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Home Inspection Nightmares XXIX

Creative plumbing, adventures in chimney building and more ridiculously odd discoveries made by the home inspectors in The ASHI Reporter

Even Better than Duct Tape

"Everyone knows not to use duct tape to seal a chimney. But nobody said anything about garbage bags and plastic wrap!"

Blaine DeVoy

HKI Building Inspections

Tacoma, Wash.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Exposed Brick Is a Selling Point, Right?

"If the walls are eroding away, just make it a design feature!"

Martin Newmark

Abacus Inspection Service

Louisville, Colo.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Getting Very Little Support

"This deck is on the edge of a 100 foot drop off to the woods, all the support coming from concrete blocks wedged onto uneven rocks. Would you trust it?"

David Grudzinski

Advantage Home Inspections

Cranston, R.I.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Battle of the Bulge

"The owner told his tenants not to go into the basement. This is below their bedroom."

Paul Luczyk

'A' TEAM Inspection, Inc.

Mukilteo, Wash.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Pressure Assist

"I've seen some bone-headed things in this line of work, and this one is up there on the list. It's a cardboard plenum (pressure-adjusted chamber) on a forced air furnace. Maybe it was a template trial run that turned into a 'permanent' install."

John Pasquella

HomeTeam Inspection Service

Pittsburgh, Pa.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Lonely Little Cactus

"This valley flashing needs a cleaning, or this cactus needs a friend."

Mike Lauby

Sunland Home Inspection

Phoenix, Ariz.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Welcome to the Crawl Space. Zap!

"When you don't know where to mount the main panel box, just mount it in the access opening to the crawl space. The panel will be easy to get to when you want the shock of your life."

Scott Hagan

National Property Inspections

Abbottstown, Pa.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

We Call This the Flame-O-Matic!

"This is a fireplace with a closet enclosure and rod. I call it the closet, clothes dryer and heat source, all in one."

Joel Webber

Old Dominion Home Inspection Services

Stafford, Va.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Eye Spy

"Is this opossum taking a Jacuzzi bath? No just hiding underneath! Scared the heck out of us!"

Jim Estrada

Property Inspector, LLC

Woodinville, Wash.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Wrong Direction

"This is a new roof install on a 20-year-old home, with the shingles lapping the roof valley so that water can just run right down behind them."

Charlie Yates

WIN Home Inspection Crown Point

Crown Point, Ind.

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Shocking Shower

"This is a electric water pump for the showerhead plugged directly into the light fixture."

David Maudlin

Indy Pro Inspection Service, Inc.

Carmel, IN

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Paving the Way

"This kitchen/laundry addition did not show on the property appraisers survey. Could it be because of the landscape pavers that were used to create the foundation?"

Geoff Clark

Thompson and Bender Inspection

St Petersburg, FL

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Slight Metallic Taste?

"This is a photo of squirrel-damaged lead flashings on a plumbing vent pipe. Squirrels love lead because of the sweet taste, and it satisfies their urge to gnaw to sharpen their teeth. Most asked question by clients who have this problem: Do the squirrels die? (Answer: No one knows for sure.)"

Gordon C.

Guffey, Brewer Inspection Services, Inc.

Arnold, MO

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Refreshing Drink Holder

"Found this inside the AC ductwork, just behind the filter. 'Honey, where did you put my drink to cool?'"

Alvin C. Miller

Hawkeye Home Inspections, LLC

Wellman, IA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Adventures in Hosiery, Episode #37

"Pantyhose on an indoor-venting dryer. The all-in-one air-purification, clothes dryer and humidification device."

John Ciambello

C&S Inspections

Colorado Springs, CO

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Just Passing Through

"Yet another snake skeleton in the breaker panel. This reminded me of the old video game 'Centipede.'"

John Astl


Home Inspection Services, INC.

Tampa, FL

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Sealed Against Leaks

"Someone was very thorough in sealing off drafts from this flue. Unfortunately they seemed to have overlooked that a gas fireplace was still venting into it, causing a serious carbon monoxide hazard."

Rick Hiddemen

Delaware Property Inspection

Wilmington DE

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Inside Job

"If the rain outside causing all the leaks gets too heavy, just stay in and patch it from the inside!"

Martin Newmark

Abacus Inspection Service

Louisville, CO

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Around the Bend

"This is one creative installation of a water heater vent pipe to the chimney. Why vent directly when you can take the scenic route?"

Dan Schaedler

Professional Opinion Home Inspection

East Aurora, NY

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

A Little to the Left, and Out a Little More

"I can just see it: One mason said to the other, 'Did you notice the window?' 'No, but I did notice the roof's overhang."

Banks Garrison

Tri-Cities Pro Home Inspections, LLC

Abingdon, VA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Mounds of Mold

"This inspector is considering adding a gas mask to the arsenal of safety tools in the inspection bucket."

Aaron Mayer

Housewarming Home Inspections

St. Louis, MO

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

We Love to Grill!

"This is grill setup is actually inside the home! They even had a custom vent installed above it."

Joshua Crepps

Crepps Home Inspection

Elizabethtown, KY

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Water, Water Everywhere

"Seems like this could provide a new way to water the lawn, with downspouts going every which way."

Jeff May

May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

Tyngsborough, MA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Leak Management

"A fistful of plumber's putty apparently did not fix the leak at this condensate

drain connection. Therefore, a custom gutter with a catch can was added.

Kristin Keller

Key Building Inspections, LLC

Kimberton, PA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Car-Jacked Deck

"I found this at a home recently 'rehabbed' by a flipper. The deck is supported by carjacks, blocks, and bags of concrete."

Alan Trauger

Alan Trauger and Associates, Inc.

Longwood, FL

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Joint Pains

"Every connection coming in and out of this furnace is seriously flawed in some way, from the aluminum foil, to the metal-to-PVC connections, to the globs of putty preventing leaks."

Jeff Nichols


Inspections, Inc.

Marietta, GA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Custom Roof-Deck Drainage

"The owner had installed plastic household storage bins below all the leaks and connected the bins to a network of improperly sloped ¾-inch PVC pipes that drained into an interior sink."

Tony Eldon

Bay Area Property Inspections

San Rafael, CA

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Hey, I Was Napping!

"I had limited access to this beam, as the homeowner had installed a very effective security system!"

Mario Lucciola

All Spec Building Inspections

St. Catharinas, ON

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter

Always Warm

"An all-season deck needs a heat source. This one is heated by a 250,000 Btu tankless water heater exhaust vent, complete with plastic dryer vent cover—perfect for sending warm, dry, poisonous carbon monoxide right up onto the deck above."

Bryant Warren

HouseMaster Inspections

Tulsa, OK

Courtesy of The ASHI Reporter