What I'm Seeing Now

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Two Wires Diverged On A Wood

Two wires diverged on a wood,
And I, I saw the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

On a pre-drywall inspection I saw a wayward traveler - a wire improperly placed on top of a piece of wood and vulnerable to damage.

Yes, a traveler vulnerable to mischief caused along its path by sharp instruments, blows with blunt objects - well, shocking things can result, all caused by highway thugs and miscreants.

This wire needs protection!

To sum it up, this is poorly installed.  It's outside an upstairs bathroom and in a hallway.  This spot is certainly attractive to picture hanging, and a nail could easily hit it.

Without even quoting the code, which demands various sorts of proper protection for this wire, common sense alone dictates that!

One way is with a simple cover plate.  The wire would be buried in a canal or other way to partially hide it and then protected with the plate.  This prevents a nail from hitting the wire.

But there are other ways too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NOTICE the common sense in each of these installations.

The wires have been stapled in the MIDDLE of a vertical stud, or pass THROUGH a hole drilled. 

Protected.

Or they are stapled BEHIND the stud so that they are a comfortable distance from the drywall.

Protected.

Or they pass THROUGH the convenient holes provided by the manufacturer, or, again, stapled high enough to be AWAY from the drywall.

Protected.

THIS IS BASIC COMMON SENSE.  WHILE ALL OF THIS ALSO "MEETS CODE," IT DOES NOT REQUIRE MUCH EFFORT.  ALL IS PROTECTED.

Going back to the top, see how the cable is left unprotected?  You can see that the horizontal 2x4 was installed later, and here to hold the shower head.  And the plumber did not care about the electrical wire, obviously, as he was interested in the shower head installation.

What to do?  Maybe a canal in the stud which buries the cable and then protective cover plates? 

That isn't my problem - I merely observed the installation and reported it.

My recommendation:  sometimes things found on a pre-drywall inspection seem like little things.  This one certainly does.  But imagine the shock, pun intended, if on some future day someone goes to hang great grandma's photo in that hallway, and the the nail for the hanger hits that cable!  Murphy's Law says it will happen!  In a couple of days this cable would have been hidden forever by drywall.  It's best to find it now!

 

 

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 29 commentsJay Markanich • October 08 2014 02:07AM

Comments

This, safety concerns for electrical installations, is the main reason a home inspection is recommend at the pre-drywall stage of construction.

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

Jay, big fan of a pre-drywall inspection to find mistakes or oversights in the wiring design! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) almost 5 years ago

Little things like this one are easy to miss Lenn.  Even on a pre-drywall inspection!

Wayne - I am too!  And not just because I am a home inspector.

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

This one just looks wrong from the get-go.  Getting a pre-drywall inspection is a great idea.

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) almost 5 years ago

As I've told you before I don't fool around with anything electrical.  Just don't understand why someone would place another in jeopardy when they knew better

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

If and when things look wrong, they usually are Kat.

And in this case the plumber is not thinking electrical James.  Erringly, with understanding or not, this puts another in jeopardy, as you say.

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

I'm now getting a flashback...had to copy that poem a hundred times in grade school!

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost...never will forget it.

 

Posted by Pete Xavier, Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide (Investments to Luxury) almost 5 years ago

Jay, ouch! Good thing they hired you for a pre-drywall inspection. Not common practice here but it should be. 

Shocking I say. 

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) almost 5 years ago

 Good morning Jay. Common sense? Is that the change pot that sits next to the cash register in the local Jiffy market? Take a penny add a penny?

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) almost 5 years ago

Great catch.  Thank goodnesss you knew what you were doing and saw this.

Posted by Chris Griffith, Bonita Springs Listing Agent (Downing-Frye Realty, Bonita Springs, FL) almost 5 years ago

Pete - someone wrote a poem like that ... ? *

Andrea - and the county signed off on the house!

Michael - I usually give a penny, seldom taking one, but I'm glad the bowl is there!  I don't know about you, but my market isn't jiffy.

Thanks Chris.  This kind of thing is very easy to miss.

* Actually Pete, my next-door neighbor growing up was one Mr. Frost.  I think his first name was Bobbie, right?

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

Yes, this does seem like an accident waiting to happen.  And, Frost would be proud.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 5 years ago

Good morning Jay Markanich what happened to the town inspection for the "roughs"....the electrical inspector missed all of those metal plates that were needed???? yikes

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) almost 5 years ago

Thanks Debbie.  Mr. Frost would probably feel slighted by my change of the poem!

There were metal plates elsewhere in the house Barbara, and I should have taken a photo for this post, but I didn't know I was going to write it!  But the county missed this one for sure!

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

Jay, that one is waiting for a drywaller's screw. I hope they have AFCI's in place. Looks like they will need them ; )

Posted by Donald Hester, NCW Home Inspections, LLC (NCW Home Inspections, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Good morning Jay,

It would be my luck to be the one trying to get curly hair hanging something in that area!

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) almost 5 years ago

Anything can happen with this little puppy Don.  Murphy is in the house.

I am with you Raymond.  If it happens, it happens to me typically!

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

And Don, it would be fair of me to question your thinking about using drywall screws on drywall.  We both know that hanging drywall isn't what drywall screws are for.

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

Jay, my favorite by Robert Frost! As for the pre-drywall inspection, it's so necessary in these days of production homes.

Posted by Tom White, Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN (Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.FranklinHomesRealty.com) almost 5 years ago

It really is Tom.  Like the proverbial box of chocolates, you really don't know what you're getting until you bite.

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

Aloha Jay,

I always learn something relevant and interesting with your posts. Pre-drywall inspection predicated with Robert Frost's poetry was both calming and potentially shocking.

peace,

Posted by Kimo Stowell, REALTOR Associate® RS-76763 - Honolulu Hawai'i (HI Pro Realty LLC RB-21531 ) almost 5 years ago

Jay, you need your own reality show. Enough said!

Posted by Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate, "Your Local Expert!" 503-755-2905 (John L Scott Market Center) almost 5 years ago

Aloha Kimo.  Thanks.  I am glad to contribute to your database!  There was a poet named Frost?

Thanks Gayle, but they would find me to jocular.  Very nice new photo!

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

Have to wonder where the inspector was for the municipality on this one..hmm ?

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

This location is upstairs S&D.  They can't be expected to go up there...

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

Potentially a problem, but thankfully an easy fix.

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Yeah, I vote they rip out that bathroom and start again.  Jim, your thoughts?

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

Sounds about right to me. Sooo, that was your recommendation, right? 

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) almost 5 years ago

Precisely, Jim.  Square one.

Well, the bathroom was kind of rectangular, but you get the idea.

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

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