A Northern Virginia Home Inspector's Perspective

Follow me
Home Inspector - Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - 3380-000723



The dryer vents through the roof - is it leaking air inside the attic?One of my pet peeves is seeing that the dryer vents through the roof.To me common sense says it's a bad idea.Why?  Look at the diagram to the right.  This is probably the most typical dryer vent hood that I see when it is insta...
I always wonder when I see old wiring, an old circuit breaker, and a new appliance.The house was built in 1965 and everything is original.The circled breaker services the range.  There is a new range in the kitchen.This panel box had been painted so many times I didn't even think about trying to ...
Not a double whammy - this is the quad whammy.Climbing up into the attic space I saw this small leak on the front roof.It was raining heavily during the inspection and this spot was definitely wet.  It had moldy-looking surrounds and a small spot of white fungus in the middle.It was an active lea...
This post is about a dangerous gas water heater vent.The photo to the right is my water heater.  It is a conventional gas water heater.  It costs me about $12/month to heat my water.A standard water heater such as mine is essentially a thermos bottle sitting on top of a gas fireplace.  A thermost...
That's right - every now and then I run into the old knob and tube wiring.The key word in that sentence is OLD.Generally speaking, this older wiring system was used residentially in the United States from the 1880s to the 1930s.  I have found reports of it being used residential construction in s...
This is not a common place for a water heater leak.The most common places for water heaters to leak would be the pipe connections on the top of the unit or the TPR valve on the side.  But leaks in other places happen too.Electric water heaters have two elements that penetrate from the sides of th...
Every now and then I see asbestos pipe lagging.In this house it could be seen on oil-burning radiator lines all over the house.  It was in poor condition, broken, and laying on the ground.Originally it had been wrapped with a white blanket of asbestos.  Why?  Asbestos is a fabulous insulator and ...
It is not unusual to find sap in the attic wood of an historic house.  This house was built in 1870.There are many, many more trees in the country now than there were 1870.  Why?  Husbandry. But the pine wood used now is different.  Pine trees in that era, that were used for construction, grew na...
It's newly remodeled and already there are porcelain chips in the bath tub.They were all in one area.The chips were deep, into the metal below.They were recently done.  And of course, the remodeling is new.So, how did it happen?Someone dropped a tool maybe, or something else.No problem, nobody wi...
An older house often means older insulation.This is a three-story, 1941 semi-detached, all brick, with a flat roof.  It is typical construction for this era and in this place.There are newer windows, but what appears to be original drywall.  Original drywall means original insulation.  What kind ...

Jay Markanich

Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia
local_phone(703) 330-6388
smartphone(703) 585-7560
Contact The Author
An experienced home inspector's look at current home inspection events and conditions along with his useful recommendations.