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NE W ! Fast Verifi cation er Proce ss P34

Inspection News & Views from the American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc.


Being Frank: Odds and Ends


ASHI Deck Standard FAQs


Discovering Pests and Housing Pets


Offering Ancillary Services


Warming Up to Heat Pumps


Smart Inspector Science: Solving a Basement Leak Puzzle Involving Brick Veneer

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ASHI Reporter • May 2017

9/23/16 2:23 PM



May 2017




ASHI Deck Standard FAQs Bruce Barker, ACI Discovering Pests and Housing Pets


Offering Ancillary Services

Please Support our Advertisers:

Deck Safety Month® Carol Dikelsky, ASHI Reporter Editor



Jeffery C. May, May indoor Investications LLC Alan Carson, Carson Dunlop

Warming Up to Heat Pumps Alan Carson, Carson Dunlop

40 Smart Inspector Science: Solving a Basement Leak Puzzle Involving Brick Veneer

Vol. 34, #5

Tom Fezia, Mr. Fix-It, Inc.,


6 Being Frank Frank Lesh, ASHI Executive Director 7 Around the CoRner Hollis Brown, Speaker of the CoR 28 ASHI Community

Chapter News, Chapter Listing, New Inspector Status, Chapter Education

Leviton Healthy Home Checkup America’s Call Center Wagner Meters InspectIT Target Professional Programs BPG Inspections RTCA How to Operate Your Home Joe Ferry ASHI Online Learning Center US Inspect NHIE Study Guide ASHI Free Logos and P.O.D. InspectorPro The ASHI School 3D Inspection System American Home Warranty Allen Insurance Sun Nuclear HomeGauge

2 5 9 9 11 15 19 19 21 23 27 27 844-268-2677 27 33 37 39 41 43 45 47 48


34 Your ASHI

Membership, Endorsed Member Programs & Anniversaries

Hands-on Home Inspection Training

39 The ASHI School

42 Postcards From the Field

It’s Wacky Out There

Education and Training Your Region

46 Ohio ASHI: On the Road 2017

6 18


3May 2017



ASHI National Officers and Board of Directors Educated. Tested. Verified. Certified.

A SH I M ISSIO N S TATEM ENT To set and promote standards for property inspections and to provide the educational programs needed to achieve excellence in the profession and to meet the needs of our members.

Officers Howard Pegelow, President Gilbert, AZ, 414-379-4186

Donald Lovering, Sr., Treasurer Auburndale, MA, 617-928-1942

Tim Buell, President-Elect Marysville, OH, 614-746-7485

Mike Wagner, Secretary Westfield, IN, 317-867-7688

Scott Patterson, Vice President Spring Hill, TN, 615-302-1113

Randy Sipe, Immediate Past-President Spring Hill, KS, 913-856-4515


ASHI STAFF Main Phone: 847-759-2820, 8:30 am - 5:00 pm Mon. - Fri., CST EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Frank Lesh, Executive Director, 847-954-3182, Jen Gallegos, Executive Assistant and Project Coordinator 847-954-3177, EDUCATION, CE APPROVAL, ASHI ONLINE LEARNING CENTER, INSPECTIONWORLD

Michele George, Director of Education & Events, 847-954-3188 MEMBERSHIP, CHAPTER RELATIONS, BOOTH RENTAL, PRODUCT ORDERS

Russell Daniels, Assistant Executive Director, Director Membership & Chapter Relations, 847-954-3185, Janet George, Membership Services Supervisor, 847-954-3180 Michael Krauszowski, Membership Relations Administrator

Bruce Barker 2015-2017 Cary, NC, 919-322-4491

Bruce LaBell 2015-2017 Scottsdale, AZ, 602-765-2140

Michael Conley 2017-2019 Anna Maria, FL, 941-778-2385

Reuben Saltzman 2017-2019 Maple Grove, MN, 952-915-6466

James J. Funkhouser 2017-2019 Manassas Park, VA, 703-791-2360

Bob Sisson 2017-2019 Boyds MD, 301-208-8289

Bryck Guibor 2017-2019 Tucson, AZ, 520-795-5300

Tony Smith 2015-2017 Cedar Rapids, IA, 319-533-4565

Ken Harrington 2015-2017 Delaware, OH, 614-507-1061

Blaine Swan 2016-2018 Columbus, Oh, 614-506-0647

Mike Rostescu, Director IT & Internet Communications 847-954-3189,

Richard Hart 2016-2018 Conyers, GA, 770-827-2200

John Wessling 2016-2018 St. Louis, MO, 314-520-1103


David Haught 2016-2018 Huntington, WV, 304-417-1247

Speaker, Council of Representatives Hollis Brown, 2017-2018 Manassas, VA, 703-754-8872

847-954-3175, Mark Lester, Membership Services Coordinator, 847-954-3176 ACCOUNTING

Toni Fanizza, Accounting, Purchasing and Human Resources Manager, 847-954-3190, Beverly Canham, Financial Assistant, 847-954-3184 WEBSITE, INFORMATION SYSTEMS, DATABASE

Dave Kogan, Director of Marketing & Business Development Advertising, Marketing, IW Expo Hall, Public Relations 847-954-3187, Arlene Zapata, Graphic Department Director & “ASHI Reporter” Managing Editor, 847-954-3186, Kate Laurent, Graphic Designer & Digital Strategist 847-954-3179,

Publisher: Frank Lesh Editor: Carol Dikelsky Art Director: Arlene Zapata, Designer: Kate Laurent American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc. 932 Lee Street, Suite 101 Des Plaines, IL 60016

847-954-3186 Reporter calls only 847-299-2505 (fax) Reporter only Email: Advertising: Dave Kogan Phone: 847-954-3187, Email:

ASHI REPORTER – ISSN 1076-1942 – the official publication of the American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc. (ASHI), 932 Lee St., Suite 101, Des Plaines IL 60016, is published monthly. Annual subscriptions: $44.95 to non-members. Periodical postage paid at Des Plaines, IL 60016 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ASHI Reporter, 932 Lee Street, Suite 101, Des Plaines, IL 60016-6546. Copyright© 2017, ASHI. None of the content of this publication may be reproduced, in any manner, without the prior written consent of the publisher. Inclusion of or specific mention of any proprietary product within does not imply endorsement of, nor does exclusion of any proprietary product imply non-endorsement, by the American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc. Opinions or statements of authors and advertisers are solely their own, and do not necessarily represent the opinions or positions of ASHI, its agents or editors. See above for information pertaining to submission of articles, advertising and related materials.


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Chris Karczewski, Social Media & Membership Relations Administrator, 847-954-3183, THE ASHI SCHOOL

Bonnie Bruno, Manager, 888-884-0440 or 847-954-3178 Steve Reilly, Senior Sales Representative, 888-884-0440 or 847-954-3181, Michelle Santiago, Administrative Assistant & Sales Representative 847-954-3198,


5May 2017



Odds and Ends From ASHI’s Executive Director

Heads up! Several important issues are coming up soon for your consideration. Prepare to Submit Your Votes Proposal for the Auxiliary Residential Deck Inspections Standard. On Page 13 of this issue of the Reporter, you’ll find a great article from Bruce Barker, “Guru of the Standard.” He has compiled answers to FAQs so that all inspectors can be informed when casting their vote about ASHI’s proposed new deck standard. Please read this information to familiarize yourself with the proposal so that you will be prepared to vote when you receive your ballot via email. Changes to the ASHI Bylaws. Several of these proposed changes to ASHI’s bylaws are simple “housekeeping” items, but some are more involved. When you receive your ballot, please take the time to read through the proposed changes and cast your vote. If we don’t receive enough completed ballots from members, we will have to keep bugging you to do your civic—I mean, ASHI— duty. Remember, ASHI is your Society, and you have the opportunity to participate in its governance. So, when your ballot arrives via email, please submit your vote. we started a contest that gives you a chance to win a special giveaway every month; the “trinket” you’ll receive will be determined by our very own Marketing Director, Dave Kogan. For every month you enter, you also will get a chance to earn the Grand Prize—a Full Conference Attendance Package for InspectionWorld® 2018 in Orlando, FL! It’s easy to participate. Just click on a link to the ASHI website that you’ll receive in an email from ASHI HQ. The link will connect you with information about ASHI that we’d like you to know. Be sure to click the link every month! For example, last month, the link we sent took you to information about Insight, a new app for home inspectors by Carson Dunlop. If you haven’t seen the details, be sure to check them out at This app is a fantastic tool that all inspectors can use. Rob Kinsey won the first monthly drawing and he received a fantastic ASHI license plate bracket. (We spare no expense here at ASHI HQ!) Even better, Rob is also entered in the drawing to


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

win the Grand Prize later this year. Don’t miss out on this monthly opportunity to learn something new, potentially win an ASHIthemed item and have a crack at getting a complimentary attendance package to IW 2018. ASHI Goes Paperless at IW Building on the success of this year’s launch of the IW app in Las Vegas, we’ve decided to officially move into the 21st century by going “paperless” at IW. For those of you who’ve been around a while, you may remember that, years ago, ASHI handed out giant conference proceeding books that weighed about 25 pounds. Attendees even got to carry those encyclopedias from class to class! Although that may have helped us build up stamina and bone density, it also caused shoulder, neck, back and knee deterioration. The bonus benefit was trying to stuff all those books into our suitcases for the trip home. And once we placed them in our offices, they sat on a bookshelf until the shelf collapsed. A few years back, we switched to providing CDs in addition to the books. Note to Millennials: Compact discs held 700 MB of data. Maybe you can imagine how much information that included, but let’s just say that, compared with the storage systems today, it wasn’t much. Over the years, we’ve also provided thumb drives, which do hold quite a bit of data, but because the drives are so small, most of us ended up losing them before we even had to deal with the issue of having a laptop or desktop computer to access the data.

So, now we’ve decided to put everything on the ASHI IW app so that everything needed for the conference can be compiled into one place and accessed by a mobile device. If you want to know when, where and what courses are available, go to the app. To review handouts, notes from a session, lists of attendees, a map of the conference center, daily messages or any other event information, you’ll just use the app. With so much information at our fingertips, we might get carpal thumb syndrome, but our shoulders will be just fine.

Frank Lesh, Executive Director American Society of Home Inspectors Direct: 847-954-3182 •

Note to Self: “You’re the Speaker, not the Decider”

Around the CoRner

From the Speaker of the CoR

By Hollis Brown, Speaker of the Council of Representatives


he position of Speaker of the Council of Representatives (CoR) overwhelmed me at first. I had all these ideas about what ASHI was, what it stood for, its rich heritage and all that it could be. I struggled the most with that “all-that-it-could-be” thing. So, I decided that I just needed to figure out exactly what that future looked like, share my visionary agenda, convince everyone that I knew best and implement my grand scheme. I began to imagine the complications that were certain to develop as I implemented my plan. I was going to have to encourage my supporters, convince the undecided and overcome the opposition. Then I woke up, wiped the sweat from my brow, calmed my pounding heart, and took another look at the policies and procedures of the CoR. Oh, yeah, there it was, in black and white, under the heading “Desired Representative Behavior”:

Each Council member is encouraged to speak the desires of his or her respective membership and not promote his or her own agenda. What a relief! I don’t have to solve the problems of ASHI writ large. My role is to facilitate discussion and communication. Ever since the CoR meeting in January in Las Vegas, the CoR Group Leaders have had some robust discussions. So far, though, most of this talk has been predicated on the thoughts and ideas generated by a handful of representatives. Although there are nearly 8,000 voices in all of ASHI, there may be only 10 people in the room at a any given CoR meeting. Where is everyone else? ASHI’s CoR is designed as a representative system. Chapters select Chapter Rep-

resentatives to participate, and regional groups elect Group Leaders to represent sets of multiple chapters. If the Group Leaders are going to represent the chapters well, they must be in constant communication with their Chapter Representatives. The CoR Group Leaders need to know what the Chapter Representatives are thinking, but it doesn’t end there. Remember that the purpose of the CoR is to speak for the membership. It’s at the chapter level that the CoR Group Leaders can engage ASHI members. It is incumbent upon the Chapter Representatives to facilitate an ongoing dialogue with chapter members. This discussion may begin at chapter meetings, but it can’t end there. Ideas abound! ASHI is a diverse group of professionals with diverse thoughts and opinions. ASHI is faced with a grand opportunity to expand into the 21st century with a robust platform based on the ideas and ideals of its membership. The CoR wants to know what you think. To that end, I encourage all Chapter Presidents to invite one of their Chapter Representatives to present a CoR Report at every chapter meeting. I’d like to know that CoR Chapter Representatives are listening to their chapter’s members and are sharing their thoughts with CoR Group Leaders. The CoR will continue to convene meetings of our Group Leaders, during which we’ll discuss these topics. Finally, I’ll attempt to distill all this information into a report and present it to the ASHI Board of Directors. Challenges lie ahead. I have never seen a small group solve the problems of a large one without first listening to the individual members of the group. We have a process; let’s use it. H

ASHI Council of Representatives Speakers and Group Leaders

SPEAKER: Hollis Brown 703-856-7567 ALTERNATESPEAKER: Janni Juhasz janni.j@homtec 419-215-5505

South Atlantic Gerald Simmons Jerry@simm 404-281-3734

Gulf Craig Lemmon reioftexas@ 817-291-9056

SECRETARY: Brendan Ryan brendan@csahome 724-321-1360

South Midwest Joe Pangborn Joe@Pangborn 573-228-4509


North Central

New England/ Canada

Donald Bissex Donald@mystic 781-475-8980

New York/ New Jersey Steven Baranello 516-972-4875

Mid-Atlantic Bronson Anderson 2inspect4u@ 540-836-0256

Andrew Seeger Andrew@Building 513-482-0449

Mountain John Thompson Shelterworksllc@ 406-360-4613

Pacific Darrell Hay 206-226-3205

Midwest Eric Barker Ebarker@moraine 847-408-7238


Deck Safety Month®

Deck Safety Month® NADRA-ASHI Partnership Brings Education and Business Prospects to Home Inspectors By Carol Dikelsky, ASHI Reporter Editor

May is Deck Safety Month®, so we’d like to spotlight the partnership that ASHI has with the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA). NADRA is the voice of the deck and railing industry. Its goal is to prevent injuries and save lives from the use of decks that are old and unsafe. NADRA promotes safe outdoor living and recommends that consumers get regular deck checkups by a Deck Evaluation/ Inspection–Certified Home Inspector. The NADRA-ASHI Partnership One way that NADRA partners with ASHI is by sending representatives to several ASHI chapters to present training on deck safety, followed by the administration of a certification examination. For a $200 fee to NADRA, an ASHI member receives a half day of training, a certification exam and an annual membership. Membership and certification with NADRA allows inspectors to market their expertise in providing deck safety inspections and to tap into the array of NADRA resources, including access to its logo and a personal online profile that can generate leads.

Michael Beaudry, Vice President of NADRA, said, “This is an exciting collaboration for both organizations. I’m positive that we’re making a difference every time we welcome ASHI members as new Deck Evaluation/Inspection–Certified Home Inspectors. These inspectors are knowledgeable about how to inspect decks well, and their outreach into the community helps raise awareness with homeowners about the importance of maintaining safe decks and railings.” 8

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

This awareness can translate into fewer accidents that may occur on older, weathered decks. “For example,” Beaudry continued, “an inspector can point out to clients that the deck that’s attached to the home they are about to purchase (and which the client might consider to be ‘new’) actually could be several years old and may not have always had proper maintenance. The inspection is a great opportunity to get the deck inspected thoroughly.” Deck inspections can drive business. Inspectors can earn $200 to $250 for each deck safety inspection they perform, and having a NADRA certification validates their high level of competence. Beaudry commented, “A great way for inspectors to increase business is by marketing ‘deckonly’ inspections. Marketing this angle of your expertise can build revenue and add to your client base. If you’ve performed a deck safety inspection for a client one year, they’ll remember your skills and call on you when they plan to move to a new home. Some inspectors even may decide to focus solely on this end of the business to differentiate themselves from other general inspectors.” Beaudry added, “The NADRA Deck Evaluation/Inspection Certification class has been well received by members of the

ASHI chapters that have partnered with NADRA to bring this important education to their members. Over the years, NADRA has determined that ASHI has the highest professional standards in the industry, evidenced by how ASHI leaders and members treat their colleagues as family and by how ASHI promotes the professional networking that helps bring our two industries together. In addition, ASHI inspectors, national and chapter leaders and staff are terrific, friendly people. We enjoy our relationship with ASHI, and our satisfaction is confirmed with each chapter event that we attend.”

NADRA is on track to achieve its goal of certifying 1,000 ASHI members in deck safety. With 30 or more ASHI members attending each chapter’s NADRA education and certification session, home inspectors affiliated with ASHI chapters are a fast-growing part of NADRA membership. Deck Safety and Certification at the St. Louis Chapter’s Spring Seminar ASHI’s St. Louis Chapter leaders recently promoted deck safety at their spring seminar by offering NADRA’s education

9May 2017




Deck Safety Month®

and certification program. Thirty ASHI members attended this class and were certified in Deck Evaluation/Inspection.

Beaudry said, “ASHI leaders are extremely serious about moving the inspection profession forward. They drive home the message that education is a key element to having a successful inspection business. That philosophy trickles down to the members, and it creates a community in which ASHI members take their job seriously and are genuinely passionate about learning.” As a result, he commented, “ASHI members are fantastic students at the NADRA course. They take great notes, and they pay attention. You know the class is going well when people are engaged and asking questions, even toward the end of the session. The pre-certification session runs from 8 am to noon, and we administer the certification examination after a break for lunch. ASHI members who pass the test become NADRA Deck Evaluation/Inspection– Certified Home Inspectors.”


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

“If a person doesn’t pass the exam, we work with them to make sure they learn what they still need to know,” Beaudry said. “Our goal is to provide a successful education experience and to impart deck safety information to everyone who can use it.” To do a simple projection of the benefits to the community at large, if the 30 newly certified inspectors in St. Louis each perform three deck safety inspections per week during 45 weeks in a year, that could equate to a total of 4,050 decks being inspected in one year alone. In turn, this number increases the corresponding prevention of potential injuries (or worse) due to the types of accidents and injuries that can happen with the use of old and decaying decks. Deck Safety Promoted by St. Louis Media Mark Goodman, Vice President of the ASHI St. Louis Chapter, sent out a press release about the education and certification session to local media the evening before the session. He said, “The next day, a reporting team from the local Fox affiliate interviewed us. We had a chance to talk about the importance of checking your deck in front of a viewing audience of potentially

2.5 million consumers living in the greater St. Louis area.” Beaudry added, “The great news for the home inspectors is that anyone who happened to watch the report about deck safety and NADRA’s education and certification class (that ran on the 5 pm, 6 pm and 10 pm news) also may have visited the ‘Find an Inspector’ pages on the NADRA or ASHI websites. Those clicks can propel new business.” (Check out the chapter’s media coverage here: http://fox2now. com/2017/03/09/home-inspectorswarn-that-decks-can-be-an-accidentjust-waiting-to-happen/.) The St. Louis Chapter is planning another media push during May to draw attention to Deck Safety Month®. Goodman said, “We plan to drive coverage—including TV, radio and print—to advance deck safety and inspections. We believe that even if people don’t immediately set up deck safety inspections as a result of this media push, if we can at least get them to go out and look at their decks and think about doing some safety checks and maintenance, it’s a step in the right direction.”

ASHI Ad.indd 6

11May 2017

3/25/15 10:33 AM •



Deck Safety Month®

Takeaways from NADRA’s Deck Evaluation/ Inspection Certification Class

The inspectors who left the session in St. Louis showed a renewed interest in tackling their next deck inspection and applying what they learned. They also were inspired to start marketing their ability to provide NADRA-certified deck evaluations/inspections as part of their business. Here are some comments from the inspectors who attended: John Wessling, ASHI Certified Inspector, Instructor for The ASHI School and 2014 President of St. Louis ASHI Wessling Home Inspection Services, St. Louis, MO, What I learned in the class reinforced my knowledge of components of design and the importance of paying attention to details when inspecting any deck. Now that I’ve become certified with NADRA, I plan to discuss the importance of regular deck inspections with my local agents, building associations and neighborhood groups, and I’ll include some of the statistics about deck failures and injuries that I learned. I’ll also promote the fact that I can perform deck inspections and safety reviews to these associations and neighborhood organizations. I found that this education and certification session was time well spent. It is great to see NADRA and ASHI, two professional organizations, working together to promote home and deck safety. Mark Goodman, ASHI Certified Inspector and St. Louis ASHI Vice President, Brewer Inspection Services, Manchester, MO, Statistically, handrail failure is the largest source of deck injuries, so I would have to say the most valuable thing I learned during the class was about the proper attachment of handrails to the deck structure. As home inspectors, we see a lot of decks, and the vast majority of all handrails are attached wrong. It doesn’t matter if the handrails are bolted to the rim joist, or if the rim joist is attached with nails and hardware only. Handrail failures can result in injury, head trauma and death—even if the deck is only a few feet off the ground. We already encourage homebuyers to choose ASHI Certified Inspectors to perform their home inspections. After taking this class, I see that, for a stand-alone deck inspection, I should encourage homeowners to choose an inspector who is certified by


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

both ASHI and NADRA. Having the NADRA certification gives you a competitive edge, but more importantly, it arms you with the tools and knowledge you will need to perform a superior deck inspection. One of the benefits that NADRA provides to its members is access to a marketing toolkit, available online on the NADRA website. Just like ASHI, NADRA provides great marketing tools that are part of your membership package. As part of my business, I do stand-alone deck inspections. I’m hopeful that ASHI’s new deck standard will be approved by the ASHI membership. [Editor’s note: See Page 13 for more information about the proposed deck standard.] Using that new standard, along with having NADRA certification, will help me and other ASHI members advance our efforts toward promoting deck safety and securing more deck inspections with clients. Nick Zlotopolski, Brunic Home Inspection Services, Florissant, MO, For me, a newer inspector who’s not yet certified by ASHI, the biggest takeaway from the class was that I realized I haven’t been reporting on decks as comprehensively as I should be. It’s clear to me now that I should spend more time on the deck portion of my reports. The class taught me to think about decks differently. Although we generally say that decks have a life span of 10 to 20 years, with all of the new hardware and sealing products on the market, I wonder how the “life expectancy” of decks will change in the future. I was surprised to learn that people end up with more severe injuries from guardrail failures than from deck collapses. I believe that real estate agents who are looking for inspections on homes with decks or deck inspections will likely refer inspectors who have NADRA certification in the same way they refer inspectors with ASHI certification for a general home inspection. Having the NADRA certification gives me the credibility that will help me get those referrals. Going forward, I’ll be sure to educate agents on the importance of my NADRA certification and explain that it can reduce the liability of the inspector as well as the agent. I enjoyed this class, and I highly recommend that other home inspectors attend it if NADRA comes to your chapter! H

ASHI Deck Standard FAQs

ASHI Deck Standard FAQs By Bruce Barker, ACI

Note to All ASHI Members Regarding the Upcoming Vote on the Proposed Deck Standard: This spring, ASHI members will be asked to vote on whether to approve the proposed Auxiliary Standard of Professional Practice for Residential Deck Inspections. This article is intended to provide answers to frequently asked questions about the proposed Deck Standard. The Standards Committee has spent more than a year developing this Deck Standard. It has been approved by the ASHI Board of Directors and by ASHI’s attorney. It has been made available for member and public comment. We urge you to approve this standard so that ASHI members can help improve the safety of decks and help prevent needless injury and death. For more information, look for the Deck Standard ballot in your email (during May and June) and the wording of the proposed Deck Standard ( When you receive your ballot, be sure to vote on this important issue! What is the Deck Standard? The Deck Standard is a voluntary auxiliary standard, like the Predrywall and Pool Standards. Inspectors may elect to offer this service or they may elect not to. Why do we need a separate Deck Standard? Reliable statistics are difficult to obtain, but injuries (and worse) involving decks are in the thousands every year. Inspections of existing decks by trained inspectors can help reduce these needless injuries, thereby improving public safety. Experts in deck safety are aware of this project and they agree that this Deck Standard is a significant step forward for deck safety. Auxiliary standards, such as this Deck Standard, are an important part of ASHI’s credentialing program. This program is under development, so details have not been finalized. The current intent is that through training, testing and continuing education, ASHI will offer members meaningful additional credentials that they can use to differentiate themselves from other inspectors. Does the Deck Standard apply to home inspections? No. Deck Standard Section 1.1 makes this point very clear. Deck inspections performed using this standard are intended to be performed as a separate service for homeowners who want to know about the condition of their deck. Deck inspections performed using this standard are not intended to be performed during a home inspection. A proposed addition to the home inspection standard, which is also on the ballot, makes it very clear that all inspections based on

auxiliary standards are excluded from a home inspection unless the client and inspector agree in writing to include the inspection. Will the Deck Standard become part of the Home Inspection Standard? No. An inspection using the Deck Standard is much more technically exhaustive than a deck inspection performed during a home inspection. Deck Standard Section 1.1 makes this point very clear. (View the proposed Deck Standard on the ASHI website at Air conditioner inspections are a good analogy for distinguishing between an inspection performed during a home inspection and a technically exhaustive inspection. An air conditioner inspection during a home inspection involves observing the air conditioner and operating it. That is all we are required to do. A technically exhaustive air conditioner inspection involves activities such as taking pressure and current draw measurements, which we do not do. A deck inspection during a home inspection involves observing the deck. That is all we are required to do. The more technically exhaustive deck inspection using the Deck Standard involves comparing the deck to a Deck Construction Guideline, such as DCA 6‐12, and reporting deck components that do not comply with the guideline. This involves technically exhaustive activities such as measuring joists, beams and posts, and comparing those measurements to tables in the guideline. A deck inspection using the Deck Standard is much more than a deck inspection performed 13May 2017




ASHI Deck Standard FAQs

during a home inspection. It should be easy to explain this to a client who asks. Why are specific defects not listed in the Deck Standard? A standard of practice tells the inspector what to look at, not what to look for. Specific defects are not listed in the home inspection standard and they are not listed in the Deck Standard. A reportable defect for a Deck Standard inspection will be found in the deck construction guideline selected by the inspector. May a balcony be inspected using the Deck Standard? Maybe. A balcony that is built as a deck may be inspected using the Deck Standard. A balcony is built as a deck if it is freestanding, or if it is supported on one side by a ledger attached to the house, or if the floor joists extend from the house and are supported by a beam or a similar structure near where the joists end. The deck-like balcony structural components should be visible for inspection. A cantilevered balcony may be inspected using the Deck Standard if the inspector uses a Deck Construction Guideline that applies to a cantilevered balcony, and if the cantilevered balcony structural components are visible for inspection. A cantilevered balcony is defined as a structure consisting of floor joists that extend from the house and that are supported only by the house wall. What is a Deck Construction Guideline? This term is defined in the Deck Standard glossary. The best example of a Deck Construction Guideline is DCA 6‐12, which is available as a free download at Why does a Deck Standard Inspection use a Deck Construction Guideline? A Deck Construction Guideline is an objective standard to which an inspector can compare a deck. Having an objective standard removes subjective judgments involving terms such as “significantly deficient.” A deck component either complies with the guideline or it does not comply. If the component does not comply, the inspector reports this fact, explains the implication of noncompliance and recommends that the client take appropriate action. Having an objective standard reduces risk; of course, the inspector must be familiar with the Deck Construction Guidelines that the inspector selects. Why not use DCA 6‐12 as the Deck Construction Guideline? Inspectors may want to use other guidelines that are suited to their local market. The Deck Standard gives inspectors the flexibility to use a guideline that best suits their needs. Is it fair and reasonable to apply current standards to an existing deck? Yes, for at least two reasons. First, there is no grandfathering of safety defects. If something about a deck is unsafe, it does not matter if the deck complied with building codes or standards when it was built. This is the definition and rationale behind the definition of “unsafe.”


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Photo courtesey: Jon Vacha, Home Standard Inspection Services

Second, a deck inspection performed using the Deck Standard is for homeowners (clients) who want to know about the condition of their deck. This is an important distinction. Sellers do not usually appreciate it when the inspector finds defects. Homeowners (clients) want to know about the defects, especially those that might present safety concerns; that’s why they will hire the inspector. The homeowner (client) is free to act on the information in the deck inspection report or to disregard it. Will extra training be required to inspect using the Deck Standard? Extra training is not required, but it is strongly recommended for most members. Inspections performed using the Deck Standard are different from deck inspections performed during a home inspection. Extra training will help inspectors understand their responsibilities when conducting inspections using the Deck Standard. The current plan is to make this training available to members and chapters free of charge using the Internet and video technology. Live classes also should be available for those who prefer question-and-answer interaction with an instructor. Training plans are not final at this time.

A final note The Standards Committee has spent more than a year developing this Deck Standard. It has been approved by the ASHI Board of Directors and by ASHI’s attorney. It has been made available for member and public comment. We urge you to approve this standard so that ASHI members can help improve the safety of decks and help prevent needless injury and death. H

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Discovering Pests and Housing Pets

Discovering Pests and Housing Pets Encountering Pesky Situations During Home Inspections By Jeffrey C. May, Principal Scientist, May Indoor Air Investigations LLC


ou may have heard of Jeff May, a former home inspector; perhaps you’ve listened to one of his presentations at InspectionWorld® over the years. If so, you’ve been exposed to his passion for maintaining healthy levels of indoor air quality. Or perhaps you’ve read or shared one of the books he’s written for homeowners, including My House Is Killing Me! The Home Guide for Families with Allergies and Asthma and Jeff May’s Healthy Home Tips. These excellent resources offer guidance about maintaining a healthy indoor environment, even when dealing with the pets and pests that can be a part of home life. Both books are available on

increased asthma symptoms. Eighty-two percent of 800 homes tested had detectable levels of mouse allergens—it was highest in kitchen dust. Sensitized occupants in houses with elevated levels of mouse allergens had double the risk of developing asthma symptoms.

Jeff also maintains a website ( and publishes newsletters for home inspectors (send a request from the site: The following article is an adapted compilation of two such recent articles (“Pets and Pests,” ©2014, and “IAQ and Pests,” ©2017). The topics relate to discovering pests in the home or during a home inspection, and managing the downside of having pets when striving to achieve healthy indoor air quality. Some aspects of what Jeff describes may make your skin crawl a bit, but as home inspectors, you can no doubt relate to the reality of making unpleasant discoveries of pests in a home. Pointing out these “realities” to clients is important. As Jeff explains, “Pests that are found in people’s homes can have a negative effect on the indoor environment.” Read this article to learn from Jeff’s extensive experience in the area of maintaining a healthy indoor environment and remind yourself of the importance of bringing these issues to the attention of your clients.


As you know, the presence of carpenter ants may indicate excess moisture and rot somewhere in the building. You’ve also seen the damage that squirrels and raccoons can do indoors. And most of you can spot the redstained urine trails of mouse runways along basement pipes or foundation walls. But what you may not know is that pests can cause health symptoms. For example, all insects and arachnids (like mites)—in other words, “bugs”—produce fecal matter that can be allergenic. What are some pests commonly found in houses that can have a negative impact on indoor environmental conditions? There’s a small food chain in the dust in buildings, including in homes. This chain contains mites, moths and other small (if not microscopic) creatures. One of these is a book 16

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

louse, which is small but still visible to the naked eye.

Photo 2. Mouse urine trails on wires. © May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

Photo 1. An approximately 1-mm book louse between air bubbles. © May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

Mice Mice are well-known indoor pests. A fairly recent medical study concluded that elevated levels of mouse urine indoors can lead to

Photo 3. Mouse droppings along main beam. © May Indoor Air Investigations, LLC

> Another example: I investigated a school in which two kindergarten classrooms had been abandoned due to an odor. The culprits again were shrews, which had set up their domicile above the drop ceiling. When I looked above the ceiling tiles, I saw piles of shrew droppings on top of the poly vapor barrier—there was the source of the smell! Photo 4. Mouse droppings on top of foundation wall. © May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

tions LLC

I found out about these unpleasant animals when I investigated a building odor in a condo complex in Vermont. The odor saturated one room and an adjacent hallway in a lower-level condo. Air flows carried the odor up into the unit above, where the owners had placed boxes of baking soda on every stair tread in the hopes of reducing the smell. It hadn’t worked. I found some suspicious-looking (and odoriferous) fecal matter on the hallway carpet in the lower unit and I sent it to the State of Vermont for identification. They confirmed that it was “shrew scat.” I found the entry hole at the exterior, outside the smelly room in the lower-level condo unit. Shrews defecate and urinate in the same place, and their fecal matter (as well as glands on their bodies) emits an odor so powerful that people have abandoned rooms in their homes.

Mites It’s common knowledge that dust mites, which live primarily in beds and often-used cushioned furniture, cause allergies and asthma symptoms. I’ve even found dustmite infestations on fish tank covers (all that moisture and those delicious fish food flakes!). But what about all the other mites, like mold-eating mites and predator (miteeating) mites, which also live in buildings? People living in a house with a basement full of mold may be exposed to mold as well as mite allergens, and consequently, they may have symptoms due to this exposure. Allergists only test for two different types of house-dust mites, so someone could test negative to mites and yet be allergic to mold-eating mites.

Photo 5. “Groping in the dark, the switch felt ‘fuzzy.’” © May Indoor Air Investiga-

Shrews These unpleasant animals are about the same size as mice, but they have claws and longer snouts, and they eat meat instead of grains and seeds (you trap them in mouse snap traps with freeze-dried grubs or beef jerky rather than with peanut butter). Some species even have poisonous bites that paralyze their prey. Shrews are beginning to invade homes, perhaps because they are on the hunt for mice.

Discovering Pests and Housing Pets

Photo 6. Dead shrew in furnace. © May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

Moths Why should home inspectors care if wool moths are nibbling on a sweater or rug? The house will be emptied out anyway, prior to sale, right? Agreed. But what if the seller’s wool wall-to-wall carpeting is infested? Then the moths can infest the new occupants’ wool clothing. And moth larvae produce allergenic fecal material. What if the occupant has battled moths by using mothballs? Mothballs are semi-volatile pesticides. In my opinion, no pesticides, including bee and wasp sprays, should be used indoors.

Photo 7. A pile of shrew fecal matter. © May Indoor Air Investigations LLC

Asian ladybugs I live in a fairly new house. The first fall after we moved in, these bugs were crawling all over the siding. Every time I opened a door or window, I would find a few crawling around in the track. It was like some Hitchcock horror movie. They may look cute, but they leave red stains and smell terrible when crushed, so if you find them in your own house, resist the urge to bash them. Vacuum them up instead. In addition, there is cross-reactivity between Asian ladybugs and cockroaches, so someone exposed to the droppings of only one of these pests can become allergic to both.

Spiders Just as shrews are above mice on their food chain, spiders are at the top of a smaller food chain. Spiders only eat live prey, so if there are a lot of spiders in a building, there is an insect problem on site. If you find spider webs hanging like netting from joists in an unfinished basement ceiling with exposed fiberglass insulation, it most likely means that there are mites present and the spiders are waiting. And what are the mites eating? They may be dining on invisible mold, growing in the biodegradable dust captured in the fiberglass fibers. Some molds can grow in places in which the relative humidity (RH) is over 80%. Below-grade and partially below-grade spaces are naturally cool; as air cools, its RH rises, so such spaces are prone to 17May 2017




Discovering Pests and Housing Pets

developing conditions of high RH that can lead to mold (mildew) growth. The fiberglass insulation may look as clean as it did on the day it was installed, but there’s a food chain there, with spiders at the top. Prevention and Treatment Whether or not you do pest inspections, I encourage you to recommend that your clients prevent mouse and shrew infestations by sealing up gaps and openings at the exterior and in the garage, and by being sure that the crawl space and roof vents have intact screens (or buy hardware cloth and screening), rather than putting traps and poison all over the place. In the humid season (in New England, for example, generally mid-April through mid-October), the RH in below-grade and partially below-grade spaces should be kept at or below 50% in unfinished spaces and 60% in finished spaces. In addition, finished basement spaces must be heated adequately in winter (with the thermostat set consistently at a minimum of 58°F, whether the space is being used or not)—again, this strategy can help control the RH and minimize pest infestations. (Even if a basement has never experienced water intrusion or leaks, it can be extensively infested with mold and critters due to elevated RH.) There’s growing concern, and rightfully so, about using chemicals to combat pests. People should dry-clean wool clothing and store items in plastic rather than contaminate a closet or clothing chest with mothballs. Carpets and rugs can be treated with steam vapor from a steam-vapor machine.

PART 2: THE PETS Cats and Dogs Cats and dogs can be problematic for families with allergies, asthma or both. Even if no one in the family has pet allergies, such animals are living dust mops that can carry pollen and other allergenic material into the house. If a cat or dog goes into a moldy basement, the animal also can carry mold spores upstairs. 18

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

I did one investigation in a house in which I found Penicillium mold in the basement. I found the same mold spores on a bed pillow in the master bedroom. The homeowner kept the kitty-litter box in her musty basement and the cat used to cuddle next to her on the bed. That cat offered her a lot more than affection, that’s for sure! If you have pet allergies, it’s best not to own a cat or dog. If you have a beloved pet, however, keep the animal out of moldy spaces and don’t let the animal sleep in your bedroom. This brings me to the topic of dog beds. Some people buy expensive, cushioned pet beds for their dogs and then don’t clean the beds or replace the beds for a decade or more. Such a bed can become infested with dust mites, and then the dog carries dust-mite allergens in its fur or hair—this is not healthy for people and not healthy for dogs (dogs can get asthma from exposure to the mite allergens). Clean the dog bed as directed, if not more frequently. Consider using a blanket for a dog bed and wash the blanket on the same schedule as you wash your own bedding.

Fish Some parents of children with allergies or asthma choose to have fish tanks as a safer alternative to a pet cat or dog. Think again. A retired surgeon hired me to investigate conditions in his home because whenever he spent time in his den, his eyes watered and his nose ran. “I couldn’t have operated on patients,” he said to me, “if I’d had this problem back then.” He had two fish tanks in the room. The tanks were full of beautiful tropical fish. He spent a lot of time looking after the fish and the tanks, but when he fed the fish, some of the fish food spilled out over the tank covers. Fish food flakes are

protein—welcome food for dust mites. And all that warmth and moisture! Dust mites were crawling on the covers and whenever the homeowner lifted the cover to feed the fish, he was exposed to dust-mite allergens. He cleaned the tanks and the room dust, and his runny nose disappeared. I also don’t like to see fish tanks in children’s bedrooms. If a fish tank is kept in a bedroom (or even in a classroom), however, someone should maintain the tank’s exterior to be sure it stays scrupulously clean. The Ghosts of Pets Past What if a family moves into a new home and someone in the family begins to experience allergy or asthma symptoms? The family member may have pet allergies, but the family has never owned a pet. Or, someone might have dust-mite allergies, but the family always has been careful about having dust-mite covers on their mattresses and bed pillows. What might be the problem?

If the previous homeowner had a cat, dog or bird, pet dander most likely is still in the house—in the dust on radiators, on baseboard heating convectors, in heating and cooling ducts or in wall-towall carpeting. Before moving in, a new homeowner should clean thoroughly all surfaces in the house. Radiators should be vacuumed with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) vacuum and treated with steam vapor (this is not the same as steam cleaning) from a steam vapor machine. Baseboard heating convectors should be cleaned similarly; this process will necessitate removing and cleaning the covers. Metal ducts should be cleaned professionally; flexible ducts (if very dusty) may have to be replaced. Any wallto-wall carpeting should be removed. If there is only subfloor beneath, the plywood should be vacuumed and painted before new carpeting or other flooring is installed. Don’t leave carpeting in hallways or on stairs (including stairs leading from the first floor to the basement); this carpeting, too, might be contaminated with dust-mite and pet allergens.

A side note of caution: Remember that people can carry pet and dust-mite allergens on their clothing and hair, so if you have allergies and find yourself starting to cough while sitting in a public place next to someone you don’t know, you might want to find another seat. CONCLUSION The issues of pests and pets may be a rather “creepy” subject related to home inspection, but it is an important subject nonetheless. When conducting home inspections or indoor air quality investigations, it’s crucial to notice the small “details” left behind by pests and pets because they often reveal a potential problem. Visible evidence of pets and pests in a home or a building should be of interest to home inspectors and air quality professionals alike, as well as prospective homeowners. H Jeff May is the principal scientist, May Indoor Air Investigations LLC, Tyngsborough, MA. Contact Jeff at 978-649-1055, info@mayindoorair. com,

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Offering Ancillary Services

Offering Ancillary Services By Alan Carson, Carson Dunlop,, 800-268-7070


ncillary services are additional services that you can offer to your client at the time of an inspection. For example, when you book an inspection, you can ask the client if he or she also would like you to test the paint in the home for lead. (Testing for lead paint is the ancillary service.)

Ancillary services fall under the broad category of “selling more services to each client.” There are two distinct types of ancillary services: • services offered to your client at the time of the inspection • services offered to your client after they move into the house An excellent example of an ancillary service is the classic fast-food question: “Would you like fries with that?” Clearly, the marketing team for McDonald’s understood that once a person is in a buying mode, it is very easy to get that person to buy more. Most home inspectors, however, know very little about how to apply this ancillary service concept to their business.

The basic premise of selling ancillary services is based on this concept: Once you have made a sale and convinced the prospective client to hire you to do a home inspection, it is very easy to sell the client something else. An Example at the Car Dealership Here’s another example of this psychology in action. Have you ever bought a new car? If you have, there’s no doubt that you’ve been fed through the “new-car buying mill” at the dealership. Critical to the car salesperson’s pitch is that he or she sells you a number of “invisible” options, such as an 20

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

extended warranty, undercoating to protect BEYOND the frame from rust,BASICS clear coating to protect the paint, upholstery treatment to protect the upholstery and many other similar options. The cost of these options can add up to make the dealership lots of money, but they are harder to sell than the more “visible” options, like a sunroof or electric windows. The car dealer’s strategy is to sell you the invisible options after you’ve already agreed to buy the car. Let’s walk through the process. Typically, you make a deal to buy the car with a salesperson, but the owner or manager approves the deal in his or her office. Once the deal is wrapped up, you go to another office to finalize the paperwork for the financing or leasing. It is here that the salesperson hopes to sell you ancillary options. They know you are in a vulnerable position psychologically because you have committed to buying the car. Getting you to agree to add a few other relatively inexpensive options can be easy, especially when the salesperson can just wrap the cost of it all into the financing or lease. If you’ve ever bought a car, you’ve heard someone say to you: “For just $20 more per month, you can have the extended warranty.” Spot the Best Strategy for Home Inspectors This universally understood marketing principle can work for a home inspection business, too. The following examples illustrate the point: • An inspector in San Francisco offers a home inspection that includes a number of ancillary services as part of the standard service. This inspector feels that all of these additional services should be wrapped into the price of the home inspection. Sure, the inspection will cost the client a little more, but the client will

have carbon monoxide and lead paint SPECIALTY DIV TRACK testing included in the total package. • A  home inspector in Cincinnati offers a standard inspection for $400. In addition, clients can choose optional services to add on to the standard inspection. One package adds on carbon monoxide testing. Another package adds both carbon monoxide and lead paint testing. • A  home inspector in Boston offers a standard home inspection. Once the client agrees to hire the inspector and books the inspection, the inspector asks the client if he or she would like to have a carbon monoxide test done while the inspector is on site. The inspector then asks if the client would like the home’s paint tested for lead as well. Which of these three home inspectors do you think is the most successful? If you selected the inspector from Boston, you are correct. Ensure That Ancillary Services Are Profitable Many ancillary services can be offered at the time of inspection. Most of these services, however, require some additional knowledge, training and, in some cases, a license. You also may need specialized equipment. Investigate each of these services to find out which ancillary services are good fits for your company, your personal comfort level and your profitability goals. Some home inspection companies have been very successful at offering ancillary services. They can turn a $400 inspection into an $800 inspection and spend very little extra time on site. It’s helpful to note that an ancillary service that is not profitable on its own can turn out to be profitable if you are already on site because you have removed the travel component.

Chapter News PRO-ASHI members inspected a ranch home with four additions.

Scott Kelly (L) using an old plumb bob and Michael Ashburn using an LED laser level on a foundation wall: “New technology vs. Old.”

Pro-ASHI Team - Bryan Cole, John Vaccarello, Dan Horvath, John Fleenor, James Cortez, Shawn Bruce & Scott Kelly

The Iowa-ASHI chapter visited the Plumber’s Supply Company of Iowa City to hear a presentation about Geothermal.

21May 2017




Offering Ancillary Services

Pay attention to what other inspectors are offering. Ask your clients if there are other services they would value. Pay attention to current issues featured in the media. For example, is mold a big issue in your area? And most importantly, make sure that you will be able to perform the services you offer in a competent manner. Keep the Client Relationship Going Consider what ancillary services you could offer to your clients after they move in to their new home. The philosophy behind this strategy is that, during the inspection, you spend two to three hours with the client and during that time, you develop rapport. At the end of the inspection, you’ve become a trusted advisor to the client. Most home inspectors throw that rapport away at the end of the inspection, but it’s possible for an inspector to get some referral business from it. And it’s even more likely that the inspector will get more business if he or she keeps the relationship going. Implement Back-End Business Strategies In fact, the most neglected part of marketing a home inspection business may be the back-end business strategy. What is a back-end strategy? It is the ability to sell to the same client over and over again. Your business should have a back-end strategy because the cost to acquire a client is fairly high in the first place. At first glance, a home inspection business appears to have no clear back-end strategy. Essentially, you acquire a client who is unlikely to call you back for another inspection in the near future. If you are lucky, you may get one more inspection in a lifetime from that client. From a back-end point of view, this repeat rate is simply not good enough. There are two good reasons to offer ancillary services to your client after they move in: • Your clients already know and trust you, so they are more likely to be receptive to your ancillary services. • From an overall perspective, it’s important to have a back-end strategy for your business.


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

What could you offer as back-end or follow-up services? • Improvement checks: You could offer to verify that all of the improvements you initially suggested in your inspection report were carried out properly. • Seasonal inspections: You could offer to inspect seasonally relevant components of the home every year. You could have separate checklists for the spring and fall, for example. • Periodic inspections: Some clients have expressed an interest in having their home inspected periodically to help avoid costly repairs. Maybe you could develop a “Year Five Inspection,” for example. • Indoor air quality inspections: Indoor air quality is a hot topic that will likely get more attention over the next few years. Because indoor air quality usually is related to how the occupants live in and use the home, it is best to offer this inspection as a follow-up service rather than at the point of the initial inspection. • A n energy-efficiency study: You can inspect the home and make recommendations relative to the energy efficiency of the home. You can project the payback relative to the cost of improvements to enhance energy efficiency. Other examples of ancillary services include the following: • • • •

Hazardous materials testing Solid fuel heating inspections Radon testing Pool inspections

Of course, to perform these additional services, you either will need to be qualified yourself to do them, or you will need to hire a third party who is qualified.

Give It a Try Providing ancillary services can help you increase your bottom line and it certainly can enhance your reputation as being a “one-stop shop” for all types of inspection services. We encourage you to give it a try! H





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Warming Up to Heat Pumps

Warming Up to Heat Pumps: Moving from an Air-Source to a Water-Source Heat Pump By Alan Carson, Carson Dunlop,, 800-268-7070


nspecting central air conditioning is hard enough, but inspecting heat pumps is even more challenging. Not only is it an air conditioning system that also can act as a heating system, there may be a backup heating system to inspect as well. Water-source heat pumps also include the complexity of circulating pumps, piping and water-to-refrigerant heat exchangers. To understand water-source heat pumps, it makes sense to first understand air-source heat pumps.

If we want to grab heat from outdoors when it is 45°F (7°C) outside, we have to pass a colder liquid through an outside coil. This sounds similar to what we did indoors during the air conditioning season. We are going to use an expansion device to create a low-pressure, low-temperature liquid that can enter the evaporator coil. This cold liquid will take the 45°F (7°C) outside air being blown across the coil and pick up some heat from it. Air-source heat pump (outdoor unit)

The Air-Source Heat Pump Concept If we can take heat from a house and throw it outside when we want to keep the house cool, why can we not run it backward in the winter, taking heat from outside and throwing it inside?

The latent heat of vaporization is important, as the liquid entering the outdoor coil is boiled off to a low-pressure, low-temperature gas. The gas moves out of the outdoor coil and moves into the house. Now we have a cool, low-pressure gas coming into the house, but we want to get the heat out of the gas. In much the same way that a refrigerator can grab heat from its cool interior and throw the heat out into the kitchen, an air-source heat pump grabs heat from the outside air and dumps it into the house. How can we get heat from cold air? Even though the temperature is low, there is heat in the air. If we can put something even colder outside, the heat will flow out of the outdoor air and into that “colder thing.” That “colder thing” turns out to be the same refrigerant used in the summer for air conditioning.


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

We move the gas through a compressor to raise its pressure and temperature. We now have a hot, high-pressure gas that we pass through the indoor coil. In this situation, the indoor coil is the condenser coil. The hot gas passes through the coil and the house air blows across the coil. As the gas inside the coil is cooled, it condenses back to a liquid, giving off its heat to the house air. This is how we grab heat from the outdoors and dump it indoors. To complete the refrigerant loop, we take the warm, high-pressure liquid back outside, passing it through an expansion device to create a cool, low-pressure liquid that boils off in the outdoor coil (acting as an evaporator). Then we go through the cycle again.


Warming Up to Heat Pumps

Heating cycle

it is not at all unusual to have an outdoor temperature in the winter that is 30°F to 60°F (16°C to 32°C) cooler than the inside of the house. The amount of heat that a heat pump can deliver drops as the outdoor temperature drops. This means that, in some northern climates, the heat pump cannot always deliver enough heat. Auxiliary heating (electric or fossil fuel) often needs to be added to air-source heat pump systems. What if we could find a heat source with a more constant temperature than the outside air?

Cooling cycle

The process is almost the same as the air conditioning process, using a change of state, and pressurizing and depressurizing the gas at the appropriate points. With air conditioning, we move heat from the indoors to the outdoors. A reversing valve is used to change the direction of the refrigerant flow when changing from cooling mode to heating mode. The indoor and outdoor coils remain the same, the compressor remains the same and the expansion devices perform the same function, although there may be two instead of one. Depending on the climate and installation, both of the refrigerant lines may be insulated. The problem with air-source heat pumps in cold climates The ability of an air conditioner or a heat pump to move heat reduces as the outdoor temperature gets further away from the desired indoor temperature. Although it is unusual to have a summer outdoor temperature that is more than 30°F (16°C) higher than what we would like indoors,

Water-Source Heat Pumps In the heating season, heat can be captured from water in wells, ponds, rivers or lakes and transferred to the household air. Deep water from these sources is a constant 40°F to 50°F (4°C to 10°C) year-round, providing a stable heat source in winter and a heat sink in summer. During the summer, heat from the house is dumped into the water. Water-source heat pump

By passing the refrigerant through a water-to-refrigerant heat exchanger (also known as a water jacket), heat can be pulled out of (or dumped into) the water source. This heat exchanger replaces the outdoor coil and fan found with air-source heat pumps. The relatively constant temperature of the water source means that water-source heat pumps are not subject to the same seasonal inefficiencies as air-source heat pumps. Backup heating systems often are not needed. Water-source heat pumps may be open-loop or closed-loop. 25May 2017




Warming Up to Heat Pumps

Open-Loop Systems Open-loop systems draw water from a source and discharge it somewhere else. For example, the system may draw water from one well and dump it into another. Some authorities require these wells to be at least 100 feet apart.

Closed-loop systems can be more expensive than open-loop systems, depending on several factors, although the antifreeze pumps tend to draw significantly less electricity than the well pumps that are required for open-loop systems. Water-source heat pumps and related equipment, such as circulating pumps, are contained within the home. Water or antifreeze piping typically is run underground to the source. There will be little, if any, evidence of a closed-loop, water-source heat pump on the exterior of the home. Water-source heat pumps in condominium buildings These systems operate in the same manner as closed-loop heat pump systems (described above) except that they use the hot water risers in the building as a heat source, a heat sink or both. Condominium heat pumps tend to be smaller—both physically and in heating and in cooling capacity—than heat pumps in houses. They usually are mounted within wall or ceiling cavities in the living space, although larger stand-alone units also can be found.

Because the water runs directly into the water jacket, open-loop systems are highly dependent on good water quality and quantity. Iron content and acidity can damage the heat exchanger. Mineral deposits can clog the heat exchanger, so regular maintenance is recommended. These systems can use up to 10,000 gallons of water per day; therefore, it is crucial that the well can provide enough water at all times of the year. Water disposal needs to be done in an environmentally acceptable manner. Closed-Loop Systems Closed-loop systems circulate a liquid (typically antifreeze, such as propylene glycol, calcium chloride or methyl alcohol) through a loop submerged in a lake, for example. This eliminates the water quality and quantity concerns found with open-loop systems. In many ways, closed-loop systems are very similar to ground-loop systems. (Note: Ground-source heat pumps are a topic for another article.)

Condo heat pump mounted in wall

Condo heat pump

Components Typically, the indoor components of a water-source heat pump include the following: • a coil to transfer heat to or from the house air (similar to any heat pump or air conditioner) • r efrigerant lines • a n expansion device • a compressor • a reversing valve • a second coil, a heat exchanger, or both; usually, a water jacket that transfers heat between the refrigerant and the antifreeze or waterpump(s) to move the antifreeze or water It is also common to use the heat pump to heat domestic water, helping the conventional water heater. By passing domestic water through the “de-super-heater,” which is another heat exchanger located ahead of the condenser coil, heat is pulled from the hot refrigerant. This typically works best in mild weather and when the heat pump is running in cooling mode, as there is extra heat that Continued on page 38

Closed-loop systems are similar to ground-source systems.


ASHI Reporter • May 2017


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The National Home Inspector Examination (NHIE) is developed and maintained by the Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors (EBPHI). This board has received many requests over the years for a study guide to assist those taking the NHIE. This study guide, and the associated NHIE Home Inspection Manual, were developed to address this need.

The National Home Inspector Examination (NHIE) is devel oped and maintained by the Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors (EBPHI). This board has received many requests over the years for a study guide to assist those taking the NHIE. This manual, and the associated NHIE Study Guide, were developed to address this need.

The NHIE Home Inspection Manual addresses the technical aspects of the NHIE. This NHIE Study Guide addresses the non-technical aspects. Many come to the home inspection profession as a second or a third career, and may not have taken a professional entrance exam for many years, if ever. This study guide helps to familiarize the candidate with the examination itself, and with the associated administrative procedures. It also includes helpful insights into the types of questions the exam contains, and techniques for success.

This NHIE Home Inspection Manual is based on the most recent Role Delineation Study (RDS). This study surveys thousands of home inspectors in order to determine the services they provide, and the components they inspect. The questions in the NHIE are derived directly from this survey, Exam Administration and constitute the knowledge base for an entry level home inspector. This manual is the Content first of its kind to follow this Exam Outline format. It also informs the candidate about the knowledge base behind the current examination questions, and proHow to Take an Exam vides a technical reference for the experienced home inspector. $98.50

Find Basic and Advanced Technical, Specialty/Diversification and Business Management topics. Log in on

ISBN 978-0-9964518-1-9

9 780996 451819

Easy. Education. Excellent. FREE to ASHI members!! The ASHI Online Learning Center provides 2-hour modules approved for 2 ASHI CEs. (Special section) Many Past IW modules State-approved for online education.



NHIE Study Guide

100 Review Questions

ISBN 978-0-9964518-0-2

9 780996 451802


Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors

NHIE Home Inspection Manual

Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors

Enjoy interesting sessions recorded at IW 2017 and past IWs.

NHIE Home Inspection Manual Components and Systems Typical Defects Maintenance and Safety Issues Industry Standards References 100 Review Questions

The NHIE Study Guide and the NHIE Home Inspection Manual together contain over 750 pages of technical and administrative information and are produced by the Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors. They will benefit the exam candidate along with being a great technical reference for the experienced home inspector.

Be prepared. Get the NEW

Study Guide and Home Inspection Manual Available from the

Examination Board of Professional Home Inspectors 27May 2017



NORTH CENTRAL ASHI Central PA Second Monday, 6 pm, except Jan. & July, Hoss’s Steakhouse 1151 Harrisburg Pike, Carlisle, PA Kevin Kenny, 717-226-3066

Keystone (PA) First Monday, 5:30 pm The Crowne Plaza, Reading David Artigliere, 610-220-1907

Ohio Howard Snyder, 330-929-5239

North Central Ohio William Stone, 216-308-9663

Pocono-Lehigh (PA) Third Tuesday, Tannersville Inn, Tannersville Ronald Crescente, 570-646-7546

PRO-ASHI (PA) Second Wednesday of Jan., March, May, July & Nov. Ray Fonos, 412-461-8273

Tri-State (DE, NJ, PA) Second Tuesday except April, Aug. & Dec., Dave & Buster’s Plymouth Meeting, PA Peter Muehlbronner, 215-852-7319,

MIDWEST Central Illinois Second Monday, 6 pm Kevan Zinn, 309-262-5006

Great Lakes (IL, IN, IA, KY, MI, MN, OH, WI) For monthly meetings: schedule-of-events/ Carol Case, 734-284-4501

Greater Omaha (NE) Jon Vacha, 402-660-6935


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Heartland (IA, MN, ND, SD, WI) Reuben Saltzman, 612-205-5600

Indiana ASHI Quarterly Danny Maynard, 317-319-7209

Iowa ASHI Fourth Tuesday, 7:00 - 9:00 pm Clarion Inn, Cedar Rapids Craig Chmelicek, 319-389-7379

Kentuckiana (IN, KY) Allan Davis, 502-648-9294 elitehomeinspections@

Mid-Missouri Second Thursday, 12:00 pm, even months of the year; Columbia Board of Realtors office: 2309 I-70 Drive NW, Columbia, MO Mark Kelsey, 573-356-5305 mark@

Northern Illinois Second Wednesday (except Dec.) 5:30 pm - 9:00 pm Crazypour, 105 E. North Ave., Villa Park, IL Jeremy Meek, 630-854-2454

OHIO SOUTH ASHI Meeting: Last Sat. every month, noon @ Frickers, North College Hill, Ohio P.O. BOX 532197 Cincinnati, Ohio 45252 Chris Green, 513-939-4036 Email

SOUTH MIDWEST Arkansas Lonnie Moore, 479-530-5792

Great Plains (KS, MO) Second Wednesday of even months The Great Wolf Lodge, Kansas City Doug Hord, 816-215-2329

Midwest PRO ASHI (KS) David Mason, 316-393-2152

St. Louis (MO) Second Tuesday, 6:30 pm 4355 Westhampton Place Ct. Frank Copanas, 314-456-0783

MOUNTAIN Arizona Bryck Guibor, 520-419-1313 Quarterly education on

New Mexico 2nd Saturday of every other uneven month (January-March-Etc.) Albuquerque - Mimi’s Cafe, 8:30am Except for November - Santa Fe Lance Ellis, 505-977-3915

Northern Rockies (ID, MT) Steve Jenicek, 406-949-6461 Secretary: Kelly Campeau 877-749-2225

Rocky Mountain Fourth Tuesday, 6:30 pm Brian Murphy, 303-791-7824

Southern Colorado Second Thursday, 6:30 pm Valley Hi Golf Club, Colo. Springs Daniel Noteboom, 719-332-9660

Utah First Tuesday, 7 pm Marie Callender’s, Midvale Fred Larsen, 801-201-9583

PACIFIC Alaska Meeting dates: Jan. 1, March 1, Aug. 1, Nov .1 Location varies each meeting David Mortensen, 907-243-4476

ASHI Hawaii Alex Woodbury, 808-322-5174

California Randy Pierson, 310-265-0833

Central Valley CREIA-ASHI Peter Boyd, 530-673-5800

Golden Gate (CA) John Fryer, 510-682-4908

Inland Northwest (ID, WA) Chris Munro, 208-290-2472

Orange County CREIA-ASHI (CA) Third Monday, 5:30 pm Hometown Buffet 2321 S. Bristol, Santa Ana Bill Bryan, 949-565-5904

Oregon Fourth Tuesday, 6:30 pm 4534 SE McLoughlin Blvd., Portland Jay Hensley, 503-312-2105

San Diego CREIA-ASHI First Tuesday each month Elijah’s Restaurant 7061 Clairemont Mesa Boulevard San Diego, CA 92111 Dennis Parra II, 619-232-1100

San Joaquin Valley (CA) Third Tuesday, 6 pm Rice Bowl, Bakersfield, CA Raymond Beasley, 661-805-5947 Mail: 3305 Colony Oak St. Bakersfield, CA 93311

Silicon Valley ASHI-CREIA (CA) Skip Walker, 650-873-4224

Southwestern Idaho Second Monday David Reish, 208-941-5760

Los Angeles-Greater San Gabriel Valley Second Tuesday, 6 pm Old Spaghetti Factory, Duarte Larry Habben, 714-685-0321

Los Angeles-Ventura County ASHI-CREIA First Thursday, 5 pm Holiday Inn, Woodland Hills Bob Guyer, 805-501-0733

South Bay (CA) Webinar meetings Randy Pierson, 310-265-0833

Western Washington Chapter Meetings held at chapter seminars in March and September Karl Nueffer

NEW ENGLAND Coastal Connecticut Third Thursday, 6 pm, Westport VFW Lodge, 465 Riverside Avenue, Westport Gene Autore, 203-216-2516

New England (ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) Fourth Thursday, 5 pm The Lantana, Randoph, MA Michael Atwell, 617-630-5629

Northern New England (ME, MA, NH, VT) Tim Rooney, 603-770-0444

Southern New England (CT) First Tuesdays, 6:30 pm Billy T’s, 150 Sebethe Dr. Cromwell, CT Richard W. Hall, 860-281-4238

NEW YORK/JERSEY/ DELAWARE Capitol Region (NY) Third Thursday, 7 pm, Doratos Steakhouse and Pub, Guilderland Robert Davis, 518-885-7949

Central New York Second Wednesday, 6 pm, Tony’s Family Restaurant, Syracuse Peter Apgar, 315-278-3143 peter@craftsmanhomeinspection. net

First State (DE) Third Wednesday, 7 pm The Buzz Ware Center 2121 The Highway, Arden Mark Desmond, 302-494-1294

Garden State (NJ) Second Thursday, The Westwood, Garwood Bret Kaufmann, 973-377-4747

Greater Rochester (NY) Second Tuesday, 6 pm, Murph’s Irondequoit Pub, Irondequoit John White, 585-431-0067

Hudson Valley (NY) Second Tuesday, 6 pm Daddy O’s Restaurant, 3 Turner Street, Hopewell Junction, NY 12533 Michael Skok, 845-592-1442

Long Island (NY)

NOVA-ASHI (MD, VA) Fourth Tuesday, Associate hour 6-7 pm, Membership meeting 7-9 pm Northern Virginia Resources Center, Fairfax Tony Toth, 703-926-6213 Third Monday, 6 pm, Domenico’s Restaurant, Levittown Steven Rosenbaum 516-361-0658

Piedmont ASHI (VA)

New York Metro Shannon Cory, 404-316-4876 Last Thursday, 5pm Travelers Rest 25 Saw Mill River Road Ossining, NY 10562 Chris Long, 914-260-8571

Southern New Jersey (NJ) Third Wednesday, 6:30 pm Ramada Inn, Bordentown Rick Lobley, 609-208-9798

Western New York Second Thursday, 6:30 pm Tony Rome’s, West Seneca Andy Utnik, 716-636-9676

MID-ATLANTIC Central Virginia Second Tuesday, 6:30 pm, Keegan’s Irish Pub 2251 Old Brick Road Glen Allen, VA 23060 John Cranor 804-873-8537 cranorinspectionservices

Greater Baltimore (MD) Third Thursday except July & Aug., 6:30 pm dinner, 7:00 pm speaker Maritime Institute Conference Center 5700 N. Hammonds Ferry Rd. Linthicum Heights, MD 21090 Andy Bauer,

Hampton Roads (VA) Second Thursday, 7 pm, Cypress Point Country Club, Virginia Beach Gregory Murphy, 757-535-4355

MAC-ASHI (MD, VA) Second Wednesday, Rockville, 6 pm Senior Center, Rockville Mark Mostrom, 301-536-0096

Robert Huntley, 540-354-2135


East Tennessee Third Saturday of Feb., May, Aug. and Nov. Paul Perry, 866-522-7708

Mid-Tennessee Ray Baird, 615-516-5511

Mid-South (TN) Steven Campbell, 901-734-0555

North Carolina Third Wednesday, 3 pm, Quality Inn at Guilford Convention Center, Greensboro Andy Hilton, 336-682-2197

Lone Star (TX) Bud Rozell, 214-215-4961

Louisiana Quarterly Meetings Michael Burroughs 318-324-0661

Suncoast (FL) First Tuesday, 6:30 pm, Please see our website for meeting locations. Steve Acker, 727-712-3089

Southwest Florida Serving Manatee, Sarasota & Charlotte Second Wednesday, 6 pm Holiday Inn, Lakewood Ranch 6321 Lake Osprey Drive, Sarasota Michael Conley, 941-778-2385 FLinspector@outlookcom

CANADA Home Inspectors Association BC Sean Moss, 604-729-4261

CAHPI Atlantic Lawrence Englehart 902-403-2460

South Carolina

CAHPI Ontario

First Saturday of Feb., May, Aug. & Nov., 8 am Roger Herdt, 843-669-3757

Prairies (Alberta) (CAHI)

GULF ASHI South (AL) Quarterly, Homewood Library, Homewood John Knudsen, 334-221-0876 Rob Cornish, 613-858-5000 Chris Bottriell, 780-486-4412

Quebec AIBQ Pascal Baudaux, 450-629-2038

Florida Wiregrass Second Wednesday, 6:30 pm Meeting/Training Room in Lutz Nancy Janosz, 813-546-6090

Gulfcoast (FL) First Thursday, 7 pm, The Forest Country Club, Fort Myers Len Gluckstal, 239-432-0178

29May 2017




New ASHI Associates As of March 1, 2017

H Denotes graduate of The ASHI School Calvin Westcott

Mary Ann Chiquete

North Pole, AK

Benchmark Home Inspection LLC Buckeye, AZ

Ben Davenport HD Services LLC Alexander City, AL

Ben Watson

Andre Owens

Todd Ransom

HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA

Watson Home Inspections Englewood, CO

Owens Home Inspections Hampton, GA

MIBT-Home & Property Inspections Services Lebanon, IN

Andre Benard

Pillar To Post Professional Home Inspections Canton, GA

Aaron Tarry

David Thomason

Casey Ashley

Pillar to Post Danbury, CT

Southern Family Home Inspection Temple, GA

Inspection Connection LLC Andover, KS

John Wright

Bradley Moore

Todd Hampton

The Wright Home Inspection Ridgefield, CT

ODDH Enterprises Coralville, IA

Open Prairie Home Inspection LLC Hugoton, KS

Joseph Bailey

Rollins Certified Home Inspections, Inc. Indianola, IA

Gary Soto Accurate Inspections Fontana, CA

Esteban Vasquez HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA

Al Silva

Leigh Wilson

Mesa, AZ

Long Beach, CA

Matt Smyers

Wesley Wingfield

Flag Integrity Inspections LLC Flagstaff, AZ

Omni Motor Group Santa Clarita, CA

Yellowhammer Inspection Services Wilmer, AL

Daylan Whitney

Home Inspections Art La Mesa, CA

Michael Sparks

Michael Amarante

Safe Solutions Plus Home Services LLC Rainsville, AL

ECS Home Inspections Ontario, CA

Richard Stapleton Boaz, AL

Archer Home Inspections Panorama City, CA

Terry Barker

Roberto Arrambide

Eagle Home Inspection & Consulting Services Sherwood, AR

HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA

Pillar to Post - The Kastberg Team Aurora, CO

Michael Butts

Gerry Barber

Darrell Dennison

Reliant Home Inspection Calimesa, CA

DD Professional Home Inspections Cortez, CO

Steve McGriff Assured Integrity Home Inspection New Market, AL

Darrell Pitts

MRB Home Inspections LLC Mountain Home, AR

James Campbell Al Professional Home Inspections, Inc. Van Buren, AR

Rick Fish America’s Elite Home Inspection Services Bella Vista, AR

Tom Hall Bonafide Home Inspections LLC Magnolia, AR

Charles Howell Howell Home Inspection Searcy, AR

Joe Maxwell ABC Real Estate Inspections Vilonia, AR

John Mills Safe Choice Home Inspection, Inc. Morrilton, AR

James Moody

Sentry Inspecting LLC Cottonwood, AZ

Patrick Archer

Darryl Doheny HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA

Danny Forster A Better Home Inspection By Forster’s, Inc. Fallbrook, CA

Brady Heidenrich RKM Home Inspections Covina, CA

Omar Hernandez HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA

Abe Kazimierek Inspection Excellence LLC Granite Bay, CA

Gale Miyahara Home Analysis Service, LLC Mountain View, CA

Keith Morton Brea, CA

Robert Rice Rice Home Inspections Running Springs, CA

Quality Control Home Inspections Hot Springs, AR

Tyler Richardson

Duane VanderPluym

William Ruziska

VanderPluym Home Inspection Austin, AR



Johnny Saechao

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

HomeGuard, Inc. San Jose, CA America-Can All Star Home Inspections San Jacinto, CA

Gennadiy Zakinov

Doug Babcock Home Inspection Pros LLC Colorado Springs, CO

Eric Benson Valley Inspection Colorado Springs, CO

Michael Boyd

Samuel Hall Lord Holmes LLC Grand Junction, CO

Walter Kruger Atrium Inspection Services LLC Colorado Springs, CO

Dresini Home Inspections LLC West Haven, CT

Dennis Castellano

Absolute Inspection Agency Riverview, FL

Brandon Engle Survey Eagle Property Inspections Sun City Center, FL

Jason Epp Jason David Epp, Inc. Hudson, FL

Francisco Guarderas BODETEC Coral Gables, FL

Steven King

Chris Roth Corner to Corner Inspections LLC Colorado Springs, CO

Leland Silver

Guardian Inspection Services Pella, IA

Don Crum, Jr.

Jesse Cravens

Steve Freeman

Selkirk Inspections, LLC Bonners Ferry, ID

Fairview Home Inspections Mandeville, LA

Matt Sapp ASAPP Home Inspections Middleton, ID

Fred Butler

Inspection Plus Florence, KY

Richard Johnson The Building Inspector Plymouth, MA

Omar Rohoman

Tommy Gasaway

Seffner, FL

Gasaway Home Inspections, Inc. Manteno, IL

David Alagna

Frank Herbik

Silver Spring, MD

Joel Pita Miami, FL

Matthew Schmitt North Palm Beach, FL The Cornerstone Inspection Group Atlanta, GA

First-In Home Inspections LLC Clark, CO

Eagle Eye Home Inspections Wichita, KS

Jorge Menendez

Crystal Valley Inspections Marble, CO

Bradley Reese

Carl Vos

Austin Ledy

Butler Home Inspections, Inc. Hillsboro, IL

Brandon Ansley

South San Juan Home Inspections LLC Pagosa Springs, CO

Tony Rollins

Pillar to Post/Young Team Portage, IN

Buyers Protection Group Melbourne Beach, FL

Daniel Quinn

Joshua Ray

Mark Stewart

Greg Forrister Greg’s Home Inspection LLC Cedartown, GA

Dylan Hendrix Hendrix Home Inspection LLC Fairmount, GA

Tyler Kelley Firefighter Home Inspections LLC Locust Grove, GA

5280 HomeCheck Inspections Westminster, CO

Wiley King

Scott Swetkovich

Mark Mann

WYCO Home Inspections LLC Brighton, CO

Maverick Inspections Lilburn, GA

Wiley King Consultant St. Marys, GA

Mitchell Mock Olive Tree Development LLC Savannah, GA

Pillar to Post Home Inspectors Oswego, IL

Mass Integrity Home & Pest Inspection LLC Hyde Park, MA Catonsville, MD

Chris Lee Michael Murdock

Parker Adams

Valley View Home Inspections LLC Boonsboro, MD

Indy Pro Inspection Service, Inc. Carmel, IN

Shanzhong (Sam) Yuan

David Carter Carter’s Home Inspections, Inc. Greenfield, IN

Ralph Cincush Total Property Inspections LLC Muncie, IN

Shawn Haymond Pinnacle Home Inspections LLC Indianapolis, IN

Steven Mix Shamrock Home Inspections LLC Woodburn, IN

Kylly Inspection Services LLC Gaithersburg, MD

Dan Patterson Dan Patterson Building Service LLC Prospect, ME

Neil Featherstone Clear Insight Home Inspections Fremont, MI

Brian Grill Sidney, MI

Roger Haller Haller’s Home Inspection Walker, MI

Bradley Nolan

Richard Hanton

Southern Indiana Inspectors Seymour, IN

Tim Pless

Sterling Heights, MI Spring Lake, MI


John Sheill

Todd Wilson

Adrian Ramos

Dean Rankin

Eric Riehl

Jose Diaz

Tru Michigan Home Inspection Clarkston, MI

Wilson’s Home Inspections LLC O’Fallon, MO

AmeriSpec Albuquerque, NM

WIN Home Inspection Elyria, OH

Exton, PA

Pasco, WA

Andrew Yonaka

Nicholas Schwartz

Ryan Franke

Mark Smith

Jerry Rivera

Kent Smith

MS Building Services LLC Hazel Park, MI

Lake St. Louis, MO

Concept One LLC Albuquerque, NM

Pillar to Post Ashland, OH

“Above the Rest” Inspection Pittsburgh, PA

Integrity Inspection Services Naches, WA

Joseph Vaglica

Norbert Newsum

Stanley Baptiste

Doug Shanks

Stephen Wanner

John Gonzalez

I.R.M. Services San Fernando, MS

BHIS Mastic, NY

HomeSpec LLC Sylvania, OH

Pottstown, PA

Lonnie (Trey) Jones

Mark Bonvissuto

Jeremy Slone

Expert Service LLC Hattiesburg, MS

Bonvo Home Inspection LLC Garden City, NY

Slone Inspection Services LLC Howard, OH

Inside and Out Home Inspections LLC Denver, PA

Straight Street Building/ Home Home Inspections Seattle, WA

Louis Chiappetta

Lee Sundin Sundin Services LLC Grandville, OH

Inspectstop Home Inspections LLC Washington, PA

Howard Handewith

Louis Chiappetta Home Inspection Eastchester, NY

James Delaney

Chris Ziehler

Jeffrey Bennett

Belbrook, OH

Full Service Home Inspections Summerville, SC

Tip Top Home Inspections LLC Shorelie, WA

Gateway Engineering & Surveying, Inc. Shelby Twp, MI

Davis Arcoren Diligent Home Inspection Services LLC Waconia, MN

Josh Ardolf Anchor Home Services Mankato, MN

Gary Bodick Buyer’s Advocate Home Inspection Coon Rapids, MN

Bill May Integrity Home Inspections of MN Minnetonka, MN

Riley Place Place Home Inspections Foley, MN

Sher Vang

Russell Hews HHI Hews Home Inspections Missoula, MT

Bryan West Honest Inspections Plus LLC Billings, MT

Eric Goglin Milestone Home Inspection LLC Raleigh, NC

Scott Kilby

T.J. Petersen

D L Brown Inspections LLC Piqua, OH

Quinten Coe

Tim Roberts

BPG St. Charles, MO

Roberts Home Inspection LLC Lincoln, NE

Ryan Fox Park Hills, MO

Steve Huggins Amerispec Home Inspections Kirkwood, MO

Jeff Jobe Guardian Residential Inspections Ionia, MO

John Keever Eagle Eye Home Inspections St. Peters, MO

Melvin Mohn BrickKicker O’Fallon, MO

Brent Rice Osage Beach, MO

Richard Shamp First Look Home Inspections Blue Springs, MO

Josh Thompson Jefferson City, MO

Todd Valentine

Cap City Property Inspections Columbus, OH

Jonathan Bertholf

St. Paul, MN

Home-Spect LLC Barnhart, MO

Hyde Anderson

Seaboard Home Inspections LLC Wilmington, NC TP3 Services Ashland, NE

Anthony Ferrendelli

Helderberg Home Inspection Services LLC Voorheesville, NY

Edward Hansalik Valid Home Inspections LLC Franconia, NH

Stephen Brosnan Precision Inspection Services Toms River, NJ

Richard Hockenbury RCH Home Inspections LLC Brick, NJ

Kyle Kaufmann Kaufmann Consultants LLC Madison, NJ

James Roese Jim Roese Home Inspections LLC Howell, NJ

Michael Sullivan American Dream Home Inspections LLC Scotch Plains, NJ

Columbus, OH

Danny Brown

Darius Brown Relmagine by S&D, Inc. Richmond Hts., OH

William Burkett Home Inspector ETC Dayton, OH

Douglas Curfman Sherlock Homes Independent Inspection Agency Wadsworth, OH

Richard Dankovic Elite 1 Home Inspections LLC Lexington, OH

Sean Edwards Euclid, OH

John Farmiloe The Home Detective Northfield, OH

Alexander Fleming WIN Home Inspection Columbia Station, OH

Jim Maurer OnSite Property Inspections Columbus, OH

Peter O’Brien

Terrell Nedrow Nedco Inspection Services LLC Moore, OK

Bobby Whipp Whipp Home Inspections Cache, OK

Steve Coats SDC Home Inspections Bend, OR

Nate Kay Cascadia Home Inspections Portland, OR

Kim Kramer Blueprint Home Inspections Portland, OR

Donald Platko Fulcrum Home Inspections LLC Redmond, OR

Indika Sugathadasa Portland, OR

James Domanico Lancaster, PA

Bill Haughery Precision Inspecting Lancaster, PA

Sherif Khalifa Pillar to Post Willow Grove, PA

Sean Lydon US Inspect Ridley Park, PA

Kenny McKee

Adam Weber

Rodney Yarbor

Lawrence Dunbar New Century Home Inspectors Goose Creek, SC

Brandon Thompson HomeTeam Inspection Service - Memphis Lakeland, TN

Darryl Grimaldi Home Inspector Pros Lake Stevens, WA Seattle, WA

Robert Hrouda

Levi Maus Vancouver, WA

Eugene Bialozor Sun City Inspections Sun Prairie, WI

Jason Geiger Priority Home Inspection Muskego, WI

Kris Schoonover

Tony Burks 1st Protection Home Inspection Dallas, TX

Louis Kraml Home Inspection Consulting PLLC Lewisville, TX

Drew McIlravey Fort Worth, TX

Brian Stephens

Skeleton Key LLC Hubertus, WI

Darren Smith Waukesha Home Inspections Waukesha, WI

Continues on Page 32

Austin Home Inspections Round Rock, TX

Marty Abrahamson Eastern Home Inspections Seaford, VA

Rachelle Jarrett Chantilly Plumbing & Remodeling Nokesville, VA

James Johnson Stephens City, VA

Dennis White Peninsula Home Inspections Newport News, VA

Thompson, PA

Peter Henderson

Michael Miller

White River Junction, VT

Pillar to Post Burgettstown, PA

Stephen Brent Steve’s Home Inspections Edmonds, WA

Ernie Marquez

Tipp City, OH

Raymond O’Brien

Paragon Home Inspections El Prado, NM

Charles Oris

East Norriton, PA

Philip Dahl

Johnstown, OH

Brandy Onega

Seattle, WA

AmeriSpec Harmony, PA

St. Louis, MO

31May 2017



New ASHI Inspectors

ASHI Chapter Education

As of March 1, 2017

SUNTECH 2017 Conference Suncoast ASHI Chapter When: May 5-6, 2017 Where: Hampton Inn 4017 Tampa Road Oldsmar, FL 34677 Topics: Crawl Space, Foundations, Electrical Code Change, Infrared Testing, Mold, Lightning Restoration and more Speakers: Mike Cramer, Scott DeMalteris, Sean Wise, Christopher Casey, Will Spates, Tim Toburen, Tom Miller CEUs 14 ASHI CEs Contact:  Kevin Koplar,

MAC ASHI Educational Event When: May 6, 2017 Where: Johns Hopkins University Rockville, MD 20850 Topics: Main and Sub-panel Issues, Inspecting the Exterior Envelope Speakers: Steve Thomas, Mark Parlee CEUs 8 ASHI CEs Contact:  Avi Levy,

Los Angeles/Ventura County & San Diego Thermography Event When: May 23-26, 2017, 8am-5pm Where: Downey Association of Relators Training Room 12073 Paramount Blvd. Downey, CA 90242 Topics: Level-1 Thermography ITC Certification Program Presenter: Bill Fabian, Monroe Infrared CEUs 32 ASHI CEs Contact:  Bob Guyer, guyerinspections

Please see Page 46 for ASHI-Ohio on the Road, Regional Education Series.

IMPORTANT REPORTER DEADLINES: • JULY ISSUE - 5/15/17 • AUGUST ISSUE - 6/15/17 • SEPTEMBER ISSUE - 7/15/17 • OCTOBER ISSUE - 8/15/17 • NOVEMBER ISSUE - 9/15/17 • DECEMBER ISSUE -10/15/17 • JANUARY 2018 ISSUE -11/15/17 • FEBRUARY 2018 ISSUE -12/15/17 The Reporter is produced 6-8 weeks ahead of the week it arrives in your mailbox. To have your chapter seminar listed in this section, email all information about your chapter seminar to: BE SURE TO INCLUDE ALL INFORMATION: seminar subject, when, where, CEUs & a link for more information or contact information.

What’s new on the ASHI Online Learning Center? 30 NEW modules are NOW available!! Enjoy interesting sessions that were recorded at IW 2017 and past IWs. Earn 2 ASHI CEs for each module.

Meta Wingard Wingard Services LLC Fairhope, AL

Raymond Wingard Wingard Services LLC Fairhope, AL

Adam Jones US Inspect Arvada, CO

Justin Willis Willis Home Inspections Thornton, CO

Peter Varljen Imagine the Potential LLC Marietta, GA

Stanley Sanger Sanger Home Inspections Lawrence, KS

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Edmund Rosenberger III R&R Home Inspection Middle River, MD

Steven Collier Collier Home Inspection Poughkeepsie, NY

JD Smeigh Strategic Enterprises LLC Annadale, VA

Patrick Woodward Truss Home Inspection Services LLC Fredericksburg, VA

Dutton Smith HomeSmith Services LLC Middlebury, VT

Bryan Bandy Blue Crab Inspections Abingdon, MD

New ASHI Certified Home Inspectors As of March 1, 2017

Darrin Swan

Edgar Martinez

Alabama Home InspeXions LLC Dothan, AL

Pro-Spect Inspection Services Dover, DE

Brian Lang

Rita Blue

Buyers Protection Group Phoenix, AZ

Hargrove Inspection Services Evans, GA

David Aronovici

Jeff Brazenas

4 Seasons Home Inspections Scotts Valley, CA

Inspect-All Services Conyers, GA

John Marshall North Bay Inspection Vallejo, CA

Davis Home Inspections LLC Dalls, GA

Brandon Overton

Douglas Schreiber

Hawkeye Home Inspections, Inc. Rocklin, CA

Harrell Home Inspection Norcross, GA

Nate Hollis

Billy Wood

RCPI - Residential Commercial Property Inspections Colorado Springs, CO

AllView Home Inspections Gainesville, GA

Kevin Power

Building Specs Hawaii LLC Kailua, HI

Coastal Home Inspection Mystic, CT



Scott Davis

Vance Morimoto

Continues on Page 38

ormation about ASHI visit:



SHED 1932



Mathey Meanly



P PERFECTION HOME INSPEC TORS Aubry Marcus Have you ordered from the ASHI Marketplace* before? It has moved to this link: with exciting new features and products! Brand Your Chapter

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> Create one look for all your marketing pieces

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> Purchase informative brochures imprinted with your logo and contact information to hand out to clients and agents alike

Permission to copy or reprint all or any part of the material contained in this brochure must be obtained by writing to ASHI and receiving express written permission.

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Whether youPhoto are an agent or a broker, le Courtesy of Jon Vacha, builder or real estate Home Standard attorney, your rep Inspection Services with every real estate transaction you p

protect that reputation by always recom Professional’s Guide Your Home Inspection home inspection. to Home Inspection Questions Answered

As a not-for-profit organization, ASHI has worked since 1976 to increase consumer

awareness regarding the importance of home

inspections and to enhance the professionalism of its membership. The Society has stringent

What is a home inspection?

requirements for achieving and continuing member status.

What is ASHI?

© 2016 American Society of Home Inspectors, Inc. Permission to copy or reprint all or any part of the material contained in this brochure must be obtained by writing to ASHI and receiving express written permission.


A ho objec of th syste roof

Why do I need a home inspection?

Distribution of this material is not an indication of membership in ASHI.

When do I call a home inspector? P-111 / 5-16

ASHI is an organization of independent, professional home inspectors quired to make a comrom the day they join to nspections in accordance Standards of Practice of Ethics, which prohibng in conflict-of-interest hat might compromise ctivity. Associates work o ASHI Certified InCI) status as they meet equirements, including comprehensive, written exam and performing m of 250 professional, ome inspections conaccrodance with the dard of Practice and hics. Mandatory continution helps the memberurrent with the latest in y, materials and profess.


P-110 / 5-16

Choose an ASHI Home nspector?

Order your FREE logo and visit our PRINT-ON-DEMAND SITE to promote your business!

Photo Courtesy of Jon Vacha, Home Standards Inspection Services

176308_P111 FAQ_Brochure_r1.indd 1

33May 2017



Member Benefit News Coming Soon…Faster Verification for Upward Mobility in ASHI! By Russell K. Daniels, ASHI Assistant Executive Director and Director of Membership Services & Chapter Relations,


•S  ubmit five (5) complete home inspection reports. > Select reports completed in five (5) different months within the last year. > Be sure that each report includes the client’s name, address and the date of the inspection. > Be sure that each report you submit complies with the ASHI Standard of Practice and Code of Ethics.

But did you know that approximately 90% of the inspectors who achieve one of these levels will stay in business and remain members of the ASHI family? That means it is worth your time and effort to pursue these ASHI designations.

Once you submit your reports on the portal, the verification process will take up to two weeks to complete. ASHI will notify you of the results as soon as a decision is made.

s an ASHI member, you are likely already aware that you must complete a verification process as part of the requirements to achieve the designations of ASHI Inspector or ASHI Certified Inspector.

However, if you are like most ASHI members, you probably wish that the verification process required to achieve these designations would take less time to complete.

When will this Online Verification Portal be available? This new process will be available soon. Be on the lookout for new information on the ASHI website and in other communications that will tell you when you can access this new benefit.

Well, we at ASHI have been listening and we have designed a plan to speed up the verification process.

Questions? Email any questions about this Online Verification Portal process to

Introducing an exciting new benefit: ASHI’s Online Verification Portal What is it? The Online Verification Portal, which will be available soon on the ASHI website, will assist you in completing the verification process more quickly and more efficiently. Our intent in creating this portal is to provide you with the high level of service that you desire from ASHI.

ASHI Event Calendar 

July 21-22, 2017 ASHI Board Meeting Des Plaines, IL

How will it work? Once this portal is up and running, the process of submitting your inspection reports will be easier and more efficient so that you can get through the verification process more quickly and move up to the next important designation level in ASHI.

 October 19-21, 2017 Leadership Training Conference and ASHI Board Meeting Des Plaines, IL

The portal will include simple instructions (such as those listed below) to help you submit your reports on the new portal. Sample instructions:

• Upload your reports to this portal to complete the verification process.


•R  eview the detailed instructions that describe how to start the verification process.

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

January 21-24, 2018 InspectionWorld® & ASHI Board Meeting Orlando, FL

FREE ASHI Member access to past IW sessions.


1. Go to

ASHI Certified Inspectors: 3,521

2. U  nder Education & Training

Inspectors/Logo: 223 Associates: 4,192 Retired Members: 103 Affiliates: 82

3. C  lick on:


Total: 8,121 Members as of 4/7/2017

ASHI MEMBERSHIP BENEFIT PROGRAMS ASHI-ENDORSED PROGRAMS ASHI’s E&O Insurance Program: Target Professional Programs 860-899-1862 ASHI Personal Lines Insurance Program: Liberty Mutual ASHI’s Protecting Home Inspectors From Meritless Claims Program: Joe Ferry – The Home Inspector Lawyer 855-MERITLESS (637-4853) ASHI Service Program BuildFax Tricia Julian, 877-600-BFAX x161 ASHI Customer Appreciation Program: Brent Skidmore, 864-386-2763 Brett Symes, 913-529-2683 LegalShield Joan Buckner, 505-821-3971 Dave Goldstein, 800-882-6242

May Anni versa ries

OneSource Solutions 877-274-8632 Eliab Sisay, 206-218-3920 ASHI Rebate Program Dana Fishman, 800-634-0320 x1417 ASHI-ENDORSED EXAMS ASHI Standard and Ethics Education Module Go to, click on Education and Training, then click on the link for the ASHI Standard of Practice Education Module. NHIE Exam: 847-298-7750 ASHI-ENDORSED TRAINING PROGRAMS ASHI@Home Training System 800-268-7070 The ASHI School Bonnie Bruno, 888-884-0440 PLATINUM PROVIDER Millionaire Inspector Community Mike Crow Mention that you are an ASHI member.

Thirty-five Years

Ten Years

Roger Hankey

Kelly Morris Brett Gordon Jim Keeling Angel Calle Robert Hintze Robert Klebanoff Ralph Bertke Bobby Fowler Ken Meyer Duane Younger Ron Larson Daniel Doyle Keith Rauch Ken Trudgeon Alvin Miller John Alastick Robert Conner Scott Whitbeck Brent Simmerman Dan Withrow James ‘’Med’’ Grubbs Neil Desmond Blane Hope Alan Miller

Thirty Years James Lewis

Twenty-five Years Al Atkison Daniel Bajus Richard Castell Michael DeLugan Andrew Innes Eric Lee John Moriarty Guy Occhino Stephen Sala Larry Webster Steven Zimmer

Twenty Years Timothy Bench Rob Cahill Joe Glas Skip Gray Andrew Griffith Michael Healy Mark Londner Kenneth Marchi John Peterson Michael Strom-Berg

Fifteen Years Don Arnold Bruce Barker George Basista Calvin Blankenship Mike Bouchillon Kenneth Colwell Ronald Cooley Kenneth Cornwell Stephen Friday John Heffner Timothy Hennelly Joseph Janosz Nancy Janosz Eddie Konrad Bobby Monk Will Morgan Richard Pickard Bill Smith Gary Taylor Nick Welty

35May 2017

Five Years Richard Caby Kevin Hanly Jake Williams Doug Johnson Timothy Ballard Russell Poe Michael Imsand Todd Peterson Dan Plotner Amanda Arndt J Paul Barrett Jon Tschetter Brian Healey Gary Somerville Tyler Stacy Gary Griffin William Halstead Joe Hill Mark Kissee Hans Norr Robert Milby Bill Rosser Steve McBride Donald Rick George Ury



Chapter News ASHI Chapters Gather for Spring Seminars in St. Louis and Western Washington St. Louis Chapter—Mixing BBQ with Education and Certification Submitted by Mark Goodman, St. Louis Chapter Vice President


n February, the St. Louis Chapter of ASHI held its annual spring seminar. Approximately 100 Associates, Inspectors, Certified Inspectors and Affiliate Members attended, as well as a few other inspectors from outside the St. Louis area. Our chapter’s spring seminar traditionally has been a one-day educational opportunity; however, this year, we offered a “bonus day” of education. So, on the first day of the two-day seminar, leaders from the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA) brought their Deck Evaluation/ Inspection Certification course to our chapter members. In a single day, 30 inspectors received training and became certified as NADRA Deck Evaluation Inspection-Certified Home Inspectors. The inspectors who took advantage of this training and certification course are now better prepared to report on decks, deck construction and deck safety issues. (See the article on Pages 8-12 for more information about NADRA training and certification.) On the second day of the seminar, the morning sessions included valuable information from three presenters who covered the topics of contract language, siding and

roofing inspections. The presenters were Todd Boehje, an attorney in St. Louis, and Lance Finland and Tony Hock from CertainTeed Corporation. Attendees learned about a wide variety of issues, including the effects of solar reflections on vinyl siding. If you’d like to learn more information about this issue, you can refer to these resources on the Vinyl Siding Institute’s website: • “Solar Reflection and Heat Distortion” ( and_Heat_Distortion.pdf) • “Understanding Concentrated Solar Relfection and Its Potential Damaging Effects,” which includes a video (www.vinylsiding. org/resource-library/understanding-csr/) After lunch, with our bellies full of barbecue from Bandana’s restaurant, Darryl McMillian from the St. Louis Masonry Institute kicked off our afternoon presentations. Darryl spoke about full masonry structures and masonry veneers. He described how to diagnose the different types of defects that inspectors see and explained their root causes. Victor Ingarten from Clean Sweep Chimney Service was the final speaker of the seminar. Victor came highly recommended by the Chimney Safety Institute of America and he discussed chimney construction, chimney inspections and gas logs. We learned that gas logs actually are made to be installed in wood-burning fireplaces as a way of converting the fireplaces to gas and they are not intended for metal-insert fireplaces. Victor wrapped up his talk with a live demonstration of thermal shock so we could see what happens when you heat a cracked clay chimney liner.

Throughout the two days of our annual spring seminar, attendees made and renewed connections with fellow national and local affiliate members. All in all, it was a great two days full of valuable information and camaraderie.

Western Washington Chapter— Combining Education with Vintage Vehicles Submitted by Joanne MacKintosh, ASHI Western Washington Executive Director


he ASHI Western Washington Chapter held its 2017 spring seminar at the renowned museum LeMay – America’s Car Museum, in Tacoma, WA. Chapter President Karl Neuffer welcomed the approximately 150 licensed home inspectors who attended this special all-day seminar. Bruce Barker, ASHI Certified Inspector and nationally known speaker, presented topics ranging from roof installations, gas appliances and legal issues. Having our seminar at this unique venue made it possible for attendees to mingle with each other during breaks while exploring the collection of vintage and unique vehicles. We also were treated to a special after-hours tour of the museum. Education Chair Brad Albin took the accolades for this successful event in stride and now he’s back at work planning our chapter’s next two-day seminar, scheduled for September 15-16, 2017, in Seattle, WA. No matter where you live across the nation, you are cordially invited to join us. The ASHI Western Washington Chapter welcomes all home inspectors! H

Left: LeMay - America’s Car Museum venue, Tacoma, WA Below: Brad Albin, Karl Neuffer, Bruce Barker at the Western Washington Spring Seminar


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

37May 2017



New ASHI Certified Home Inspectors As of March 1, 2017

Continued from Page 32

Lucas Weigle

Eric Wulff

John Tuck, Jr.

Anthony Kelly

True Home Inspections, Inc. Arlington Heights, IL

Castle Home Inspections St. Louis, MO

John Tuck Home Inspections Downingtown, PA

ProSpect Inspection Services LLC McLean, VA

Cory Funkhouser

Mike Bugge

Andrew Haynes

Mark Daughtry

Rhead Inspection Services, Inc. Rigby, ID

Maury Home Inspections LLC Bethesda, MD

Record Home Inspections Hasbrouck Heights, NJ

Residential Inspection Services Chattanooga, TN

Cascade West Home Inspections LLC Bellevue, WA

Robert Casey

Christopher Honingford

Ronald Rhead

Paul Tittsworth

Roger Frommer

Corey Olson

A1 Property Inspection Corp. Downers Grove, IL

Focused Property Inspections Standish, ME

Catawba Island Home Inspection Corp. Port Clinton, OH

Inspection Pro Services LLC Bluffdale, UT

Brandon Lybarger

Craig Everett

Vincent Wesney

Andrew Gardner

Home Inspection St. Louis Carlyle, IL

US Inspect Clarkston, MI

Zachary LaVoi

Erie Inspection Service, Inc. Norwalk, OH

Home Sweet Home Inspections LLC Fairfax, VA

GreyStone Inspection Services Wentzville, MO

On The Spot Inspection Seattle, WA

Thomas Dempsey Shamrock Building Inspection Consultants LLC Pewaukee, WI

Warming up to Heat Pumps, continued from Page 26 can be captured from the refrigerant. Coefficient of Performance Heat pumps typically use electric energy to drive the compressor and move air across the coil(s). When a heat pump is grabbing some heat (from the outdoor air, water loop, ground loop or another source) and delivering it into the house, it is consuming electrical energy. If the amount of heat delivered

to the house is just equal to the energy used to capture that heat, the coefficient of performance (COP) of the heat pump is 1.0. To put it another way: The COP is greater than 1.0 when we get more energy from our heat source than it costs us to collect the energy. The COP is less than 1.0 when we get less energy than we spend to get it. The COP is 1.0 when the cost equals the benefit. Because electric

resistance heat operates at a COP of roughly 1.0, it is better to shut off the heat pump and use electric heat when the COP drops below 1.0. Unlike air-source heat pumps, water-source heat pumps do not have the COP affected by exterior temperatures. Typically, they are able to maintain a COP greater than 3.0.

This concludes our introduction to water-source heat pumps. It was not possible to cover all the details of all the problems that can occur, but we provide descriptions of these in the ASHI@ Home Training Program (http:// Carson Dunlop is a consulting engineering firm devoted to home inspection since 1978 ( H


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

News from The ASHI School “Never Stop Learning!” Says 78-Year-Old Student of the Mold and Moisture Damage Comprehensive Class By Kevin Cuyler, Instructor


t was very exciting for me to teach the February 2017 session of The ASHI School’s Mold and Moisture Damage Comprehensive Class. One reason this class was extra-special was that we had the largest group of students that we’ve ever had attend this class. Another reason was that, among the group of eight great inspectors, there was an especially inspirational student, Jerry Marshall. At the age of 78 years, Jerry now holds the distinctive honor of being The ASHI School’s “most mature” student and I’d like to share with you the wise words he said to me: “Never stop learning!” Why the great interest in hunting down mold and moisture damage? Well, just look at all the volumes of information available and the interest related to this topic. In general, we simply spend more time inside than outside. This means that our interior living environments are becoming more polluted than the air outside. For home inspectors, having the knowledge and tools to assess, inspect and test for these concerns has become paramount in importance.

Evaulating & using the meters

Why not join us for the next Mold and Moisture Damage Comprehensive Class? You’ll find out firsthand how we learn about this topic, and you’ll get to participate in the fun we have in class and in the lab work we do. Contact Bonnie Bruno at The ASHI School (888-884-0440, for more information about when the next Mold and Moisture Damage Comprehensive Class is scheduled. H Kevin Cuyler is an instructor for The ASHI School. He is president of Go Above Board Environmental Inspection Dynamics, leaders in quality mold inspections, testing and education. Visit his website at

Using the temp. gun & hygrometer

4-Square Lab object: What's in each square-Where's the Moisture?

t out

The video is not always

Where is moisture hiding? Where is that that moisture what it looks like!- hidding?

Learning air spore trap & direct tape lift sampling Instructor: Kevin Cuyler

Left to right: Instructor Kevin Cuyler, Sidad Beebee, Jonathan Walker, Bill Kent, Jerry Marshall, Henry Sander, Jared Chapman, Tim Foreman, John Yaroch Sidad Beebee

Jonathan Walker

Bill Kent

Jerry Marshall

Henry Sander

Jared Chapman

Tim Foreman

Mold & Moisture Damage Comprehensive Class: 2/25,26,27/17

39May 2017

John Yaroch



Solving a Basement Leak Puzzle Involving Brick Veneer

Smart Inspector Science

By Tom Feiza, Mr. Fix-It, Inc.

Figure 1. Basement leaks, top of wall


ome inspectors guarantee that the basement will be dry—at least, that’s what buyers may think. In reality, inspectors must identify any signs of moisture intrusion and advise the buyer on what steps to take. Understanding how water intrusion occurs will make you a better home inspector. When Basement Leaks Indicate a Brick Problem Take a look at the top of the block basement wall in Photo 1. Staining at the top of the wall almost always indicates a surface water issue. In this case, water on the surface of the soil is entering the block from the outside (Figure 1). But the pattern shown in Photo 1 is a little different: lower on the block and uniform. Hmmm. The inspector certainly should identify this as an abnormal entrance of water into a home. Does the inspector stop there or take a look outside? Because I was serving as a consultant to help the owner resolve this problem, I investigated the situation a little more than I would have during a typical home inspection. What I Found Outside The owner had been trying to solve the problem with grading, gutters and extended downspouts, but the leaking and staining Photo 2. Brick veneer with no flashing

Photo 1. Basement stains, top of wall

continued. Although surface drainage was done correctly, soil and bark were piled high against the brick veneer. The owner had little choice with this situation because at the placement of an adjacent, high driveway. The gutter was clear. Downspouts discharged into an underground flex tube, which had just been replaced and was working. Compounding the problem were small roof overhangs over the 1.5-story brick surface. The brick wall faced north, straight into the direction of most wind-driven rain. The brick became saturated every time it rained. Digging up soil at the base of the brick veneer, down to the top of the block wall, revealed no visible flashing and no weeps (Photo 2). Ouch. How They Should Have Built It Remember that all siding can leak, including wood, vinyl, brick and faux stone. Behind brick veneer, there should be 1 inch of air space and at least one layer of a moisture-resistant


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

barrier. The barrier should be terminated at flashing to the exterior, with weeps to drain water and allow ventilation (Figure 2). This wall was built incorrectly: no flashing, no weeps and the brick veneer buried in the soil. If there is a flashing, it does not extend beyond the face of the brick (Figure 3). Compounding the problem was a lack of overhangs to stop rain from saturating the brick on this north-facing wall. Coming up with Solutions The best solution would be to remove the brick and rebuild the area properly by raising the top of the basement wall, add a moisture barrier with a proper air gap behind the brick and install proper flashing with weeps. A less expensive alternative would be to remove the lowest brick portions, install a flashing under the moisture barrier in

Figure 2. Brick veneer flashing

sections and add weeps. If there is a moisture barrier in place, the area should be backfilled with gravel to allow drainage and drying. But owners always want the cheapest solution. So, we will spray the brick with a breathable sealer that rejects bulk moisture, backfill the outside with gravel, cross our fingers and monitor the area for leaks. A Final Tip As a professional home inspector, you should understand the many ways in which moisture can enter homes and inform your customers of any concerns you notice. Never guess at a solution to a problem if you are not sure of the answer. Unfortunately, brick veneer often is installed incorrectly, but luckily, it doesn’t always leak because it may be protected by wide overhangs and may not face wind-driven rain. H Tom Feiza has been a professional home inspector since 1992 and has a degree in engineering. Through, he provides high-quality marketing materials that help professional home inspectors boost their business. Copyright © 2015 by Tom Feiza, Mr. Fix-It, Inc. Reproduced with permission.

Figure 3. Masonry flashing problems

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41May 2017



Postcards from the Field

NEW POSTCARDS EMAIL!! Please send your name, city, state, photos, headings & captions to: Note: By sending in your postcard(s), you are expressly granting ASHI the right to use the postcard and your name with it in the ASHI REPORTER and in other publications ASHI may select.

They Used the Wrong Snake

Rooftop Pool

Richard Aiello I-Spy Home Inspection LLC Winthrop, MA

Michael West Integrity Inspection/BPG Allentown, PA

Note to Self: No One Will Notice...

Chris Kennedy Kennedy Home Inspection, LLC Cumming, GA

Doug Baker Five Star Home Inspections Leavenworth, KS

Stairway to Hell Whew! That was a Long Flight

Matthew Steger WIN Home Inspection Elizabethtown, PA 42

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Gordon Guffey Brewer Inspection Services Manchester, MO


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Postcards from the Field DIY Water Heater 1

DIY Water Heater 2

Steve Hier Miller-Hier Enterprises Inc. Chicago, IL

Greg Mathias Catmando Real Estate Services, Inc. Lewisburg, PA

That’s NOT an Ash Tray...

NEW POSTCARDS EMAIL!! Please send your name, city, state, photos, headings & captions to: Note: By sending in your postcard(s), you are expressly granting ASHI the right to use the postcard and your name with it in the ASHI REPORTER and in other publications ASHI may select.

Water Heater Venting

Stephen Smith Top Notch Home Inspections Raynham, MA

Urban Landlords Collection: Gag Reflex Folder

Margaret Conable Elm City Home Inspections LLC New Haven, CT

Spellcheck: None? Really?

Jim Young Home Pro Professional Home Inspections Cleveland Heights, OH 44

ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Ken Meyer Portico Home Inspection LLC Portland, OR

45May 2017



ASHI Chapter Education: 2017 event schedule


o better serve its’ members and the Ohio home inspector community, the Ohio Chapter is expanding their number of regional evening meetings. The two to three hour meetings, to be held quarterly in three regions, will supplement the chapter’s multi-day annual Home Inspector Expo and their full day seminars. The regional activities are the responsibility of Regional Representatives who are an integral part of the chapter’s leadership to coordinate regional activities with chapter officers and committees. The chapter anticipates these meetings will advance individual inspector competence, increase cooperation and camaraderie among inspectors, strengthen local public outreach, promote ASHI and thereby support continued chapter growth.


On the Road


Central Region: May 18

• There is a $10 fee

Contact Persons: David Argabright (Ohio ASHI Central Representative) Phone: 614-801-9444 email:

• Food and non-alcholic beverages will be provided • Earn 2 ASHI CEUs Register and payment online at • Select Store from the left side • Then Education/Dues to get to ASHI On the Road (Dates subject to change) Forrest Lines - Ohio ASHI Chair of Education

Northern Region: Contact Persons: Rod Whittington (Ohio ASHI Northern Representative) Phone: 216-952-8500 email: George Basista (Ohio ASHI Northern Representative) Phone: 330-565-3760 email: Next Presentations: June 27 and September 21 location and topics TBA


ASHI Reporter • May 2017

Merwyn Bowdish (Ohio ASHI Central Representative) Phone: 740-215-7201 email: Topic: TBD Location: Rusty Bucket, 7800 Olentangy River Rd, Worthington (Columbus if using GPS) Time: 5:30 pm-8:30 pm Next Presentations: August 18 and November 16; locations and topics TBA

Southern Region: July 20 Contact Person: Chris Heywood (Ohio ASHI Southern Representative) Phone: 513-515-9799 email: Topic: Structural System Inspections - Presented by Rick Graman, President of GEI-Engineering Location: Cincinnati State Evendale Campus 10100 Reading Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45241 Time: 5:30 pm-8:30 pm Next Presentation: October 2 Topic: Carbon Monoxide Combustion Testing & Meter Calibration - Presented by Rudy Leatherman, Technical Training Mgr., HBB PRO. Location: Cincinnati State Evendale Campus 10100 Reading Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45241 Time: 5:30 pm-8:30 pm

Ohio ASHI thanks the speakers, vendors and all who attended the 2017 Ohio ASHI Inspector Expo. Because of YOU, it was a huge success!! 2017 Ohio Inspector Expo Vendors Advanta Clean (Lunch Sponsor) Allen Insurance Benchmark Labs Bright Guy Blackburns Chimney Services Corporation to Ohio Appalachian Development (COAD) EMSL Gem Marketing Glass Guru HomeGauge Inspection Software Home Wizard Inspection Contracts Inspector Pro Insurance Inspector Services Group LiftMaster Monroe Infrared Mike Crow (Lunch Sponsor) Ohio Basement Authority (Lunch Sponsor) Palm-Tech Inspection Software RadaLink Roof Revivers (Vendor Reception Sponsor) RTCA WEGETTHEMOLDOUT

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ASHI Reporter • May 2017

May 2017 Reporter  

Home inspection news and tips for inspectors, home owners and realtors.

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