Since we have completed thousands of home inspections in our fifteen-year existence, here is a summary (including photos) of the most common issues we have experienced.
1) Missing GFCI outlets where they provided us with the best safety. They should be located in the following: exterior, garage, laundry, unfinished basement, kitchen, and bathrooms.
2) Missing smoke detectors.
The National Fire Protection Association recommends:
Install smoke alarms inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement.
On levels without bedrooms, install alarms in the living room (or den or family room), near the stairway to the upper level, or in both locations.
3) Missing carbon monoxide detectors.
Carbon monoxide detectors should be installed on each level of the home. Here is a schematic of what you should have installed on every level, including fire extinguishers (which are a great idea)!
4) Cracked chimney crown wash.
This can allow water to enter the bricks causing significant damage and, if left un-repaired, can be very expensive to fix. Here are three examples we found on recent home inspections.
5) Double tapped breakers.
This is where two wires are installed at one breaker. Some breakers are designed for this, but not all.
6) Ground wires and neutral wires are installed under the same screw (lug) on the neutral bus bar.
A prevalent defect that a licensed electrician quickly corrects. Here are two examples from two recent home inspections.
7) Back-drafting exhaust from a water heater exhaust flue.
This can happen to any water heater flue; however, it is widespread when the flue is not resized when a conventional combustion furnace is replaced with a high-efficiency furnace. In addition, the flue that was once shared by both appliances is too big for the smaller water heater exhaust and allows the exhaust gases (including carbon monoxide) to drop back down and enter the home—two more examples from recent inspections.
8) Mold in attics is very common too.
Mold is usually observed when the ventilation of an attic is compromised; there is a lack of insulation or air leakage into the attic from the living space. It can be a very easy or challenging problem to solve! Usually, however, the culprit is bathroom exhaust fans that are not directing the warm moist air to the exterior. We also see many instances where the process of re-roofing has caused the attic to sustain mold. When a new roof is installed, the attic ventilation is often changed, thus allowing the attic to “breathe” better. Unfortunately, there was a building era where the bathroom exhaust fans were pointed at the soffit. The new ventilation style pulls all of this air back into the attic setting up the perfect storm. Coupled with how infrequently people look in their attics, the problem can go undetected for a very long time.
Let Us Catch Your Common Issues!
Schedule your inspection with us today! We serve the neighborhoods of Akron, Aurora, Brecksville, Cuyahoga Falls, Hudson, Kent, Medina, Streetsboro, Solon, Stow, and Twinsburg. We service Cuyahoga, Geauga, Medina, Portage, and Summit counties.