Document Name
Sort Generated Document By
Total Credit Requested
$ 0.00
Header Text
Total Credit Requested
$ 0.00

1234 New Construction Ct.
Hanover MD 21076
08/13/2018 8:00 am


Stellar Seller

The summary is meant to organize the defects or important repairs needed in the home. Most anything can be repaired in a home, although some repairs can be very expensive to complete. Generally, normal maintenance issues are left out of the summary unless they would lead to water leaks or expensive repairs if not completed in a timely way. Roof maintenance issues will be included in the summary because of the severe damage that may be caused by the neglect of roof maintenance.

Please Read The Entire Report

There is important information about home maintenance, materials used in the construction of this home, and appliance use and maintenance that should be read to gain an understanding of how to care for your home.

Qualified Contractors

Qualified contractors should be properly licensed and insured in the state of Maryland. Documentation of repairs to include the contractor's invoice, details of work completed, contact information and license number should be provided for the buyer’s records.

Recommended Contractors

Any contractor recommendations are made for my client's or their agent's convenience. I do not accept kickbacks or referral fees from any contractors, EVER.

1 - Inspection Details

In Attendance
Client, Client's Agent
Weather Conditions
Clear, 85-90 degrees
Home Style
Detached Single Family
Using This Report

Thank you for choosing 1st American Home Inspections, LLC for your Home Inspection!

The inspection performed to provide data for this report was visual in nature only, and non-invasive. The purpose of this report is to reflect as accurately as possible the visible condition of the home at the time of the inspection. This inspection is not a guarantee or warranty of any kind, but is an inspection for system and major accessible component defects and safety hazards.

The Inspection is not Pass/Fail

A property does not "Pass" or "Fail" a General Home inspection. Please feel free to contact me with any questions about either the report or the property. The goal of this inspectionreport is not to make a purchase recommendation, but to provide you with useful, accurate information that will be helpful in making an informed purchase decision.

Read the Report

Please read your entire inspection report carefully. Although the report has a summary that lists the most important considerations, the body of the report also contains important information. There is important information about home maintenance, materials used in the construction of this home, and appliance use and maintenance that should be read to gain an understanding of how to care for your home.

Using the Summary

The summary is meant to organize the defects or important repairs needed in the home. Most anything can be repaired in a home, although some repairs can be very expensive to complete. Generally, normal maintenance issues are left out of the summary unless they would lead to water leaks or expensive repairs if not completed in a timely way. Most roof maintenance issues will be included in the summary because of the severe damage that may be caused by the neglect of roof maintenance.

Repairs, Evaluations and Corrections

For your protection, and that of others, all repairs, corrections, or specialist evaluations should be performed by qualified contractors or licensed professionals. Safety hazards or poorly performed work can continue to be a problem, or even be made worse when home sellers try to save money by hiring inexpensive, unqualified workmen, or by doing work themselves.

Recommended Contractors

Any contractor recommendations are made for my client's or their agent's convenience. I do not accept kickbacks or referral fees from any contractors, EVER.

Do a Final Walk-Through

Because conditions can change very quickly, we recommend that you or your representative perform a final walk-through inspection immediately before closing to check the condition of the property, using this report as a guide.

We're Here to Help!

If you have questions about either the contents of this report, or about the home,please don't hesitate to contact us for help, no matter how much time has passed since your home inspection. We'll be happy to answer your questions to the best of our ability.

Notice to Third Parties

This Report is the joint property of 1st American Home Inspections, LLC and the Client(s) listed above. Unauthorized transfer to any third parties or subsequent buyers is not permitted. This report and supporting inspection were performed according to a written contract agreement that limits its scope and the manner in which it may be used. Unauthorized recipients are advised to not rely upon the contents of this report but instead to retain the services of the qualified home inspector of their choice to provide them with an updated report.

Explanation of Ratings

I = Inspected. This means the system or component was inspected and found to be functioning properly, or in acceptable condition at the time of the inspection. No further comment is necessary but whenever possible additional information about materials used in the construction and how to care for or maintain the home

NI = Not Inspected. This indicates that at least part of a system or component could not be inspected or inspected as thoroughly as I would like. This would rarely mean that the system or component could not be inspected at all. This amounts to a limitation and will include an explanation.

NP = Not Present. This indicates that a system or component was not present at the time of inspection. If the system or component should have been present, a comment will follow.

O = Observation. This indicates that an action is recommended. Observations are color coded to indicate the importance of the observation.

  • Blue - Means maintenance should be performed. This falls short of being an actual defect and will not be included in the report summary.
  • Orange - Means that a system or component should be repaired or replaced.
  • Red Means that a correction or repair is needed to eliminate a potential health or safety hazard.
For Agents

Viewing the summary may be a more efficient use of your time! You can click the summary button under my name and license # for viewing online or on the right side is the PDF button that allow you to view or print the summary only. On the top edge is the "Agent Tools" button that opens a window you can easily copy/paste from.

Watch this 3 minute video to get the most out of the Report Tools for agent!

Thank you for all the hard work that you put into this transaction!

Henry "Sonny' Toman

2 - Roof

2.1 Roof Covering X
2.2 Flashing / Penetrations X
2.3 Drainage System X
Inspection Method
By a drone with a high resolution camera
Roof Type / Style
Side Gable
Roof Covering: Covering Materials
Architectural Shingles
Roof Covering: Architectural Shingles

The roof was covered with laminated fiberglass asphalt shingles, also called "architectural" or dimensional" shingles. Laminated shingles are composed of multiple layers of a fiberglass mat embedded in asphalt and covered with ceramic-coated mineral granules. Shingles with multiple layers bonded together are usually more durable than shingles composed of a single layer.

Flashing / Penetrations: About Flashing & Penetrations

Roof penetrations describe the vents or flues that pass through the roof sheathing and covering materials. These penetrations will typically include flashing and boots designed to keep water out. The rubber boots that are used on penetrations will need to be replaced periodically.

Flashing is a general term used to describe sheet metal fabricated into shapes and used to protect areas of the roof from moisture intrusion. Inspection typically includes inspection for condition and proper installation of flashing in the following locations: - roof penetrations such as vents, electrical masts, chimneys, mechanical equipment, patio cover attachment points, and around skylights; - junctions at which roofs meet walls; - roof edges; - areas at which roofs change slope; - areas at which roof-covering materials change; and - areas at which different roof planes meet (such as valleys). Flashing is often installed behind or underneath materials that conceal it from your inspector.

The photo shows examples of where roof flashing might be found under ideal conditions.

Drainage System: About Roof Drainage

Proper design and maintenance of the roof drainage system is critical for protecting the foundation and keeping the basement dry. Keeping the rain gutters clear to prevent overflow and extending the downspouts away from the foundation are the two most important aspects of maintaining a properly designed system. Home owners should consider using a contractor who specializes in cleaning and maintaining the roof drainage system. This is dangerous work and even a short fall from a ladder can be fatal or cause serious injury.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations

3 - Exterior

3.1 Driveway / Sidewalk / Patio X X
3.2 Steps / Porch / Deck X X
3.3 Siding / Trim / Flashing X X
3.4 Doors / Windows X X
3.5 Grading / Site Drainage X
3.6 Trees / Shrubs X
Driveway / Sidewalk / Patio: Materials
Asphalt Driveway, Concrete Walkway
Driveway / Sidewalk / Patio: About Asphalt

Asphalt driveways typically last 12-35 years depending on quality of installation, climate, usage, and how well they have been maintained. Seal coat the driveway every 2-5 years and repair cracks and holes as soon as possible.

Steps / Porch / Deck: Drain In Stairway

There is a drain at the bottom of the exterior stairs to the basement. This drain must be kept clear at all times. Your inspector cannot be certain this drain is functioning properly absent a rain storm.

Siding / Trim / Flashing: Siding Type
Vinyl Siding
Siding / Trim / Flashing: About Flashing

Flashing is a thin layer of waterproof material that keeps water from getting into places it doesn't belong. It is usually a metal but can be vinyl, PVC or an adhesive bituminous material similar to tape. You would typically expect to find it at gaps between different materials like siding and windows or doors, decks and siding, trim and siding and on roofs. Flashing is better than caulk in most instances because it doesn't shrink and separate from materials like caulk does. Flashing is used more in newer than in older homes but has been in use for hundreds of years. Often materials will need to be removed to install flashing on older homes. Any change of siding, trim, doors and windows is a good opportunity to ensure that flashing is being used where it should be. Better contractors will know how to use flashing effectively to keep water out of your home. Proper use of flashing will add cost to the project but it is money well spent!

The included photo shows an example of perfect conditions which are rarely found on any home but it does demonstrate how flashing is used to protect the home from water leakage.

Doors / Windows: Glazing Type
Double Glazed

Windows provide our homes with light, warmth, and ventilation, but they can also negatively impact a home's energy efficiency. You can reduce energy costs by installing energy-efficient windows in your home. If your budget is tight, energy efficiency improvements to existing windows can also help.

Learn More

Doors / Windows: Double-Glazed

A typical clear, double-glazed unit has two lites of glass with the inner and outer layers of glass both being clear and separated by an air gap. Double glazing, compared to single glazing, cuts heat loss in half due to the insulating air space between the glass layers. In addition to reducing the heat flow, a double-glazed unit with clear glass will allow the transmission of high visible light and high solar heat gain.

Learn More

Doors / Windows: Kwikset Smartkey Locks Installed

Some or all of the exterior locks were Kwikset Smartkey locks that can be re-keyed without a locksmith in most instances. It is wise to re-key locks immediately after taking possession of a home to prevent unauthorized access.

For more information CLICK HERE

Grading / Site Drainage: Explain Grade

Grade refers to the slope of the soil around the home. Improper sloping of the soil near the home can lead to surface water, rain or melting snow, being directed towards the foundation. This condition is responsible for most wet basements and damaged foundations. The soil around the home should be sloped away from the home at least an inch per foot for 5 or 6 feet ideally.

Grading / Site Drainage: Explain Limits

Trees and shrubs are inspected for evidence of a condition which contributes to a problem that would have a negative impact on the home only.

Trees / Shrubs: Explain Limits

Trees and shrubs are inspected for evidence of a condition which contributes to a problem that would have a negative impact on the home only.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations
3.1.1 - Driveway / Sidewalk / Patio

Temporary Trip Hazard

The final layer of asphalt had not been applied at the time of inspection. Caution should be exercised as there will be trip hazards in the driveway until the asphalt is complete.

3.2.1 - Steps / Porch / Deck

Stair Treads Excessively Sloped
Rear Basement Stairway

One or more stair treads are excessively sloped and may be a trip/fall hazard. Exterior stair treads should be sloped to prevent water from collecting but not more than a maximum of 1/4 inch per foot.

Gardening shovel tool shape Concrete Contractor
3.3.1 - Siding / Trim / Flashing

Gaps at Trim

There are gaps at the exterior trim that should be filled to keep water and pests out.

Paint roller Painting Contractor
3.3.2 - Siding / Trim / Flashing

Exposed nails in trim

There are exposed nails in the exterior trim that should be filled or sealed to prevent corrosion.

Paint roller Painting Contractor
3.4.1 - Doors / Windows

Missing Window Screens
Master Bedroom

Window screens are missing and should be replaced to keep pests out.

Tools Handyman/DIY
3.4.2 - Doors / Windows

Window Wells Uncovered

Window wells should be covered to keep water, children, and pests, such as foxes or skunks out of the window well. This is a common cause of wet basements.

Wrenches Handyman

4 - Attic / Insulation / Ventilation

4.1 Attic Condition X
4.2 Insulation Condition X X
4.3 Ventilation / Exhaust Fans X
Attic Condition: No Evidence of Roof Leakage

Inspection of the attic turned up no evidence of roof leakage. This is not a guarantee that the roof won't leak in the future.

Attic Condition: Attic Access
Inspected in the attic

Many of the defects found in an attic may be listed in the related sections of this report. Sometimes there is no attic or no access to the attic space. These conditions would be noted in this report.

Attic Condition: Ventilation Method
Ridge and Soffit vents

Attic ventilation is not an exact science and a standard ventilation approach that works well in one type of climate zone may not work well in another. The performance of a standard attic ventilation design system can vary even with different homesite locations and conditions or weather conditions within a single climate zone.

The typical approach is to thermally isolate the attic space from the living space by installing some type of thermal insulation on the attic floor. Heat that is radiated into the attic from sunlight shining on the roof is then removed using devices that allow natural air movement to carry hot air to the home exterior. This reduces summer cooling costs and increases comfort levels, and can help prevent roof problems that can develop during the winter such as the forming of ice dams along the roof eves.

Natural air movement is introduced by providing air intake vents low in the attic space and exhaust vents high in the attic space.Thermal buoyancy (the tendency of hot air to rise) causes cool air to flow into the attic to replace hot air flowing out the exhaust vents. Conditions that block ventilation devices, or systems and devices devices that are poorly designed or installedcan reduce the system performance.

Illustrations are for general information only and may not reflect the ventilation methods of your home.

Attic Condition: Insulation Materials
Blown in fiberglass

Attic Condition: Insulation Depth
Approximately 12 inches, to 18 inches

The recommended insulation levels in Maryland are a minimum of R-38 all the way up to R-60 or a depth between 12" and 22". This is just a recommendation and not a requirement for a new home.

To learn more visit

Insulation Condition: Insulation Characteristics

The amount of insulation used in a home will determine how much energy is wasted heating and cooling the home. Proper insulation techniques allow for adequate ventilation and reduce accumulations of excess moisture in the air. A lack of adequate insulation will cause higher heating and cooling costs and can make the occupants uncomfortable during extreme weather conditions. Improper insulation techniques can cause excess moisture to collect and cause water damage and possibly mold growth. Newer homes are usually better insulated and more energy efficient than older homes. Newer homes are also "tighter" and allow less air flow or fewer "air changes" per hour. This sometimes makes newer homes more susceptible to mold growth. Insulation in the walls cannot be visually inspected.

Ventilation / Exhaust Fans: About Kitchen Ventilation

Kitchens are often ventilated by an over the stove exhaust hood / fan or built in microwave exhaust fan or window. Ventilation is a means of removing heat, steam and odors produced by cooking in a kitchen. Cooking can increase the relative humidity in the home, which in turn can create condensation on cooler surfaces and contribute to moisture related problems such as mold. Inhalation of cooking fumes can have a negative impact on your health.

Learn more about health effects of cooking fumes

Ventilation / Exhaust Fans: Bathroom Ventilation Method
Bathrooms Vented to Exterior
Ventilation / Exhaust Fans: Kitchen Ventilation Method
Built in Microwave Vented to Exterior
Attic Condition: Very Hot in Attic

The heat in the attic during the warm summer months can be distracting and may limit the time spent in the attic. Temperatures in attics are often in the 120-140 degree range.

Insulation Condition: Concealed By Finishes

A visual inspection of areas which should be insulated was prevented by wall and/or ceiling finishes which may have concealed a defect. Any defects observed will be noted in this report.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations
4.2.1 - Insulation Condition

Missing Insulation In Attic
Above family room

Portions of the insulation was observed to be missing. This condition cause moisture problems and contribute to energy loss during the heating and cooling seasons if not corrected.

House construction Insulation Contractor

5 - Structure

5.1 Roof Structure X
5.2 Ceiling Structure X
5.3 Wall Structure X
5.4 Floor Structure X
5.5 Foundation X
Roof Structure: Inspection Access
Inspected in attic

Roof Structure: Roof Structure Materials
Truss System, Oriented strand board (OSB) sheathing
Ceiling Structure: Ceiling Structure Materials
Bottom chords of the roof truss system, I-Joists (engineered joists)

Most if not all of the ceiling structure will be concealed by attic insulation or ceiling finishes such as drywall or plaster. Any evidence of structural failure will be noted in the report.

Wall Structure: Wall Structure Materials
Wooden framing

Many homes will have a wall structure made of multiple materials such as wooden framing built on top of cement block or poured cement. Some homes will have one or more additions made with different materials. Sometimes wall finishes and soil will totally conceal the wall structure from view. Any evidence of structural failure will be noted in this report.

Floor Structure: Floor Structure Materials
I-joists (engineered joists), Oriented strand board (OSB) sheathing, Metal beams, Metal posts

Most if not all of the floor structure will be covered by floor covering, ceiling finishes or insulation. Any evidence of structural failure will be noted in the report.

Foundation: Foundation Access
Inspected from exterior, Inspected from interior

The foundation may be concealed by soil on the exterior, wall finishes and insulation on the interior or all of the above. Any evidence of structural failure will be noted in this report.

Foundation: Foundation Configuration
Walkout basement below grade exit
Foundation: Foundation Materials
Poured concrete foundation walls

A foundation transfers the load of a structure to the earth and resists loads imposed by the earth. A foundation in residential construction may consist of a footing, wall, slab, pier, pile, or a combination of these elements. A footing is installed before the foundation wall to provide a level surface for construction of the foundation wall; to provide adequate strength, in addition to the foundation wall, to prevent differential settlement of the building in weak or uncertain soil conditions; to place the building foundation at a sufficient depth to avoid frost heave or thaw weakening.

Roof Structure: Roof Structure Concealed By Insulation

Portions of the roof structure was concealed by insulation. Evidence of a defect would be noted in this report.

Ceiling Structure: Ceiling Structure Concealed by insulation and Finishes

The ceiling structure is concealed by insulation in the attic and ceiling finishes.

Wall Structure: Wall Structure Concealed By Finishes

The wall structure, or the majority of it,  was concealed by wall finishes and could not be inspected visually. Any evidence of a defect or failure will be noted in this report.

Floor Structure: Floor Structure Concealed By Finishes

Acess to view the floor structure was limited by floor covering and ceiling finishes. Any indication of a structural defect will be noted in this report.

Foundation: Concealed By Wall Finishes

Wall finishes prevented a thorough visual inspection of the foundation and may have concealed a defect. Any evidence of a suspected defect or structural failure would be noted in this report.

Foundation: Foundation Concealed By Soil

Exterior portions of the foundation were partially or completely covered with soil. This prevented a thorough inspection of the foundation and may have concealed a defect. Any evidence or indications of a structural defect or failure of the foundation or footings will be noted in this report.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations

6 - Interior

6.1 Walls / Ceilings / Floors X X
6.2 Windows / Doors / Closets X X
6.3 Cabinets / Countertops X
6.4 Stairways / Railings X
6.5 Smoke Alarms X
Walls / Ceilings / Floors: Existing Homes

Settlement cracks and nail pops are normal signs of aging in a home. As moisture content in the air changes from season to season, the building materials in the home expand and contract. This will cause small cracks and nail pops in the ceiling that will require normal maintenance. Just as we develop wrinkles with age, so will any home.

Water stains and evidence of prior repairs are very commonly found in existing (not new construction) homes. Unless the area is wet it may be impossible to determine whether the problem has been resolved. Because water flows downhill, it may not be possible to determine the source of the water stain. The purpose of this comment is to explain that some water stains are not always explainable.

Floors in older homes are often irregular and squeaky. This may or may not indicate a structural problem.

Windows / Doors / Closets: Cord Strangulation Warning

Almost every month, on average, a child dies from window cord strangulation, according the the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Any long, knotted cords that are potentially within the reach of small children should be removed to prevent strangulation and possibly brain damage or death.

Stairways / Railings: About Stairway Safety

Care should be exercised on stairways as more injuries occur on stairways than other parts of the home. Even a slight variation between steps can lead to a fall and serious injury or even death. Handrails should be present at every stairway with 4 or more risers and may be desirable on shorter stairways. Handrails should be sturdy, graspable and carefully maintained as they may be used to prevent a fall.

Stairways in older homes were built to different standards than stairways in modern homes. Consumer safety wasn't foremost in the minds of most builders and there were fewer building codes, if any. The homes were smaller on average and stairways had to be fit into the space available. Basements weren't finished and basement ceiling heights may have been lower. As these homes are updated and basements are finished, stairways are used more and consumer safety becomes more important. Your home inspector may point out issues with older stairways that are very difficult or impossible to resolve without making expensive, and sometimes impractical, changes to the homes. It is also important to remember that there is no requirement for an older home to comply with modern building codes. Nevertheless, your mind knows where that step is supposed to be and variations in step height, tread depth, pitch and other issues can lead to falls and serious injury. Handrail installation becomes more important in older homes for this very reason.

Smoke Alarms: New Maryland Law

This is a summary of the new smoke alarm law as I understand it:

1. Replace battery-only operated smoke alarms with units powered by sealed in, ten-year/long-life batteries with a silence/hush feature. Do Not replace a hardwired smoke alarm with a battery only smoke alarm.

2. Upgrade smoke alarm placement in existing residential occupancies to comply with minimum specified standards. These standards vary according to when the building was constructed. The deadline for compliance with the new law is January 1, 2018.

3. Replace smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations
6.1.1 - Walls / Ceilings / Floors

Damaged Floor Tiles
Master Bathroom

There is a chipped floor tile in the master bathroom. This is a cosmetic defect that should not affect the durability of the tile.

Flooring Flooring Contractor
6.2.1 - Windows / Doors / Closets

Windows difficult to latch
Master Bedroom

One or more windows were difficult to latch and require some adjustment.

Window Window Repair and Installation Contractor

7 - Appliances

7.1 Disposal X
7.2 Dishwasher X
7.3 Microwave / Exhaust Fan X
7.4 Range / Cooktop / Oven X
7.5 Refrigerator X X
7.6 Clothes Washer / Dryer X
Appliances Present
Microwave, Electric range, Dishwasher, Disposal, Refrigerator with ice maker

The inspection of appliances is not required by the State of Maryland Standards of Practice but we try to confirm safety and basic functionality.

Owner's Manuals

An owner's manual is very useful for learning how to operate an appliance, order parts and for general maintenance. If the owner's manual isn't provided by the seller it may be available online at the manufacturer's website. You would need the model number to select the correct manual.

Disposal: About Garbage Disposals

The garbage disposal is mounted to the underside of a sink and is designed to store waste food in a hopper chamber (just beneath the sink drain and the upper part of the disposal). When turned on, the motor spins the flywheel and attached impellers at almost 2,000 RPM.

The attached impellers work to throw the waste food against the shredder ring and together they grind and pulverize the garbage. Water from the kitchen faucet flushes the pulverized waste material out the waste lineconnector discharge outlet and down the sewer system, or in some cases, into the septic system. (NOTE: Disposal usage may have some limitations with septic systems in some municipalities. Check with your local building code official.)

Your garbage disposal is different from your actual garbage can. Not all food scraps and liquids are meant to be poured into your disposal. Your should NEVER POUR GREASE down your sink drain or into a disposal.

To learn more

Dishwasher: About Dishwashers

Dishwashers are used to clean dishes and some work better than others. Your home inspector doesn't determine whether the dishwasher will do a good job, just whether it is functional when inspected. Most dishwashers don't actually sanitize dishes the just wash them. Higher temperatures are required to sanitize your dishes and dishwashers will typically just wash them. Not everything can be cleaned in a dishwasher and dishwashers with exposed heating elements may melt some things. Dishwashers drain into the disposal or directly into a drain. Either way food that isn't dissolved by the dishwasher can clog the dishwasher discharge hose or drain. Bones and small pieces of hard items that won't be dissolved should not be put into a dishwasher.

Microwave / Exhaust Fan: About Microwave Ovens

A microwave oven cooks food because the water molecules inside it absorb the microwave radiation and thereby heat up and heat the surrounding food. Microwaves could affect your tissue in a similar way if they were able to escape from the microwave oven. Modern microwave ovens are designed to allow essentially no leakage of microwaves, however. The only time for concern would be if the door is broken or damaged, in which case the oven should not be used.

Microwave ovens installed directly above a cooktop, or range (stove) will need to have an exhaust fan do deal with steam, grease and odors. The exhaust fan of a microwave oven will not usually work as well as an exhaust hood which is designed for the purpose of exhausting steam and grease and may not vent to the home exterior. Your inspector will try to determine if the fan is working but can't know how effective it will be. Filters should be cleaned or replaced regularly to prevent grease build up and allow the fan to exhaust as well as possible. Most filters can be purchase at hardware stores or online but the model number and possibly the serial number may be required. Measuring the size might work if the model number isn't available.

Your home inspector doesn't determine whether the microwave oven will cook food or whether it is leaking microwave radiation, but will note if it is damaged.

Range / Cooktop / Oven: Free Standing Electric Range

A free standing electric range, often referred to as a stove, includes heating elements on the top usually referred to as burners and an oven. Electric ranges use heating elements to cook and are controlled thermostatically by use of knobs or digital control panels. Some are basic and others are more complex. It should be understood that when the heating element is on it will get red hot. Temperature is controlled by the heating element "cycling" on and off. The hotter the temperature that you choose the longer the element will stay on to achieve the desired temperature. This is true of the cook top burners or oven elements. Some ovens will have a "Self Cleaning" feature that locks the oven door to prevent accidental injury as it gets very hot. It is important to understand how the manufacturer intends the oven to be cleaned to prevent damaging the finish. Glass top ranges require special cleaning products avoid damaging the top.

If the owner's manual isn't provided by the seller, you can probably go to the manufacturer's website to download or print one.

Your home inspector doesn't determine if the range will cook well, only if it is functional or damaged. Oven temperatures may not be what the controls indicate and an oven thermometer can be useful as you "get to know" your oven.

Refrigerator: About Refrigerators

The refrigerator and freezer use refrigerant to remove heat in almost the same way that an air conditioner does. And like an air conditioner it has coils that should be cleaned to maintain proper function, use energy as efficiently as possible, and extend the useful lifespan.

Refrigerators may stop working at any time and cause food spoilage. Having a cooler around to store food is a good way to prevent spoilage when the refrigerator does stop working. If you don't own a cooler, you'll need to decide if purchasing one is worth the expense compared to the cost of food replacement. Refrigerators often require delivery that may take several days. If the refrigerator will need to be taken up stairs the deliverer should be informed at the time of purchase.

An ice maker requires a water supply and sometimes has a filter that will need to be replaced regularly to prevent bacteria buildup. The water supply may leak if the refrigerator is moved or pulled out for cleaning. It is a good idea to know the location of the shut off for the water supply when one exists.

An owner's manual is useful for replacing parts and understanding maintenance requirements. If the seller doesn't provide an owner's manual it may be available at the manufacturer's website for download or printing.

Clothes Washer / Dryer: Dryer Energy Source
Clothes Washer / Dryer: No Clothes Dryer

There was no clothes dryer installed at the time of inspection.

Clothes Washer / Dryer: No Clothes Washer

There was no clothes washer installed at the time of inspection.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations
7.5.1 - Refrigerator

Refrigerator on GFCI Circuit

Please remember that your refrigerator is installed on a GFCI circuit and if the circuit breaker for that portion of the kitchen is tripped you food may spoil if not reset immediately.

Mag glass Monitor

8 - Electrical

8.1 Service Entry / Service Rating X
8.2 Service Panel / Main Disconnect X
8.3 Wiring / Grounding / Junction Boxes X
8.4 Outlets / Lights / Ceiling Fans X
Service Entry / Service Rating: Type of Service
Underground Service Lateral
Service Entry / Service Rating: Service Rating
200 amps
Service Panel / Main Disconnect: Main Disconnect / Panel in Basement

The main electrical shutoff (disconnect) is located in the basement. It is important to maintain easy access to the main service panel so that power can be turned off or back on in the event of an emergency. This is a very good place to keep a flashlight.

Service Panel / Main Disconnect: Cover Removed For Inspection
Service Panel / Main Disconnect: Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter

An arc fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) is a circuit breaker that breaks the circuit when it detects an electric arc in the circuit it protects to prevent electrical fires. An AFCI selectively distinguishes between a harmless arc (incidental to normal operation of switches, plugs, and brushed motors), and a potentially dangerous arc (that can occur, for example, in a lamp cord which has a broken conductor).

AFCI breakers have been required for circuits feeding electrical outlets in residential bedrooms by the electrical codes of Canada and the United States since the beginning of the 21st century; the U.S. National Electrical Codehas required them to protect most residential outlets since 2014.

Arc faults are one of the leading causes for residential electrical fires. Each year in the United States, over 40,000 fires are attributed to home electrical wiring. These fires result in over 350 deaths and over 1,400 injuries each year.

Conventional circuit breakers only respond to overloads and short circuits, so they do not protect against arcing conditions that produce erratic, and often reduced current. An AFCI is selective so that normal arcs do not cause it to trip. The AFCI circuitry continuously monitors the current and discriminates between normal and unwanted arcing conditions. Once detected, the AFCI opens its internal contacts, thus de-energizing the circuit and reducing the potential for a fire to occur.

Determining whether the appropriate rooms are protected is beyond the scope of a general home inspection. Your inspector cannot confirm whether labeling of the circuit breakers is accurate.

Underwriters Laboratory recommends testing the AFCI breakers monthly by pushing the test button.

Service Panel / Main Disconnect: GFCI Breaker Installed

A ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI), is a device that shuts off an electric power circuit when it detects that current is flowing along an unintended path, such as through water or a person. You will need to reset the breaker to reactivate a protected outlet.

Underwriters Laboratory recommends testing the GFCI outlets monthly by pushing the test button.

Service Panel / Main Disconnect: Combination AFCI & GFCI Breaker Installed

A combination AFCI & GFCI Breaker provides protection from arc-faults and ground-faults. You will need to reset the breaker to reactivate a protected outlet.

Wiring / Grounding / Junction Boxes: Wiring Materials
Nonmetallic Sheathed Wire
  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations

9 - Heating and Cooling

9.1 Heating Equipment X
9.2 Thermostat / Shutoff X
9.3 Combustion Air / Venting X
9.4 Distribution of Heating / Cooling X
9.5 Condensate disposal X
9.6 Cooling System X
Heating Equipment: Heating System Age

The age of the appliance is determined by use of an online database and cannot be guaranteed by your inspector.

Heating Equipment: Heating Fuel / Energy Source
Natural Gas

While electricity and natural gas are supplied directly from a utility, other fuels such as propane gas and heating oil require a scheduled delivery by an independent contractor. You should be careful to avoid running out of heating oil or propane in the during the winter months or you may experience frozen water pipes which may burst and cause a great deal of damage. Home owner's insurance typically won't cover damage caused by a failure to heat your home.

Heating Equipment: Heating System Manufacturer
Heating Equipment: High-Efficiency Gas Furnace

High-efficiency gas furnaces have AFUE ratings of 90% and greater. A solid-state control board controls the ignition. There is no continuous pilot light. There are two or sometimes three heat exchangers installed inside a high-efficiency gas furnace. Condensate is produced when heat is extracted from the flue gases. The temperature of the flue gases is low enough to use a PVC pipe as the vent exhaust pipe. There is no need to vent the exhaust gases up a chimney stack.

Thermostat / Shutoff: Thermostat Location

Family room

Thermostat / Shutoff: Shutoff with heating equipment.
Distribution of Heating / Cooling: Air Filter Maintenance

Furnace Air Filters should be checked monthly and replaced as needed. Failure to change the filter when needed may result in the following problems:

  • Reduced blower life due to dirt build-up on vanes, which increasing operating costs.
  • Reduced effectiveness of air filtration resulting in deterioration of indoor air quality.
  • Increased resistance resulting in the filter being sucked into the blower. This condition can be a potential fire hazard.
  • Frost build-up on air-conditioner evaporator coils, resulting in reduced cooling efficiency and possible damage.
  • Reduced air flow through the home.
  • Dirty filter cause dirty refrigerant coils which are the #1 cause of major repairs.
Distribution of Heating / Cooling: Forced Air Distribution

Once the temperature is set at the thermostat, cold air from the home is pulled into the system where it passes through the air filter, removing allergens like pollen and dust. It then blows the air through the air handler where it is warmed via the furnaces heat source and spread to the home through the ducts via the blower motor. 

Distribution of Heating / Cooling: Filter Size

Air filters should be checked monthly and replaced when dirty. Air filters trap dust, dirt and pollen that would otherwise collect on the refrigerant coils or be recirculated throughout the home. High quality air filters will trap smaller particles and improve the air quality as well as keep the coils cleaner. Dirty Refrigerant Coils are the #1 cause of major repairs such as failed compressors.

Distribution of Heating / Cooling: About Cleaning Ducts

Knowledge about air duct cleaning is in its early stages, so a blanket recommendation cannot be offered as to whether you should have your air ducts in your home cleaned. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urges you to read this document in it entirety as it provides important information on the subject.

Learn more

Distribution of Heating / Cooling: Damper
The supply duct near the furnace has a damper installed. This allows some control of the air flow to certain parts of the home. It may allow you to control how much conditioned air moves to the upper level or lower level. Determining this is beyond the scope of a general home inspection. A typical strategy is to direct more of the air upstairs during the cooling season as the lower level will usually be cooler or to direct more air to the downstairs in the heating season as warm air rises. You will need to experiment some to determine if the damper is useful to you at all.
Condensate disposal: About Condensate Disposal
The condensate disposal system, usually PVC piping, will require regular cleaning to prevent a blockage which would lead to leakage. The cooling system can remove quite a bit of moisture from the air during the cooling season. Leakage can create a significant amount of water damage and even mold growth. Your Inspector recommends annual cleaning and that you consider having a float switch installed (if there isn't already one) in the trap to shut down the air conditioning system if the trap becomes blocked.
Condensate disposal: Drip Pan With Float Switch

This heating and cooling system had a drip pan installed with a float switch to prevent flooding.

Cooling System: System Cooling Adequately

The air is being cooled adequately. The temperature was checked at the air handler.

Cooling System: Cooling System Age

The age of the appliance is determined by use of an online database and cannot be guaranteed by you inspector.

Cooling System: Cooling System Manufacturer
Cooling System: Split System Installed

The air conditioning system is a split system in which the cabinet housing the compressor, cooling fan and condensing coils was located physically apart from the evaporator coils.As is typical with split systems, the compressor/condenser cabinet was located at the home's exterior so that the heat collected inside the home could be released to the outside air.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations

10 - Plumbing

10.1 Water Supply Piping / Shutoff X
10.2 Bathtubs / Showers X
10.3 Faucets / Sinks / Toilets X
10.4 Drain, Waste and Vent Piping X X
10.5 Water Heating X
10.6 Gas System X
10.7 Sump Pump X
Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Main Shutoff Location

Shutoffs are not operated during inspections as they have a tendency to leak when used.

Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Water Source
Public Utility
Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Water Service Materials
1 inch plastic

This is the main pipe coming from the street.

Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Supply Pipe Materials
1/2", 3/4", CPVC

These are the pipes running throughout the house.

Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Remember To Winterize

Remember to turn off the water supply to the exterior water faucets which would supply water for the garden hose. Turn them off in October or November to prevent the pipes from freezing and then bursting. Open the outside valves so that water may escape.

Bathtubs / Showers: Maintenance

Bathtubs and showers are a regular source of water leakage in residential homes. They have plumbing fixtures that require more piping than other fixtures. The piping will typically have more couplings or connectors which can leak on the supply side and the bathtub has an overflow that is likely to leak on older tubs. Because of the common leakage, difficulty in finding those leaks and possible damage done by water leakage, overflows are generally not tested. While an overflow is designed to prevent overflow of the bathtub, it would only work if the water was flowing very slowly. 

Maintaining the surround (walls around a tub or shower) is important because any gaps between wall tiles can allow water leakage. The gap between the tub or shower pan and the surround should be caulked and the caulk maintained to prevent leakage also. One piece shower surrounds are less likely to leak and require less maintenance.

Faucets / Sinks / Toilets: About Sinks & Faucets

Connections to sink drains and faucets are a common source of leakage in a home. Faucets require occasional maintenance to function properly. Faucets purchased at the big box stores are typically of a lower quality than faucets purchased at an actual plumbing supply house. Plumbing contractors will usually need to charge more for these fixtures and they expect them to last longer.

Faucets / Sinks / Toilets: About Toilets

Toilets are a regular source of water leakage and damage to a home. Toilets require maintenance to prevent water leakage and water waste as well. When the flapper leaks, it can cause large water bills or even burn up a well pump. When a toilet becomes loose at the connection to the floor (closet flange) a slow leak of waste can develop and that often damages the structure or creates mold growth. Maintenance is much cheaper that the resulting repairs, especially if mold remediation is required.

Drain, Waste and Vent Piping: Materials
Water Heating: Water Heater Age
Water Heating: Water Heater Energy Source / Capacity
Natural Gas
Water Heating: Water Heater Manufacturer
Water Heating: Gas Fired Tankless

Hot water for the home was supplied by a gas-fired tankless water heater installed inside the home. Tankless water heaters do not store water in a tank like conventional water heaters. When a hot water fixture is opened in the home, water flows into the water heater where it is heated by gas burners before flowing to the open hot water fixture.

Tankless water heaters save energy by avoiding the stand-by losses associated with conventional water heaters which must constantly maintain water in a tank at a minimum temperature.

Due to calcium build-up on components, tankless water heaters may require service annually. Failure to service the water heater in a timely manner typically results in a reduced hot water flow rate.

Gas System: Type of Gas Piping
Black Steel
Sump Pump: About Sump Pumps

Sump pumps remove ground water. If a sump pump fails the home may be flooded with ground water. Sump pumps are small appliances and may have a short life expectancy. The illustration is an example only and may not be the same type present in this home.

Sump Pump: Location
Water Supply Piping / Shutoff: Most Supply Piping Not Visible

Most water supply pipes were not visible due to wall, floor and ceiling coverings. Any evidence of a defect will be noted in this report.

Drain, Waste and Vent Piping: Most Drain Pipes Not Visible

Most drain, waste and vent pipes are often concealed by wall and ceiling finishes and run underground to the public sewer system, and are not visible for inspection. Any defects will be noted in this report.

Sump Pump: Lid Sealed for Radon Reduction

The lid to the pit or "crock" containing the sump pump is part of the radon reduction system and is sealed. Your inspector did not break the seal and could not inspect the sump pump. Any indication of failure will be noted in this report.

  • IN = Inspected
  • NI = Not Inspected
  • NP = Not Present
  • O = Observations
10.4.1 - Drain, Waste and Vent Piping

Leak in Ceiling Under Bathroom

There is a leak underneath the master bathroom. The thermal image of the kitchen ceiling indicates cold spots (dark blue) that were confirmed to be wet with a moisture meter.

Pipes Plumbing Contractor

11 - Radon Reduction System

Passive Shunt Installed

A passive radon shunt allow radon gas to escape through a pipe to the outside atmosphere. If properly installed this may be an effective means of radon reduction. Testing is the only way to know if it is in fact effective at reducing radon gas levels in the home.