What I'm Seeing Now

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It's Supposed To Rain Today, Hard. I Will Probably Get Some Calls.

It's supposed to rain today, hard.  I will proabably get some calls.

Why do I say that?  Because (my fourth-grade teacher Mrs. Summers would be upset that I used "because" as the first word in a sentence), um, because I am not only a home inspector, I have a thermal camera!

Not many in my area do.  In fact, I don't know anybody else.

Why do people call?

This is the result following a recent rain storm.

The left thermal image is a master bedroom window.

The lavender and purple areas represent cooler temperatures, and in this case moisture.

You can even see the footprint on the floor.

This moisture is not visible to the eye!

It was discovered when somebody walked over near to the window and felt the wet carpet!

The right image is the ceiling in the kitchen eating area just under this bedroom!

 

Again, this moisture is not visible to the eye.

It was discovered by the thermal camera.  Such use is a Best Practice!

In fact, there was moisture in many places these people did not know about. 

Why?  Because (bummer, there's that because again) many windows simply were not installed right.

Until my visit these folks did not know that.

How old is the house? 

Just over a year, interestingly just out of "warranty."

But, do you think that warranty period will stop these people from contacting the builder, and therefore the window installer?

Not a chance.  This is a big deal!  The builder shoulda, woulda, coulda recognize that immediately.  And do what he can to make this right.

We'll see!

My recommendation:  people usually don't call to ask me to come over to just check things out when they don't know there is a problem anywhere.  The mental mindset is not there yet as regards thermal cameras.  But maybe one day!  I really recommend that people have me come by just before their one-year warranty period is up so I can check out not only the windows, but the insulation as well.  Insulation slips downward over time if not stapled and that shows up very, very clearly with a thermal camera.  BUT IT IS NOT VISIBLE TO THE EYE!

 

 

 

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 16 commentsJay Markanich • October 07 2013 03:26AM

Comments

Hi Jay,

Good example why thermal camera's are needed. Plus the warranty expired huh.  What a surprise.

Have a great day in Bristow.

Best, Clint McKie

Posted by Clint Mckie, Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586 (Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections) about 5 years ago

Might Mo is a great detective.  I hope the contractor will help them.

Posted by Women of Westchester Working Together, Women helping Women get ahead (Women of Westchester Working Together) about 5 years ago

It's interesting that they never noticed any moisture prior to now Clint!  But I bet they will get satisfaction.

WOW Cous - there could be any number of reasons for the windows to leak, but all certainly due to installation.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

  If I were a builder....I would elect to have a thermal camera as a part of my  equipment....hmmm ?

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) about 5 years ago

Good morning, Jay.... that thermal camera should be a requirement for equipment used by all home inspectors... buyers are getting short changed without it....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, "Franklin MA Homes" (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) about 5 years ago

I have contacted many builders about hiring me to do inspections on their houses prior to occupancy S&D. No takers.

Barbara - they are not cheap and the training is just as expensive!  When I first bought my camera, now about 10 years ago, my wife was upset at the $15K price and asked if I was going to make my money back using it.  My answer was, "I don't know.  I hope so."  I did, and quickly, but that was an honest answer!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

I will be interested in knowing the outcome of this one Jay keep us informed/  My question is why did the owners wait until after the warranty expired to get it done?

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) about 5 years ago

This was a couple of months ago James.  They did not call me to tell me the outcome, which usually means there was no fight!  They did not notice it likely because that carpet had not gotten wet before.  Any house can leak depending on the direction and force of rain.  That particular rain invaded that window!

Thermal images are absolutely definitive.  It is hard to for a builder to argue with them.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

Hi Jay, why don't you come on over to the house for a little visit this afternoon. And hey, if you think about it, grab that fancy shmancy little camera of yours that takes the yellow and purple pictures. Just for kicks! A little suspicious to me...

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) about 5 years ago

That one year warranty is just the minimum required by Virginia.  Most new homes today are sold with an extended warranty for structural defects.  They are usually 10 or 20 years depending on the builder.

So, it's finally going to rain.  Maybe it will be enough to trace the water in my sunroom. 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) about 5 years ago

Best to do that a day or so after a hefty rain Fred!  But lemmino!

Lenn - again, let me know!  This is obviously a problem that pre-existed the warranty period so the builder will likely call the sub and have it handled.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

Jay,

One year...wow. Before I had them replaced, the 50 year old windows in my house never leaked. I'm pretty sure my new windows are going to outlast me. 

Rich

Posted by Richard Iarossi, Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) about 5 years ago

What a great tool!  I'm going to have to ask around to see if any inspectors use them here.  It doesn't often rain in Tucson, but when it does....

Posted by Cara Marcelle Mancuso, Call a Marana neighbor, I'm THERE! LONG REALTY (Long Realty - Dove Mountain, Marana AZ) about 5 years ago

Those are windows Rich!  But they were installed correctly.  Today, often, a little caulk and boom, installed.

Cara - it is!  I have gotten two calls already today since writing this post.  It rains in Tucson?    ;>)

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

Jay - The thermal cameras is a great investment. People really get a kick out of it when they see what is can do.

Posted by Eric Middleton, Professional Property Inspector (Closer Look Property Inspections Inc.) about 5 years ago

I always take an image of the clients too Eric, and send it to them.  They get a kick out of that also.  I did get two calls that day about window leaks, with one scheduled first thing this morning.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 5 years ago

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