Tuesday, June 5, 2012

3 common, easy to fix inspection items

As professional home inspectors, we see a lot of issues, big and small. We also see a lot of the same issues from house to house that can be headed off with a little preventive maintenance. Here are 3 common things we see and what you can do to keep them off your inspection report.

Replace refrigerant line insulation - The hot Texas sun tends to bake the pipe insulation around the AC unit's refrigerant line, causing it to crack and fall off. (Note: Good insulation around your refrigerant line will really help your AC unit perform more efficiently). Pipe insulation can be found at any home improvement center, and it's an inexpensive way to keep the cold air cold.

While you're messing around with the AC unit, go ahead and clear any vegetation or debris from around your AC condenser. If the coils look dirty, give them a hose down. Use a regular garden hose; a power washer can damage the fins on the coil.

Trees, shrubs and bugs - Trim any shrubbery, trees or vegetation that is touching the house. We don't need to make it any easier for insects to access your home. Also, if possible, make sure your wooden fence isn't touching the exterior of your house for the same reason.

For houses built on a slab, try to keep the dirt, grass and mulch 6 - 8 inches below the brick line. In other words, have 6 - 8 inches of concrete slab showing around your house. This will help keep bugs off the brick and keep water from ponding and wicking into the walls.

Dishwasher drain - Take a look at how your dishwasher drain leaves your food disposer. It should leave the disposer housing and head uphill, ideally to the level of the bottom of the countertop, before heading to the dishwasher. That will keep gunk from the disposer from backwashing onto your clean dishes in your dishwasher.

If your sink has an air gap for the dishwasher (the thing that looks like a soap dispenser with no soap), make sure it's plumbed. Sometimes when a dishwasher is replaced, the air gap is bypassed.

More tips to come...

Call us to book an inspection or pre-listing consultation - 972-292-8733