Growing Weeds

As the home inspector rounded the side of a Pleasanton home – there it was – a weed growing out of a downspout.

Gutters and downspouts are part of a drainage collection system designed to collect rain water from the roof and carry it away from the house.

Do you know how much water runs off a 2,000 square foot roof when it’s raining? If it rains one inch during a storm, approximately 1246 gallons of water flows into the gutters.

This downspout must have been clogged for considerable time before the sheet-metal downspout corroded through… and accumulated gutter debris decayed into a nutrient rich soil – and with a little water and a seed – the adage about weeds growing anywhere kicks in.

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Potential Kitchen Fire

When is the last time you looked under your kitchen exhaust hood or at the air filter under the microwave oven above the cooking range?

A good home inspector looks under exhaust hoods and microwave ovens for greasy air filters.

Greasy air filter are a potential fire concern – especially, if someone cooks with a flame in the skillet.

Failing to change or clean a greasy air filter creates a number of potential hazards including increased greasy buildup on the interior of your exhaust hood, inside the microwave oven exhaust flue, on exterior surfaces of your kitchen cabinets and walls, countertops and floors.

Leaving grease filters in place too long dramatically increases the risk of fire entering duct work and spreading through a house.

The inspector’s recommendation: wash the air filter in the dishwasher or replace it.

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Garage Disposal Power Cord

The garbage disposal is a device electrically powered and designed to shred food waste into tiny pieces small enough to pass through drain/waste plumbing.

The home inspector noted that the electrical black power cord passing through the bottom of a garbage disposal isn’t centered in the pass-through hole.

The power cord is missing a clamp or rubber grommet to keep the cord centered and away from the sharp edge of the housing.

Think about what you put under the kitchen sink: dish detergent, cleaning supplies, plastic containers, etc. Sometimes those items push against the power cord.

Over time it’s possible for the power cord insulation to chaff or wear through – the bottom line: an electrical power cord shorted to a metal housing and water don’t mix.

Did you know it takes about .015 amps (electrical current) across the heart to kill a person? There are approximately 1.5 amperes to the garbage disposal.

Take a minute to look under your garbage disposal.

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Water Wins Again

Did you know that the older galvanized steel pipes in homes cause 90% of water flow problems.

After 35-50 years, steel pipes rust from the inside out.

As water passes through the steel pipes, corrosion deposits build up inside and partially block water flow. Some older pipes are so corroded that even a pencil would not fit through the center of the pipe.

In the home inspectors photo – the pipe has corroded through and is dripping water – a waste of natural resources.

Running water through a corroded pipe is turning off a water faucet and the water is becomes discolored due to iron oxide.

If you live in house plumbed with steel pipes and there’s low water flow – there’s a good chance that it may be time to re-plumb.

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