If you’re planning a home renovation project, you should do three kinds of inspections before any work begins. Depending on your home’s condition and age, it might make sense to get even more inspections than the basic three. You can do these checks yourself or hire a professional. Not only will a professional inspector alert you to potential dangers, but they can also help make sure that the planned work will comply with local codes.
In a thorough electrical inspection, it helps to begin by observing two key elements that pertain to physical safety. Are there any unusual odors in the home that might be the result of faulty wiring or short circuits? Are there visible signs of faulty wiring, like broken or frayed insulating covers?
If the answer to either of those questions is yes, then a professional electrician should do a complete inspection. If no warnings signs are present, a routine electrical inspection should continue with a complete examination of the service panel, a close look at any aluminum wiring, and a check of the wattage levels in all lighting fixtures.
Foundation problems can be serious for any size home. Inspections should look for signs of plumbing damage and check that there are no strange or musty odors in the basement. Those are the two main signs of a faulty foundation. Any wall or floor can be worn away with time, but if a plumbing leak leads to water within the foundation, it’s time for major repairs.
Most home inspectors and builders will tell you that everything about your home depends on your foundation, and with a weak one, you’re in for major problems. Some homeowners have annual foundation inspections just to be sure there are no major problems with the structure.
Most homeowners can eyeball their roof and spot obvious problems, but it takes a professional to discover what the untrained eye can’t see. Before starting a renovation job, check the roof for obvious problems. Call in an expert if you notice anything unusual or your roof is more than 10 years old. Problems like missing or broken shingles, large areas of mold, unusual dips or rises, uneven guttering, and gaps between the chimney and roof are typical signs that you need roof repair.
No matter what type of renovation job you’re planning, spend time deciding how many inspections to do before the project starts. There’s no reason to get knee-deep in a home renovation only to discover faulty wiring or a cracked foundation. The first step in any successful repair task is planning, and performing the proper inspections is a central part of that.
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