Heat Pumps and Illegal Plumbing in Fleetwood, Surrey – Featured Home Inspection

This week’s featured inspection is a large home in the Fleetwood area of Surrey.

The home was built in 2008 and featured a Heat Pump / High Efficiency gas furnace HVAC system.

The heat pump condensing unit

The heat pump condensing unit

The condensing unit was unlevel, which can cause problems with the compressor. I recommended the client remove the slope to prolong the compressor life. Otherwise the heating system was in great shape. TIP: If you have an A/C or Heat Pump unit in your home, change your filter monthly. Those little fins on the evaporator coil in the furnace get plugged easily.

This drain vent still had the cap on.

This drain vent still had the cap on.

Here’s a classic defect that always makes me laugh – the builders never removed the protective cap from the vent stack. This stack hadn’t been venting properly for over five years! This is something that I have seen code inspectors miss many times. It’s also a great reason to walk the entire roof, and not just check from the end of a ladder.

An illegal s-trap

An illegal S-trap

Someone had added a bathroom in the basement, but did not have a professional plumber perform the work – this drain line has got to go. An S-trap (Shaped like a sideways “S”) is actually a safety hazard – siphoning of the water can allow sewer gas (methane, sulfur gas) into the home. The owners had a large family and I always make a point of showing them any safety hazards after the inspection.

Double-Tapped Breakers at the Sub Panel

Double-Tapped Breakers at the Sub Panel

Finally, opening up the sub-panel revealed a double-tapped circuit. Double tapping (circled in red) is when two conductors share the same breaker terminal, which can overheat and cause a fire. This will actually be an easy fix, since there’s lots of room in the panel to add an additional breaker.

The client was thankful for the inspection and will be moving in a few months from now.

About the Author DavidFairbairn

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 david@fairbairninspections.com today!

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