At TEC Inspection Services, we work to verify the proper function of all built-in appliances during the home inspection. We’ll even snap a few photos to record our findings and make recommendations for further evaluation if needed. Keep reading for an overview of how we examine appliances during the home inspection.
Examining Appliances During the Home Inspection
Appliances to be examined during the home inspection include the dishwasher, garbage disposal, kitchen exhaust hood, range, cooktop, ovens, built-in microwave, trash compactor, bathroom exhaust fan and heater, whole house vacuum systems, garage door operator, doorbell and chimes, and dryer vents. If the home has a built-in outdoor kitchen, our home inspector will check those appliances as well.
TIP: Prior to the home inspection, make sure that the home has electricity, water, and gas connections. You should also light pilot lights before the home inspector arrives.
It’s important to note that the home inspector is not required to perform tasks such as testing the microwave for oven radiation leaks, inspecting self-cleaning functions, disassembling appliances, determining the adequacy of venting systems, or determining proper routing and or lengths of duct systems.
Inspecting the Dishwasher
During the home inspection, our Licensed Home Inspector will run the dishwasher to ensure proper function. No, they won’t put your dishes away afterward, but nice try! Dishwashing units that are inoperative, improperly mounted, functioning poorly, or units with rusted/damaged/missing components will be marked as Deficient. The home inspector will also report the dishwasher as Deficient if he/she observes water leaks or the absence of a backflow prevention device.
Inspecting Food Waste Disposers
The home inspector will flip on the garbage disposal and run the trash compactor to inspect for proper function. Food waste disposals will be marked Deficient if the unit is inoperative, jammed with toys (it’s happened before), functioning poorly, or improperly mounted. Your home inspector will also report the unit as Deficient if he/she observes water leaks or missing/damaged components.
Inspecting Oven Ranges and Exhaust Hoods
During every home inspection, our home inspectors check the gas range or electric stovetop for function. Electric or gas ranges, cooktops, and ovens will be marked Deficient if the unit is inoperative or has missing or damaged components. Your home inspection report will note potential fire hazards such as the presence of combustible material within thirty inches above the cooktop burners. The home inspector will also make note if an anti-tip device should be installed for safety reasons.
Kitchen appliances will be examined for gas safety concerns such as leaks, the absence of a gas shutoff valve within six feet of the appliance, the absence of a gas appliance connector (or one that exceeds six feet in length), and gas appliance connectors that are concealed within or extended through walls, floors, partitions, ceilings or appliance housings. He or she will check for thermostat accuracy (within 25 degrees at a setting of 350° F).
Range hoods and exhaust systems will be reported as Deficient if the unit is inoperative, has deficiencies in performance or mounting, missing or damaged components, ducts that do not terminate outside, if the unit is not the re-circulating type of configuration, and if improper duct material is present.
Inspecting Built-in Refrigerators
TEC Inspection Services will inspect built-in refrigerators and freezers to ensure proper functioning. Your home inspection report will include images with thermometer readings for verification.
Inspecting Microwave Ovens
The inspector will inspect built-in microwaves and report the unit as Deficient if inoperative, performing poorly, improperly mounted, and/or if there are missing or damaged components. If you notice the home inspector microwaving a cup of water, he or she is not making hot chocolate (or at least we hope not!). Thorough home inspectors use this method to ensure the unit is functioning properly. Your home inspection report will include photos with the thermometer reading to help identify if the microwave will likely need to be replaced.
Inspecting Bathroom Exhaust Systems and Heaters
During the home inspection, your inspector will operate mechanical exhaust systems and bathroom heaters. He/she will verify that the unit is operative, properly mounted, and will look for missing or damaged components. The unit will also be marked as Deficient if the ducts fail to terminate outside of the building. All gas bathroom heaters should be vented to the exterior of the building unless the unit is listed as an “unvented design.”
Inspecting Garage Doors
The home inspector will open and close the garage doors during the inspection, so make sure that he/she has access. The garage doors will be marked Deficient if inoperative. Garage doors may also be marked Deficient if they are not performing as designed. Your home inspector will make note of missing or damaged components and will mark the unit Deficient if he/she has concerns about the structural integrity or mounting. For safety reasons, photoelectric sensors should not be located more than six inches above the garage floor. The home inspector will check garage door locks and confirm that the side ropes have not been removed or disabled.
Inspecting Dryer Exhaust Systems
The inspector will venture into the laundry room to take a look at the dryer exhaust system. The unit will be marked Deficient if he/she sees missing or damaged components, the absence of a dryer exhaust system, ducts that do not terminate outside of the building, screened terminations, or ducts that are not made of metal with a smooth interior finish.
Inspecting Outdoor Kitchens and Appliances
If the home that you are considering purchasing has an outdoor kitchen, we’ll check that out too! We’ll even take the time to fire up the grill and make sure Kegerators stay icy cold.