On pre-drywall inspections I can mostly see what cannot be seen after drywall installation, and, as to what I can see, sometimes you're baffled and sometimes you're not.
Take this master bedroom for instance.
Those pieces of cardboard in these photos make up what are called baffles.
They are properly placed. Notice how the cut outs on the sides keep the cardboard 2" or so from the sheathing.
That is to allow for roof ventilation.
Air comes in under the gutters through soffit vent openings, moves along the sheathing, and due to convection passes up and out through the ridge vent at the top of the roof. It's excellent ventilation and pure physics. It never fails.
Those baffles allow insulation to be blown to the very edge of the roof, WITHOUT covering the soffit vents.
That way air can flow.
I saw these baffles all over the upper level and well done.
Until I got to the other end of the master bedroom.
There were no baffles.
This side of the roof has a tray ceiling detail, which makes the ceiling higher and allows room for a ceiling fan. You can see the flush junction box for the ceiling fan in the upper right corner.
However, this area needs insulation all the way to the edge of the roof too.
Without baffles the soffit vent openings will likely be covered with insulation, and so ventilation will be compromised. Without the necessary air flow that section of the roof will be subject to extreme heat in summer and ice dams and icicles in winter.
The cardboard baffles would have to be added before the drywall goes up.
That's why we do these inspections!
My recommendation: on a pre-drywall inspection we look at a myriad of things. There is no typical defect found. And that's the idea, to get enough visual to get a pretty good idea of what is going on with the house prior to the drywall installation. Drywall covers up a multitude of sins! It's best to catch as much information as we can before the drywall installation.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560