Tools/Equipment for a new inspector

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Tools/Equipment for a new inspector

AuthorMessage
Larry O'Connor
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Posted: Mar 9, 2004 12:52 PM       Post Subject:

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For a new home inspector just starting out and
on a very tight budget.

What "necessary" tools and equipment would
you recommend for an HI just starting out?

Thanks
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Danny Armstrong
NACHI Member: No
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Posts: 15
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 2:37 PM       Post Subject:

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Flashlights, batteries, powerfull rechargeable lights for crawl spaces and atticks. Standard small tool pouch (screwdrivers, pliers, etc.). Ladders, extension and step ladders or folding compact ladders. Volt meter, moisture meter, themometer(s), coveralls, boots, shoes to wear inside if you get your boots muddy. Dust masks, knee pads, elbow pads. Binoculars. Some inspectors have lots of other gadgets, just depends on how much you want to spend!

Danny
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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
NACHI Member: Yes
(as of 3/25/07)
NACHI Member
Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 9:13 PM       Post Subject:

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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ekartal
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Posts: 1480
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 9:30 PM       Post Subject:

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I use a voltage sniffer before opening service equipment.

Erol Kartal
ProInspect
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Gerry Beaumont

Gerry Beaumont Consulting
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User: gbeaumont
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 9:55 PM       Post Subject:
Hi to all,

Larry, I wish I had got to this post before Mr Oconnor had the chance to corrupt you !! icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif

ugrent read this first

Gerry wrote:
my tongue is planted firmly in cheek whilst writing this, any you are entering the area of an old gag between freinds


I would not trust the opinion of a guy who thinks he can perform open heart surgery with 2 maglites and a Swiss army knife (Dull) the absolute minimum inspectors tool kit should contain:

and this picture does not show my 7 different ladders, combustion analyser, sure tester and increment borer.

Regards

Gerry

--
Gerry Beaumont
NACHI Education Committee
e-mail : education@nachi.org
NACHI phone 484-429-5466

Inspection Depot Education
gbeaumont@inspectiondepot.com

"Education is a journey, not a destination"

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Joseph Hagarty

HouseMaster
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(as of 3/25/07)
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Posts: 3988
User: jhagarty
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 10:48 PM       Post Subject:
What are the pry bars for?

--
Joseph Hagarty

HouseMaster / Main Line, PA
joseph.hagarty@housemaster.com
www.householdinspector.com

Phone: 610-399-9864
Fax : 610-399-9865

HouseMaster. Home inspections. Done right.

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Larry O'Connor
NACHI Member: No
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Inactive Poster
Posts: 21
Posted: Mar 9, 2004 10:48 PM       Post Subject:

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Thank you all very much for your response posts and photos.

Open heart surgery heh? icon_twisted.gif

Robert, can you amputate an arm or a leg with your tools??

icon_cool.gif

Thanks again everyone.

Larry
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jburkeson
NACHI Member: No
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Posts: 1056
Posted: Mar 10, 2004 1:46 AM       Post Subject:

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Gerry,

You obviously need a bigger hammer if you are ever to truly become a CMI. nachi_sarcasm.gif


Joe "The Hammer" Burkeson

--
Joseph Burkeson, RPI (Hooperette)

?Anyone who has proclaimed violence his method inexorably must choose lying as his principle.?
~ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

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Stuart Spradling

Spradling Home Inspections, LLC.
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(as of 3/25/07)
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Posts: 186
User: sspradling
Posted: Mar 10, 2004 8:32 AM       Post Subject:
Gerry,
Is that tool at lower left a tire plugger?
Stu
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Gerry Beaumont

Gerry Beaumont Consulting
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Posted: Mar 10, 2004 8:50 AM       Post Subject:
hi to all.

Joe H, the pry bars are part of the Professional Equipment "broker attitude realinement kit"

Joe B, to go with the old gag "it isn't the size of the hammer..........."

Stuart, you never know when your gonna get a flat, but realy it is a "T-bar" to use with screwdriver bits and small sockets.

Regards

Gerry

--
Gerry Beaumont
NACHI Education Committee
e-mail : education@nachi.org
NACHI phone 484-429-5466

Inspection Depot Education
gbeaumont@inspectiondepot.com

"Education is a journey, not a destination"

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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
NACHI Member: Yes
(as of 3/25/07)
NACHI Member
Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 10, 2004 8:53 AM       Post Subject:
Larry O'Connor wrote:
Robert, can you amputate an arm or a leg with your tools?? icon_cool.gif

Of course ... icon_lol.gif ... thats why it's always good to have a decent multi-tool with a sharp mini saw ... icon_cool.gif

Dont pay any attention to Gerry's ramblings about heart surgeons ... home inspectors are not "specialists", they are "generalists". Like the family doctor who will use simple instruments like a stethoscope, tongue depressor, reflex hammer, ear light, etc. and his own senses to get an overall handle on your condition, and whether you need to see a specialist ... icon_wink.gif

gbeaumont wrote:
... the absolute minimum inspectors tool kit should contain:

Hmmmm ... quite a list of "minimum tools" for someone on a tight budget (maybe you missed that part ... lol). Plus add at least $1,500 for training seminars for the specialized equipment. And you are on a very slippery slope with that "increment borer" my friend ... icon_eek.gif

My guess would be the pry bars are to remove access panels for crawl spaces and attics that have been closed up and are not "readily accessible" ... icon_wink.gif ... but, could someone please print out a copy of the NACHI SOP for my friend Gerry ... I notice there is no printer there (duck).

Quite an array of "absolute minimum tools" ... icon_rolleyes.gif ... Well raise my rent! Gerry Beaumont has actually admitted he would be unable to do a decent property inspection without a wide array of specialized testing equipment, including a laptop computer. I need to go lie down now ... icon_lol.gif

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
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Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 10, 2004 11:11 PM       Post Subject:
All kidding between Gerry and I aside, you should have at least a good set of basic tools to start, and can add more specialized testing equipment over time as you gain more experience if thats what you decide to do. There are a few other topics on this issue too.

Also don't skimp on good training, keep learning, and try to work with an experienced inspector at first ... or at least do ride-alongs with some ... you could trade doing the crawl space and/or attic inspections for the help ... icon_wink.gif

(P.S. Gerry ... where is the SureTest? I have to go lie down again ... lol)

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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Gerry Beaumont

Gerry Beaumont Consulting
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User: gbeaumont
Posted: Mar 11, 2004 8:38 AM       Post Subject:
Hi to all,

I hate finding myself in agreement with Rob, but to be quite honest one does not really NEED a vast selection of specialized tools to perform a home inspection, and certainly no-one should carry any tools that they do not know how to use properly.

On top of Rob's maglite & Swiss army knife set. I personally do not leave home without:

Clip on CO detector (for my safety)
Tiff 8800 (combusible gas detector)
Delmhorst moisture meter
Suretest (just tells you more than a 3 light)

In the most part, I use the more specialized stuff to support my visual and other sensory findings, for example is that an old damp stain, or an active leak ?? Did I catch a whiff of gas around that shut off......No that shutoff has a leak. etc.

Expensive tools do not make a good inspector, they make a good inspector better, there is no substitute for training and experience.

One last thought, ifyou do go into the specialized tool area, get specialized training, and make sure that if needed your equipment is serviced and recalibrated as required by the manufacturer on an annual basis, my combustion analyser and Larger CO meter cost $200 per year in re-calibration and new oxygen sensors. (I send them to the same place that Rob uses to get his Swiss army knife honed and recalibrated) icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif

Regards

Gerry

--
Gerry Beaumont
NACHI Education Committee
e-mail : education@nachi.org
NACHI phone 484-429-5466

Inspection Depot Education
gbeaumont@inspectiondepot.com

"Education is a journey, not a destination"

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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
NACHI Member: Yes
(as of 3/25/07)
NACHI Member
Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 11, 2004 9:03 PM       Post Subject:
gbeaumont wrote:
Expensive tools do not make a good inspector, they make a good inspector better, there is no substitute for training and experience.

As much as it kills me ... icon_rolleyes.gif ... I have to agree with Gerry there. There really is no substitute for training and experience.

There are times doing an evaluation of a building with highly sophisticated and very specialized testing equipment when the readings just rub me the wrong way based on what I can see and suspect. Like doing an evaluation on a concrete structure once with impact echo equipment (don't even go there Gerry ... lol) and the readings just seemed off. I went to my truck and got out a masons hammer to check things out for myself, and it turned out the equipment was WRONG. And that was some of the best equipment money could buy.

The point is ya need to develop a gut instinct about any type of inspections, and trust your gut instinct and look at things closely if it tells you something is wrong.

P.S. Gerry ... I prefer M&M (Maglight and Multi-Tool) .... icon_wink.gif icon_lol.gif

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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Larry O'Connor
NACHI Member: No
(as of 3/25/07)
Inactive Poster
Posts: 21
Posted: Mar 11, 2004 11:11 PM       Post Subject:

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Well, between Gerry and Robert, you've answered my question clearly (between all the ribbing). icon_lol.gif

I wanted to be sure that I did not need thousands of dollars in tools
and equipment to start out my inspection.

The basic tools you listed are perfect for me.

Gerry, you mention ride alongs. I've emailed other NACHI inspectors
here in Michigan (about 50 miles away or more).

There seems to be some hesitation in letting me ride along.

Can any one shed any "serious" light on the subject?

Should I offer to pay them. (I'm losing my job next week so
will not be able to pay anything yet)

I've offered to do the grunt work. Still no takers.

I'm looking at attending one of several training centers.

AHIT has a class starting right here in Michigan.

Maybe after my course work, I'll be more lucky in getting a few ride alongs.

Thanks again to everyone for their information on the required tools.
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James Rooff

Milestone Home Inspection, LLC
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User: jrooff
Posted: Mar 12, 2004 9:06 PM       Post Subject:
Larry, it maybe in your best interest to do the or ask for the ride along after you have been through the AHIT training class. You may find when you offer to help, your tour guide knows you have at least an idea you know what your looking for and your help could be worth the ride along.
Just an observation here.
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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
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Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 14, 2004 11:38 AM       Post Subject:
Larry ... First get some good training, read up on crawl space and attic issues, and consider joining and going to some local chapter meetings to get your foot in the door for some ride-alongs ... icon_wink.gif

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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Gerry Beaumont

Gerry Beaumont Consulting
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(as of 3/25/07)
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User: gbeaumont
Posted: Mar 14, 2004 11:47 AM       Post Subject:
Hi to all,

Larry, you need to ask yourself if you can trust the opinion of a "Professional Engineer" who takes these guy's out on an inspection ??



"caveat emptor" enough said icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif

Regards

Gerry

--
Gerry Beaumont
NACHI Education Committee
e-mail : education@nachi.org
NACHI phone 484-429-5466

Inspection Depot Education
gbeaumont@inspectiondepot.com

"Education is a journey, not a destination"

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Robert OConnor

Eagle Engineering & Inspections
NACHI Member: Yes
(as of 3/25/07)
NACHI Member
Posts: 1936
User: roconnor
Posted: Mar 14, 2004 12:07 PM       Post Subject:
Consider that since I tought those guys how to do a property inspection better than Gerry could, I could teach anyone ... icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif icon_lol.gif

They are now my "A" team at M&M Inspections, Inc. ... icon_cool.gif

--
Robert O'Connor, PE
Eagle Engineering ?
Eagle Eye Inspections ?
NACHI Education Committee

I am absolutely amazed sometimes by how much thought goes into doing things wrong

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Ronald Reedy
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Posted: Mar 14, 2004 11:57 PM       Post Subject:

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I see the flash light in the picture, I also have one with a head strap Energizer makes this one and several other companies on the market, takes two double A"s I find it handy in an attic were I can use both hands to swing from the trusses icon_lol.gif

--
The best place to start your real estate transaction is with the home inspection

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