What I'm Seeing Now


Clogged Drain?

On a one-year inspection, of which I do many, I asked the clients as I always do to tell me what things they have noticed about the house that I might not be able to know otherwise during the inspection.

Some things you only know about because you live there.

Is this a clogged drain?

All year long the homeowners have told the builder that this front downspout, buried and invisible, spurts water out the top of the connection every time it rains.

Would I know that on a home inspection?  Not likely, unless it was raining!

Even with that information, the builder still put the final asphalt coat on the driveway.  Often driveways, and streets, are left for some time with the rough coat, waiting for construction, and heavy trucks, to stop running over the roads.

That time was apparently here for this house.  The builder dutifully put on the final, smoother asphalt coat.


I suppose the termination of this downspout was to connect underground to the street storm sewer.  That's where the water would end up anyway.

But the configuration of this house, driveway, yard and sidewalk, made it difficult to drain this rain water in such a way that it would be carried away from all of that, or re-infest the foundation.

So they buried the drain line.  They also left the very attractive, plastic bar code stickers on the plastic connectors.  Being plastic the stickers are hard to remove.  Not getting sunlight these are likely to stick around for a while!

So, what can be done?  Certainly a camera needs to be inserted at this end to see what is going on, whether the line is clogged or the termination is covered by the round, concrete sewer tubing!  And what if that's the case?  What do you think the builder will do?

In the meantime, this homeowner has Old Faithful, spurting every time it rains.  How wonderful...

My recommendation:  one-year warranty inspections are very important.  And they can find things that might be difficult to fix.  But it is important to work with the builder to get these things fixed, even at the "risk" of being a pest!




Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 24 commentsJay Markanich • August 30 2011 08:54AM
Clogged Drain?
On a one-year inspection, of which I do many, I asked the clients as I always do to tell me what things they have noticed about the house that I might not be able to know otherwise during the inspection. Some things you only know about because… more
Jay's Tuesday Free Enterprise Quote
"A Russian man goes to the official agency, puts down his money and is told that he can obtain delivery of his automobile in exactly 10 years. “Morning or afternoon, ” the purchaser asks. “Ten years from now, what difference does it make? ”… more
"We Include Demustification. Not Everybody Does That. "
A Realtor referred his neighbor to me. She was afraid she had a lot of water in her house, and walls, and had called three companies to dry her house out. One thing she had been told was, "We include demustification. Not everybody does that… more
Beauty Is Only Skin Deep
Sorry for the cliched title. But if the shoe fits, wear it. There I go again. Sorry. But really, beauty is only skin deep. A couple of years ago the deck was sagging. It was getting old. So, wisely, the female homeowner hired a… more
Notching Or Cutting Holes In Engineered Floor Joists
A popular construction material these days are floor I-beams, sometimes called "Engineered Floor Joists. " You have seen them. They are convenient and easy to use. But there are strict guidelines for notching or cutting holes in… more
A Chimney Is Not A Structural Member To Attach To
Often times decks are weakened by the way they are attached to a house. And a chimney should not be used to support the deck's structure. A chimney is not a structural member to attach to. This house has two wood-burning fireplaces. … more
I Got My First Earthquake Inspection!
Interestingly, within an hour of the earthquake my phone began ringing! People with questions about what to do and what to look for around their houses. I had to admit to them that I have never done this before, but I visualized my house and… more
I'm Being Reported
I have to say, when I first heard that I was being reported, it worried me because I did not know what I had done. And I really didn't know what it meant. The phone call started by telling me that I'm being reported. When I found out why, I… more
Foam Yer Flash!
Do you ever go outside to look at your roof and just know the flashing isn't working? Or go into the attic to lay more and more plywood over your insulation so you can further crush it with boxes of books only to see how much water is getting… more
Jay's School of Inspectology - We Investigate Completely!
This is a 42 year old house with a clue outside that would lead a home inspector to think things before he goes inside! And, as with so many things, in Jay's School of Inspectology - we investigate completely! What's the teensy clue outside?… more