Axium SOP

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BATHROOM AND COMPONENTS

It is extremely important to remember that when checking plumbing fixtures at the property we do not leave the room when we have water running to fill up a sink or bathtub. If we leave the water running in a sink/bathtub and get distracted, we run the risk of flooding areas of the home. If you need to leave the area where you are testing the plumbing fixtures, make sure to turn off all the water faucets before leaving. If we forget to follow this procedure, we could cause thousands of dollars of damage to the property.

  • When performing a home inspection, it’s important to start from the top of the home and work your way down. This way if there are any leaks you should be able to catch them as you are working your way down through the home.
  • We fill up all sinks, flush all toilets and run the water in the tub and shower the entire time we are inspecting the bathroom.
  • When you come across any leaks, water damage, or signs of repair you should always document with your moisture meter in every picture.
  • If you do come across any leaks during the inspection you want to do your best to trace that leak back to the source and document any issues you see in the plumbing above the ceiling where you noticed the water leak
  • Be careful what you verbally tell the clients. You don’t want to state whether the leak is active or previous unless you are certain and anything you tell them verbally should also be documented in the report. Always say they should have it further evaluated by a qualified contractor and repaired or replaced as necessary.

 

 

8.01 Door(s)

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should check every accessible door at the property.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect the bathroom doors.

Procedure

  • Inspector should test every bathroom door by opening and closing it. Should check to make sure that it operates smoothly and is able to lock properly if there is a lock that is present.
  • Always check the door from the outside, not the inside, in case the knob is broken and you don’t want to lock yourself in the bathroom. We are looking to make sure the door is square, aligned properly, latch closes, any damage on the front and don’t forget to look at the back of the door.

Common Defects

  • Door is very difficult to slide on the track or did not operate smoothly.
  • The door is damaged from a break in, pet, or has poor repairs.
  • The dead bolt needs adjustment or is missing.
  • The ball catch on the door needs adjustment or is missing.
  • The door is damaged, defective, delaminated, installed improperly, missing, or does not latch securely.
  • The door does not shut, is not square, is off track, peeling paint, or has been removed.
  • The door rubs at the bottom, floor, jamb, or top when opening and closing.
  • The door swings open/closed, swings over the step, or is weathered.
  • The door stop is damaged or missing.
  • The floor guides are missing or not operating.
  • There is a gap around the door.
  • The door handle is damaged, difficult to turn, loose, or missing.
  • The door hardware is not recessed.
  • The hinge is loose, missing, or missing screws.
  • The door jamb is deteriorated.
  • The door knob is loose, missing, or in need of repair/replacement.
  • The mirror on the door is cracked or broken.
  • The door is missing the handle or some other hardware.
  • The door needed nail heads set, putty, prep and paint or seal.
  • The shower doors swing, have a missing handle, or is not latching.
  • The slide latch is difficult to operate.
  • The strike-plate is missing, not latching, or is not tight.
  • The door was not inspected with a key.
  • Weather stripping is missing, damaged, or revealed daylight.
  • Window on the door is broken, cracked, or has a damaged seal.
  • The door would not close properly.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking all of the components of the bathroom door.

8.02 Exhaust Fan

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect the Exhaust Fan.

Procedure

  • As you walk into the bathroom one of the first things you will want to do is check for the presence of an exhaust fan. If there is an exhaust fan you will want to switch it on and let it run for about a minute (You don’t want to let it run for a long time because the noise can interfere with your audio recording). Make sure that if it is an exhaust fan/light combo that you turn the light on as well. As the exhaust fan is running you will want to listen for any unusual noises and inspect for any general damage to the exhaust fan. There is one picture required for this section and if the exhaust fan is working properly at the time of the inspection you will take a picture of the exhaust fan with a light on in the picture to show us that the fan was working.
  • If you are unsure that the exhaust fan is working properly you can get a small piece of toilet paper and stick it up to the fan to see if it sticks. If the toilet paper is held in place that means that the exhaust fan is working.
  • If there is no exhaust fan present, the next thing that you will want to check for is a window. Depending on whether there is a window or not you will chose the correct “Not Present” statement in the program which describes the ventilation requirements for the bathroom.

Common Defects

  • The exhaust fan had a cover that was damaged or missing.
  • The exhaust fan was damaged or dirty.
  • The exterior vent was damaged or missing.
  • The light on the exhaust fan flickered or was not working.
  • The exhaust fan hummed during operation.
  • The light cover had a burn mark, was damaged, or was missing.
  • The exhaust fan was loose, missing, noisy, not working, or did not have a switch.
  • The exhaust fan was not venting to the exterior.
  • The exhaust fan was old, weak, or slow to work.
  • The exhaust fan had a switch that was wired wrong.

Common Mistakes

  • Forgetting to turn on the exhaust fan and checking for proper operation.
  • Not listening to the exhaust fan carefully for any sounds that would indicate that it isn’t functioning properly.
  • Not taking a picture of the exhaust fan with a light in the picture as a sign that the exhaust fan was working.
  • Not turning on the light of the exhaust fan to see if it was working.

8.03 Ceilings  

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

The inspector will need to use the flashlight to inspect ceilings where the lighting is not good (like closets/pantries). Also, if the inspector observes any staining from water they should use the moisture meter to check that spot.

Procedure

  • While the inspector is checking all of the bathrooms they should observe the ceilings for any damage. If there is an old repair or water stains that are present you should always put the moisture meter on that spot. Make sure to take pictures of the moisture meter in the location of the stain or repair. We always want to check the grout and caulking at the ceilings around the shower, bathtub, and tile.

Common Defects

  • The ceiling has an access hole, crack, seam crack, multiple cracks, or several hairline cracks.
  • The ceiling is damaged, deteriorated, loose, is missing a piece, or is missing in areas.
  • The ceiling has nail pops, signs of repair, or is warped/buckled.
  • The ceiling is peeling from water leak above.
  • The ceiling has peeled in areas and needs prep/paint.
  • The ceiling was peeling or loose.
  • The ceiling has a light stain or a water stain.
  • The ceiling revealed tape and nail beds in areas (cosmetic).
  • The ceiling showed pulling or wrinkling of the drywall tape at the corner, which could reflect structural movement in this area.
  • Evidence of possible mold-like substance was observed on ceiling.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking the entire ceiling for any damage.
  • Not using the moisture meter and taking a picture with it in the picture if there are signs of water staining or signs of repair.

8.04 Walls

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

The inspector will need to use the flashlight to inspect walls where the lighting is not good (like closets/pantries). Also, if the inspector observes any staining from water they should use the moisture meter to check that spot.

Procedure

  • While the inspector is in the bathrooms they should observe the walls for any damage. If there is an old repair or water stains they should always use the moisture meter. Make sure to take pictures of the moisture meter in the location of the stain or repair. Also, check for moisture if you see bubbled paint. We always want to check the grout and caulking at the walls around the shower, bathtub, and tile.

Common Defects

  • The walls have an access hole, bulge, crack, seam crack, hairline cracks, or multiple cracks.
  • The walls have damage, pet damage, framing damage, or is deteriorated.
  • The walls have missing or loose grout.
  • The walls are loose or missing in areas.
  • There are signs of moisture behind the walls and/or moisture stains on the walls.
  • Possible mold-like substance is present on the walls.
  • There are nail pops, peeling paint, or the wall is peeling/loose in areas.
  • There are signs of repair or mismatch in paint at the walls.
  • The wall is sloped, had tape pulling/wrinkling, or revealed tape and nail bed areas.
  • The walls were missing silicone caulking around control knob cover plate.
  • The walls were not finished properly (Missing caulk or paint).
  • There is evidence of wood-destroying insects present at the walls.
  • Evidence of possible mold-like substance is present on the walls.
  • The medicine cabinet, mirror, shelf, soap dish, toilet paper holder, towel bar, or towel ring has any type of damage or is loose.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking the entire walls for any damage.
  • Not checking the wall accessories in the bathroom to make sure they are secured.
  • Not using the moisture meter and taking a picture with it in the picture if there are signs of water staining or signs of repair.

8.05 Floors

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should lift any carpets or rugs (if possible and not attached) in order to check for damage to the floor.

Tools Needed

If the inspector observes any staining from water, they should use the moisture meter to check that spot on the floor.

Procedure

  • While inspecting the bathrooms observe the flooring for any damage.
  • Move rugs when inspecting floors, looking for cracked or damaged tiles or grout, water damage on wood floors, damaged linoleum, or damaged carpet.
  • Check all floors around toilets and showers and tubs visually and moisture meter. We want to get into the habit of always testing for moisture on floor around the toilet.
  • It is important to fully inspect bathroom floors. Common places for moisture damage is under and around sinks, around toilets and in front of tubs and showers, especially at the right and left corners of a tub. Use your moisture meters in these areas and run your hands over wood floors for signs of damage.
  • If carpet is present then lift the edges of carpet and inspect subfloor at corners of tubs, showers and around toilets if possible. Probe the subfloor with a screwdriver for wood rot. Look for signs of mold-like substances. If long term damage is present, check the ceiling under these areas for signs of damage.
  • Search for any signs of previous water damage and note any bowing/cracking on wood flooring. Remember to lift carpets and check underneath rugs if possible.
  • Also run your hands along the perimeter of the floor.

 

Common Defects

  • The floor is blemished, cracked, damaged, deteriorated, or faded.
  • The carpet is loose or loose at the edge.
  • The grout on the flooring is damaged or missing.
  • The floor has a hump, is loose, or missing.
  • The floor needs shoe-mold, is not sealed at the edge, or is not sloped to drain.
  • The floor had pet damage, slopes, squeaks, or is stained.
  • The floor revealed a seam or had seams that were wide/inconsistent.
  • The floor had tiles that were cracked, damaged, or loose.
  • The floor had a transition piece that was missing, a trip hazard, or was warped/buckled.
  • The floor was missing mortar/sealer or was not installed according to current standards.
  • The floor felt weak (not supported), had wear/tear, or had wet stains.
  • The floor revealed damage from WDI (Wood Destroying Insects).
  • The floor had tiles that may contain asbestos.

Common Mistakes

  • Not running your hand along any wood flooring to feel for damage.
  • Not checking all of the flooring in the interior rooms for damage.
  • Not lifting rugs, carpets, or mats that could be covering up damage.

8.06 Windows

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector shall inspect all accessible doors and windows by visual inspection and by opening and closing them.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect the bathroom windows.

Procedure

  • Inspect window frame, casing and sill for damage.
  • Look for signs of moisture intrusion around and under window.
  • If signs of previous leaks test area with moisture meter.
  • Inspect glass for damage, cracks, and evidence of broken seals.
  • Inspect lock and crank mechanisms by locking and unlocking and cranking handles.
  • Make note of missing cranks or other hardware.
  • Open and close window indicating smooth operation, checking spring rails and sash cords.
  • Make sure the window stays in the upright position without assistance.
  • If double sash window – open and close the top sash and verify proper operation.
  • Inspect window tilt mechanisms looking for damage plastic latches.
  • Inspect screens for damage or bent frames, or missing.

Common Defects

  • Sash Cords (Severed, Missing, Damaged)
  • Crank Handle (Not Working, Loose, Missing, Damaged)
  • Window Frame (Damaged, Loose, Peeling Paint, Moisture Damage)
  • Window Did Not Close Completely
  • Glass (Broken, Cracked, Missing, Loose at Frame)
  • Glass Not Tempered
Glazing Missing
  • Grille (Damaged)
  • Lock (Loose, Not Operating properly, Damaged, Missing)
  • NI – AC Unit in Window
  • Sash (Difficult to Operate, Not Aligned, Rubs or Scrapes, Stuck, Top Slides Down)
  • Screens (Missing, Damaged)
  • Window Thermal Seals (Damaged, Cloudy)
  • Sill, Casing, Frame (Damaged)
  • Spring Rails (Loose, Weak, Missing)
  • Missing Cranks
  • Locks Not Working

Common Mistakes

  • Damaging Blinds – Be very careful when opening and closing blinds. The blind cords can get brittle from being exposed to the sun. Support the blinds with one hand while pulling the cords and opening so all of the weight is not on the pull cords.
  • Returning Blinds to their original position – observe the exact position the blinds are in and return the blinds to the open or closed position as found.
  • Forcing windows open and breaking glass pane – Do not force a window open if it is stuck. Carefully try to open by applying pressure evenly to the top and bottom.
  • Missing Broken Seals – Look at the window from different angles while opening and closing and as you walk up to the window. Observe windows from exterior and interior looking for evidence of broken seals and foggy windows. If the windows are dirty, then clean a small area with your towel to distinguish between dirt and condensation between the panes.
  • Not Inspecting Every Accessible Window – The one window you do not inspect is the one window that will have an expensive defect.

8.07 Electrical Outlets

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

The inspector will use the GFCI receptacle tester on all accessible bathroom outlets and use the reset button on the tester to trip the GFCI. The inspector should have two GFCI outlet testers so they can double check outlets if a tester isn’t working properly or is broken.

Procedure

  • Plug GFCI tester into bathroom outlets and use the reset button to trip the outlet. If all the electrical outlets in the bathroom are not working, that should tell you there could be a GFCI outlet tripped somewhere or not resetting properly. So, you just want to make sure you look for double GFCI’s on a circuit.
  • Make sure to trip every GFCI outlet that is accessible and document in the report by taking a picture of the GFCI receptacle tester plugged into the outlet with the proper light on. All bathroom outlets should be GFCI protected.
  • If the bathroom outlet is not working the code for that is a finger on the test button of the outlet tester showing that it didn’t trip properly. If there is another defect, like reverse polarity, you would point to the lights of the GFCI tester indicating that it is a defect. If the lights aren’t working properly or the picture doesn’t show the lights on the tester, use both fingers to point to the lights that should be on, indicating the defect.

Common Defects

  • No GFCI protection
  • Damaged or missing faceplate – Damaged or missing weatherproof cover
  • GFCI has multiple on one circuit, not grounded, will not reset, will not trip, or is not present.
  • Open Neutral – Reverse Polarity – Not Working – Not Grounded – Obstructed – Wired to Light.

Common Mistakes

  • Not resetting the GFCI after it has been tripped:

-For an exterior outlet the reset button will either be on the outlet that we are tripping, or it could be anywhere on any of the other Exterior Outlets, so you will continue to look as you go around the Home. It could also be connected to the same circuit as the garage, so the next place you would check is in the garage to reset the exterior outlets.

-In some older homes, it could be on a bathroom GFCI outlet, so all the bathrooms, garage and exterior could all be on one GFCI circuit.

-On newer homes, sometimes it could be on a basement circuit, so the garage, the outside and the basement circuit could all be on one circuit, so you would look in the basement for GFCI circuit. The primary place to look in a basement for a GFCI is somewhere around the stairs. The stairs were built at the time the home was built, even if the basement was finished or unfinished, so usually under the stairs, they will put the GFCI circuit.

-The other place that should be checked would be the electrical panel because sometimes the reset will be located in the panel.

-For kitchen outlets the reset button will either be on the outlet that we are tripping, or it could be anywhere on any of the other kitchen outlets, so you will continue to look as you go around the kitchen. The new standard is for there to be two dedicated circuits for GFCI protection in the kitchen. These should not be connected to other GFCI circuits (i.e., bathroom, exterior, garage).

-Inspector should always re-check to make sure any GFCI’s are reset after they test them. Make sure the inspector finds the reset and they do not just leave the property. That’s a number one complaint that we get is that the GFCI is not working or outlet is not working when people come home, after we have been at the property.

8.08 Electrical Fixtures and Switches

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector will check every lighting fixture in the home as well as all the ceiling fans for proper operation.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect Electrical Fixtures and Switches.

Procedure

  • While inspecting the bathrooms, you will want to turn on and check every accessible light. There are no pictures required for this section.

Common Defects

  • Light fixture uses a light socket adapter and should have own outlet.
  • Light bulb is missing or not working.
  • Can’t find the switch to turn on the light fixture.
  • The chain at the light fixture is missing or stuck.
  • The cord is hanging by electrical wiring.
  • The light cover is cracked or damaged.
  • The light fixture is damaged, exposed, flickered, loose, missing, has broken glass, or uses an extension cord.
  • There is a missing cover, missing, glass, missing globe, or missing a part.
  • The light fixture is not working or old/rusty.
  • The closet light has an exposed light bulb or does not have proper clearance from storage area.

 

 

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking every light fixture in the in the bathroom.

8.09 Counters

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should check to make sure that the counters are secured and don’t have any damage.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect the bathroom counters.

Procedure

  • While the inspector is in the bathroom they should observe the counters to make sure that they are secured properly and there is no damage.
  • If you move anything on the counters to reach GFCI outlets, reach switches, or look at caulking on the back splash, make sure that you put everything back on the counter exactly the way that you found it.
  • The other defect that we want to check for is caulking between the flood piece and the countertops.

Common Defects

  • Does not butt evenly against wall (wall out of square).
  • Countertop has more than an 8” inch overhang.
  • Countertop had facing that was loose in some areas.
  • Countertop has a burn mark, is chipped, is not level, is painted over, is stained, is swollen (blistered), is damaged, or is loose (not fastened securely).
  • There is loose tile or grout at the countertop.
  • The countertop has moisture stains or is swollen from moisture. (Showed signs of moisture intrusion).
  • The countertop needs caulking with silicone along the backsplash.
  • The countertop was cut out too wide at sink (gap was visible).

 

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking for caulking along backsplash or around the sinks.
  • Not checking to make sure that the counter is secure and not loose.

8.10 Cabinets

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should check all cabinets, cupboards, and drawers in the bathroom area for proper operation and damage.

Tools Needed

The inspector might need to use a flashlight to see into certain cabinets. They might also use the moisture meter if there are signs of leaking or water damage in the cabinets.

Procedure

  • While in the bathroom the inspector should check the function of every cabinet and drawer to make sure that they operate properly by opening and closing them.
  • Make sure to look at the bottom of the cabinets while opening them to check for damage from leaks. This is especially important under the sink. Base cabinets can be damaged from previous water leaks, and can be sagged or warped.

Common Defects

  • The cabinets are damaged, don’t work smoothly, has loose hinges, is loose, is peeling in areas, is unfinished, uses drywall screws, has a loose handle, has moisture intrusion, or overlap each other when closing.
  • The cabinets were warped or installed incorrectly.
  • The cabinets rub against each other when opened, rubs/hits the dishwasher, rubs/hits the microwave, rubs/hits the oven door, or rubs/hits the refrigerator.
  • The cabinets were sagged/warped, show wear/damage, has missing tracks/rails, were missing, or were missing hardware.
  • There is mold present in the bathroom cabinets.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking every cabinet in the bathroom for proper operation.
  • Not checking the cabinets for drywall screws.

8.11 Plumbing, Drain, Waste and Vent Systems

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should check the plumbing drain and waste systems underneath the bathroom sink by filling up the sinks and draining them.

Tools Needed

The inspector might need drain stoppers to fill up the sinks with water and might need to use flashlight to check underneath the sink.

Procedure

  • When the inspector first starts to inspect the bathroom they should begin with turning on the water at the sinks to begin to fill them up.
  • Make sure as the sink is being filled up you should be listening and watching the sink fill. Don’t get distracted and don’t leave the bathroom while the sinks are filling up so it doesn’t overflow (only need it to be half full). You can go around and inspect other items in the bathroom while the sinks are being filled up.
  • Look for leaks around the faucet and mount. Also, make sure everything is mounted correctly, secured, and caulked.
  • Once the sinks are full pull the drain stoppers. Immediately look under the sink for any leaks and touch all water connections with hand checking for leaks. Should be touching the pipes, supply lines, drain lines, and hoses.
  • Document that there are no leaks with a picture of the pipes but also make sure the picture includes the base of the cabinet below to show there is no leaking or water damage.

Common Defects

  • Drains that clog, leak, fail, or that are damaged or kinked.
  • Drains that are clogged, slow to drain, or missing.
  • Drains that have an “S” trap.
  • Traps that are missing or sloped incorrectly.
  • Drains that didn’t operate properly or hold water in the sinks.
  • Drains that are double trapped or have an improper connection.
  • Drains that are rusted or deteriorated.

Common Mistakes

  • During a flood test the drains underneath the bathroom sink will often leak. This is not your fault that it leaked but it is your responsibility to make sure that everything is dried up and the belongings under the sink are dried off. You will want to pull everything out to dry the base cabinetry and try to dry off all the bottles, boxes, etc. If there is something you see that is completely damaged or is causing a problem, you need to call the office right away so they can call the listing agent, so the listing agent can call the homeowner. Be sure to leave all items under the sink the same way that you found them.
  • Not checking the drain lines with your hands during the flood test of the sinks.
  • Not taking a representative picture of the drain lines and the cabinet floor below to show that there is no leaking or signs of previous leaking.
  • Having a flex drain line that could clog, leak, or fail and not mentioning it in the report.

8.12 Plumbing Water Supply and Shut-Off Valves

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector should check all water shut-off valves and pipes for leaks, corrosion, or if they are seized. We do not operate the shut off valves as part of an inspection.

Tools Needed

The inspector might need to use the flashlight to see under the sink and properly evaluate the shut-off valves.

Procedure

  • While inspecting under the sink the inspector should check the shut off valves for any leaking, corrosion, or if they have seized. The shut off valves should be checked both visually and by using your hands to fill for any damage or leaking. There is one picture required for this section and it should show a clear image of the shut off valves under the sink(s). We do not turn or operate these valves, just visually inspect the valves.

Common Defects

  • The shut-off valves are difficult to access or are damaged.
  • The knob of the shut-off valves is damaged, missing, or rubs against a wall, cabinet, or other obstruction.
  • The shut-off valves are leaking, missing, seized, corroded, or not present.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking the plumbing shut off valves with your hands to see if there are any leaks.
  • Turning on a valve that was off. It is important not to operate valves because we don’t know why they were off in the first place.

8.13 Plumbing Fixtures

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect the Plumbing Fixtures.

8.14 Toilet

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: Same as NACHI Standards of Practice.

Tools Needed

The inspector will need to use the moisture meter to check for any leaking around the toilet.

Procedure

  • Toilet Procedure: While inspecting the bathroom, you will walk up to the toilet, stand over toilet and straddle toilet with your legs on the left and right side and then squeeze in on it and move your legs left and right to shake it to see if the toilet twists or moves. You want to make sure it is properly secured and connected to the floor. While you are doing that, you flush the toilet, letting it flush and make sure everything flushes and drains well. Be sure to close the lid after inspecting. Homeowners get upset if not done.
  • Water Fill Tube Procedure: While standing over toilet, lift the tank lid and look inside for the water fill tube. There should be a gap between the top of the water line of the tank and the water fill line and it should be secured in that position. Also, run your hands under the edge. The water fill supply tube should not be under the water line. That could allow siphoning of the toilet water back into the drinking water of the home. So, make sure that gap is there.
  • Toilet Seat Procedure: We do want to check the toilet seat also. If it’s cracked, or really 
loose, or one of the screws is out, or any major damage to the seat, we want to call out. 
Be sure to close the lid after inspecting. Homeowners get upset if not done.
  • Tank Procedure: Also look for any damage on the inside of the tank, or any cracks, any 
excessive rust or corrosion and that the component looks in good condition. Typical places for cracks are on the side walls and around the screws at the bottom. Look for any damage of the component or excessive roughness.
  • Tank Lid Procedure: This also allows you to check the tank lid for any cracks or damage or chips and then replace lid. While you are putting tank lid back on, you want to grab the tank and check to make sure it is secure to the toilet itself.
  • Tank and Toilet Connection Leaks: Next, step back away and look for any leaks between that tank and toilet connection. Then usually you get down on your knee or you can bend down and look for leaks around the tank, supply line connections under the tank, and follow that down the supply line and shut-off valves. Then you want to put your hand on the shut-off valve and water connections to make sure there are no leaks. We Do Not Turn the Supply Line Valves or Shut-Off Valves.
  • Now, you want to take the picture of the toilet showing all the components that we are checking, shut-off supply line, looking at the floor, leaks at the tank. You want to get down and frame a picture that shows the toilet to tank connection and also goes all the way to the Floor and shows the floor around the tank. You can only do this from one side of course, the side with the shut-off valve. You want to include the shut-off valve and supply line tube connection. Don’t forget to check the other side of the toilet.
  • We want to make sure that we are listening as we leave that bathroom to see if that toilet is still running or not. We want to make sure that it shuts off after flushing. Another time to remember to listen for toilet is when we go back around and get our temperature readings of heat source at the end of the inspection. So, it’s a good idea to be listening for the toilets as we check the heat registers of each one of the bathrooms.
  • Moisture Meter: We want to look for previous water damage around the toilet, especially around the water supply line and all the way around. Then we want to put our moisture meter down onto the floor and get a moisture reading to see if there are any leaks coming from underneath the toilet into the floor covering. We are going to do our moisture meter reading away from the tub to get away from the toilet, and then we will do it right next to the toilet. If there is carpet around the toilet, which is not a very good idea, we should peel back some of the carpet a little and look for any type of subfloor wood damage underneath the carpet. So, to use the moisture meter we want to get a basic line reading on tile way away from the tub. Tile is harder to read because the concrete in tile sends a signal back that looks like moisture.

Common Defects

  • The toilet bowl is cracked.
  • The flush on the toilet is weak, slow to fill, or you have to hold the lever down.
  • The toilet handle is missing or damaged.
  • The toilet leaks on the floor, into the bowl, at the shut off valve, at the tank mount, from the tank to the toilet, or at the water supply.
  • The toilet is loose on the floor (either slightly or very).
  • The toilet runs after flushing.
  • The toilet seat was damaged, loose, or missing.
  • The shut off valve is missing at the toilet.
  • The toilet makes a loud whining sound when the tank was refilling.
  • The supply valve at the toilet was off.
  • The tank lid is cracked or missing at the toilet.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking both sides of the toilet for any damage or cracking.
  • Not checking the floor around the toilet for moisture using the moisture meter.
  • Not straddling the toilet and checking to make sure that it is secure.
  • Not flushing the toilet and lifting the tank lid to check for proper operation.
  • Not using hands on the supply line to check for any leaking.

8.15 Water Supply Functional Flow

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector will test to find any decreased pressure in the shower flow when another fixture is operated at the same time.

Tools Needed

No tools required to inspect

Procedure

  • Start the shower running
  • Flush nearby toilet or run sink faucet at full pressure
  • Document the variation of water flow in the shower stream

Common Defects

  • Over deviation in the diameter of the plumbing
  • Possible galvanized pipes that have built-up corrosion/rust. Common in homes built pre-1960

Common Mistakes

  • Operating more than one additional fixture can lead to a false finding.

8.16 Fixture Valve Installation and Temperature

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: The inspector will check to make sure that the shower/bathtub has both the hot and cold water installed correctly and will use the infrared thermometer to show that the temperatures are in an acceptable range.

Tools Needed

The inspector will need to use the infrared thermometer (IR gun) to measure the temperature of the water in the shower (or the sink if no shower is present).

Procedure

  • Start the shower or bathtub running, all the way on hot, and we are going to let the tub fill up with water. This is very important when you only have one single valve in the shower, as those are very difficult to replace and 50% of the time, they switch the hot and cold which is a common defect.
  • Next we are going to do our temperature differential test and get a temperature reading and make sure we have hot and cold water; normal way is left is hot, right is cold, but are sometimes switched and defective. Water temperature should be taken at the shower. Aim the water spray to the bottom of the tub or shower and let it run. Take temperature reading where the hot water has hit the surface. We want the temperature to be over 100 degrees when testing the hot water. This first picture must show the temperature reading and the position of the shower lever. This is to prove the shower valves were operating properly. The second picture will show the cold water is working and in this picture, we want to show the shower head as well as the temperature on the infrared thermometer under 80 degrees.
  • At this point the tub should have filled up a little bit and now we want to drain it. This is a good way to put the pressure on the pipes below and make sure there are no leaks at the bathtub (just like we do for sinks).
  • Another defect we have is that the valve is defective and does not produce hot water at all, or if it is only around 80 degrees to 90 degrees at the shower, we make sure we test it with the infrared, not just on the spray but as it comes out of the faucet.
  • Then check the temperature that is coming out of the sink. If it is coming out much hotter at the sink than it is at the shower, then that is a defect as well. Now even though you are checking this at the sink, we are not documenting it. If something is wrong with the sink, it is as easy as switching the lines in the back.
  • If it is defective in the shower, it’s cutting out drywall and plumbing, so that’s why we document the shower but don’t necessarily document the sink, but we do always check for it.

Common Defects

  • Shower/bathtub fixtures were installed improperly with reversed configuration.
  • The hot water does not get above 100 degrees. The cold water does not get under 80 degrees.
  • Sinks having reversed configuration (document under plumbing fixtures).

Common Mistakes

  • Not waiting for the water to reach over 100 degrees when testing the hot water. This is important because people don’t want to be taking cold showers.
  • Not taking clear pictures with infrared thermometer showing the hot/cold temperatures.
  • Not letting the tub fill up with water to drain and test for leaks.
  • If you say in the water heater section that the gas valve was turned off and the pilot light was not lit, you need to make sure you don’t contradict that statement in this section and say the water temperatures are good.

8.17 Installed Heat Source

Axium SOP Differences

Axium Requires: While the heat is turned on at the property the inspector will check the heat source in the bathrooms if there is one present.

Tools Needed

The infrared thermometer will be used to test that heat is coming out from the supply register.

Procedure

  • Once the heat is turned on in the property (exact procedure will be under the heating system section) the inspector will check all accessible heat sources.
  • If there is a heat source in the bathroom you will use your infrared thermometer to check if heat is coming through the supply register. We want the picture to show us pointing the infrared thermometer at the supply register showing a temperature over 100 degrees.
  • Bathrooms do not require a heat source. If there is no heat source present you will take a picture with the infrared thermometer turned sideways.

Common Defects

  • Supply register or return air cover is damaged, broken, loose, missing, noisy, old, or weak.
  • There is no heat coming to the supply register.
  • Baseboard heater is damaged, broken, loose, missing, noisy, old, weak, or has no heat coming from it.
  • Supply register is not intended for the floor.
  • The louver on the supply register is stuck or damaged.
  • There is no cover for the supply register, baseboard heater, or return air vent.

Common Mistakes

  • Not checking all the supply registers in the bathrooms when the heat is on at the property.
  • Not explaining to the client that bathrooms don’t require a heat source, so it is okay if no heat source is present.
  • Only checking the registers for heat and not checking for any damage.