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Habitation Investigation LLC

http://www.homeinspectionsinohio.com
(614) 413-0075 · (937) 205-4758
Inspector: Chris Nelson

Commercial Inspection Report

Client(s):  SAMPLE
Property address:  SAMPLE
Inspection date:  Tuesday, September 1, 2020

This report published on Wednesday, October 21, 2020 10:59:32 AM EDT

"No home is perfect. Keep things in perspective. Do not kill your deal over things that do not matter. It is inappropriate to demand that a seller address deferred maintenance, conditions already listed on the seller's disclosure or nit-picky items."

The above is an excerpt from Sell Your Home For More by Nick Gromicko.

Acceptance of this report and/or relying on the information within constitutes acceptance of the real estate inspection agreement limits for the client listed above even if the agreement is not signed. Reliance on a home inspection report that was originally performed for a different home buyer removes warranties. Home Inspections are not a pass/fail. The purpose is to identify the condition of the home as much as can be done at the time of the inspection. It is out of the scope of the home inspection to give estimates for repairs. We recommend that contractors be utilized prior to closing to provide repair estimates.

If you are not the person identified as the client above then you need to attain permission from the client above and you need to have your own home inspection completed.

It is not typical to request to remedy those items which are small maintenance items. Your real estate agent will be your best source to help determine which items (if any) are appropriate to request for correction or improvement

Table of Contents

General information
Exterior and Foundation
Attic/Roof
Electric service and Branch Wiring
Heating and cooling
Plumbing, Toilets, Water Heater
Basement
Water pressure
Warehouse and Offices
Gas pipe
Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys
Commercial Life Safety

View summary

General informationTable of contents
Type of building: Commercial
Present during inspection: Realtor(s)
Occupied: Yes
Weather conditions: Partly cloudy, Fog
Temperature: 80's
Ground condition: Damp
Foundation type: Unfinished basement
1) Comment - Photos are only a representative sample of conditions observed. There may be more than one area of concern not shown by photo
2) Comment - Here is an article regarding moisture, Ohio and lower sections of homes.
https://homeinspectionsinohio.com/is-moisture-in-the-basementcrawl-space-normal

Here is a link to a home maintenance checklist to get you started.
http://homeinspectionsinohio.com/2018/03/18/home-maintenance-checklist/
3) Comment - This is a reminder that inspections are not code inspections, zoning checks nor a check for permits. Most buildings more than only a few years old are not up to current codes due to codes changing over time. It is normal and expected for homes and buildings not to be "up to code" Codes themselves are subject to locations and interpretation.

Inspections are also not a pest/rodent inspection. It is not uncommon for critters to move in to buildings when weather gets colder and/or there are food sources available. Keep food sources away and monitor always.
4) Comment - Issues that are considered cosmetic are not the goal of this report. For example; holes, stains, scratches, unevenness, not perfectly level or square, missing trim, paint and finish flaws or odors. It is not the intent of this report to make the house new again. Any mention of cosmetic is done as a courtesy or because of request.
The inspection company is not responsible for failure to properly maintain the property or damage that occurs or uncovered after taking possession of the home
5) Comment - Some wall, floor and/or ceiling surfaces were obscured by furniture and/or stored items. Some areas couldn't be evaluated.
6) Comment - Scope of Work:

-Roof of Structure Roof covering materials and condition, attic space for ventilation and insulation
-Building Structure in regards to foundation and apparent exterior wall structures
-HVAC systems for operation
-Water heaters
-Electric service, panels and outlets to be checked for safety
-Exterior of building
-Plumbing leaks and areas of deterioration
-Interiors for structural issues and indications of water leaks
Exterior and FoundationTable of contents
Foundation material: Poured in place concrete
Apparent wall structure: Steel frame
Wall covering: Brick veneer, EIFS/Hard Coat System with Insulation Underneath
Driveway material: Asphalt
Sidewalk material: Poured in place concrete
7) Safety, Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Stairs/walkways have settled. Recommend evaluation and repair. Consider slab jacking as a repair method to ensure proper slope away from the home and to help remove any trip hazards.

Front entry
Loading zone entry
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8) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Cracks, deterioration and/or damage were found in area(s) of the expanded foam insulation system (EIFS) siding. A qualified contractor who specializes in this material should evaluate and make repairs and/or replace siding as necessary.


Warehouse area
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9) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - The driveway/parking lot had significant cracks and/or deterioration in areas. A qualified contractor should evaluate and repair or replace driveway sections as necessary.
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10) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Sidewalks and/or patios have significant cracks and/or deterioration in one area(s). Recommend evaluation and repair or replace sidewalk and/or patio sections as necessary.
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11) Repair/Replace - The perimeter grading sloped towards the structure in areas. This can result in water accumulating around the structure's foundation, or in basements and crawl spaces if they exist. Accumulated water is a conducive condition to wood destroying insects and organisms. Wet soil may also cause the foundation to settle and possibly fail over time. Recommend grading soil so it slopes down and away from the structure. The grade should drop at least 6 inches within the first 10 feet. Correct any negative slope of brick/concrete areas as well to direct water away from structure. http://www.homeinspectionsinohio.com/blog/post/negative-grading

Where the site does not allow for the necessary fall away from the structure, drains or swales could be used.
12) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Parking lot had a noticeable dip or low areas. Recommend evaluation and repair to prevent further issues.
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13) Repair/Maintain - 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 help 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.
  • Resilient caulks (easy to apply).
  • Epoxy sealants (both a waterproof and structural repair).

Note: small cracks can be the result of normal drying and shrinking of cement and mortar along with settling.
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14) Maintain - 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.
15) Maintain - Caulk was missing or deteriorated in some areas and should be replaced and/or applied where necessary. For more information on caulking, visit The Ins and Outs of Caulking.
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16) Maintain - The exterior finish in some areas was failing. Recommend prep (pressure wash, scrape, sand, prime caulk, etc.) and repaint or restain areas as needed.
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17) Maintain - Small gaps exist at openings around the exterior, such as those where outside faucets, refrigerant lines, and/or gas supply pipes penetrate the exterior. Gaps should be sealed as necessary to prevent moisture intrusion and conditioned air loss.


Sealant was deteriorated.
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18) Evaluate - A lintel was rusted and should be protected against rusting and further deterioration. A lintel is a horizontal architectural member supporting the weight above an opening, as a window or a door, typically it is made of iron. Consider having a contractor evaluate to determine if it should be replaced.
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19) Monitor - Efflorescence observed on the brick veneer. Possibly due irrigation system or plumbing issues. Recommend monitoring.
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20) - The following items are not included in this inspection: below-grade foundation walls and footings, or those obscured by vegetation or building components; exterior building surfaces or components obscured by vegetation, stored items or debris. Any comments made regarding these items are as a courtesy only. Some amount of cracking is normal in concrete slabs and foundation walls due to shrinkage and drying. Note that the inspector does not determination the adequacy of sump pumps, seismic reinforcement, take measurements of plumbness, nor determine if support posts, columns, beams, joists, studs, trusses, etc. are of adequate size, spanning or spacing.
Roof inspection method: Partially traversed
Roof type: Flat
Roof covering: Metal, EPDM (ethylene-propylene-diene monomer)
Estimated age of roof material: 20+
Gutter & downspout material: Aluminum
Attic Inspection method: Partially traversed
Roof structure type: Metal framing
Insulation material: Fiberglass roll or batt
21) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Standing water was found on the flat roof. It should evaporate within 48 hours after it rains. If standing water remains after 48 hours, then the roof installation is likely substandard. A qualified roofing contractor should evaluate and repair if necessary to prevent prolonged standing water.
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22) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Gaps were found in 2 or more roof surface seams. These may result in leaks. Recommend evaluation and repair/sealing as necessary.
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23) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Plumbing vent pipe terminates less than six inches above the roof surface below. Debris or snow may block openings, and may result in sewer gases oentering living spaces or other systems to not operate correctly. Recommend evaluation and repairs as necessary so vent pipes terminate at least six inches above roof surfaces.
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24) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Heavy sealant usage indicates possible past leaks or substandard flashing. Consider evaluation and improvement. At minimum maintain sealants periodically.
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25) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Metal exhaust pipe was rusted. Recommend evaluation and repair as necessary to help prevent further deterioration.
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26) Repair/Maintain - Some metal flashing was beginning to rust. The flashing was not significantly deteriorated evident by no indications of water infiltration in those areas. Recommend painting with a rust inhibiting paint to ensure long life of the flashings.
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27) Repair/Maintain - Plumbing vent pipe had a low spot in it. These pipes should not have low spots so as to avoid having standing moisture that can freeze and damage/block the pipe. Recommend improving the slope.
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28) Maintain, Comment - Rubber membrane roofs require periodic maintenance typically every 4-5 years. Consider hiring a roofer to periodically inspect and do maintenance as needed.
29) Comment - Be aware that lifting and or moving around insulation is beyond the scope of the home inspection, therefore the areas directly buried and under insulation are not visible. Due to attic structures access to some areas are limited due to physical spaces and safety.
30) Comment - The following items or areas are not included in this inspection: areas that could not be traversed or viewed clearly due to lack of access; areas and components obscured by insulation; solar roofing components; any comments made regarding these items are as a courtesy only. Note that the inspector does not determination if rafters, trusses, joists, beams, etc. are of adequate size, spanning or spacing. The inspector does not provide an estimate of remaining roof surface life nor any guarantee of roofs age, does not determine that the roof has absolutely no leaks at the time of the inspection, and does not determine that the roof won't leak in the future. To absolutely determine than no leaks exist, complete access to all roof structure areas must be available during a wide variety of weather conditions, including prolonged heavy rain, high wind from varying directions, heavy accumulations of snow and/or ice, and melting snow and ice.
31) Comment - Many attic areas were inaccessible due to lack of permanently installed walkways, the possibility of damage to loose fill insulation, and/or low height. These areas are excluded from this inspection.
32) Comment - Attic structure and framing looked good.
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33) Comment - No active roof leaks observed.
Electric service and Branch WiringTable of contents
Primary service type: Underground
Primary service overload protection type: Circuit breakers
Service amperage (amps): 2x 400amp panels, 3x 200amp panels, various sub panels
Service voltage (estimated): 3 phase, 4 wire, 120/208
Location of Main Service Switch: Basement, Utility Closets
Location of Sub panels: Warehouse
System ground: Copper, cold water pipe bonding
Main disconnect rating (amps): 200amp per panel, 400amp per main panel
Branch circuit wiring type: Non-metallic sheathed (BX) Armor clad
34) Safety, Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection was missing in areas. An electrician should evaluate to determine if GFCI protection exists, and if not, repairs should be made so that areas lacking the protections are improved for increased safety.

Area(s) where missing were: Showroom countertop sinks

If the home is older then not having GFCI can be common and typically there are no requirements to upgrade unless there is a lot of renovation such as completely redoing a kitchen.

For information regarding GFCI's and approximate dates visit: https://homeinspectionsinohio.com/all-about-gfci-protection
35) Safety, Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Some wiring was loose, unsupported, or inadequately supported. Standard building practices require non-metallic sheathed wiring to be trimmed to length, attached to runners or to solid backing with fasteners at intervals of 4-1/2 ft. or less. Fasteners should be installed within 12 inches of all enclosures. A qualified, licensed electrician should evaluate and repair as necessary. For example, trim wire to length and/or install staples as needed.

Basement
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36) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - One electric receptacle(s) did not have power. Recommend asking the property owner(s) about this. Switches may need to be operated to make some receptacles energized. If necessary, a qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.

identified with blue dot(s) with "NP"
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37) Serviceable, Comment - No observable concerns with the electric panel wiring.
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38) Comment - As smoke detectors age they have a higher possibility of failure. Consider installing new detectors in your home so you can know for certain the age of the detectors. Smoke alarms should be installed as necessary so a functioning one exists in each hallway leading to bedrooms, each level of the home, and in each bedroom. We recommend installing new batteries in all detectors upon moving in. It is outside the scope of the inspection to determine if detectors are hard wired in.
Heating and coolingTable of contents
Estimated Condenser age: 2019, 2007, 2000, 2000, 2000, 2007, 2000, 2018
Estimated Furnace age: 2005, 2019, 2007, 2000, 2000, 2000, 2007, 2000, 2018
Primary heating system energy source: Natural gas, electric
Primary heat system type: Forced air
Primary A/C energy source: Electric
Primary Air conditioning type: Package Units
Manufacturer(s): Bryant, Carrier, Trane
Primary Air conditioning type: Split system
Distribution system: Sheet metal ducts, Flexible ducts, Metal pipe
39) Safety, Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - The last service date of the heating systems appeared 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.
40) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - The last service date of the cooling systems appeared 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. This servicing should be performed annually in the future.
41) Repair/Maintain - The cooling fins on the outdoor condensing unit's evaporator coils were dirty. This may result in reduced efficiency and higher energy costs. A qualified heating and cooling contractor should clean the evaporator coils as necessary.

http://homeinspectionsinohio.com/videos/ Part way down the page on the right side
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42) Maintain, Comment - The estimated useful life for forced air furnaces is 15 to 20 years. Some units were at this age or older and may need replacing at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.

Periodic maintenance will help ensure continued operation.
43) Maintain, Comment - The estimated useful life for air conditioning compressors is 8 to 15 years. Some units were at this age or older and may need replacing at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.

Periodic maintenance will help ensure continued operation.
44) Maintain - The filter(s) for the heating/cooling system should be checked monthly and replaced or washed as necessary.
45) Monitor - Rust/stains observed in/on the furnace cabinet. Active leaking did not occur during time of inspection. Recommend monitoring for leaks from condensation.

If leaks do develop then get it evaluated and repaired to help prevent rusting/deterioration of the furnace.

Warehouse Carrier unit
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46) Serviceable, Comment - The flames on the gas furnaces and heating units looked good and the blower motors operated.
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47) Serviceable, Comment - The desired temperature difference between return air and that produced should be in the range of 15 to 22 degrees Fahrenheit so that the supplied air is cooler than at the return duct(s), or current room temperature.

The air conditioning was operating within that range. The temperature difference was 16-20 degrees F.

All units verified using thermal imaging
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48) Serviceable - The warehouse electric furnaces operated as designed.
49) Comment - We check heating and cooling for basic function. Our inspection is not technically exhaustive.
Our inspection of ducts is naturally limited to observable areas. Therefore large areas of ducts cannot be seen. Since dirt, dust, mold, even toys are commonly found in ducts we recommend that you have the ducts cleaned.
50) Comment - All HVAC systems operated adequately and as designed.
51) Comment - We check heating and cooling for basic function. Our inspection is not technically exhaustive.
Our inspection of ducts is naturally limited to observable areas. Therefore large areas of ducts cannot be seen. Since dirt, dust, mold, even toys are commonly found in ducts we recommend that you have the ducts cleaned.
52) Comment - HVAC serial data plates
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Plumbing, Toilets, Water HeaterTable of contents
Location of main water shut off: Utility Closet/ Room
Location of main fuel shut off: Exterior
Water service: Public
Service pipe material: Copper
Supply pipe material: Copper
Vent pipe material: Plastic
Drain pipe material: Plastic
Waste pipe material: Plastic
Estimated Year of water Heater: 2007, 2005
Type: Tank
Energy source: Electricity, natural gas
Capacity (in gallons): 50, 50
Manufacturer: A.O. Smith, Rheem
53) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Corrosion was found on the water heater. The water heater may be failing. A qualified plumbing contractor should evaluate and replace or repair water heater if necessary.
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54) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Corrosion was visible on water service supply pipes. Leaks may result because of this. A qualified plumber should evaluate and replace water supply components as necessary.
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55) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - Pin holes and/or corrosion were visible on area(s) of copper water supply pipes. Leaks may result because of this. Recommend evaluate and replace water supply components as necessary.

Was not actively leaking at time of inspection.
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56) Repair/Replace - Expansion tank was not supported well and was bending the pipes. Recommend supporting to help prevent damage to the water supply lines.
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57) Repair/Replace - No drip leg is installed on the water heater gas supply line. Drip legs are intended to trap oil, scale, water condensation and/or debris from the gas supply lines before they reach and damage the water heater components. A qualified contractor should install a drip leg as per standard building practices.
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58) Repair/Replace - A water heater is installed over or next to finished living spaces and has no catch pan and drain installed. Recommend having a qualified contractor install a catch pan and drain to prevent water damage to finished interior spaces below if/when the water heater develops a leak or is drained.

Rheem unit
59) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Elevated level of moisture at flooring around the base of the Warehouse toilet(s) was found. Recommend removing toilet where necessary for further evaluation and repairs (wax ring replacement). Adequate time should be allowed for enclosed, wet floor structures to dry out after repairs are made and before floor cavities are closed off to prevent mold growth.

For a video of replacing a toilet and wax ring go here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbQMsdOB8FA&feature=fvw
60) Monitor, Comment - The estimated useful life for most water heaters is 8 to 12 years. This water heater was at this age range or older and may need replacing at any time. Recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future. Monitor

Article regarding water heater maintenance http://homeinspectionsinohio.com/2019/03/12/water-heater-maintenance/

Both water heaters
61) Monitor - Stains observed on pipes and/or fittings, apparently from past leaking. Active leaking not observed. Recommend monitoring. Also consider further evaluation to help ensure against leaks.


Location(s)-
Tool room
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62) Monitor - Stains on fire suppression pipes observed. No active leading. Monitor.
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63) Serviceable, Comment - The flames on the water heater looked good.
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64) Serviceable - The electric water heaters operated.
65) Comment - "In accordance with industry standards, we do not normally test washing machines and their water connections and drainpipes if present in the home. However, there are a few things of which you should be aware. The water supply to washing machines is usually left on, and their hoses can leak or burst under pressure and continue to flow. Therefore, we recommend replacing the rubber hose type with newer, braided, stainless steel ones that are much more dependable and that they be operated only during times you are home. You should also be aware that the newer washing machines discharge a greater volume of water than many of the older drainpipes can handle, which causes the water to back up and overflow, and the only remedy would be to replace the standpipe and trap with one that is a size larger. Although not required, whenever structural damage may result from an overflow, we recommend a pan with a plumbed drain. An alternative is a flood or leak detection device that will terminate the water supply in a water pipe failure."
66) Comment - It is beyond the scope of the inspection to confirm if the structure uses a septic or a public sewer system. This includes determination or inspection of aerators designed for septic systems. Recommend confirming with seller if there is any questions regarding this. It is always a great idea to have the county health department inspect any septic system.
67) Comment - Your main water shut off location.
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68) Comment - "In accordance with industry standards, we do not normally test washing machines and their water connections and drainpipes if present in the home. However, there are a few things of which you should be aware. The water supply to washing machines is usually left on, and their hoses can leak or burst under pressure and continue to flow. Therefore, we recommend replacing the rubber hose type with newer, braided, stainless steel ones that are much more dependable and that they be operated only during times you are home. You should also be aware that the newer washing machines discharge a greater volume of water than many of the older drainpipes can handle, which causes the water to back up and overflow, and the only remedy would be to replace the standpipe and trap with one that is a size larger. Although not required, whenever structural damage may result from an overflow, we recommend a pan with a plumbed drain. An alternative is a flood or leak detection device that will terminate the water supply in a water pipe failure."
Insulation material: Fiberglass roll or batt
Pier or support post material: Bearing wall
Beam material: Steel
Floor structure above: Steel
69) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Sump pump discharges in to the drain/waste system instead of being routed to the exterior. This is typically not permitted by municipalities. Recommend rerouting if necessary.
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70) Repair/Maintain - Cross bracing was not secured in at least 1 arena. Recommend repair/connection.
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71) Minor Defect, Maintain, Comment - Minor cracks were found in the concrete slab. However they don't appear to be a structural concern and no trip hazards were found. This is common for large sections of cement. Recommend sealing to help prevent water infiltration and for aesthetic reasons.
https://homeinspectionsinohio.com/concrete-floor-cracks-normal
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72) Comment - Sump pump operated however it is an older sump pump. Consider replacing or at least monitoring to help ensure continued existence of an operating sump pump.
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73) Comment - Additional support(s) observed. Damaged areas not observed. Recommend asking seller for details. Additional supports are often installed to reduce normal flexing of floors or in preparation for tiles floors.
Posts should be mechanically connected to the beam above to provide additional resistance against lateral displacement and to the floor (often this can not be determined).
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74) - The facing on this insulation is flammable, as indicated by the warning statements printed on the facing. Flammable facing should be located towards an interior surface and covered with a nonflammable material such as sheetrock to prevent the spread of fire.

Recommend evaluation and improvement. Sometimes simple removal of the facing is all that is needed
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Water pressureTable of contents
75) Comment - 40-80 psi is considered to be the normal range for water pressure in a home. The pressure gauge was within that range.

Also a functional flow test was performed in which several fixtures are operating and the toilet flushed to help determine if the pressure in the shower drops significantly. No significant drop occurred.
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Warehouse and OfficesTable of contents
76) Repair/Replace - Metal frame was very corroded and should be repaired.

Image of dock doors. Did not appear to be a structural concern.
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77) Maintain, Comment - Stains observed around the warehouse Northside heater and blower box fans, apparently from water intrusion. These areas were dry at the time of inspection. Recommend sealing where the units penetrate the exterior siding and monitor.
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78) Monitor - Stains were found in some ceiling area(s). However, no elevated levels of moisture were found. The stain(s) may be due to past roof and/or plumbing leaks. Recommend asking the property owner(s) about this, and monitoring the stained area(s) in the future, especially after heavy or prolonged rain.

Hall closet
Warehouse
Office
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79) - Many wall, floor, foundation walls, and/or ceiling surfaces were obscured by large amounts of furniture and/or stored items. Many areas couldn't be evaluated.
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80) - Minor cracks were found in the concrete slab. However they don't appear to be a structural concern and no trip hazards were found. This is common for large sections of cement. Recommend sealing to help prevent water infiltration and for aesthetic reasons.
https://homeinspectionsinohio.com/concrete-floor-cracks-normal
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81) - Stains were observed on the warehouse walls. These stains were dry. Recommend asking sellers for information.
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82) Safety, Repair/Maintain, Minor Defect, Evaluate - The corrugated stainless steel tubing (CSST) used for gas supply, was not bonded. In rare cases lightening strikes have resulted in damaged CSST and fires. Recommend evaluation of the CSST bonding to the electrical system and then recommend having it done for increased safety.

Bonding of CSST is something that came about approx 2008.
Improvement is typically done simply by connecting a bare copper wire to the electrical panel bar and to the csst connector by an electrician. http://www.csstsafety.com/CSST-solution.html
83) Repair/Maintain, Evaluate - Rust or corrosion was found on sections of gas pipe and/or fittings. This may cause leaks if present for a long period of time. If deeply rusted, then qualified plumbing contractor should evaluate and repair as necessary.

At a minimum reduce the moisture surrounding the pipe consider applying a protective paint to protect the pipe from deterioration.
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Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneysTable of contents
Fireplace type: Metal prefabricated
84) Repair/Replace, Evaluate - No damper was visible in the fireplace. This can result in increased energy costs due to unconditioned air entering living spaces, or due to conditioned air exiting living spaces through the chimney. A qualified chimney service contractor should evaluate and make modifications as necessary, such as installing a closeable damper.

Showroom fireplace
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85) Minor Defect, Comment - The fireplace was designed to use gas logs, and no glass doors are installed on them. For gas fireplaces like this, the fireplace damper is modified so it is permanently open to prevent combustion gases from the pilot light and main burners accumulating in living spaces. Since the damper is always open, unconditioned air from outside can enter living spaces through the chimney, and conditioned air from inside can exit through the chimney. This can result in higher energy costs from heating and cooling. The client(s) should consider installing glass doors on the fireplace to reduce this air flow.

Showroom fireplace
86) Serviceable, Comment - The gas fireplace/ valve operated as designed to.

Video on how to light a ventless fireplace http://homeinspectionsinohio.com/videos/ (Near bottom of page)
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Commercial Life SafetyTable of contents
87) Safety, Repair/Maintain - Portable extinguishers should be present and located in conspicuous and readily available locations immediately available for use and not obstructed or obscured from view.

Some were blocked from easy fast access and/or were not adequately marked/labeled conspicuously.
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88) Serviceable - Fire suppression devices appeared to be up-to-date. Be sure to continue periodic inspections and maintenance.
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IMPORTANT INFORMATION CONTINUES
You should not regard this inspection and report as a guarantee or warranty of the property and its components. It is not. It is simply a report on the general condition of the property at a given point in time. Furthermore, as a homeowner, you should expect problems to occur; roofs will leak, drain pipes will become blocked, and components and systems will fail without warning. For these reasons, you should take into consideration the age of the house and its components and keep a comprehensive insurance policy current. If you have been provided with a home protection policy, read it carefully. Such policies usually only cover insignificant costs, such as that of rooter service, and the representatives of some insurance companies are very likely to charge you for a service call and then deny coverage on the grounds that a given condition was preexisting or not covered because of an alleged code violation or a manufacturers defect. Therefore, you should read such policies very carefully, and depend upon our company for any assistance and consultation that you may need. It is highly recommended that the suggested repairs, corrections, evaluations, etc be done prior to the end of your due diligence time period if possible or before closing. Evaluations and repairs can reveal issues not visible during a home inspection or beyond the scope of a home inspection.

It is beyond the scope of the inspection to confirm if the structure uses a septic or a public sewer system. Recommend confirming with seller.


Heating and Cooling systems
Furnaces typically will last 15-20 years. With proper maintenance they can last longer. Air conditioners also have a typical life expectancy of 8-15 years. Heat pumps typically last 15-20 years. The estimated useful life for boiler system is 25-40 years. It is normal to have issues with systems as they age. Be sure to have regular maintenance done.

As of January 2006, air conditioning manufacturers are no longer allowed to manufacture products, or certain individual components (condensers, evaporator, compressors) for systems with less than a 13 SEER rating. As existing inventories of older efficiency style components are depleted, replacement of the A/C unit may be required in place of repairs.

Note: R22 has been the standard refrigerant used in air conditioners for many years. The problem with this refrigerant is that it is both less efficient and less environmentally friendly than R410a refrigerant. The government-mandated shift away from R22 refrigerant is an attempt to make homes more efficient and reduce the emissions of greenhouse gasses into the environment. As of 2010 R22 is no longer allowed to be used in newly-manufactured air conditioners. It is beyond the scope of an inspection to determine the type of refrigerant used.

Crawl Spaces
Crawl spaces should all be viewed periodically. Although not desirable it is common for moisture levels to be higher here than in other areas of the home. Recommend quarterly viewing so as to catch water intrusion and moisture related issues quickly.

Roof materials
It is beyond the scope of the inspection to give the life expectation of roofing materials. There are many factors that effect the aging process such as color, angle, orientation, ventilation and type of material. Any mention of age is a rough estimate based upon experience and is in no way an guarantee of the actual age. We recommend asking seller if you want specific age information. It is also beyond the scope to determine if a roof has more than one layer of materials. lower layer can be concealed by drip edges and flashings.

Roofs are designed to shed water like an umbrella and are not “waterproof”. In events of wind driven rains, and periods of intense rain, water can sometimes blow into areas such as ridge vents, roof vents and valleys and present leaking conditions. This occurrence is rare, but can possibly happen in severe storm events. Unless it is raining at the time of inspection, some roof leaks may not be identified during the inspection process.
As prescribed in the inspection authorization and agreement, this is a visual inspection only. Roofing life expectancies can vary depending on several factors. Any estimates of remaining life are approximations only.

Ceiling fans cannot be checked for proper mounting inside attic spaces where concealed by insulation.

The accuracy of breaker labeling is beyond the scope of the inspection.

Rodents
Please be aware that inspecting for rodents is outside the scope of home inspections. If we see obvious indications of activity we will note it. If we note it that should not be taken that we conducted a pest inspection. It is also very common for mice and similar sized critters to enter all homes at sometime. Please do not be alarmed if you have such house guests at sometime.


What are Molds?
Molds are simple, microscopic organisms, present virtually everywhere, indoors and outdoors. Molds, along with mushrooms and yeasts, are fungi and are needed to break down dead material and recycle nutrients in the environment. For molds to grow and reproduce, they need only a food source and any organic material, such as leaves, wood, paper, or dirt and moisture. Because molds grow by digesting the organic material, they gradually destroy whatever they grow on. Sometimes, new molds grow on old mold colonies. Mold growth on surfaces can often be seen in the form of discoloration, frequently green, gray, brown, or black but also white and other colors. Molds release countless tiny, lightweight spores, which travel through the air.
Everyone is exposed to some mold on a daily basis without evident harm. It is common to find mold spores in the air inside homes, and most of the airborne spores found indoors come from outdoor sources. Mold spores primarily cause health problems when they are present in large numbers and people inhale many of them. This occurs primarily when there is active mold growth within home, office or school where people live or work. People can also be exposed to mold by touching contaminated materials and by eating contaminated foods.
Molds produce health effects through inflammation, allergy, or infection. Allergic reactions (often referred to as hay fever) are most common following mold exposure. Typical symptoms that mold-exposed persons report (alone or in combination) include: Respiratory problems, such as wheezing, difficulty breathing, and shortness of breath
Nasal and sinus congestion, Eye irritation (burning, watery, or reddened eyes) Dry, hacking cough, Nose or throat irritation, Skin rashes or irritation Headaches, memory problems, mood swings, nosebleeds, body aches and pains, and fevers are occasionally reported in mold cases, but their cause is not understood.
Molds will grow and multiply whenever conditions are right and sufficient moisture is available and organic material is present. Be on the lookout in your home for common sources of indoor moisture that may lead to mold problems: If you suspect that you may have mold, contact a specialist.


When Things Go Wrong
There may come a time that you discover something wrong with the house, and you may be upset or disappointed with your home inspection.

Intermittent Or Concealed Problems.
Some problems can only be discovered by living in a house. They cannot be discovered during the few hours of a home inspection. For example, some shower stalls leak when people are in the shower, but do not leak when you simply turn on the tap. Some roofs and basements only leak when specific conditions exist. Some problems will only be discovered when carpets were lifted, furniture is moved or finishes are removed.

No Clues.
These problems may have existed at the time of the inspection but there were no clues as to their existence. Our inspections are based on the past performance of the house. If there are no clues of a past problem, it is unfair to assume we should foresee a future problem.

We Always Miss Some Minor Things
Some might say we are inconsistent because our reports identify some minor problems but not others. The minor problems that are identified were discovered while looking for more significant problems. We note them simply as a courtesy. The intent of the inspection is not to find the $200 problems; it is to find the $2,000 problems. These are the things that affect people's decisions to purchase.

Contractors' Advice
The main source of dissatisfaction with home inspectors comes from comments made by contractors. Contractors' opinions often differ from ours. Don't be surprised when three roofers all say the roof needs replacement when we said that, with some minor repairs, the roof will last a few more years.

Last Man In Theory
While our advice represents the most prudent thing to do, many contractors are reluctant to undertake these repairs. This is because of the "Last Man In Theory". The contractor fears that if he is the last person to work on the roof, he will get blamed if the roof leaks, regardless of
whether the roof leak is his fault or not. Consequently, he won't want to do a minor repair with high liability when he could re-roof the entire house for more money and reduce the likelihood of a callback. This is understandable.

Most Recent Advice Is Best
There is more to the "Last Man In Theory". It suggests that it is human nature for homeowners to believe the last bit of "expert" advice they receive, even if it is contrary to previous advice. As home inspectors, we unfortunately find ourselves in the position of "First Man In" and consequently it is our advice that is often disbelieved.

Why Didn't We See It
Contractors may say "I can't believe you had this house inspected, and they didn't find this problem". There are several reasons for these apparent oversights:

1. Conditions During Inspection
It is difficult for homeowners to remember the circumstances in the house, at the time of the inspection. Homeowners seldom remember that it was snowing, there was storage everywhere in the basement or that the furnace could not be turned on because the air conditioning was operating, et cetera. It's impossible for contractors to know what the circumstances were when the inspection was performed. Contractors also rarely understand the standards home inspectors are to follow.

2. The Wisdom Of Hindsight
When the problem manifests itself, it is very easy to have 20/20 hindsight. Anybody can say that the basement is wet when there is 2 inches of water on the floor. Predicting the problem is a different story.

3. A Long Look
If we spent 1/2 an hour under the kitchen sink or 45 minutes disassembling the furnace, we'd find more problems too. Unfortunately, the inspection would take several days and would cost considerably more.

4. We're Generalists
We are generalists; we are not specialists. The heating contractor may indeed have more heating expertise than we do.

5. An Invasive Look
Problems often become apparent when carpets or plaster are removed, when fixtures or cabinets are pulled out, and so on. A home inspection is a visual examination. We don't perform any invasive or destructive tests.

6. Taking advantage of a situation
Contractors may be desperate or eager for extra work. Is is too tempting for some to attempt to get work approval asap by telling the home owner that someone else will be paying for it.

Not Insurance In conclusion, a home inspection is designed to better your odds. It is not designed to eliminate all risk. For that reason, a home inspection should not be considered an insurance policy. The premium that an insurance company would have to charge for a policy with no deductible, no limit and an indefinite policy period would be considerably more than the fee we charge. It would also not include the value added by the inspection.