"A Thorough Home Inspection" - We hear that term tossed around in the home inspection industry here in Orlando a lot. It is more of a coined phrase for many inspectors nowadays than an actual claim.
Most home inspectors (if not all) would likely say they perform a thorough home inspection. It is hard to imagine an inspector saying otherwise. But what is a thorough home inspection?
Well, the answer to that is very subjective, and a lot of it is left up to debate and the opinions of many. But when it comes to a thorough inspection, there are some things you should expect, and that we here at Hero Inspection Services are proud to offer:
By far one of the most dangerous and common safety issues that a home inspector finds on an inspection is an electrical safety issue. Electricity can be a deadly force of not property installed and maintained.
While we do not want to pick on the DIY weekend warrior too much, we often see electrical safety issues come from homeowner work. Electrical work should be left to a qualified professional only. Why do we say that?
Consider this, according to The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, electrical receptacles alone are responsible for about 5,300 house fires in the US every year. That is just a receptacle - not the panel, branch wiring, bad breakers, aluminum wiring, or anything else. All of those other issues account for even more fires every year.
But many of these fires are due to errors made by professional electricians - people with years of training and experience. And then many of them were inspected by a professional electrical inspector as well. So if experienced professionals with other professionals checking their work make mistakes that cause fires or hurt people - then what are the chances of even the most experienced homeowner making those mistakes? Pretty good.
So the best way to stay safe with electrical work is to leave it to a quaified professional.
The power strip – one of the best tools a homeowner can have, but also one of the many tools that could cause serious damage to your appliances, or even your house. What are some things you need to know in order to protect your electronics and appliances, and potentially even your whole house?
Something that not all people know, is that not all power strips have surge protectors in them. A surge protector basically will protect any devices or appliances connected to the power strip from overloading in the case of a power outage, power spike, or electrical storm. Making sure that when you buy your strip, make sure that it has the proper specs in regards to having a surge protector.
Another thing to watch out for are power strips in either a moist environment or where a strip is located in an area of your home where air ventilation is not as strong. With either of these two things, they will lead to damage to your strip and to corresponding devices/appliances if not properly used. If left in an unventilated area, your strip could overheat, and left in a moist environment, it could spark then short out.
Again, stressing the importance of knowing where the strip is at all times and making sure that it is properly used is of the utmost importance. Proper use of your power strip will allow you to continually enjoy the ease of use, and the convenience of using a power strip.
We offer many inspection services here in Orlando - here are just a few of them:
We offer a number of other inspection types, such as Sewer Scope Inspections, Builder Warranty Inspections, Commercial Building Inspections, Wind Mitigation Inspections, New Construction Home Inspections, and more.
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If there is anything we have an abundance of here in Orlando, it's sunshine. The sun is a wonderful thing - except for your floors.
If you have wood floors in your home, the sun can really damage them. One of the biggest issues is sunlight coming through windows that discolor your flooring.
Another issue is the heat. If you want wood floors in Florida, you need to keep your home at a consistent temperature. Otherwise, your floors become warped or damaged from the heat and humidity.
Stucco is a very common exterior covering found here in the greater Orlando area. But it's not always what it seems.
We are certified stucco inspectors and we inspect many homes that have stucco issues - especially new construction. Most stucco issues are fro installer error though. So how do you prevent these kind of errors? By having your home inspected during the stucco installation.
Many of these problems can be caught and repaired by having your stucco inspected at each phase. The cost of the inspections is well paid for by preventing issues tat can come up in a very short period of time.
When you need a home inspection, you need the best of the best - and that is why you need to hire a Board Certified Master Inspector such as us.
We have worked for many years to qualify as a Master Inspector. The CMI Board requires years of inspections, continuing education, field experience, and they give us thorough background checks.
All of this is to ensure that we meet their high standards and truly elevate our industry. So why settle for a home inspector who is just licensed, when you can have a licensed, InterNACHI Certified Professional Inspector, and a Board Certified Master Inspector!
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Perhaps you have heard the term “green lumber” before but are not sure what it is. Green lumber is also referred to as wet lumber. As the latter name would suggest it is wood with a high moisture content that is used in construction.
As we would expect from a living thing, a freshly cut tree naturally contains a lot of water. The term ‘free water’ is used for water that has collected in the cells of the wood. After the tree has been cut down, this water will gradually evaporate until it reaches the same water content level of its surroundings. This is known as equilibrium moisture content, or EMC.
Obviously then, the longer this wood is left before it is used for construction etc. the dryer it will become, and better for use. This is not the case with green lumber however. After it has been processed, the wood is often stored in plastic wrapping until it is ready for use. This hampers the evaporation process, so the wood still has a higher moisture content when it is used.
Areas such as Arizona and parts of California often use this type of wood for construction as it dries out quicker in hotter places.
The reason green lumber is used comes down to the price. It normally costs less and is a softer wood, making it easier to cut and put nails into without it splitting.
We might ask then, is green lumber a better option than kiln dried wood? We will discuss this in a future article.
Positioning a building to enable it to utilize the suns energy for providing heat, is not a new concept. New advances in technology, however, make designing a home for optimum solar gain, a lot easier than before. What are some of the methods that homes can be designed and constructed to enable them to work with natural elements like the sun?
When a home is still in its design phase, computer models can show with precision how a home should be positioned and designed in order to get maximum solar gain, as well as seasonal thermal performance.
While it is important that the structure of the home should be positioned correctly. The floor plan is also an important part of the process. When considering the position of rooms such as the living room and kitchen, that are most lived in, these would want to be designed so that they benefit from the suns rays in the winter, but also enjoy shade in the summer. This is also important when planning the position of patios and decks.
Areas of a house that are not used as much like garages and laundry rooms don’t need to benefit as much from the suns heat, so can be planned out in a similar way.
What about the strategic positioning of trees? If placed in the right spot, they will provide much needed shade in the summer. At the same time though, you don’t want them to stop that much needed sunlight in the winter. So then, much thought and good planning must be taken when determining which type of tree is best, and factors such as whether it will loose its leaves in the winter.
Optimizing natural energy is an important step in the design process, but this has been only some of the ideas. In our next article we will consider a few more of these.
What is in YOUR sewer line? Find out by adding a sewer scope to your home inspection with Hero Inspection Services!
Mike McFadden, Certified Master Home Inspector in Orlando, FL