Picture Gallery Three

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photo taken by a home inspector in little rock,ar
Photo #13
What's going on here?
A lot of things which aren't good. For one, squirrels have chewed on the wire, exposing bare areas. Squirrels are members of the rodent family, and  just like rats and mice, they chew constantly. While admittedly somewhat cuter than rats, the damage they can do to attic and crawlspace wiring is immense and poses both fire and electrical safety hazards. This picture is not as clear as I would like, but  the chewed insulation is visible on the wiring itself, most easily seen on the black wire. Also note the chewed wire nut. Furthermore, this is obviously an amateur wiring issue since no professional electrician would leave a junction exposed this way. And last, but certainly not least, 120V wiring should never be run through a metal duct!

photo taken by a home inspector in north little rock,ar
Photo #14
Did someone really think this would drain properly?
More creative plumbing. Rather than hook up a proper trap, the homeowner sealed the end of the drain with epoxy and added a plastic drain line which is tied into another trap behind the wall. Not surprisingly, that tie-in was done improperly also. Even if the diameter of the drain line was adequate (and it's not), the sediment buildup resulting from this design would quickly render it unusable. Fortunately, this was on a little-used bar sink.

photo taken by a home inspector in n. little rock, ar
Photo #15
Combine 100 years of moisture intrusion and a few insects
and this is what you get as a result. The beam shows obvious deterioration. This is primarily from water leaks, but also from some insect activity. The brick pier shows a common condition in homes of a similar age. Moisture wicking up through the old, porous bricks has caused the mortar and the bricks themselves to crumble. There is a large pile of sandy dust around the base of this pier as well as most of the others. Remedial work is definitely needed here.


photo taken by a home inspector in maumelle,ar
Photo #16

Just asking for problems

It's simply not a good idea to mix copper lines, exposed electrical conductors, and damp crawlspace floors.


photo taken by a home inspector in bryant,ar
Photo #17
An insignificant little detail?

The screw on the left shows what the screw on the right originally looked like...

I'm sure a good number of sellers have questioned why the "crazy home inspector" would insist that such a seemingly insignificant item as a small screw would have to be changed. Well, when that screw happens to be one holding the circuit breaker panel cover on, the wrong type of screw can cause serious consequences. Here's a photo showing what can happen when an incorrect type is used. The factory supplies the panel with screws that have a blunt tip; unfortunately, these frequently get lost. Keeping in mind that there can be a virtual nest of wires in the panel behind that screw,  a sharp point on a screw could cut through the insulation on a hot wire, causing a dead short. Several nasty consequences can result. In the case which caused the result seen here, the short was low level enough that there was some arcing which plated the screw with copper from the wire while eroding away the screw until contact was no longer made. In cases like this, it's not unheard of for a different part of the screw to make contact with the wire the next time the screw is removed!

photo taken by a home inspector in benton,ar
Photo #18
Hidden floor damage

Shower leaks are not uncommon. It is, however, uncommon to find one with deterioration this advanced under the home when there was almost NO evidence visible in the home that the owner or a prospective buyer would recognize. In this case, the home was about 40 years old. The tile floor was installed the old way (the good way) with a hand-floated, thin concrete sub floor. It was strong enough to bridge over extensive damage to the floor joists below. The only evidence of the problem visible from the interior was a shallow depression in the tile in front of the shower door--and that was under the bath mat. A single photo can't do justice to the extent of the problem found below. If you look closely, you can even see two stalactites which have formed directly adjacent to the shower drain flange! That's significant long-term leakage.

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