Read the Small Print

Even though crews deal with OSB almost every day, they don’t often read the information printed on the pieces. But there’s a lot of important facts there. 

This particular OSB is stronger lengthwise, but is still fine to use vertically under standard loads. The size is provided as well. Also, yes it’s blurred, but you see can the word “space” in the text toward the bottom. What it means is that there should be a minimum 1/8-inch air space between each piece at all joints. They should never butt up against each other.

This is because the dimensional lumber is going to shrink over time, but the OSB may not and could pucker at the seams. This, in turn, can cause windows and doors to become inadequately sealed. It also can push a window out, creating visible gaps.

If remodelers don’t adhere to that 1/8-inch spacing and experience problems with windows or doors down the road, the manufacturer doesn’t have to honor the warranty.  This is because the directive to leave that space was placed right on the sheathing. 

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