Mother Lode Home Inspections

Website: http://www.mlhomeinspections.net
Email: mlhomeinspections@hughes.net
Phone: (209) 532-6964
PO Box 811 
Soulsbyville, CA 95372-0811
Inspector: Larry Martin

Property Inspection Report
Client(s): Jim Smith
Property address: 20130 Moyle Rd
Sonora, CA 95370
Inspection date: Sunday, July 01, 2007
This report published on 7/1/2007 9:52:24 PM PDT

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This report is the exclusive property of this inspection company and the client(s) listed in the report title. Use of this report by any unauthorized persons is prohibited.

 
How to Read this Report
This report is organized by the property's functional areas.  Within each functional area, descriptive information is listed first and is shown in bold type.  Items of concern follow descriptive information. Concerns are shown and sorted according to these types:
SafetyPoses a risk of injury or death 
Major defectCorrection likely involves a significant expense 
Repair/ReplaceRecommend repairing or replacing 
Repair/MaintainRecommend repair and/or maintenance 
Minor defectCorrection likely involves only a minor expense 
MaintainRecommend ongoing maintenance 
EvaluateRecommend evaluation by a specialist 
CommentFor your information 

Click here for a glossary of building construction terms.  Contact your inspector if there are terms that you do not understand, or visit the glossary of construction terms at http://www.reporthost.com/glossary.asp

Table of Contents
General information
Exterior
Roof
Garage
Attic
Electric service
Water heater
Heating and cooling
Plumbing and laundry
Crawl space
Kitchen
Bathrooms
Interior rooms
 
General information Return to table of contents
Report number: 200
Type of building: Single family
Age of building: 10 Years
Property owner's name: Jim Smith
Time started: 3:45 PM
Time finished: 5:45 PM
Inspection Fee: $290.00
Payment method: Check
Present during inspection: Client(s), Property owner(s)
Occupied: Yes
Weather conditions: Clear
Temperature: Hot
Ground condition: Dry
Front of structure faces: South East
Main entrance faces: South East
Foundation type: Crawlspace


1) Some wall, floor and/or ceiling surfaces were obscured by furniture and/or stored items. Some areas couldn't be evaluated.
 
Exterior Return to table of contents
Footing material: Poured in place concrete
Foundation material: Poured in place concrete
Apparent wall structure: Wood frame
Wall covering: Wood panels
Driveway material: Gravel
Sidewalk material: Gravel
Exterior door material: Solid core steel
2) One or more sets of stairs are wobbly. A qualified contractor should evaluate and repair as necessary, such as installing additional supports and/or diagonal bracing.
3) One or more stair treads on the back deck are cracked or broken. A qualified contractor should evaluate and repair as necessary.
4) One or more electric receptacles have burn or scorch marks on them. Receptacle(s) and/or wiring to them may be damaged. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary, such as replacing damaged receptacles and/or wiring.
5) One or more outdoor electric receptacles appear to have no ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock. A qualified electrician should evaluate to determine if GFCI protection exists, and if not, repairs should be made so that all outdoor receptacles within six feet six inches of ground level have GFCI protection. For example, install GFCI receptacles or circuit breaker(s) as needed.
6) Trip hazard(s) exist at landings on front deck steps due to non-uniform riser heights. Standard building practices call for riser heights not to vary more than 3/8 inch on a flight of stairs. At a minimum, the client(s) should be aware of this hazard, especially when guests who are not familiar with the stairs are present. Ideally a qualified contractor should evaluate and repair or replace stairs so all riser heights are within 3/8 inch of each other.
7) Handrail(s) at back deck stairs are loose. This is a safety hazard. A qualified contractor should make repairs as necessary. For example, installing new fasteners and/or hardware so handrails are securely attached.
8) Water supply pipes are routed outside and are subject to freezing. The client(s) should ask the property owner(s) if inside shut-off valves exist for these supply pipes. If unable to determine if shut-off valve(s) exist, or if none do, then a qualified plumber should evaluate and install interior shut-off valves as necessary to prevent pipes from freezing and bursting.
9) One or more minor cracks (1/8 inch or less) were found in the foundation. These don't appear to be a structural concern, but recommend sealing them to prevent water infiltration and monitoring them in the future. Numerous products exist to seal such cracks including:
  • Hydraulic cement. Requires chiseling a channel in the crack to apply. See http://www.quickrete.com/catalog/HydraulicWater-StopCement.html for an example.
  • Resilient caulks (easy to apply). See http://www.quickrete.com/catalog/GrayConcreteRepair.html for an example.
  • Epoxy sealants (both a waterproof and structural repair). See http://www.mountaingrout.com/ for examples of these products.
    10) Soil is in contact with or less than six inches from siding and/or trim. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms. Soil should be graded and/or removed as necessary so there are at least six inches of space between the siding and trim and the soil below.
    11) The substructure of the back deck is excluded from the inspection due to limited access because of the low height.
     
    Roof Return to table of contents
    Roof inspection method: Viewed from ground with binoculars
    Roof type: Hipped
    Roof covering: Asphalt or fiberglass composition shingles
    Estimated age of roof: 10 Years
    Gutter & downspout material: Steel
    Roof ventilation: Adequate
    12) The roof surface material appears to be near the end of its service life and will likely need replacing in the near future, even with repairs. The client(s) should budget for a replacement roof surface, and may want to have a qualified roofing contractor evaluate and attempt to issue a "5 year roof certificate".
    13) One or more "rubber boot" flashings are lifting at the base or are improperly installed so that water or vermin intrusion may occur. A qualified contractor should make repairs as necessary, such as permanently fastening down the lifted edge(s), or reinstalling flashings.
    14) Debris has accumulated in one or more gutters. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects since gutters may overflow and cause water to come in contact with the structure's exterior or make water accumulate around the foundation. Gutters should be cleaned now and as necessary in the future.
     
    Garage Return to table of contents

    15) One or more electric receptacles have burn or scorch marks on them. Receptacle(s) and/or wiring to them may be damaged. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary, such as replacing damaged receptacles and/or wiring.
    16) Evidence of "light to moderate" rodent infestation was found in one or more areas. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) defines this as less than 20 feces per square foot. Rodent infestation may be a safety hazard due to the risk of contracting Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS). HPS is a rare (only 20-50 cases per year in the United states) but deadly (40% mortality rate) disease transmitted by infected rodents through urine, droppings, or saliva. Humans can contract the disease when they breathe in aerosolized virus. For example, from sweeping up rodent droppings.

    Recommend following guidelines in the CDC's Clean Up, Trap Up, Seal Up article for eradicating rodents, cleaning up their waste and nesting materials, and preventing future infestations. While Hantavirus is believed to survive less than one week in droppings and urine, specific precautions should be taken during clean up. The client(s) may wish to consult with a qualified, licensed pest control operator for eliminating the infestation. A qualified licensed abatement contractor or industrial hygienist could be contacted for clean up. If the infestation was minimal, clean up of rodent waste and nesting materials in non-living spaces (crawl spaces and attics) may not be necessary, or may be performed for aesthetic reasons only (odor and appearance).

    17) Most areas inside the garage, including the perimeter, areas in the center, and one or more vehicle doors were obscured by stored items and/or debris and couldn't be fully evaluated.
     
    Attic Return to table of contents
    Inspection method: Viewed from hatch
    Roof structure type: Trusses
    Ceiling structure: Trusses
    Insulation material: Cellulose loose fill
    Insulation depth: 10 inches
    18) No weatherstrip is installed around the attic access hatch. Weatherstrip should be installed around the hatch to prevent heated interior air from entering attic.
     
    Electric service Return to table of contents
    Primary service type: Overhead
    Primary service overload protection type: Circuit breakers
    Service amperage (amps): 125
    Service voltage (volts): 120/240
    Location of main service switch: Main Service Panel
    Location of main disconnect: Middle of service panel
    Service entrance conductor material: Copper
    System ground: Ground rod(s) in soil
    Main disconnect rating (amps): 125
    Branch circuit wiring type: Aluminum multi-strand, Aluminum solid-strand
    Solid strand aluminum branch circuit wiring present: Can't verify
    Smoke detectors present: Yes
    19) The electric service to this property appears to be rated at substantially less than 200 amps, and may be inadequate for the client(s) needs. Recommend consulting with a qualified electrician about upgrading to a 200 amp service.
     
    Water heater Return to table of contents
    Estimated age: 10 years
    Type: Tank
    Energy source: Propane
    Capacity (in gallons): 50
    Manufacturer: A.O. Smith
    Water temperature (degrees Fahrenheit): 160
    20) The hot water temperature is greater than 120 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of scalding. The thermostat should be adjusted so the water temperature doesn't exceed 120 degrees. For more information on scalding dangers, visit http://www.tap-water-burn.com/
    21) The estimated useful life for most water heaters is 8 to 12 years. This water heater appears to be at this age or older and may need replacing at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.
    22) Corrosion was found on fittings and/or water supply lines for the water heater. Leaks may exist. A qualified plumbing contractor should evaluate and repair as necessary.
     
    Heating and cooling Return to table of contents
    Estimated age: 10 Years
    Primary heating system energy source: Propane gas
    Primary heat system type: Forced air
    Primary A/C energy source: Propane Gas
    Primary Air conditioning type: N/A
    Distribution system: Flexible ducts
    Manufacturer: Carrier
    Filter location: in return air duct in living room
    Last service date: unknown
    23) Combustible materials were found less than six inches from the single wall flue pipe for the gas-fueled furnace or boiler. This is a fire hazard. Combustible materials should be moved, or repairs made by a qualified contractor, as necessary to maintain this clearance.
    24) The last service date of this system appears to be more than one year ago, or the inspector was unable to determine the last service date. The client(s) should ask the property owner(s) when it was last serviced. If unable to determine the last service date, or if this system was serviced more than one year ago, a qualified heating and cooling contractor should inspect, clean, and service this system, and make repairs if necessary. For safety reasons, and because this system is fueled by gas or oil, this servicing should be performed annually in the future. For more information visit: http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PREREL/prhtml05/05017.html
    25) The estimated useful life for most forced air furnaces is 15 to 20 years. This furnace appears to be approaching this age and may need replacing at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.
    26) Air handler filter(s) should be checked monthly in the future and replaced or washed as necessary.
     
    Plumbing and laundry Return to table of contents
    Water pressure (psi): 65
    Location of main water shut-off valve: under front deck
    Location of main water meter: next to driveway by street
    Water service: Public
    Service pipe material: Copper
    Supply pipe material: Copper
    Vent pipe material: Plastic
    Drain pipe material: Plastic
    Waste pipe material: Plastic
    27) The clothes dryer is equipped with a vinyl or foil, accordion-type, flexible exhaust duct. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission considers these types of ducts to be unsafe, and a fire hazard. These types of ducts can trap lint and are susceptible to kinks or crushing, which can greatly reduce the air flow. This duct should be replaced with a rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct, and by a qualified contractor if necessary. Most clothes dryer manufacturers specify the use of a rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct. For more information on dryer safety issues, see http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PUBS/5022.html
    28) The clothes dryer exhaust duct is kinked, crushed and/or damaged. Air flow is restricted as a result. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of fire. The exhaust duct should be replaced or repaired, and by a qualified contractor if necessary. For more information, visit:
    http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PUBS/5022.html
    http://chimneykeepers.com/dryerclean.html

    29) Water pressure is below 40 psi, but the flow appeared to be adequate. 40-80 psi is considered to be the normal range for water pressure in a home. The inspector performed a "functional flow test" during the inspection, where multiple fixtures are run simultaneously, and found there to be adequate flow. For example, the shower flow did not decrease significantly when the toilet was flushed.

    If the client finds the flow to be inadequate, recommend having a qualified plumber evaluate and repair as necessary. Installing a pressure boosting system is one possible solution. For information on these systems, visit: http://www.low-water-pressure.com/

    30) Recommend having the septic tank inspected. Recommend having the tank pumped if it was last pumped more than 3 years ago.
    31) The washing machine is installed over a finished living space and has no catch pan or drain installed. These are not commonly installed, but they are recommended to prevent water damage to finished interior spaces below if or when the washing machine leaks, overflows or is drained. Recommend having a qualified contractor install both a catch pan and drain.
    32) Neither the clothes washer nor dryer were operated or evaluated. They are excluded from this inspection.
     
    Crawl space Return to table of contents
    Inspection method: Traversed
    Insulation material underneath floor above: Fiberglass roll or batt
    Pier or support post material: Wood
    Beam material: Solid wood
    Floor structure above: Solid wood joists
    Vapor barrier present: No
    33) Cover plate(s) are broken at one or more electric boxes, such as for receptacles, switches and/or junction boxes. They are intended to contain fire and prevent electric shock from exposed wires. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of fire and shock. Cover plates should be replaced where necessary.
    34) Insulation under the floor in the crawlspace is damaged, deteriorated, or has fallen down. A qualified contractor should make repairs as necessary to restore the insulation to its original rating.
    35) Water supply pipes are uninsulated. Recommend insulating pipes as necessary for better energy efficiency and to prevent water pipes from freezing.
    36) Some crawl space areas were inaccessible due to low height (less than 18 inches), ductwork or pipes blocking, standing water, and/or stored items. These areas are excluded from this inspection.
     
    Kitchen Return to table of contents

    37) Not Inspected
    38) Not Inspected
    39) No range hood is installed over the range or cook top. Ventilation and/or lighting may be inadequate and moisture may accumulate indoors. Recommend having a qualified contractor install a vented and lighted range hood, with the exhaust fan configured so as to vent outdoors.
    40) The range hood fan vents into the kitchen rather than outdoors. Ventilation may be inadequate and moisture may accumulate indoors. Recommend having a qualified contractor make modifications as necessary as per standard building practices so the range hood fan vents outdoors.
    41) Caulk is missing and/or deteriorated where countertops meet backsplashes in wet areas, such as around sinks. Caulk should be replaced where deteriorated and/or applied where missing to prevent water damage.
    42) One or more light fixtures appear to be inoperable. Recommend further evaluation by replacing bulb(s) and/or consulting with the property owner(s). Repairs or replacement of the light fixture(s) by a qualified electrician may be necessary.
     
    Bathrooms Return to table of contents

    43) One or more bathrooms with a shower do not have an exhaust fan installed. Moisture accumulation will occur and may damage the structure. Even if the bathroom has a window that opens, it likely does not provide adequate ventilation, especially during cold weather when the window is closed. A qualified contractor should install exhaust fans as per standard building practices where missing in bathrooms with showers.
    44) Caulk is missing or deteriorated along the base of one or more bathtubs, where flooring meets the tub. It should be replaced where deteriorated and/or applied where missing to prevent water intrusion and damage to the floor structure.
     
    Interior rooms Return to table of contents

    45) One or more doors bind in their jamb and cannot be closed and latched, or are difficult to open and close. A qualified contractor should evaluate and repair as necessary. For example, adjusting jambs or trimming doors.
    46) Squeaking or creaking noises occur when walking on one or more sections of flooring. This is usually caused by substandard construction practices where the subfloor decking is not adequately fastened to the framing below. For example, not enough glue was used and/or nails were used rather than screws. In most cases, this is only an annoyance rather than a structural problem. Various solutions such as Squeeeeek No More and Counter Snap fasteners exist to correct this. Repairs to eliminate the squeaks or creaks may be more or less difficult depending on the floor covering, and the access to the underside of the subfloor. Recommend having a qualified contractor evaluate and repair as necessary.
    47) One or more doors will not latch when closed. Repairs should be made as necessary, and by a qualified contractor if necessary. For example, aligning strike plates with latch bolts and/or replacing locksets.
    48) The weatherstrip around one or more exterior entry doors is missing and/or deteriorated. Weatherstrip should be installed where missing and/or replaced where deteriorated, and by a qualified contractor if necessary.
    49) Carpeting in one or more rooms is soiled and/or stained. Recommend having carpeting professionally cleaned as necessary.
    50) Minor cracks were found in ceilings in one or more areas. They do not appear to be a structural concern, but the client(s) may wish to repair these for aesthetic reasons.
     
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