So today I was checking out a new development in Dallas from a mid-range production builder with average prices ~450k for ~2500sf homes with brick facade on 1/6 acre lots.
There were a few construction details that I found a bit disappointing and I was wondering if this is typical for semi-custom new home construction in this price range.
* studs: load bearing walls were 2x6 studs spaced 24". Each stud was made out of what looked like ~2 ft long scrap lumber spliced and glued together. Is it normal that builders use heavily stitched lumber instead of whole pieces?
* shear walls: The outer walls had no plywood whatsoever. Shear was taken care of by styrofoam sheathing. I'm surprised that this is sturdy enough.
* water: All PEX but installed like copper (daisy chained fixtures - not home-run). I thought PEX is usually home run to a manifold because it's cheap and easy to do. The homes that I saw today had PEX that ran in loops connecting each fixture in two long single loops for hot and cold with branches. PEX was Teed off with plastic T's inside walls (eventually hidden). I'm surprised that this is code compliant. My plumbing inspector was very adamant that no fittings must be in the wall...
* DWV: All pipes were cast in the concrete slab without any sleeves. I thought that code requires 2 nominal sizes larger sleeve so that concrete expansion/contraction due to temperature doesn't eventually damage the PVC. I noticed that a lot with local construction?!
Are construction details like that typical?