Tag Archives: anacortes

DANGEROUS DECKING AND ADVENTURES WITH ABUTMENTS

Sometimes, my job can be scary. Traversing steep, slippery roofs; entering crawl spaces with who-knows-what living inside…you get the picture.

During a recent home inspection in Anacortes, I came across a scary looking deck that was basically ready to fall over. The condition of the deck was so bad, I didn’t even attempt to go on it. You name the structural issue, this deck seemed to have it, including substantially deteriorated posts, beams, and deck joists.

Take care of your deck, and it will take care of you.

Yikes. Be careful out there.

If you have questions or comments about decking, tweet me (@AIHomeInspect).

STANDALONE SATURDAYS: CREOSOTE CRAZY

On Saturdays throughout the year, I hope to give you a peek of what I see as a home inspector traveling around San Juan, Island, Whatcom, and Skagit counties through photos and videos I’ve taken along the way.

I’m sure if you know or live in Northwest Washington, you probably feel the same about how special it is here. That’s why I invite you to share your Northwest Washington imagery! Simply take your picture or video showing why you appreciate the region, and tag it with #AllIslandsLife on Twitteror Facebook.

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

ELEPHANT TRUNK IN THE ATTIC?  HMMMM…IT’S NOT THAT HARD TO EXTEND FAN DUCTING TO THE EXTERIOR; PLUS YOU’LL AVOID LIKELY MOLD!

If a bathroom vent fan funnels into your attic, moist air from your hot, damp bathroom can eventually (and likely) form mold and mildew on attic rafters and sheathing —and even your attic insulation.  A recent home inspection in Anacortes revealed this very issue.

Good news: There are a few different options for routing the venting to the outside of your home. A one-minute video by Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford does an excellent job of explaining why this is so important, and what your corrective options are.

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

WANT TO KNOW SOMETHING IN A HOME I WON’T INSPECT?

As a home inspector, I’m rightly expected to know a lot about a lot of different things in a home. However, for a variety of reasons, I can’t address every issue I come across.

Certain home features are just beyond the scope of the home inspection, and this includes electric generator systems.

Recently, during an Anacortes home inspection, I came across one of these generators. In my report, I recommended that the prospective buyer ask the seller as to when the generator system was last serviced. Additionally, I suggested that they verify with the seller as to their routine maintenance protocol for the system. Finally, I recommended further evaluation, service and repair (as necessary) by a qualified contractor.

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

DUCK YOUR HEAD: OLD HOUSE BASEMENT STAIRS

Low ceiling heights can be challenging for some folks, as this stairway in a Bellingham home recently showed. Older homes often featured lower ceilings, which can literally (but most often figuratively) cause homeowners headaches. 

via GIPHY

One thing is for sure: This is definitely not a low-ceiling issue.

To help address this issue, I suggested the homeowner demark the low-ceiling height, which is typically the most advisable course of action—unless you are in the National Basketball Association and can afford to rip out the whole thing and build it again

Thanks for watching, and here’s to happy, stress-free stepping.

Do you have questions or comments about low ceilings or booby-trapped houses in general? Go “All” in and tweet us (@AIHomeInspect).

ONE WAY TO CREATE AN UNDERFLOOR LAKE IN YOUR HOUSE

So, the Koi Pond in the backyard isn’t enough, and you want to create an underfloor lake in your home as well? We have an easy solution: consider removing your washing machine’s drain pan!

However, if an in-home body of water isn’t part of your home renovation plans, the installation of a drain pan may be in order. Recently, during an inspection on Orcas Island, Washington, I came across this relatively common issue. Drain pans can help safeguard against water damage in the event of a future potential leak in laundry rooms. 

I’ve seen plenty of occurrences where this small, preventative measure could have saved homeowners lots of cash and peace of mind. Pans are readily available at home improvement stores, in plumbing supply outlets and online, and are simple to install.

Questions or comments about water damage or home inspections in general? Go “All” in and let us know at @AIHomeInspect

Roof maintenance

If your roof isn’t too steeply pitched and has material that won’t be damaged by walking on it, AND you are mentally and physically fit to do so, carefully inspect it in good weather. Look for broken or missing shingles, missing or damaged flashing and seals around vent pipes and chimneys and damage to boards along the eaves. Shingle damage up-slope will often cause water damage far downhill. Check the chimney cap and screen and look down the flues for obstructions or animal nests. If you can’t or don’t want to get on the roof, you might want to use a ladder around the perimeter. Pay close attention to valleys and flashings; these are the primary leak-generators. Some simple, easy fixes now can prevent thousands of dollars of water damage later.

Two Vapor Barriers and Standing Water in Crawl Space

Tim Hance of All Islands Home Inspections discovered two (2) or more vapor barriers in a crawl space filled with water at a recent Anacortes, WA home inspection. The reason that two (2) or more vapor barriers is frowned upon is because water, if it enters the crawl space, can become entrapped between vapor barriers, prolonging evaporation time and leading to stagnant water conditions. Here in the Pacific NW, water intrusion into a crawl space or basement should be dealt with promptly as it can lead to structural damage/settling and insect activity (e.g., carpenter ants, anobiid beetles and Pacific Dampwood termites are attracted to moist areas). In this particular case, the installation of a perimeter curtain drain was recommended to the clients by a licensed contractor.

DETERIORATED Eave Sheathing

Tim Hance with All Islands Home Inspections discovered completely deteriorated OSB eave sheathing at a recent home inspection in Anacortes, WA. If your soffit sheathing is discolored, particularly adjacent the gutters, you may very well have water and insect damage requiring your attention and repair. Left unchecked, deterioration will continue and become more expensive with time. Keeping gutters clean and installing a metal drip-edge flashing detail will help prevent recurrence into the future.

Anacortes Home Inspection Discovers Hose Bib Draining into Crawl Space!

At a recent Anacortes Home Inspection, I discovered an oddly situated exterior hose bib located directly above a crawl space foundation vent. Running the bib, as you can see in the video below, completely filled the vent well which eventually would run water into the crawl space. Evidence of historic water intrusion was noted in the crawl space, this being the likely historic contributing factor. Standing water in crawl spaces puts the building at risk of structural settlement, moisture related issues and WDO (wood destroying insect) activity and damage. If you see standing water in your crawl space, deal with it sooner than later.