed on roof surface for the purpose of elevating roof vents or mechanical equipment.
An ‘L’ shaped aluminum extrusion used to secure galvanized roof to front and rear walls.
Type of flashing used on furnace vent flues.
A roof extension beyond the end wall/sidewall of a building.
The slope of a roof expressed as the ratio of the rise of the roof to the horizontal span. The angle that a roof surface makes with the horizontal. Usually expressed in units of vertical rise to 12 units of horizontal run.
Lumber fastened to end of truss or rafter for purpose of stabilization of roof system.
A liquid used to only cover the seams of a galvanized roof.
Usually fabricated with sheet metal and installed on top of the roof for the purpose of ventilating a roof cavity.
Concrete, burnt-clay or asbestos-cement tiles for covering roofs. Tiles are of three general types: (a) plain tiles, (b) shingle-lap tiles, (c) Italian tiling or Spanish tiling.
The subfloor on which the finished floor is laid.
Putting up the skeleton of the building.
Any unfinished opening in the framing of a building.
A laminate consisting of two or more sheets of flat glass, usually plate or sheet with an intermediate layer of transparent plastic bonded together by a heat and pressure treatment.
A type of glass, that when broken will shatter rather than produce jagged edge pieces.
The movable framework in which windows panes are set.
A small wooden member used to join other members which are fastened on the outside face.
A list of parts or details.
Drying out of green lumber, either in an oven or kiln or by exposing it to air.
The drawing of an object that is cut to show the interior. Also, a panel construction used in walls, floors, ceilings, or roofs.
Self Closing Taps
Faucet controls that shut-off automatically.
Within a building, a metal box located at the point where the electric service conductors enter the building. The spot in the building where the electricity is brought into the building from the local power distribution center.
The electric wires to the building from the outside power lines.
Service (Entrance) Equipment
Assembly or switches and switch-like devices, which permits disconnecting all power, distributing it to various branch circuits thru over current devices such as fuses or circuit breakers. Assembly of fuses or circuit breakers, with or without a disconnecting means, also is termed a distribution panel or panel board.
A hand-split shingle.
The structural covering of boards or wallboards, placed over exterior studding or rafters of a structure.
A paper barrier against wind and moisture applied between sheathing and outer wall covering.
A flat roof slanting in one direction.
A piece of material used to level or fill in the space between two surfaces.
Thin pieces of wood or other materials which overlap each other in covering a roof. The number and kind needed depend on the steepness of the roof slope and other factors. Kinds of shingles include tile shingles, slate shingles, asbestos-cement shingles, and asphalt shingles.
A wall constructed of 1x3 top and bottom plates and 2x3 studs at 24” O.C. for the purpose of supporting open areas of a multi-unit complex unit during transportation.
One of a pair of narrow windows flanking a door.
The exterior wall on either side of a unit.
The outside boards of an exterior.
Relatively small individual siding units which overlap each other to provide weather protection. They typically are applied to a nailing base, such as sheathing or horizontal nailing strips, which supports the shingles between structural framing members.
The horizontal exterior member below a window or door opening. Also the wood member placed directly on top of the foundation wall in wood-frame construction.
A lean to roof; it slopes in only one direction.
Skirt Board (Skirting)
A baseboard of finishing board at the junction of exterior wall and floor, extended to the surface of the ground.
An opening in the roof for admitting light.
Any window that moves horizontally in grooves.
A formed ‘S’-shaped edge on aluminum siding.
The undersurface of a projecting structure.
Wood from trees having needles rather that broad leaves. The term does not necessarily refer to the softness of the wood.
A perforated of louvered sheet metal assembly attached to the tail of the truss and the sidewall, to allow within the truss system to escape.
The main vertical pipe which receives waste from all fixtures.
The horizontal framing member directly under the studs.
Solid Core Door
(1) A flush door with a solid core. (2) A fire-resisting door built with three thicknesses of tongued and grooved boarding, the inner one horizontal the other ones vertical. Sometimes such a door is plated with sheet metal.
Solid Glass Door
A door in which the glass essentially provides all the structural strength.
Usually a 4’x8’ sheet of material specifically designed to inhibit the transmission of noise through a wall.
Sound Rated Door
A door constructed to provide greater sound attenuation than that provided by a normal door, usually rated in terms of its sound transmission class (STC).
The distance between structural members.
The distance between structural supports.
Point of connection to the electrical system for a particular piece of equipment, normally reserved for the exclusive use of the equipment.
The written or printed direction regarding the details of a building or other construction.
Abbreviation for spruce-pine-fir lumber species.
A large heavy nail.
Joining of two similar members in a straight line.
Steel plate formed in ‘U’ shape which is welded to main beam of steel frame (chassis) for the purpose of attaching leaf spring to frame.
An arrangement of overhead pipes equipped with sprinkler heads or nozzles. In case of fire, these nozzles automatically release sprays of water.
Stable Door (Dutch Door)
A door cut through horizontally at about half its height, with each half hung separately.
A vertical pipe.
Color in a dissolving vehicle; when spread on an absorptive surface, it penetrates and gives its color to the wood or other material.
This type of roofing is available in several variations of the seaming method. It makes the most watertight sheet metal roofing, and it should be used on roof slopes of less than 4” drop in a 12” run and is effective on slopes as slight as a 2” drop in a 12” run. Seams may be locked, double-locked, soldered, or welded.
A spring with chain attached to an exterior door.
A completed steel frame assembly on which a wood floor is constructed. Primarily needed to transport finished unit.
A vertical member of a door, window, or panel.
Common sizes of building materials and equipment available from most commercial industries.
An extra window usually placed on the outside of an existing window as additional protection against cold weather.
A lighting assembly used to flood all or part of an area, consisting of a row of lamps mounted in a trough with a reflecting good.
Portland cement, water, sand and possibly a small quantity of lime (portland cement plaster), along with, perhaps, other aggregates, used on exterior surfaces.
Upright beams in the framework of a building. Usually referred to as 2x4’s, and spaced 16 inches from center to center.
A lumber grade most commonly used for wall frame members.
The rough flooring under the finish floor that rests on the floor joists.
The interior ceiling system that uses cross tees, main tees and fiber type panels.
A flush plate used to cover an electric switch.
Abbreviation for Southern-Yellow-Pine lumber species.
A type of plywood that’s used for exterior siding.
Term used to indicate degree of slope in a rafter.
A device installed on the supply side of a water supply system that mixes hot water and cold water to a predetermined temperature range.
A substance capable of transmitting heat.
A type of aluminum foil covered sheathing board with insulative properties.
A device that controls heating or air conditioning equipment.
The beveled piece of stone, wood or metal over which the door swings. It is sometimes called a carpet strip, or a saddle.
A structural member used to bind others together.
Made by a special process that involves the inclusion of certain admixtures to the glass batch. The result is a glass with the capacity for significantly lowering the transmission of solar heat through the glass into the building. At the same time, the transmission of visible light is reduced to a degree that depends upon the particular tint and thickness of glass.
To drive nails at an angle.
One of the panels forming a toilet enclosure.
The acceptable variance of dimensions from a standard size.
A projection on the edge of wood that joins with a similarly shaped groove.
The top member of a truss.
Top Hung Window
A casement window hinged from the top.
Top member of a row of studs in a frame wall. Plate is attached to roof system.
Temperature and pressure valve installed on a water heater that is activated when the temperature or pressure of water exceeds certain limits.
Term used to designate a type of floor or roof system.
When the peak of the roof is located in the center point of a unit’s length.
Material used to accent and or cover seams of interior or exterior finish material.
Type of light fixture installed in a suspended ceiling system.
A triangular-shaped unit for supporting roof loads over long spans.
The action or result of cutting away the bottom of the door. A door with greater than normal clearance at the floor to give more ventilation to an area.
Method of installing leaf spring on tube of an axle mounted on bottom side of tube.
Batt insulation without a facing.
Term used to identify a building or a section of a building. i.e., one unit of a multi-unit complex.
A device which regulates the flow of material in a pipe.
A watertight material used to prevent the passage of moisture or water vapor into and through walls.
A thin covering of valuable material over a less expensive material.
A thick sheet of wood, single facing of masonry units or similar materials securely attached to a wall for the purpose of providing ornamentation, protection or insulation, but not bonded or attached to intentionally exert common action under load.
A screen for doors or windows formed of horizontal slats supported on vertical strips of webbing. It is capable of being collapsed into a small space when raised, and the slats are movable to admit or exclude light.
A screened opening for ventilation.
The process of supplying and removing air by natural or mechanical means to or from any space.
The upper portion of a soil or waste stack above the highest fixture.
The upper portion of a soil or waste stack above the highest fixture.
A type of exterior cladding consistency of side matched boards.
Vertical Sliding Window
A window with one or more sashes that move only in a vertical direction and make use of a device to remain in an open position.
Vinyl Covered Gypsum Board
Usually a 4’x8’ piece of gypsum board covered one side with a vinyl decorative film. See: Prefinished.
Pertaining to a composition of materials that resemble glass.
Facing for the lower part of an interior wall.
Supports gridwork of suspended ceiling at wall. ‘L’ shaped metal angle.
Wood pulp, gypsum, or similar materials made into large rigid sheets that may be fastened to the frame of a building to provide a surface finish.
Prefinished material installed on interior walls of unit.
Wall-Hung Water Closet
A water closet mounted on a wall so the area beneath is clear for cleaning.
Any change from a true or plane surface. Warping includes bow, crook, cup, and twist.
A plumbing fixture used to receive human waste and flush them to a waste pipe. Also called a “flushable toilet”.
A vertical pipe in a plumbing system which carries the discharge from any fixture.
An opening at the bottom of a wall to allow the drainage of water.
Adhesive used in assembly of a floor or wall system. Similar to wood glue.
An inexpensive pre-assembled window trims.
Wood strips, factory-shaped to commercially available patterns.
Wrong Way Roof
Term for transverse roof