||Saturday, March 24, 2012
This report published on Friday, June 29, 2018 9:14:14 AM PDT
Important: This summary page is not the complete report. Clients should refer to the complete report for evaluating the subject property.
- 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.
- Soil was in contact with or too close to wooden deck or porch substructure components. This is a conducive condition for wood-destroying organisms. Numerous support posts were rotten. Clearances to soil should be as follows:
- 12 inches below beams
- 18 inches below joists
- 6 inches below support post bases and other wood components
Pressure treated wood is typically rated for 25 year contact with soil, but the cut ends hidden below grade may not have been treated and can rot quickly. Support posts should be elevated above grade on concrete piers or footings, and be separated from the concrete by metal brackets or an impermeable membrane such as shingle scraps. For other components, soil should be graded and/or removed to maintain these clearances if possible. Otherwise, replacing non-treated wood with treated wood, or installing borate-based products such as Impel rods may help to prevent infestation and damage. Recommend that a qualified contractor repair as necessary. All rotten wood should be replaced.
- Wooden deck or porch surfaces and railings were overdue for normal maintenance. Recommend that a qualified person clean and preserve as necessary. Where decks have been coated with a finish such as opaque stains or paint, it may be too difficult to strip the finish and apply anything but paint or opaque stain. Where transparent stain or penetrating oil has been applied in the past, recommend that a penetrating oil be used. For more information, visit:http://www.google.com/search?q=penetrating+oil+deckshttp://www.google.com/search?q=deck+maintenance
Exterior and Foundation
- Caulk was deteriorated in some areas. For example, at siding-trim junctions. Recommend that a qualified person renew or install caulk as necessary. Where gaps are wider than 1/4 inch, an appropriate material other than caulk should be used. For more information, visit:http://www.reporthost.com/_docs/FPL_Caulking_Ins_Outs.pdf
Also, the exterior finish in some areas was failing (e.g. peeling, faded, worn, thinning). Siding and trim are can be damaged by moisture with a failing finish. This is a conducive condition for wood-destroying organisms. Recommend that a qualified person prep (e.g. clean, scrape, sand, prime, caulk) and repaint the building exterior where necessary. Any repairs needed to the siding or trim should be made prior to repainting.
- Vegetation such as trees, shrubs and/or vines was in contact with or close to the building exterior. Vegetation can serve as a pathway for wood-destroying insects and can retain moisture against the exterior after it rains. This is a conducive condition for wood-destroying organisms. Recommend pruning, moving or removing vegetation as necessary to maintain at least 6 inches of space between it and the building exterior. A 1-foot clearance is better.
- Vines were growing around and into vents on the east side. They should be pruned so as not to block the vents from opening.
- Ventilation for the crawl space was substandard. Vents were only visible on the east side, resulting in no cross-ventilation. This can result in high levels of moisture in the crawl space and is a conducive condition for wood-destroying organisms. One square foot of vent area should be installed for 150 square feet of crawl space. Vents should be evenly distributed and within a few feet of corners to promote air circulation. Recommend that a qualified contractor install or improve venting per standard building practices.
- Extensions such as splash blocks or drain pipes for one or more downspouts were substandard. Water can accumulate around the building foundation or inside crawl spaces or basements as a result. Recommend that a qualified person install, replace or repair extensions as necessary so rainwater drains away from the structure.
- Moss was growing on the roof. As a result, shingles can lift or be damaged. Leaks can result and/or the roof surface can fail prematurely. Efforts should be made to kill the moss during its growing season (wet months). Typically, zinc or phosphate-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://www.google.com/search?q=moss+on+roof
Garage or Carport
- 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:http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/523.html
- One or more circuit breakers in panel(s) #A were broken or damaged. This is a potential shock or fire hazard. Recommend that a qualified electrician replace circuit breakers and make repairs as necessary.
- Based on the age of this structure and the appearance of existing smoke alarms, the alarms may have been installed more than 10 years ago. According to National Fire Protection Association
, aging smoke alarms don't operate as efficiently and often are the source for nuisance alarms. Older smoke alarms are estimated to have a 30% probability of failure within the first 10 years. Newer smoke alarms do better, but should be replaced after 10 years. Unless you know that the smoke alarms are new, replacing them when moving into a new residence is also recommended by NFPA. For more information, visit:http://www.google.com/search?q=old+smoke+alarms
- One or more exterior receptacle (outlet) covers were broken. This is a potential shock hazard. Recommend that a qualified person replace covers where necessary.
- One or more "plug-in" type carbon monoxide detectors were found. CO detectors are recommended for homes with fuel-burning appliances and/or an attached garage. Because such CO detectors can be easily removed, recommend that the client verify that CO detectors haven't been removed upon taking occupancy. If removed, then recommend new CO detectors as necessary (normally one per living level and near bedrooms). For more information, visit:http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PREREL/prhtml05/05017.html
- One or more light fixtures were missing. Recommend that a qualified electrician repair or replace light fixtures as necessary.
- One or more light fixtures were inoperable (didn't turn on when nearby switches were operated). Recommend further evaluation by replacing bulbs and/or consulting with the property owner. If replacing bulbs doesn't work and/or no other switch(es) can be found, then recommend that a qualified electrician evaluate and repair or replace light fixtures as necessary.
Plumbing / Fuel Systems
- Water supply pipes in the crawl space were not insulated. Recommend insulating pipes per standard building practices to prevent them from freezing during cold weather, and for better energy efficiency with hot water supply pipes.
- The inspector did not determine the location of the main water shut-off valve, or verify that a readily accessible shut-off valve in the building exists. Recommend consulting with the property owner to determine if a main shut-off valve exists, find it yourself, or have a qualified plumber find it if necessary. If no readily accessible main shut-off valve is found in the building, then recommend that a qualified plumber install one so the water supply can be quickly turned off in the event of an emergency, such as when a supply pipe bursts.
- The hot water temperature was 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. If the water heater is powered by electricity, a qualified person should perform the adjustment, since covers that expose energized equipment normally need to be removed. For more information on scalding dangers, visit:http://www.cpsc.gov/CPSCPUB/PUBS/5098.pdf
- The last service date of this system appeared to be more than one year ago, or the inspector was unable to determine the last service date. The client should 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 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
Also, the estimated useful life for most forced air furnaces is 15 to 20 years. This furnace may be near, at or beyond this age and/or its useful lifespan and may need replacing or significant repairs at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.
- One or more hangers supporting metal heating or cooling ducts were broken. This can result in loose or disconnected ducts, reduced energy efficiency, or increased moisture in unconditioned spaces. Normally metal ducts require support every three to six feet. A qualified person should make permanent repairs per standard building practices.
Cooling / Heat Pump
- Insulation for the outside condensing unit's refrigerant lines was deteriorated in some areas. This may result in reduced efficiency and increased energy costs. A qualified person should replace insulation as necessary.
Fireplaces, Stoves and Inserts
- The glass front on the gas fireplace had a hazy film. This is typically a mineral residue left from water vapor as the gas burns. It may be possible to clean this fogging by removing the glass from the fireplace and using a gas appliance ceramic glass cleaner, available through gas fireplace and stove distributors and installers. Ammonia-based products, such as common glass cleaners, should not be used since they can cause damage or etching to the glass, or make the haze permanent. It may be possible for a homeowner to remove the glass for cleaning, if the instructions for the fireplace are available and if the homeowner is experienced in such repairs. Consult with a qualified specialist for more information, or to have them do the cleaning.
- The under-sink food disposal was noisy or vibrated excessively. Also water was leaking from the junction between the food disposal and the sink basing. A qualified contractor should repair or replace as necessary.
- The hot and cold water supplies appeared to be reversed at the sink. Typically, cold water is controlled by the right faucet handle and hot by the left. For mixing faucets, cold is typically supplied with the handle to the right and hot when when the handle is to the left, or as indicated by the faucet's markings. At a minimum this is an inconvenience, but can result in accidental scalding. Recommend that a qualified plumber repair as necessary.
- An air gap was installed for the dishwasher drain line, but the drain line was connected directly to the under-sink food disposal. Air gap devices prevent waste-water backflow from entering the dishwasher, and possibly flooding out of the dishwasher if/when a siphon occurs. Recommend that a qualified contractor repair so the dishwasher uses the high loop and air gap per standard building practices.
- The light in the exhaust hood was inoperable. Recommend replacing light bulb(s) or that repairs be made by a qualified person if necessary.
Bathrooms, Laundry and Sinks
- The exhaust fan at location(s) #C was inoperable. Moisture may accumulate and result in mold, bacteria or fungal growth. Recommend that a qualified person clean, repair or replace fans as necessary.
- The bathtub drain stopper mechanism at location(s) #B was missing. Recommend that a qualified person repair or replace as necessary.
- The shower door handle at location(s) #C was loose. Recommend that a qualified person repair as necessary.
- The master bathroom shower handle dripped after the shower was operated. It may only drip for a short period of time as the water up to the shower head drains. Recommend monitoring this, and have a qualified plumber repair if necessary.
Interior, Doors and Windows
- One or more interior doors had a keyed lockset or deadbolt installed. This is a safety hazard for small children in the event that they lock themselves in the room, do not know how to unlock the door, and the key is not available. Keyed locksets and/or deadbolts should be replaced as necessary with "privacy" locksets that don't require a key.
- One or more windows that were designed to open and close were stuck shut. Recommend that a qualified person repair windows as necessary so they open and close easily.
- A strut supporting the kitchen pantry shelves was resting on the crawl space access hatch. A qualified person should repair as necessary so the access hatch can be removed and replaced easily.
- The master bedroom door stuck shut after it was closed and latched. Some minor repairs are needed to prevent this from happening in the future.