When I see problems like this I can only think that a pre-drywall or final inspection might have helped!
During inspections sometimes things don't sound right. Once is information, two is very interesting and three times is a pattern.
On this inspection the first bathroom vent sounded funny.
The second bathroom vent sounded the same, and made me mention it.
The third also sounded the same as the first two, and the toilet paper test (turning on the fan to see if there is enough air drawn out to stick the toilet paper to the vent cover) failed.
Returning to the other two bathrooms the toilet paper test failed there too!
SOUNDS ARE VERY IMPORTANT ON A HOME INSPECTION. I PAY PARTICULAR ATTENTION TO SOUNDS.
At this point I know the attic inspection will be interesting!
This house is two years old. The sellers built it expecting to occupy it for along time. It has all their favorite features. But, alas, they are being transferred elsewhere. You don't expect to find too many things as any problems that existed initially have usually been taken care of.
Looking into the attic space all three bathroom vents discharged right at the ridge vent.
And all three looked like this!
All three vents were blocked by tar paper and very dusty!
And none was blowing much air.
Obviously these folks did not have a pre-drywall inspection. Or an inspection for their final walk through. This would have been easy to see. I always look for light coming through the ridge vent on a pre-drywall inspection. No light, no vent! Simple.
My recommendation: venting is very important. It is easiest to investigate when the house is skeletal, as would be done in a pre-drywall inspection, but then certainly during the final walk through. Even more though, this ridge vent was covered throughout its run! That means that the roofer installed the vent cap knowing it was incorrect. I'm seeing egregious errors like this more and more and wonder, just wonder, if it is not intentional. This improper installation is too hard to miss when putting in a 40' vent cap.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560