We were called to inspect a unit in this condo in Central Burnaby, BC. The building was constructed in 1979 and had recently undergone a number of upgrades such as new windows, re-piping, roof, and boiler / hot water tanks.
As part of our standard inspection process, the main panel cover was removed and the wiring carefully checked. Immediately it was apparent that the neutral service conductor was scorched and overheating.
Closer investigation revealed a lack of antioxidant paste at the terminal. When an aluminium conductor is connected, an anti-oxidant paste should always be used. This is likely the cause of the failure.
Thermal Imaging of the conductor confirmed that the connection was extremely hot (the temperature in Celsius is marked below):
This connection posed a very real fire hazard, and the buyer arranged for an electrician to correct the issue right away.
Author David Fairbairn is a certified, licensed home inspector serving Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. He has been featured in the media and has contributed to "24" Newspaper, and Global TV. He has spent years working with residential and commercial building projects, and holds a Power Engineering License in BC. Why not give him a call for your next Home Inspection? Call 604 395-2795 or email firstname.lastname@example.org today!