Category Archives: Heating/Appliances

VULNERABLE CSST GAS PIPING AT EXTERIOR

Is the CSST gas piping to your fireplace vulnerable on the exterior of your home?  I recommend having a qualified contractor protect this piping from mechanical damage if vulnerable and exposed.  The last thing you want is to a gas line to get nicked, or damaged, causing a gas leak.   

A PERMANENT SOLUTION TO COLD FEET!

Ever wake up in the morning and immediately have cold feet? Heated flooring is a luxurious addition that can bring about a sense of increased homeliness to your house.

 The video below depicts a walkthrough of a radiant in-floor electric heating system in a recent home that I inspected.  Heated floors are awesome for bathrooms and entryways alike. If you have the time and the funds, consider looking into getting a heated flooring system!

A DISPOSAL THAT SHOULD BE DISPOSED OF

try to poke my head in all sorts of places during an inspection, including under the kitchen sink. Poking around is what I get paid to do!

On a recent occasion, during an inspection in Ferndale, I discovered a crack in the garbage disposal appliance casing within the kitchen sink base cabinet. Upon closer look, I could see this was an older disposal and was not repairable, so I advised the replacement of the appliance.

If you have questions or comments about heating issues or home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).

BOILING OVER: HEATING SYSTEM NEEDS FULL SERVICE BEFORE CLOSING

Homeowners often like to use their appliances well after their statistical life expectancies. While using something that is in perfectly good working order—while perhaps a little on the “old” side—isn’t always a bad thing, I will always recommend that clients budget for appliance replacement based on these average lifespan figures. Obviously, there are many factors that impact how long an appliance will last, such as maintenance (or deferred maintenance). 

During a recent inspection in Freeland, I came across an oil-fired radiant circulating boiler heating appliance in likely need of replacement. I noted the boiler was approaching the end of its statistical expected life of 20-25 years, and that rust and corrosion were noted at many of the appliance fittings.

While the last apparent service for this appliance was recently undertaken, I couldn’t verify as to whether or not this appliance was FULLY serviced (including all related heating system infrastructure). To that end, I highly recommended full service of the boiler, water heater, and all related infrastructure by a qualified HVAC contractor prior to closing.

If you have questions or comments about heating systems or home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).

NOT A BRIGHT IDEA: FURNACE FLUE PIPE NEXT TO ELECTRICAL SERVICE ENTRANCE CONDUCTOR

Sometimes, I come across head-scratching scenarios—most typically as a curious handyman repair.

On a recent journey to Whidbey Island, my scratching was at a fever pitch when I noticed a furnace flue pipe near the overhead electrical service entrance conductors and adjacent exterior siding. To say this was a definite safety issue in my report was an understatement. 

Sometimes, you have to love DIYers!

If you have questions or comments about heating issues or home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).

THE HEARTH IS WHERE THE HEART IS!

Do you have a non-combustible hearth extending 18 inches in front of your wood burning stove appliance?  This is recommended for safety reasons to protect the fireplace surroundings from possible combustion.  

Hearths are central/focal architectural elements of modernistic homes, dubbed by Frank Lloyd Wright.  Don’t fear, Frank is here!

In the United States, over 4,000 residential fires a year are caused by wood burning appliances.  Check out this link/.pdf for more information on wood burning stove awareness: Microsoft Word – Burn Wise fast facts_9.24.2014.docx (epa.gov)

CREOSOTE: YOUR CHIMNEY’S UNWELCOME GUEST

If you have a chimney system, you’ve undoubtedly heard about creosote. Creosote is not ideal for a variety of reasons, including the fact it is highly flammable if it gathers in large volume inside the cozy confines of your chimney system. 

Unfortunately, creosote doesn’t just go away on its own. 

In fact, it accumulates if it is not removed. While a little bit of creosote is both normal and okay, substantial creosote and tar glaze buildup (like the amount I noted during a recent home inspection in Friday Harbor) should be evaluated and cleaned by a qualified chimney sweep. 

If you have questions or comments about heating issues or home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).

MORE HANDYMAN FLUE PIPE WORK: CAN YOU IMAGINE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN IT GETS WINDY?

Sometimes, I see the nuttiest things when it comes to handyman repairs. Case-in-point: I recently came across a pair of metal corrugated flue pipes on a rooftop in San Juan County that penetrated the chimney chase.

Aside from having an “alien-like” quality in appearance, they were also not properly terminated or secured.

Do you have questions or comments about home inspections in general? Go “All” in and tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).

JUST USE A LITTLE TAPE…

Sometimes, no words are required. 

I applaud the creativity of this handyman repair. Maybe it’s not something that will earn the most style points, but it is a very impressive use of resources.

If you have questions or comments about refrigeration issues or home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).