Full General Home Inspection and Structural Pest Inspection|
WA State Dept. Agriculture ICN#00000000
|Property address:||Anytown, USA|
Important: This summary page is not the complete report. Clients should refer to the complete report for evaluating the subject property.
Concerns are shown and sorted according to these types:
|Safety||Poses a risk of injury or death|
|Repair/Replace||Recommend repairing or replacing|
|Repair/Maintain||Recommend repair and/or maintenance|
|Minor Defect||Correction only involves a minor expense|
|Maintain||Recommend ongoing maintenance|
|Evaluate||Recommend evaluation by a specialist|
|Comment||For your information|
|Infestation||Evidence of infestation of wood destroying insects or organisms (Live or dead insect bodies, fungal growth, etc.)|
|Damage||Damage caused by wood destroying insects or organisms (Rot, carpenter ant galleries, etc.)|
|Conducive conditions||Conditions conducive for wood destroying insects or organisms (Wood-soil contact, shrubs in contact with siding, roof or plumbing leaks, etc.)|
1) - Structures built prior to the mid 1980s may contain lead and/or asbestos. Lead is commonly found in paint and in some plumbing components. The EPA does not recognize newer coats of paint as encapsulating older coats of lead-based paint. Asbestos is commonly found in various building materials such as insulation, siding, and/or floor and ceiling tiles. Laws were passed in 1978 to prohibit usage of lead and asbestos, but stocks of materials containing these substances remained in use for a number of years thereafter. Both lead and asbestos are known health hazards. Evaluating for the presence of lead and/or asbestos is beyond the scope of this inspection. Any mention of these materials in this report is made as a courtesy only, and meant to refer the client to a specialist. Consult with specialists as necessary, such as industrial hygienists, professional labs and/or abatement specialists for this type of evaluation. For information on lead, asbestos and other hazardous materials in homes, visit:
2) - Evidence of rodent infestation was found in the form of feces in the garage. Consult with the property owner about this. A qualified person should make repairs to seal openings in the structure, set traps, and clean rodent waste as necessary. Recommend following guidelines in these Center for Disease Control articles:
4) - Stairs built from landscaping timbers were rotten. This is a potential fall hazard. Recommend replacing rotten timbers.
5) - Handrails at one or more flights of stairs were missing. This is a potential fall hazard. Handrails should be installed at stairs with four or more risers or where stairs are greater than 30 inches high. Recommend that a qualified contractor install handrails where missing and per standard building practices.
6) - Guardrails at one or more locations with drop-offs higher than 30 inches were missing or had gaps wider than 4". This is a potential fall hazard. At a minimum, the client should be aware of this hazard. If concerned, have a qualified contractor install and/or repair guardrails per standard building practices where walking surfaces are more than 30 inches above the surrounding grade or surfaces below.
Attic and Roof Structure
7) - The roof structure had three types of ventilation openings; soffit, gable end, and ridge vents. Standard building practices call for venting to be installed at the lowest and highest points of a roof structure, with equal amounts of venting divided between them. This promotes airflow, drawing cool air in from below and exhausting warm and potentially moist air out through the top. Usually this is done with soffit vents, plus ridge OR gable end vents. When both ridge and gable end vents are installed, then cool air can be drawn in from the gable end vents instead of the soffit vents, leaving stagnant air at the lower sections of the attic or roof structure. Moisture from condensation can accumulate where the stagnant air is, and can be a conducive condition for wood-destroying organisms. Temperatures can also be elevated where the stagnant air is, and result in reduced life of roof surface materials and/or increased cooling costs. Consult with a qualified contractor who has a good understanding of roof ventilation systems, and that repairs be made per standard building practices. In some cases, the gable end vents simply need to be blocked off.
Garage or Carport
10) - The water heater in the garage was installed so sources of spark were less than 18 inches above the floor. This is a potential fire or explosion hazard. Such appliances should be installed so that open flames or sources of spark are located at least 18 inches above the floor. This minimizes the chance of explosion or fire from fuel vapors from vehicles or storage containers. Recommend that a qualified contractor repair per standard building practices. For example, by installing a pedestal. If the water heater is replaced soon, installing one then would be a convenient time to do it.
11) - Weatherstripping around or at the base of the door between the garage and the house was missing. House to garage doors should prevent fire and fumes from spreading from the garage to the house. Weatherstripping should form a seal around this door. This is a potential safety hazard. Recommend that a qualified person replace or install weatherstripping as necessary.
12) - One or more extension springs supporting garage vehicle door springs had no safety containment cables installed. These cables prevent injury to people located nearby when springs eventually break. This is a potential safety hazard. Recommend that a qualified contractor install cables where missing per standard building practices. For more information, visit:
13) - The wall-mounted control for one or more automatic garage vehicle door openers was less than 5 feet off the floor, or within reach of children. This is a safety hazard. Children should not be able to operate automatic garage vehicle door openers. A qualified person should relocate controls for door openers so they are at least 5 feet above floors and/or out of reach of children. For more information on garage door safety issues, visit:
14) - Hardware such as brackets, hangers, rollers and/or fasteners on one or more garage vehicle doors was loose. A qualified person should repair as necessary.
15) - Panel(s) #B had circuit breakers manufactured by the Zinsco company. These circuit breakers have a history of problems including not tripping under normal overload conditions and appearing to be tripped when they're not. This is a potential safety hazard for shock and/or fire. Recommend that a qualified electrician carefully evaluate all panels with Zinsco brand circuit breakers and make repairs as necessary. Consider replacing panels with Zinso brand circuit breakers with modern panels that offer more flexibility for new, safer protective technologies like arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCls). For more information, visit:
16) - One or more clamps that secure the electric service's grounding electrode conductor(s) to a grounding rod were loose. Grounding may be substandard as a result and may be a safety hazard for shock. Recommend that a qualified electrician repair as necessary. For example, by tightening clamps.
17) - Extension cords were being used as permanent wiring at one or more locations. They should only be used for portable equipment on a temporary basis. Using extension cords as permanent wiring is a potential fire and shock hazard, and indicates that wiring is inadequate and needs updating. Extension cords may be undersized. Connections may not be secure resulting in power fluctuations, damage to equipment, overheating and sparks that could start a fire. Recommend that a qualified electrician repair per standard building practices and eliminate extension cords for permanently installed equipment.
18) - The inspector was unable to open and evaluate panel(s) #B because the wooden enclosure prohibited removal of the screw that secured the cover. These panel(s) are excluded from this inspection. Recommend that repairs, modifications and/or cleanup should be made as necessary so panels can be opened and fully evaluated.
Plumbing / Fuel Systems
20) - One or more hose bibs (outside faucets) were missing backflow prevention devices. These devices reduce the likelihood of gray water entering the potable water supply. Recommend installing backflow prevention devices on all hose bibs where missing. They are available at most home improvement stores and are easily installed. For more information, visit:
21) - Copper water supply pipes were installed. Copper pipes installed prior to the late 1980s may be joined with solder that contains lead, which is a known health hazard especially for children. Laws were passed in 1985 prohibiting the use of lead in solder, but prior to that solder normally contained approximately 50% lead. The client should be aware of this, especially if children will be using this water supply system. Note that the inspector does not test for toxic materials such as lead. The client should consider having a qualified lab test for lead, and if necessary take steps to reduce or remove lead from the water supply. Various solutions include:
For more information visit:
22) - The water supply pressure was greater than 80 pounds per square inch (PSI). Pressures above 80 PSI may void warranties for some appliances such as water heaters or washing machines. Flexible supply lines to washing machines are likely to burst with higher pressures. 40-80 PSI is considered the normal range for water pressure in a home, and most plumbers recommend 50-60 PSI . Typically, the pressure cannot be regulated at the water meter. Recommend that a qualified plumber evaluate and make modifications to reduce the pressure to below 80 PSI . Installing a pressure reducing valve on the main service pipe is a common solution to this problem. If one exists, then it should be adjusted, repaired or replaced as necessary to maintain lower pressures. Note that installing a pressure reducing valve creates a "closed system," which may require installing an expansion tank at the water heater if one is not already installed.
23) - Based on visible components or information provided to the inspector, this property appeared to have a private sewage disposal (septic) system. These are specialty systems and are excluded from this inspection. Comments in this report related to this system are made as a courtesy only and are not meant to be a substitute for a full evaluation by a qualified specialist. Generally, septic tanks should be pumped and inspected every 3 years. Depending on the type of system and municipal regulations, inspection and maintenance may be required more frequently, often annually. Recommend the following:
For more information, visit:
24) - The water heater did not have earthquake straps or struts installed. This is a potential safety hazard in the event of an earthquake due to the risk of the water heater tipping over, gas lines breaking if it's gas-fired, or electric wiring being damaged if powered by electricity. Leaks can also occur in water-supply pipes. Recommend that a qualified person install earthquake straps or struts as necessary and per standard building practices.
25) - One or more sections of the temperature-pressure relief valve drain line were sloped upwards. This is a potential safety hazard due to the risk of explosion. Water and/or minerals can accumulate in the drain line after periodic discharges and impair the operation of the valve. Also, mineral deposits from accumulated water can accumulate on the valve and impair its operation. A qualified plumber should repair per standard building practices, and so the drain line doesn't slope upwards. For more information, visit: http://www.reporthost.com/_docs/TPvalve.pdf
Heating, Ventilation and Air Condition (HVAC)
27) - The last service date of the forced air heating/cooling system appeared to be more than 1 year ago, or the inspector was unable to determine the last service date. Ask the property owner when it was last serviced. If unable to determine the last service date, or if this system was serviced more than 1 year ago, recommend that a qualified HVAC contractor service this system and make repairs if necessary. Because this system has a compressor and refrigerant system, this servicing should be performed annually in the future. Any needed repairs noted in this report should be brought to the attention of the contractor when it's serviced.
28) - Air filters for the heating and/or cooling system were missing at one or more locations where they should have been installed. Indoor air quality will be reduced as a result. Recommend installing good quality filters at intended locations (e.g. in or at the air handler, behind return air grills). Filters should be sized correctly to minimize air gaps. Many types of filters are available. Recommend installing pleated filters or better rather than the cheapest disposable kind. For more information, visit:
29) - The estimated useful life for most forced air furnaces is 15-20 years. The inspector was unable to determine the age of the furnace. Be aware that this furnace may be near, at, or beyond its useful life and may need replacing or significant repairs at any time. Recommend attempting to determine the furnace's age (ask property owner or service technician), and budgeting for a replacement if necessary.
30) - The estimated useful life for most heat pumps and air conditioning condensing units is 10-15 years. The inspector was unable to determine the age of this unit. Be aware that it may be near, at, or beyond its useful life and may need replacing or significant repairs at any time. Recommend attempting to determine the age (ask property owner or service technician), and budgeting for a replacement if necessary.
Fireplaces, Stoves, Chimneys and Flues
32) - No hearth was installed for the downstairs fireplace. Embers may ignite combustible surfaces nearby. This is a fire hazard. For fireplaces with a firebox less than 6 square feet in size, hearths should be at least 16 inches deep in front and extend at least 8 inches to the sides. For fireboxes more than 6 square feet in size, hearths should be at least 20 inches deep and extend 12 inches to each side. Recommend that a qualified person make repairs or modifications per standard building practices if necessary. For example, by installing a non-flammable hearth pad, or by extending the existing hearth with non-flammable materials.
33) - One or more wood-burning fireplaces or stoves were found at the property. When such devices are used, they should be professionally inspected and cleaned annually to prevent creosote build-up and to determine if repairs are needed. The National Fire Protection Association states that a "Level 2" chimney inspection should be performed with every sale or transfer of property with a wood-burning device. Recommend consulting with the property owner about recent and past servicing and repairs to all wood-burning devices and chimneys or flues at this property. Recommend that a qualified specialist evaluate all wood-burning devices and chimneys, and clean and repair as necessary. Note that if a wood stove insert is installed, it may need to be removed for such an evaluation. For more information, search for "chimney inspection" at:
34) - Ribbed, flexible drain pipe was used at the sink. This type of drain pipe accumulates debris more easily than smooth wall pipe and is more likely to clog. Recommend that a qualified plumber replace flexible piping with standard plumbing components (smooth wall pipe) to prevent clogged drains.
Bathrooms, Laundry and Sinks
35) - The clothes dryer was equipped with a vinyl or mylar, accordion-type, flexible exhaust duct. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission considers these types of ducts to be unsafe, and a fire hazard. They can trap lint and are susceptible to kinks or crushing, which can greatly reduce the air flow and cause overheating. Recommend that such ducts be replaced with a rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct, and by a qualified contractor if necessary. For more information, visit:
36) - The clothes dryer exhaust duct appeared to need cleaning. Significant amounts of lint build-up were visible and may reduce air flow. This is a fire hazard. Recommend that a qualified person clean this duct now and as necessary in the future. Some chimney sweeps or heating/cooling duct cleaners perform this service. For more information, visit:
37) - The bathroom with a shower or bathtub at location(s) #B didn't have an exhaust fan installed. Moisture can accumulate and result in mold, bacteria or fungal growth. Even if the bathroom has a window that opens, it may not provide adequate ventilation, especially during cold weather when windows are closed or when wind blows air into the bathroom. Recommend that a qualified contractor install exhaust fans per standard building practices where missing in bathrooms with showers or bathtubs.
38) - The sink drain pipe at location(s) #A used an S-trap rather than a P-trap, or no P-trap was visible. Siphons and sudden flows of water in S-Traps can drain all the water out of the trap, leaving it dry. Sewer gases can then enter living areas. Recommend that a qualified plumber repair per standard building practices.
39) - Ribbed, flexible drain pipe was used at the sink at location(s) #A. This type of drain pipe accumulates debris more easily than smooth wall pipe and is likely to clog. Recommend that a qualified plumber replace flexible piping with standard plumbing components (smooth wall pipe) to prevent clogged drains.
Interior, Doors and Windows
40) - Handrails at one or more flights of stairs were missing. This is a potential fall hazard. Handrails should be installed at stairs with four or more risers or where stairs are greater than 30 inches high. Recommend that a qualified contractor install handrails where missing and per standard building practices.
41) - One or more screen doors were damaged, difficult to open or close. Recommend that a qualified person evaluate and repair or replace as necessary.