What is the difference between a Home Inspection and a Systems Inspection? A Systems Check or Inspection only examines the electrical, plumbing, heating and cooling, and kitchen appliances. A Home Inspection examines the whole house, i.e. the above systems as well as the rest of the house such as the structure, exterior, foundation, windows and doors, garages and roof.
I am buying a brand new house. Why do I need a home inspection? Just because a house is new does not mean that there are not concerns. Most people say, "The house was inspected by the county building inspector. Why do I need to have it independently inspected?" This is true and most of them do a very good job given how over worked they are, but county inspectors are examining the house in regard to the building codes which set the minimum standards that the house must meet. A home inspection may go beyond the building code because we have the time to spend a few hours in the house, and we are examining the home with you in mind. Additionally, a county inspector may not check the operation of systems, and therefore a system may be installed correctly but not operate.
Can I be at the inspection? Absolutely. The inspection is for your benefit. This is your opportunity to spend a few hours at the house and become familiar with it. Our job is not simply to identify any defects, but also to educate you about your new home.
How long will the inspection take? The average inspection takes about three hours including the preparation and the delivery of the report.
When do I get the inspection report? Professional Inspection Services, LLC will take the information back to the office and email you the report. The goal is always to get you the report the same day as the inspection.
Can you tell me how much the repairs will cost ,or can you do the repairs? The general answer is no. Professional Inspection Services does not do repairs because of the potential conflict of interest. Because we do not do repairs, we may not be able to give you a true estimate of repair costs. We recommend that you consult a contractor who specializes in the area of concern. Your real estate agent can provide a list of vendors to assist you in finding contractors who can give you a cost estimate.
What is Dryvit? Exterior Insulation and Finished System (EIFS), commonly known as Dryvit (manufacturer), is a stucco like finish that is placed over a styrofoam base. EIFS has been a problematic siding because of water intrusion behind the EIFS. Professional Inspection Services will be looking at the seams in the EIFS to make sure they are properly sealed. We will also be examining the sealing at the base of the EIFS and its clearance from the ground. If necessary, we may recommend an EIFS Inspection. This is an examination by an inspector trained in EIFS who will look for water behind the EIFS using specialized moisture meters. Professional Inspection Services does not perform EIFS Inspections.
What is Polybutylene Piping? Polybutylene pipe is a plastic pipe that was used during the late 80s and early 90s. It has been problematic because of breaks that have occurred usually at the joint fittings. Adjustments have been made for the fittings, so when Professional Inspection Services, LLC performs the inspection, we will be looking at the visible piping to determine the type of fittings and examining the piping for leaks.
Is PEX the same as Polybutylene? No. PEX is a different plastic pipe known as Polyethylene. PEX has been around for years, but has started to be used more because of the cost of copper. As with every plastic pipe, installation is important. Professional Inspection Services, LLC will look for proper installation in the visible piping and will look for leaks. Attached is the installation instructions for PEX from the Plastic Pipe and Fittings Association. However, each different manufacturer of PEX has there own standards for installation.
Are you specialist in heating and cooling, roofing and other systems of the house? Home inspectors are generalists and have training in identifying problems which may be occurring in these areas. We may recommend, based on our observations, additional inspections by someone who is a specialist in a particular system.
What are AFCI breakers? Simply stated: AFCI breakers are designed to sense a sparking within the electrical circuit and trip the breaker in order to prevent fires. Beginning with the adoption of the 2008 National Electrical Code all 15 and 20 amp circuits supplying living areas are to be protected with AFCI breakers. The 2008 NEC has not yet been adopted by GA. For further information you may link to an article on AFCI breakers at the following address: AFCI Article
Do you look for Chinese Drywall? Yes. While Chinese Drywall is not prevalent in the Columbus/Phenix City area, it has been identified in a few houses. Chinese Drywall is difficult to definitively identify without testing, but some are stamped on the backside as being made in China and visible above the garage where insulation is not covering the drywall. There are some indicators of the presence of Chinese Drywall like the discoloration of copper pipes and wiring that if seen during the visual inspection, the inspector will further examine and attempt an identification of the cause.