Fire Extinguisher Maintenance and Inspection

Fire extinguishers are devices commonly found indoors and are used to douse fire and prevent its spread. They are small metal canisters that contain compressed gas (usually nitrogen) that, when activated, propel a directed spray of flame-retardant chemicals. Fire extinguishers are only effective if building occupants understand where and why they are used. Fire Type […]

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Exercise Equipment Dangers

Exercise equipment is inherently dangerous.  Various types of home gym devices are typically large and have moving parts. Accidents, whether to adults who misuse the equipment or to children who gain unsupervised access, can be avoided through preventative measures. Gym equipment is also a breeding ground for dangerous pathogens, particularly in commercial gyms where users share the equipment. Physical […]

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Estimating the Lifespan of a Water Heater

While the typical water heater has a lifespan of about 10 years, careful consideration of the factors that pertain to its lifespan can provide the InterNACHI home inspector and the homeowner with information about the potential costs that would be incurred by replacing the water heater. These factors include: correct installation; usage volume; construction quality; […]

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Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring is an alternative to solid hardwood flooring made entirely out of real wood. It’s currently the most popular type of flooring in the world. North America is the only area left where traditional, solid wood floors still outnumber engineered floors, but engineered wood flooring is quickly catching up, with the rate of […]

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Cisterns

Cisterns are tanks that store water for a variety of purposes, such as irrigation, fire suppression and drinking. Uses Potable water may be stored in cisterns for such purposes as drinking, bathing and dishwashing. Treated water may arrive from public water sources or filtered from rainwater in a catchment system. Non-potable water can be stored […]

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Electrical Terms

This article seeks to clarify some elementary electrical terms and concepts that are sometimes confused. Basic Electrical Measurement Units Voltage, measured in volts (V), is the measure of potential energy per unit of charge. Using a “water-in-pipes” analogy, voltage in the electrical system is similar to water pressure in a plumbing system. High “pressure” or […]

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Depreciation of Investment Property

One of the largest tax breaks for owners of investment property comes in the form of depreciation, or the loss in value of a property over time due to physical deterioration. The U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows owners to take a tax loss every year based on this depreciation over the useful life of […]

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Crib Safety and Inspection

Defective cribs, especially hand-me-down and homemade models, can pose serious hazards to young children, including strangulation, entrapment and overheating. Government manufacturing standards set in 1973 have greatly improved crib safety, yet defective cribs continue to be responsible for the highest child injury rates of any nursery item. In fact, approximately 50 infants each year are […]

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Condensation Inspection

Condensation, also called sweating, forms on building materials when the temperature drops below the dew point, which is the temperature at which droplets of water vapor are forced so closely together that they coalesce into liquid water. Because of their characteristic thermal conductivity, components made of metal are usually the first places where condensation will […]

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Condensation in Double-Paned Windows

Condensation, also called sweating, forms on building materials when the temperature drops below the dew point, which is the temperature at which droplets of water vapor are forced so closely together that they coalesce into liquid water. Because of their characteristic thermal conductivity, components made of metal are usually the first places where condensation will […]

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