It’s easy to take hot water for granted, but did you know it’s important to maintain your water heater annually? Whether you have a tankless or conventional water heater—electric, propane or gas—annual maintenance is essential for safety reasons, efficient/reliable operation, and to extend the serviceable life of the appliance. Here’s a great DIY resource giving tips and advice about maintaining water heaters.
And, here’s a tip: If you have an electric water heater, consider purchasing replacement elements and thermostats (they’re inexpensive) and storing them next to the water heater. In this way, you’re prepared to quickly and easily replace elements/thermostats to restore hot water without making a long trip to the hardware store (fingers crossed that they have what you need). You’ll be a hero restoring hot water quickly, trust me! Finally, if you ever notice that your water heater tank is leaking or corroding, that’s your tell sign that the water heater is at end-of-life and requires replacement ASAP.
If you have questions or comments about home inspections in general, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).
Today, I’m going to write about a plumbing issue that is as easy to diagnose as counting “1-2-3,” or—more aptly—“A-B-C.”
I’m talking about “S-traps” and “P-traps.” If you don’t know what these are, this video gives a nice overview. After watching this, you’ll better understand why you may want to consider making the switch from “S” to “P” in your home’s sinks.
I recently came across this very issue during an inspection on Fidalgo Island, where I found an “S-Trap” installed under the kitchen sink. As a result, I recommended the homeowner install a “P-Trap” in my report.
If you have questions or comments about plumbing issues, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).
If you don’t take care of leaks when they first occur, a funny thing begins to happen: they get worse. Recently, during an inspection in Langley, I discovered an active plumbing leak in the crawl space at the main water shutoff valve.
I also noted corrosion at the galvanized pipe fitting. I stated in the report that my clients should consult a qualified plumbing contractor to take care of this before the problem worsened.
Do you have questions or comments about plumbing issues? Go “All” in and tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).
Sometimes, home inspection problems can be hard to spot. And other times…
A recent inspection in Bow provided one of these “other times,” when I discovered an active plumbing leak in the bathroom. It was kind of impossible to miss the bright, yellow bucket that had been installed to catch the dripping water.
It certainly made my job easier.
If you have questions or comments about plumbing issues in general, tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).
So, you’ve done the right thing in your crawl space and insulated water supply pipes. All is good, right?
Not so fast.
During a recent visit to a home on Lopez Island, I came across this unfortunate issue: copper water pipes showing substantial corrosion—such as calcification deposits—despite the fact they were tucked into insulation.
However, insulation is useless and even harmful when it displays signs of moisture intrusion. In this case, that’s the precise scenario I encountered.
The prognosis wasn’t good because the majority of the water supply piping was concealed behind pipe insulation. Therefore, much to my dismay, I had to recommend that all the water supply piping underneath the home be further evaluated by a qualified plumbing contractor to make repairs as deemed necessary. The only way to do that is to remove the insulation and take a look.
To learn more about protecting your pipes, Home Depot recently created a “how-to” video on the topic. Hope it helps you!
Questions or comments about plumbing or home inspections in general? Go “All” in and tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).
I use the word “unconventional” in my home inspection reports quite often when it comes to an assortment of issues. While “unconventional” may be a positive attribute in certain circumstances and specific industries (such as successful marketing or sales campaigns), it’s virtually always considered a negative adjective for home inspectors. In my field, uniformity is king!
This week, our “unconventional” examples originated during a recent inspection I conducted in Bellingham. I noticed an unconventional vent pipe protruding through a master bathroom toilet tank, and—admittedly—I had no idea as to its function. Funnily enough, I saw an identical issue in a separate bathroom toilet.
In my report, I recommended the clients (potential buyers) inquire with the seller or a qualified plumbing contractor as to the function of the protrusion.
Do you have questions or comments about unconventional installations or home inspections in general? Go “All” in and tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).
Does your sink ever sing to you? I recently came across such a sink at a home in Oak Harbor. The song? A little ditty called “water hammer.”
Water hammer is the result of waterline pressure causing water pipe movement when flow is stopped or started. The “hammer” noise—which is actually a shock wave within the pipes that can lead to pipe collapse–may happen for a host of different reasons, such as insecure pipes.
If you ever notice your sink bursting out into song, consider having it further evaluated by a qualified plumbing contractor to learn more about your options—or perhaps signing it up for “America’s Got Talent.” Thanks for watching!
Questions or comments about water hammer or home inspections in general? Go “All” in and let us know at @AIHomeInspect