Is your house depressed?

By Joe Lundequam / September 11, 2017 / General / No Comments

Is your house depressed? No? How about depressurized? (See how I did that? I got you to read past the headline.) A combustion vent is a passive one, which means that it doesn’t have a fan. It supplies air to the furnace room. Gas-fired appliances like the furnace and water heater need oxyge...

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Something else to worry about: Radon

By Joe Lundequam / August 11, 2017 / General / 2 Comments

Do I really need to worry about radon? Not really. That’s not to say that radon isn’t real, because it is. It’s also invisible, odorless and deadly. More people die from radon exposure than car crashes, accidental falls and house fires combined. The chart’s around here som...

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Anti-siphon valves vs. Swamp Tea

By Joe Lundequam / July 24, 2017 / General / No Comments

Picture this scenario; You’re filling a kiddie swimming poll in your back yard, hoping to tempt a couple of nearby ducks to visit. Suddenly, the air fills with the sound of sirens, and a hook-and-ladder rushes to a neighbor’s garage fire. You run to the scene, along with a bunch of ot...

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What level should I set my humidifier to?

By Joe Lundequam / July 5, 2017 / General / 4 Comments

Leave your humidifier off. As a home inspector in the Stillwater MN area, I see a lot of whole house humidifiers. They are the boxes on the side of the furnace. They have a few low-voltage wires attached, and a thin water line. Somewhere, usually near the thermostat or attached to the furnace, is...

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A quick and easy way to save on A/C costs

By Joe Lundequam / June 19, 2017 / General / No Comments

Clean the condenser fins (Okay, not quick OR easy, but not hard, and really important) As a home inspector in the Stillwater area, I see a lot of A/C units that are full of dirt, or dogwood tree stuff (or dryer lint if the clothes dryer is close to the unit. I know, right? Who […]

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Dryer duct safety

By Joe Lundequam / June 5, 2017 / General / No Comments

Lint from clothes dryers can cause a fire According to the fine folks at FEMA, 2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss. The leading cause of home clothes dryer fires is failure to clean them (34 percent)...

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What’s a “missing knockout”?

By Joe Lundequam / June 5, 2017 / General / No Comments

Electrical panels and panel boards are to be fully contained without openings and gaps A knockout in a junction box or circuit panel is a small, round piece of metal that gets, well, knocked out when wiring is installed. Someone wanted a hole on the panel to put wires in and changed their mind. o...

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Attic insulation

By Joe Lundequam / June 5, 2017 / General / No Comments

Why not reduce heating costs with good insulation? Why? because good insulation is expensive and hard to install. There are several choices available to a homeowner regarding attic insulation, but none of them are easy. For example; In terms of quick and easy installation, fiberglass batts are ki...

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A little mouse is no big deal, right?

By Joe Lundequam / June 3, 2017 / General / No Comments

Wrong. Mouse infestation is a VERY big deal As a home inspector in the Stillwater area, I look for evidence of mouse infestation. According to the Standards of Procedure as set by the Association of Home Inspectors (ASHI), I’m not required to report on the presence or absence of rodents. (W...

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Do I have to worry about the ice maker, too?

By Joe Lundequam / May 25, 2017 / General / No Comments

No, not at all. The water line to it? Well, yes, that you DO have to worry about. The poly tubing that comes with the fridge? Throw it out. It’s easy to damage, and gets brittle when old. A better choice would be “anything else”. That includes copper, braided plastic, braided st...

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