Author Archives: Sara Radka

Bathroom sink draining slow?

We ask a lot of our bathroom sink drains. We pour toothpaste, soap, shaving cream, makeup and stray hair into them and expect them to work. Unfortunately, sometimes they don’t. A serious clog usually requires a chemical drain cleaner or a plumber’s snake. For a slow-moving drain, you might first try a plunger to dislodge the clog. It’s easy to use; be sure to use it carefully and avoid splashes. Before you begin, put a few inches of water in the sink to provide a good seal around the plunger. Next, stuff a wet rag into the overflow opening of the sink and seal it well. This air block greatly increases the effectiveness of the plunger. Then plunge away! You may have to refill the basin with water a few times to free a very stubborn clog.

VIDEO: Standing Water in Crawl Space

Standing water was discovered at a recent home inspection on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands. If you see standing water or water intrusion in your crawl space, it’s important to deal with it sooner than later as standing water can lead to structural settling and WDO (wood destroying insect) activity/damage in the home, together with moisture related issues within. The longer water intrusion persists, the more expensive the fix typically becomes.

Fun Fact Friday!

You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching TV.

The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929; “7” was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces. “UP” indicated the direction of the bubbles.

The word “nerd” was first coined by Dr. Seuss in “If I Ran the Zoo.”

Dueling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are registered blood donors.

VIDEO: Huge Open Seams in Siding!

Failed caulking details and huge vulnerable seams between siding abutments at the exterior of a home in Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands were discovered at a recent home inspection. It’s very important to protect open seams at the building’s exterior from water intrusion which can, and will, lead to water/insect damage in short time. Caulking abutments is advised, or installing a metal flashing detail behind open seams does the trick too.

VIDEO: Huge Open Seams in Siding!

Failed caulking details and huge vulnerable seams between siding abutments at the exterior of a home in Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands were discovered at a recent home inspection. It’s very important to protect open seams at the building’s exterior from water intrusion which can, and will, lead to water/insect damage in short time. Caulking abutments is advised, or installing a metal flashing detail behind open seams does the trick too.

VIDEO: Unsafe deck structure

At a recent home inspection in Anacortes, I recently discovered beetle exit holes in one of the deck support posts. When I probed the post, my screw driver went directly into the heart of the post! I discovered several other deteriorated posts and beams, together with some unconventional deck construction practices, which warranted further evaluation and repair by a contractor for safety reasons

VIDEO: Moldlike growth in attic!

At a recent home inspection in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, I discovered plywood sheathing in the attic that was stained with a mold-like growth. This typically, almost always, indicates an insufficient ventilation or elevated moisture issue within the attic. Vents could be restricted, vent ducts may be discharging into the attic, or the interface between the main home and attic may need to be better sealed. In any event, a contractor needs to first resolve the underlying cause of elevated moisture and make necessary repairs. The mold-like growth is then typically remediated with a mildicide and then painted with mildicide paint to encapsulate historic mold growth. I recommend tinting the paint TAN because white or black mold growth will be obvious if it returns (e.g., you’ll see it on tan paint). If the attic is forever tan, you know the issue has been addressed satisfactorily. Because most home buyers want this issue addressed prior to closing, and remediation can be expensive, I recommend peeking into your attic on an annual basis and dealing with any apparent mold-like growth sooner than later if noted.

How to deal with mice

Eek! There’s a mouse in the house!

Mice have been cohabiting with humans as long as humans have been cohabiting. They figured out millennia ago that our homes are a good place for them to live. Warm, dry, plenty of food – all a mouse (and hence mice) could want. Popular Mechanics says, “There are plenty more ways beyond the traditional mousetrap to get the rodents infesting your house.” Here is their survey of the best ways homeowners and exterminators can solve a mouse problem.

Hope you find this interesting and timely informative! If you’re looking for a top notch Home Inspection and Home Inspector in Friday Harbor, Washington or the San Juan Islands (including Orcas Island, Friday Harbor, Lopez Island, and Shaw Island) to keep you from buying “The Money Pit,” then you need Board Certified Master Home Inspector Tim Hance of All Islands Home Inspections working for you! Over the past 8 years, we’ve protected over 3,200 home buyers, just like you, from unexpected post-closing expenses. Call (360) 298-1163 to schedule your Friday Harbor, WA or San Juan Islands Home Inspection today! I look forward to working with you soon and exceeding your expectations!

Fun Fact Friday!

Sharks evolved about 450 million years ago about 3 times ago longer than dinosaurs.

Every person has a unique tongue print.

Pandas have lived on Earth for two to three million years.

In ten years, the average man shaves off a pound of whiskers.

The technical term for a cat’s hairball is a “bezoar.”

VIDEO: Install Chimney Cap / Rusted Flashings!

At a recent home inspection on San Juan Island, I discovered rusting/corroding flashing details at the chimney that should be further evaluated and repaired to help prevent potential leaks to the interior. Also, the installation of chimney caps is advised over open flues to prevent water intrusion which can reduce the life expectancy of masonry fireplaces. Finally, treating and removing organic growth from masonry is advised, together with applying a masonry sealant to properly maintain your exterior masonry elements.