What I'm Seeing Now

head_left_image

When Mirror Silvering Fails

When mirror silvering fails.

Mirrors are simple sheets of glass that have been coated on the backside with aluminum oxide.

This is a process that has been around for hundreds of years.  In the past everything from tin, and mercury, and silver were used to coat the backside of glass.  That silver was used is likely the reason for the name "silvering."  Today's process uses aluminum.

But the glass must be very clean prior to the silvering process.

If it isn't clean the aluminum oxide will not stick.

This house is 10 months old, and we were doing a one-year warranty inspection.

Many builders have the one-year warranty expire in 11 months (go figure), so this client, for whom I did a pre-drywall and final walk-through inspection, had me back to do the warranty inspection.

This mirror is in the hall bathroom that the children use.

The silvering was failing in many places along the lower edge.

The stains all looked fairly uniform, like you see in the photo.  What does that mean?

I don't know - tape residue on the glass had not been completely removed, or perhaps it had the silvering damaged in some way prior to installation.

But mirrors should last a long time, and certainly longer than 10 months!

My recommendation:  there is nothing typically found during any home inspection.  And certainly the same defects don't show up on a one-year warranty inspection from house to house.  Every house is different!  So they all need a thorough going through.  When things like this are found they are noted.  The mirror's defect here is not the builder's fault, obviously, but now it becomes the builder's problem.  Hopefully it can be returned to the supplier for a manufacturer refund.  This is an unusual defect to find on a home inspection, from my experience.  But a defect nonetheless!

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

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

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 11 commentsJay Markanich • October 27 2017 10:12AM
When Mirror Silvering Fails
share
When mirror silvering fails. Mirrors are simple sheets of glass that have been coated on the backside with aluminum oxide. This is a process that has been around for hundreds of years. In the past everything from tin, and mercury, and silver were… more
Is A Home Inspector Required To Inspect (Test) A Washing Machine?
share
Is a home inspector required to inspect (test) a washing machine? No, there is no "requirement, " but a home inspector can test anything he wants to or that the client wants tested. Does that surprise you? Isn't the home inspector hired to… more
"But It Was Just A Little Leak. We Turned Off The Dishwasher!…
share
"But it was just a little leak. We turned off the dishwasher! " Water from leaks has to go somewhere. Even when the leak appears to be contained. This client built a new home and I performed a home inspection. All of the appliances were… more
When Unprofessional "Roofers" Have Never Heard Of OSHA
share
When unprofessional "roofers" have never heard of OSHA. Many roofs in our neighborhood got shredded by a tornado in April. Mine included. Of course I hired a professional I have known for over 20 years - licensed to the hilt, insured,… more