Although home inspectors are considered generalists and are discouraged from quoting code in their inspection reports, it’s always a good idea to be familiar with the latest requirements, especially regarding residential electrical systems. Read this primer for some updates in the 2015 International Residential Code (IRC): Inspecting GFCI and AFCI Protection.
New home construction is wired a lot differently than it used to be, using well-insulated, grounded cables. Still, they must be installed correctly in order to ensure that they don’t create unsafe situations. Inspectors should know the differences between the types of cables commonly found in homes and be able to spot defective installations. They should also be prepared to encounter wiring systems that are very old and obsolete. Take a look at our new article on common types of electrical wiring to find out more.
Sump pumps are probably the most important appliances in the homes that have them. They keep water from seeping into the basement and causing damage to the home’s interior. It’s too bad that many homeowners spend thousands of dollars on TVs and furniture yet get the cheapest sump pump they can buy. The pump is what protects their possessions from being destroyed by water! Sump pumps are self-activating but must be maintained regularly. Read our new article on sump pump operation and inspection to find out more.
If you have any interest in arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) please take a look at my new article. In it you will find information about what AFCIs do, what they look like, how they compare with ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs), and other useful information.