Website: http://www.brauninspection.com
Email: keith@brauninspection.com
Phone: (716) 289-1858
229 Irving Terrace 
Buffalo, NY 14223
Inspector: Keith Braun
N.Y.State License # 16000015140

 

Home Inspection Report
Client(s): John & Jane Doe
Property address: Buffalo, NY 14223
Inspection date: Tuesday, June 26, 2007
This report published on 11/14/2007 11:06:37 AM EST

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This report is the exclusive property of Signature Property Inspection and the clients 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 
ServiceableItem or component is in servicable condition 

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
Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys
Basement
Kitchen
Bathrooms
Interior rooms
 
General information Return to table of contents
Report number: 062507a
Structures inspected: Main house and attached garage.
Type of building: Single family
Age of building: 47 Years.
Time started: 8:55 a.m.
Time finished: 11:45 a.m.
Present during inspection: Clients, Property owner, Realtor.
Occupied: Yes
Weather conditions: Clear. Rain prior to arrival.
Temperature: Warm 80 F.
Ground condition: Dry
Front of structure faces: West
Main entrance faces: West
Foundation type: Partially finished basement.


1) This property has one or more fuel burning appliances, and no carbon monoxide alarms are visible. This is a safety hazard. Recommend installing one or more carbon monoxide alarms as necessary and as per the manufacturer's instructions. For more information, visit http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PREREL/prhtml05/05017.html
 
Exterior Return to table of contents
Footing material: Not visible
Foundation material: Concrete block
Apparent wall structure: Wood frame
Wall covering: Vinyl
Driveway material: Asphalt
Sidewalk material: Poured in place concrete
Exterior door material: Wood panel
2) 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 have GFCI protection. For example, install GFCI receptacles or circuit breaker(s) as needed. See also http://www.easy2diy.com/

Photo 18  
Exterior outlet. (Non GFCI rated)
 

3) Vegetation such as trees, shrubs and/or vines are in contact with or less than one foot from the structure's exterior. Vegetation can serve as a conduit for wood destroying insects and may retain moisture against the exterior after it rains. Vegetation should be pruned and/or removed as necessary to maintain a one foot clearance between it and the structure's exterior.

Photo 5  
Shrubbery in contact with structure. (Southwest corner)
 

4) Trees and/or shrubs are in contact with or are close to the roof edge in one or more areas. Damage to the roof may result, especially during high winds. Vegetation can also act as a conduit for wood destroying insects. Vegetation should be pruned back and/or removed as necessary to prevent damage and infestation by wood destroying insects.

Photo 2  
Trees in contact with structure. (East gutter)
 

5) Shrubbery is blocking the furnace intake/ exhaust. Recommend pruning the shrubs back so as to not interfere with the proper functioning of the furnace. A blockage may cause a high pressure fault, causing the furnace to shut down.

Photo 6  
Shrubbery blocking furnace intake/ exhaust. (South facing)
 

6)   One or more sections of gutter are clogged with leaves and debris. Gutters should be kept clear, as a regular maintenance item, so as to promote proper water run off and drainage.

Photo 1  
Gutter clogged with leaves & debris. (East gutter)
 
 
Roof Return to table of contents
Roof inspection method: Traversed
Roof type: Hipped
Roof covering: Asphalt or fiberglass composition shingles
Estimated age of roof: 10 years
Gutter & downspout material: Aluminum
Roof ventilation: Adequate
7) One or more composition shingles are damaged, deteriorated and/or missing, and should be replaced. Leaks may occur as a result. A qualified roofing contractor should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.

Photo 17  
Damaged roof shingle.
 

8) Debris such as leaves, needles, seeds, etc. have accumulated on the roof. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms since water may not flow easily off the roof, and may enter gaps in the roof surface. Leaks may occur as a result. Debris should be cleaned from the roof now and as necessary in the future.

Photo 20  
Accumulated needles and debris in roof valley.
 

9) Moss is growing on the roof. As a result, shingles may lift or be damaged. Leaks may result and/or the roof surface may fail prematurely. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms. Efforts should be taken to kill the moss during its growing season (wet months). Typically zinc-based chemicals are used for this, and must be applied periodically. For information on various moss treatment products and their pros and cons, visit http://bryophytes.science.oregonstate.edu/page24.htm
http://z-stop.com

Photo 3  
Moss growth. (North facing)
 
 
Garage Return to table of contents

10) The automatic door closing device (sprung hinges, etc.) on the garage-house door needs adjustment, repair or replacing. The door doesn't close and latch easily and/or completely via the force of the automatic closing device. This door is intended to prevent vehicle fumes from entering living spaces and to slow the spread of fire from the garage to living spaces. A qualified contractor should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.
11) Weatherstrip around or at the bottom of the garage-house door is missing. It should be installed where missing and as necessary to prevent vehicle fumes from entering living spaces.
 
Attic Return to table of contents
Inspection method: Traversed
Roof structure type: Rafters
Ceiling structure: Ceiling beams
Insulation material: Fiberglass roll or batt
Insulation depth: Approx. 6"
Insulation estimated R value: 19
12) Extension cords are being used as permanent wiring in one or more areas. They should only be used for portable equipment on a temporary basis. Using extension cords as permanent wiring poses a fire and shock hazard. Extension cords may be undersized. Connections may not be secure, resulting in power fluctuations, damage to equipment, and sparks that could start a fire. Extension cords should be removed as necessary, or a qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary. For example, install additional circuits and/or electric receptacles.

Photo 8  
Overheated cord, melted into stored styrofoam. (Attic)

Photo 9  
Extension cord used to wire fixture. (Attic)

13) One or more exhaust fans have no duct and terminate in the attic. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms due to increased moisture levels in the attic from the exhaust air. A qualified contractor should install ducts and vent caps as necessary and as per standard building practices so exhaust air is vented outside. Better building practices call for R8 rated insulation on these ducts.

Photo 11  
Improperly vented bathroom exhaust. (Attic)

Photo 25  
Improperly vented Kitchen exhaust. (Attic)

14) One or more attic vents are blocked by insulation and/or debris. This can reduce air flow through the attic, reduce the life of the roof surface because of high temperatures, and/or increase moisture levels in the attic. Repairs should be made as necessary, such as moving insulation or debris, so vents are unobstructed.

Photo 10  
Insulation too tight at eave. (Attic)
 
 
Electric service Return to table of contents
Primary service type: Overhead
Primary service overload protection type: Circuit breakers
Service amperage (amps): 100
Service voltage (volts): 120/240
Location of main disconnect: No single main disconnect, use all breakers in main service panel
Service entrance conductor material: Aluminum
System ground: Cold water supply pipes, Copper
Main disconnect rating (amps): Not applicable, no single main disconnect
Branch circuit wiring type: Copper
Solid strand aluminum branch circuit wiring present: No
Smoke detectors present: Yes
15) This property has one or more Federal Pacific Electric brand main service or sub panels that use "Stab-Lok" circuit breakers. Both double and single pole versions of these circuit breakers are known to fail by not tripping when they are supposed to. This is a potential but serious fire hazard. Recommend having a qualified electrician replace any and all Federal Pacific panels. For more information, visit: http://www.inspect-ny.com/fpe/fpepanel.htm

If the Federal Pacific panel(s) are not replaced, then a qualified electrician should thoroughly evaluate the panel(s) and make repairs as necessary. Recommend installing smoke detectors above Federal Pacific panels.

Photo 24  
FPE electric panel with "Stab-lok" breakers.
 
 
Water heater Return to table of contents
Estimated age: October 1998
Type: Tank
Energy source: Natural gas
Capacity (in gallons): 40
Manufacturer: A.O. Smith
Water temperature (degrees Fahrenheit): 135
16) 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/
17)

Photo 14  
Domestic water heater.
 
 
Heating and cooling Return to table of contents
Estimated age: 1995
Primary heating system energy source: Natural gas
Primary heat system type: Forced air, Up draft, High efficiency
Primary A/C energy source: Electric
Primary Air conditioning type: Split system
Distribution system: Sheet metal ducts
Manufacturer: York
Filter location: At the base of the furnace. Electrostatic Air Cleaner.
18) The outside condensing unit is not level. Damage may occur if it is more than ten degrees off from level. A qualified contractor should evaluate and make repairs as necessary, such as replacing the pad that the condensing unit is installed on.

Photo 7  
A/C Condensing unit with electric disconnect.
 

19) Air handler filter(s) are dirty and should be washed now. They should be checked monthly in the future and washed as necessary.
20)

Photo 13  
High efficiency gas furnace with electrostatic air cleaner.
 
 
Plumbing and laundry Return to table of contents
Water pressure (psi): 71
Location of main water shut-off valve: Southwest corner - basement
Location of main water meter: Southwest corner - basement
Location of main fuel shut-off: West side - basement
Water service: Public
Service pipe material: Copper
Supply pipe material: Copper
Vent pipe material: Copper
Drain pipe material: Copper
Waste pipe material: Cast iron
21)

Photo 15  
Natural gas meter & main shut off.
 

22)

Photo 21  
Water pressure. (71 P.S.I.)
 

23)

Photo 22  
Main domestic water shut off and meter.
 
 
Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys Return to table of contents
Chimney type: Masonry
24) The masonry chimney's mortar is deteriorated and should be repaired to prevent further, significant deterioration. Recommend having a qualified chimney service contractor or mason evaluate chimney and repair as necessary. This will likely require repointing the mortar.

Photo 19  
Crumbling mortar below chimney cap
 
 
Basement Return to table of contents
Pier or support post material: Steel
Beam material: Steel
Floor structure above: Solid wood joists
25) One electric receptacle has burn or scorch marks on it. Receptacle and/or wiring to it may be damaged. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary, such as replacing damaged receptacle and/or wiring.

Photo 12  
"Arced" electrical outlet. (Basement)
 

26) Flexible lamp or appliance cord is being used for permanent wiring in one or more areas. This wiring is not intended to be used as permanent wiring, and poses a safety hazard of shock and fire. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.

Photo 16  
Dry rot lamp cord. (Basement)

Photo 23  
Frayed lamp cord at light fixture. (Basement)
 
Kitchen Return to table of contents

27) One or more electric receptacles that serve countertop surfaces within six feet of a sink 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 receptacles that serve countertop surfaces within six feet of sinks have GFCI protection. For example, install GFCI receptacles or circuit breaker(s) as needed.
28) One faucet leaks by the handle when turned on. A qualified plumber should evaluate and repair as necessary.
 
Bathrooms Return to table of contents

29) One or more electric receptacles that serve countertop surfaces within six feet of a sink 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 receptacles that serve countertop surfaces within six feet of sinks have GFCI protection. For example, install GFCI receptacles or circuit breaker(s) as needed.
30) Caulk is missing or deteriorated above the bathtub, where the tub surround meets the tub. It should be replaced where deteriorated and/or applied where missing to prevent water intrusion and damage to the wall structure.
 
Interior rooms Return to table of contents

31) An insufficient number of smoke alarms are installed. Additional smoke alarms should be installed as necessary so a functioning one exists in each hallway leading to bedrooms, and in each bedroom. For more information, visit http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/5077.html
 
I would like to thank you for having the trust in me to do an analysis of this property. As a reminder, for as long as you own this property, you are automatically enrolled in my Property Consultation Service at no cost to you. Simply call me with any questions related to the inspection, property, report or maintenance concerns.