Terms Beginning with "P"
pan joist structural system: A type of one-way cast-in-place concrete roof and floor structural system that uses ribbed slabs formed with elongated pans.
panelboard: a panel, including buses and automatic over-current devices, designed to be placed in a cabinet accessible only from the front.
parapet wall: A low wall around the perimeter of a roof deck
PE: Professional Engineer
PELs: Permissible Exposure Limits (standards set by OSHA).
permanently installed: fixed in place (i.e., screwed, bolted or nailed), as distinct from components, systems or appliances considered portable or freestanding.
Phase I: a type of fireplace and chimney inspection that exceeds the standards required by a traditional home inspection.
physical deficiency: a major defect, a significant deferred-maintenance item, or a component or system that has exhausted most or all of its remaining useful life (regardless of its actual life expectancy), or a safety concern, or anything that could potentially cause the need for an expensive repair.
picture-framing: A term used to describe the rectangular or square-patterned ridging that appears over the perimeter of an insulation board.
pitch: angle or inclination, usually of a roof.
pitch pan: A container formed of sheet metal that is installed around supporting connections for roof-mounted equipment and machinery. Filling the container with pitch or plastic roof cement helps seal out rainwater, even under conditions of vibration caused by the machinery's operation or other factors.
plenum: an air compartment or chamber that connects one or more ducts and forms part of an air-distribution system.
plumbing jacks: Sleeves that fit around drain-and-waste vent pipes and attached to the low-slope roof’s surface.
PM: Preventive Maintenance.
PMR (protected membrane roof): Also known as an IRMA (inverted roof membrane assembly), a low-slope roof having insulation that is installed on top of the membrane.
ponding: The development of a large puddle or area of standing water on a roof for prolonged periods, typically 48 hours after a rain event when conditions are favorable for drying, due to poor drainage and/or deflection of the roof deck.
post-tensioning: A pre-stressing technique whereby steel strands are tensioned after the concrete is cast.
pre-stressed: Concrete that undergoes internal stresses from reinforcing steel strands to offset tension stress of future loads.
pre-tensioning: A pre-stressing technique whereby steel strands are tensioned prior to the concrete being cast.
premises: a lot, plot, parcel of land, property or building.
pressure drop: the loss in pressure due to friction or obstruction in pipes, valves, fittings, regulators and burners, and the length of pipes and the number of elbows.
pressure regulator: a device placed in a gas line for reducing, controlling and maintaining the pressure downstream of the device.
primary building: a building that an inspector has agreed to inspect, excluding all accessory buildings, with the exception of the primary parking structure.
primary parking structure and surfaces: a building and appurtenant surfaces for the purpose of vehicle storage associated with the primary building.
psychosocial factors: Psychological, organizational, and personal stressors that could produce symptoms similar to poor indoor air quality.
public accommodation: public and private facilities that are used by the public, including a wide range of entities, such as restaurants and bars, theaters, grocery stores, shopping centers, etc.
public way: a street, alley or yard open to the outside and leading to a public area.
publicly available information: information that is accessible or available to anyone upon request.
purlins: A horizontal structural member spanning between beams or trusses to support a roof deck. In slope glazing, purlins are the horizontal framing members.
PVC (polyvinyl chloride): A thermoplastic low-slope roof membrane.
readily ascertainable: describes information that is available to the inspector within reasonable time at a nominal cost so that it can be practically reviewed during the research portion of the inspection.
stack effect: Pressure-driven airflow produced by convection as heated air rises, creating a positive pressure area at the top of a building and a negative pressure area at the bottom of a building. The stack effect can overpower the mechanical system and disrupt ventilation and circulation in a building.