Handyman support columns and bases were discovered under a masonry fireplace in the crawl space at a recent home inspection in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island. Upside down CMU masonry blocks (holes should face upwards!) and aggressive shimming, together with the lack of a positive connection between the post base and above floor structure, warranted further evaluation and repair by a qualified contractor.
I discovered completely disconnected ducting in the crawl space at a recent home inspection in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island. In this particular instance, this ducting was for mechanically ventilating the crawl space area, and had no bearing on the heating system for the home. That said, because it was disconnected, clearly the ventilation system wasn’t functioning as intended or designed and required repair. I frequently discover completely disconnected ducting in crawl space areas for furnaces which significantly compromises the heating efficiency within homes and nicely heats the crawl space areas. Most often, homeowners have no idea because they rarely traverse their crawl space areas.
Standing water was discovered at a recent home inspection in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. Standing water in crawl spaces puts the building at risk of structural settlement and insect damage which is why it’s important to deal with it upon discovery.
Damaged cement-fiber lap siding boards were discovered at a recent home inspection on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands. A qualified contractor would recommend repair and replacement of damaged siding boards, which can be surprisingly expensive. It’s always important to get bids for repair prior to closing as costs may be surprising and it’s important to fully understand the home’s issues, and costs to remedy, prior to closing so you’re fully informed.
A non-functional sump pump and standing water conditions were discovered in a crawl space at a recent home inspection on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands. It’s important to monitor crawl space sump pumps to ensure they’re functioning properly as standing water conditions can lead to structural settlement and insect activity/damage. Inquire with contractors about a remote monitoring system to alert you remotely to a non-functional sump pump; this will keep you from having to go into a dirty crawl space!
Inspecting the furnace at a recent home inspection in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island, I noted corrosion, deterioration and holes in the flue pipe which is a clear safety issue. This particular furnace was 15 years old and approaching the end of its expected life. It’s important to service your furnace on an annual basis for optimal performance, longevity and safety reasons.
At a recent home inspection in Freeland on Whidbey Island, I discovered apparent mold in the attic. This video explains what I’m looking at and how it’s customarily repaired and remediated. It’s important to look into your attic every once in a while and look for any signs of water intrusion or mold. If noted, I recommend dealing with it as soon as possible as repairs become more expensive with time.
Deteriorated LP InnerSeal composite siding was discovered at a recent home inspection on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands. This siding product was subject to class-action lawsuit for premature failure and elevated maintenance requirements. Well maintained, e.g., painted and caulked pursuant to LP’s recommendations, this product will deliver years of serviceable life. But, if it’s not well maintained it will deteriorate quickly and can lead to underlying structural damage. In this case, I recommended further evaluation by a qualified contractor, one familiar with LP InnerSeal composite siding, to further evaluate and make necessary repairs.
The most vulnerable portion of trim is where it abuts a horizontal plane, in this case at the door threshold. This is why I always probe the base of door jamb trim for “soft spots.” This deteriorated door jamb was noted at a recent home inspection in Anacortes on Fidalgo Island. Keeping the base of these vulnerable elements well sealed (painted and caulked) will help safeguard against deterioration. It’s all about maintenance!
The crawl space looked great, new vapor barrier installed, nice and clean. However, when I got into the deeper recesses of the crawl space, I noted it was like I was walking on a water bed! 3-4 inches of standing water was under the black plastic vapor barrier in many areas. Standing water and water intrusion in crawl spaces puts the building at risk of water, insect and structural damage and is nothing to be dismissive about. In this case, at this Orcas Island home inspection, I recommended further evaluation by a qualified contractor to make necessary repairs and eliminate water intrusion into the crawl space area.