Gases from the sewer are extremely toxic, foul and even explosive. One of its constituent gases is so dangerous that it’s actually used as a chemical weapon while another is so heavy that it will quickly displace oxygen and suffocate anyone nearby. In most cases, these gases remain in the sewer, but they can enter the living space through dried out plumbing fixtures, plumbing cracks and other sources. To find out more about the danger, how it arises and what to do about it, please read out new article on sewer gases in the home.
Eyebrow dormers are as pleasing to the eye as they are functional, at least when they’re constructed right. On the other hand, they’re very expensive and they more prone to defects than the rest of the roof. To find out more, check out our new article on eyebrow dormers.
Did you know that UL lists some ceiling fans for use in wet environments and others for damp, humid environments? Or that fans shouldn’t be less than seven feet from the floor? There’s more to these appliances than you might have thought, and you can find out more in our new article on ceiling fan inspection.
Kerosene is a cheap fuel and it burns efficiently, which is why kerosene heaters are popular as space heaters in the US and even a source of primary home heat in Japan. But they smell bad and they pose serious fire hazards if they aren’t constructed, maintained or operated properly. They should have a low center of gravity, for instance, so they are unlikely to top over. To find out more, read our new article on kerosene heater inspection.
Ventless fireplaces are enjoyed for their energy efficiency and ease of installation, but they’re thought by many to be a horrifically dumb idea; they vent their products of combustion, including toxic carbon monoxide, directly into the living space. Some of the critics of this fireplace design are entire countries and states that have banned them, not to mention the CDC, the EPA and various other watchdog groups that strongly oppose their use. There are ways you can prevent deadly carbon monoxide leaks, and you can find out about them and more in our new article on ventless fireplace inspection.
Cold surfaces cool their surrounding air, forcing water vapor closer together until it condenses. It’s common on water pipes because metal – especially copper – has high thermal conductivity, which means it’s likely to cool quickly in response to a brief exposure to cold water or air. There are ways to prevent condensation in homes, which can cause mold growth and a variety of other building ailments. To find out more, read our new article on condensation inspection.
Saunas are a great place to relax, but they’re also breeding grounds for mold and even antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To combat these and other risks, certain precautions and design features should be followed. To find out more, check out our new article on sauna inspection.
Water stoves are used to heat homes and domestic water, and they’re conveniently located outside of the house. While this frees up room in the house and improves indoor air quality, water stoves are notoriously inefficient and release large amount of smoke into the air. Due to their status as a public health threat, many jurisdictions have outlawed or restricted their use. To find out about installation requirements and more, check out our new article on water stoves.
Galvanic corrosion is the disintegration of dissimilar metals that come into contact in the presence of an electrolyte. It can easily happen wherever moisture is present in a house, especially in plumbing and water heaters. To find out more, check out our new article on galvanic corrosion.
Electric fences are typically used on residences and farms to keep pets and livestock safe from traffic or the mouths of hungry coyotes. But more can go wrong with these systems than you might expect – dry soil impedes grounding and weakens the fence, an errant spark leaves the fence and starts a fire, or the owner designed it to be far too powerful. Lightning, too, is a major concern with these systems. To find out more about their design and hazards, read our new article on electric fence inspection.