Advice on home inspection

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  #1  
Old 01-27-07, 02:52 PM
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Advice on home inspection

Hello!
We just received a home inspection report for our house. Some electrical problems were included that never came up on our inspection and that we never knew about in the 5 years we've lived here. I was wondering if any of this is as bad as it sounds?

They say:
1. "The subpanel is improperly installed as per today's standards. all subpanels must consist of 4 wires and have a neutral and ground isolated" We only have a main panel here so that must be what he means- our house was built in 1977 and as far as I know it is a 3 wire system which was the standard then. Does this have to be repaired or is it grandfathered in?
2. Double tapped circuits- we now know about these and will have them fixed
3."There are improper sized circuit breakers installed. This is a potentially dangerous condition. " This goes on to say that in changing the breakers circuits may fail which could lead to full rewiring!

I'm just wondering about #1 and #3- I know 2 needs to be fixed. Are these job that need to be done or are they things that are normal on an older home? They did not come up in our home inspection and we've never had a problem here so I'm just wondering how big of a deal they are. Previous owner did alot of DIY work, but we've never touched the electric so it is all what was left from him.
I just don't know if I even want to start getting involved in all this...be it me or an electrician
Thanks for any advice!
 
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  #2  
Old 01-27-07, 03:06 PM
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on note 1
it sounds like your main panel is on a stancion near the house or on the outside of the house, and what you are calling the main panel is inside the house. this should have been a four wire feed even back when your house was built. the fact that it was done wrong then does not take the responisbility away from you for fixing the problem now.

on note 3
this is a fire hazzard. it should be cheep to fix. put the correct size breakers in where needed.
 
  #3  
Old 01-27-07, 03:33 PM
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1. May or may not be an issue. Do you have an outside panel with a breaker or fused disconnect of any sort?

2. If you mean that two circuits are connected to the same breaker, this is no problem if allowed by the breakers for most general purpose circuits in the house. Even if not allowed by the breakers, it can be remedied by using a wire not and pigtail within the panel.

3. Improperly sized breakers (when they are higher amperage than they should be) are a fire hazard. If this is they cvase they need to be changed and the wiring inspected. If you have not had problems with the breakers tripping then the circuits are not likely damaged, but they do need to be inspected.

Understand that home inspectors are not electricians. They do not know everything and sometimes make mistakes. Understand also that nothing they find needs to be corrected unless the buyer insists on it and you want to do it to make the sale. Another possibility would be you lowering the price to allow for the work to be done after they move in at their expense.

Having said that, if a a fire hazard truly does exist, then you should fix it immediately.

One final comment. If these problems truly do exist, then you ought to ask for your money back on your home inspection. Even five years ago these problems should have been found. At the very least, write that company a letter telling them all this, and remember what a bad job they did when you need similar services again.
 
  #4  
Old 01-27-07, 05:27 PM
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#3-- Is your main concern. Address that, right now.

#2- At least you have protection.


#1-. "The subpanel is improperly installed as per today's standards. all subpanels must consist of 4 wires and have a neutral and ground isolated" We only have a main panel here so that must be what he means- our house was built in 1977 and as far as I know it is a 3 wire system which was the standard then. Does this have to be repaired or is it grandfathered in?

This depends on several things.


The rest.....##
We just received a home inspection report for our house. Some electrical problems were included that never came up on our inspection and that we never knew about in the 5 years we've lived here. I was wondering if any of this is as bad as it sounds?##

Why a 5 year delay?

Oh, You rented and now you bought? No wonder you didn't know.

1977, The home does not need to meet todays codes. But address #3 Right away.
 
  #5  
Old 01-28-07, 12:16 PM
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Thanks so much for your replies!


The 5 year delay was between when we did our inspection when we bought the house and now when our buyer had their inspection done.

I really appreciate the feedback! After reading the replies We will probably have someone come in and take a look at it and give an estimate and tell us what really needs to be done. If it doesn't seem like as big of a job to correct as the inspector made it seem we will have it done ourselves. I know some of the plumbing changes he told the buyers were necessary were not, so maybe he did get some of this wrong too. If the electrician comes in and it seems like a big hassle, we'll credit the buyer at closing to have it done themselves. We only have a couple of weeks before closing and so much left to do!

Thanks again!
 
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