The Top 20 Home Defects Found During Home Inspections?  

Do You Know the Top 20 Most Common Defects Found in Home Inspections in Southwest Georgia? 


Not everyone knows the most common issues we see on a regular basis that show up as deficiencies in Home Inspections. Many of the issues could remedied with simple proactive maintenance – while some do require some level of professional assistance. Being aware of these common deficiencies can help sellers truly prepare their home for pre-listing and can also help buyers be aware of these issues during the home viewing process:


Ground Drainage – Proper Positive Slope

Worn Out Shingles / Roof Protrusion Boot Deficiencies

Chimney Flashing and Roof Flashing Deficiencies

Severely Weathered or Water Damaged Overhang/Soffit/Exterior Trim

Lack of Adequate Guttering System

Vegetation Against Exterior Structure – Tree Limbs Over Roof Surfaces

Weathered Windows & Caulking and Sealer is Severely Damaged or Missing

Doors That Need Adjusting and Servicing

Neglect or Moisture Damage to Brick Porches/Patio’s/Decks

Mold, Water, or Moisture Damage to Framing or Floor Systems

Improper or Inadequate Plumbing Under Sinks

Electrical Panel / Distribution Panel Wiring & Other Issues

Damaged or Improper Electrical Boxes, Receptacle, or Switches

Electrical Fixtures and or Bulb Deficiencies

No AFCI / GFCI Protection at Bedrooms / Bathrooms and Other Wet Areas

Smoke Alarms / CO Alarms

Lack of Proper Maintenance of HVAC Equipment & Filters

Badly Neglected & Lack of Proper Vapor Barrier in Crawl Space

Old Cast Iron and Galvanized Waste Disposal & Water Supply Distribution Pipes

Dangerous DYI / Unprofessional Construction Projects


If you are considering selling your home or if you are buying a home – contact Sentry Home Inspections, LLC today for the best Home Inspection in Southwest Georgia!

229 449-8482

Does Your Home Have Defective Roofing Shingles?

You would likely not even know it. However, If you have visible, non weather-related damage to your roof, you most likely have defective shingles. There are currently thousands of roofs with Atlas Chalet and CertainTeed shingles that are deteriorating at a much quicker pace than the industry standard. This is due to manufacturer defects. These defects were so widespread that many lawsuits were filed over the past few years, lawsuits which eventually became large class-action lawsuits. Georgia had more of these shingles installed than any other State in the USA.

So, what do the defects look like? The defective shingles deteriorate in similar patterns including cracking, curling, pitting, blistering, balding and severe de-granulation.

These shingles, if present on your home, can encourage water penetration due to material failure. If you are going to be buying a home, the presence of these shingles can stop that process as insurance companies will not cover the roofs.  If you are selling a home with these shingles present buyers are not going to assume the innate risk and potential future outlay so the sale of your home could be abruptly terminated – unless, of course, you agree to cover contingency replacement of the shingles.

Make sure your home inspector is very well trained and familiar with roofing materials as well as any performance issues or defects with material composition and life span. Especially any shingles that have had manufacturer recalls or class action lawsuits. If they’re not, that could cost you thousands of dollars in unexpected repair and replacement cost as both a home buyer or a home seller.

If you are looking for the best home inspection in Albany, Leesburg or the Southwest Georgia Region – call Sentry Home Inspection Services today: 229 449-8482.

We’ve Got Your Back!

Is There Asbestos In Your Home? Is Your Family Safe?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber mined from the earth. It is heat and chemical resistant and is easily formed into just about any shape or product. It was used in more than 3,000 different construction materials and manufactured products, including many found in residential homes.

Typically – in residential settings these materials can be found in: cement, roof shingles, ceiling tiles, sprayed-on ceilings, patching compounds, attic and wall insulation containing vermiculite, siding, floor tiles, HVAC insulation, plumbing insulation/blanketing and many other sealant/insulation applications.

Asbestos can be identified in both a friable or non-friable state. Friable asbestos can be easily crumbled or reduced to a powder and can become airborne. This type of asbestos poses the greatest danger to the environment and exposure health. Non-friable asbestos is more tightly bound with another material and its fibers cannot easily be made airborne unless they are sanded, cut, or sawed.

When disturbed, asbestos breaks down into microscopic small fibers up to 1,200 times thinner than a human hair. These tiny fibers easily become airborne and when inhaled, many of the fibers will become trapped in the mucous membranes of the nose and throat where they can then be removed, but some may pass deep into the lungs, or, if swallowed, into the digestive tract. Once they are trapped in the body, the fibers can cause health problems such as mesothelioma, lung cancer and severe/chronic asbestosis. There is no known safe level of asbestos exposure, and medical research indicates these fibers can cause severe lung diseases and cancer in 10 to 30 years after the initial asbestos exposure.

If your home was built prior to the 1980’s there is a high likelihood that may contain asbestos in some form. It is vitally important to know if there is asbestos-containing materials in your home – and if so – risk exposure – so you can protect your health as well as your family’s.

Sentry Home Inspection Services is nationally certified to conduct residential and commercial asbestos survey’s and inspections. If you need to get an asbestos inspection in Albany, Leesburg and the Southwest Georgia Region we can help take care of all your survey, inspection and testing needs. This service establishes the presence of asbestos, sample collection, risk assessment and certified laboratory testing results.


For More Information on the dangers of asbestos please visit the Environmental Protection Agency at:


20 Things Home Sellers Do To Hide Issues During Home Inspections

For most of us our home may be the single largest investment we will ever make. So it makes sense to hire the very best home inspector you can find to make sure that you are do everything possible to ensure you’ll have all of the unbiased factual information you need to make an informed investment decision.

While for the most part, one would like to think that all home sellers are completely forthcoming and completely honest about their home – unfortunately, the truth is, some dishonest or unscrupulous sellers use tricks in an intentional attempt to hide issues before and during the home inspection process. At Sentry Home Inspection Services we are well versed in identifying these tricks to determine if these were attempts to properly maintain and enhance a home or if these attempts are in fact trying to hide something.

Here are 20 Common Tricks Home Seller’s Use and What You Can Do To Disclose Them:

  1. Re-Roofing a Home: There are many reasons why a home may have a new roof and the presence of a new roof doesn’t necessarily mean that a seller is trying to hide anything. Especially in the case of homeowners insurance claims and proactive upkeep. However, sometimes a seller will re-roof a home in an attempt to hide long term neglect, which can mean sustained water intrusion, mold and air quality issues. Make sure your seller is able to produce all necessary roof information and history, and ask your home inspector to closely scrutinize this area.
  2. Use of Roof Sealant On Flashing, Vents and Chimneys: In many instances, properly used roofing sealant is a viable means of producing a water tight envelope that prevents rain water from entering a home. However, in more cases than not – roof sealant is often used as a quick, easy and cheap stop gap attempt to hide leaks and avoid performing proper repairs. In this situation also make sure your seller is able to produce all necessary roof repair information and history, and ask your home inspector to closely scrutinize these items.
  3. Painting Problem Areas: em areas. Fresh paint itself is not necessarily a tall tell sign of dishonesty, as it can simply indicate routine annual maintenance and pride in ownership. However, new paint can also be an intentional attempt to cover water stains, mold, deteriorating wood, insect problems and much, much more. An experienced home inspector knows what to look for to identify signs of “hiding problems.”
  4. Recently Completed Remodeling & Construction: Signs of recent remodeling or renovations may simply be a capital improvement effort on the part of the seller to increase the home’s value. However, this can also be an attempt to hide issues with the home. You will want to ask the seller why the work was done, who completed the work and ask for copies of receipts and building permits for the project(s) – especially with basement and exterior renovation projects. Also make sure you give your home inspector a  head’s up.
  5. Resurfacing of Exterior or Interior Foundation Areas: Recent resurfacing or refacing of a homes exterior foundation areas may very well simply be an aesthetic appearance effort on behalf of a seller. But it can also be an attempt to hide severe or long term water intrusion problems, settlement problems or structural support issues. Make sure your inspector is diligent in inspecting those areas.
  6. Windows That Have Been Heavily Sealed, Caulked and Repainted: While it is important to maintain the exterior areas of the homes windows, excessive or heavy sealant, caulking and paint could indicate an attempt to hide severely weathered, damaged or rotten areas of windows. Make sure you ask the seller about any exterior window work and ask your home inspector to carefully scrutinize each window.
  7. Newly Stained or Resealed Deck:  While regular deck maintenance is a routine part of home ownership and protecting an investment, occasionally seller’s will attempt to hide deck issues with a fresh resurfacing. An experienced professional home inspector will know what to look for and how to find those hidden issues that can be both structural as well as safety issues with a deck. Make sure your home inspector is certified in the Residential Code for Prescriptive Wooden Deck Construction.
  8. Re-landscaped Grounds Around The Foundation: Re-landscaping a yard can not only improve the exterior aesthetic appearance of a home but it also add property value as well – so long as it is done for those reasons. Unfortunately, many times, seller’s will have landscaping done around a home’s foundation areas to disguise rainwater run off issues as well as significant water intrusion. Make sure you ask about any newly completed landscaping projects and get the contact information on who competed the work. Make sure you mention any concerns to your home inspector because they know what to look for to identify water intrusion issues inside foundation areas.
  9.   Removing Evidence of Damage. Occasionally, it becomes necessary to sometimes replace exterior components f a home such as siding, wooden overhang, soffits, window encasement’s, etc.. Sometimes, sellers have this work completed just prior to listing the home on the market as a maintenance effort. Unfortunately, sellers sometimes try to hide damage from water, insects and more by removing any sign of trouble. If you notice recent random replacement of exterior elements, it could mean a deliberate attempt to hide long term issues. Make sure your home inspector is “certified” in Thermal Imaging and Infrared detection.
  10. Non Disclosure of The Home’s Major Systems Age(s): A responsible home owner is going to be able to disclose the age of the home’s HVAC system(s) and water heater. If a seller doesn’t know or doesn’t disclose this information, this could be an indicator that the systems are at or near the end of their average life span. One sign that the seller is trying to hide something is when they’ve disclosed only the bare minimum of information. As a buyer you should always ask to see manuals, warranties and receipts for annual servicing – repairs and replacements. Always make sure you ask your home inspector to conduct a thorough analysis of each to ensure they’re all in good working order. Your home inspector should be able to disclose the age of the units regardless of whether or not the seller does.
  11. Pests: Never assume that just because a a home looks beautiful that there are not pests that have taken up residence in the home. Responsible sellers should be able to disclose any pests issues, produce receipts for exterminations services and provide a copy of the home’s Termite Bond. If you have a sneaking suspicion there are pests taking up residence in your new home, don’t risk it — tell your home inspector so they can be aware of your concerns and always have a comprehensive wood destroying pests inspection completed by a licensed exterminator prior to closing.
  12. Contaminated Grounds: One major potential issue that many people do not think about is possible grounds contamination, especially for homes built before 1970. Homes from this time frame used to be heated by fuel oil. It was not unusual at all for homeowners to have large oil tanks installed in the basement or underground in an effort to conserve space and hide the unsightliness of a huge metal tank. Of course, fuel oil can contaminate the soil around it and having a fuel oil tank removed is very expensive. Because of this, many homeowners try to hide the fact that such a tank exist. If you see metal pipes sticking up out of the ground or observe areas that appear to be sunk in for no obvious reason – you want to make sure that you ask the seller about the possibility of a buried fuel oil tank.
  13. Disguising Problems With New Carpet: New carpet can really enhance the interior appearance of a home, make the home seem more inviting and doesn’t mean that a seller is trying to hide anything. But there is always the chance that they could be. Make sure you carefully review all seller disclosure information. Your professional home inspector should know how to check the “unseen” potential issues hiding under the carpet.
  14. Placing Decor Items In-front Of Problem Areas:  Sneaky sellers will block problem areas with artwork, shelves, entertainment centers and other furniture or personal items. Stacked up moving boxes against walls are another sneaky attempt by unscrupulous sellers to hide indications of damage. Make sure you make note of any thing that seems unusual or is blocking visual observation of areas inside the home, Don’t be shy ask the seller to move any such obstacles.
  15. Trying to Hide Appliances That Are Damaged Or Do Not Work Properly: Many home owners will try to disguise the fact that an appliance has issues or needs repairing by doing things such as placing many pots and pans on a range or cook-top prior to the home inspection, filling the dishwasher with dishes or filling the refrigerator ice maker bucket with store brought ice. If something doesn’t look quiet right with an appliance to you – make sure your home inspector knows before hand.
  16. Seller’s Restricting Access: Uncooperative sellers who make the home inspection process difficult or attempt to restrict a full comprehensive inspection in any way should raise am immediate Red Flag. If you are experiencing this as the home buyer, you may want to consider moving on to find another home.
  17. Seller’s Who Choose To Not Know About Potential Issues: Under the law, a seller cannot be held liable for problems he or she didn’t know about. Thus, many sellers, actually most sellers, won’t have mold, radon water quality, or indoor air quality test or inspections completed prior to listing the home on the market – why because they don’t have too and they don’t want to know. This makes it even more important to have these inspections performed as a buyer. That way, you know for sure – that your investment is secure and that your family’s health is safe.
  18. Seller’s Who Choose Not To Disclose Previous Property Usage: Sometimes seller’s refrain from mentioning potentially damaging property usage information. For example – a seller may not disclose that the home was a rental home for a period of time, acquired through repossession/foreclosure or was the site of criminal activity. Many times – past usage disclosure can provide many clues about things that need to be closely scrutinized during the inspection process. Don’t hesitate to talk to neighbors or local police about any known home history.
  19. Showing You A Home Inspection They Just Had Performed: While home sellers can certainly have a pre-listing home inspection performed in order to help them prepare the home for sale – be very leery of a seller who tries to convince you don’t need to waste your money on another home inspection – you can simply use theirs. Whether they already have a home inspection or not – hire a professional home inspector to inspect the home for you!
  20. Downplaying Concerns That You Raise. If a home seller tries to brush off your inquiries and questions you need to consider that a red flag. Sellers will often do this to avoid admitting that they have not kept the home in good maintenance or repair condition. If this happens to you, look for signs of questionable maintenance such as dirty air filters, dirty HVAC equipment, broken appliances, rusted over water heaters or degraded masonry work. also, make sure you ask for documentation when and if repairs were performed.

So Don’t Be Fooled!

If you have any reason to suspect that a home seller is being less than completely open and forthcoming with you about the home you are looking at – make sure you share that information with your home inspector.

When it comes to buying a new home, don’t limit your conversations or questions to just agents involved or the sellers. Talk to the neighbors in the neighborhood and ask questions like: Have you seen any repair trucks here lately? Why are the sellers moving? Are you aware of any problems in the neighborhood? What is the crime rate in this community? Etc…


Why It’s So Important to Change Your Air Filter

Air filters are a central, but often under-appreciated part of a central HVAC system. They don’t just filter out bits of pollen and dust that would otherwise circulate through the home and lower indoor air quality. They also provide a first line of defense against larger objects such as bits of loose insulation being pulled into the system where they could cause damage or present a fire risk. But if you don’t change your air filter regularly, it can turn against you. Clogged air filters are the number one cause of HVAC system failure.

As the filter catches more and more of the natural particulate pollution of your home – dust, mold and fungal spores, pet dander, fabric fibers, etc. – the fine mesh through which air passes becomes denser. This means that if you don’t change your air filter regularly, air can’t pass through as readily.

Because air doesn’t circulate as quickly, particulates can settle in ducts and on household surfaces when they’d usually be carried into the system and filtered. It’s a lot more cost effective to change your air filter than it is to schedule a duct cleaning, but dirty ducts can result in an ongoing drain to your system efficiency and a long-term source of pollutants in your air supply.

It’s best to change your air filter every month, especially if you have pets or live in a high-pollen area. Air filters are generally inexpensive and changing your air filter is a simple task that doesn’t require a professional hand. In most cases, you should simply be able to slide the old filter out and slide a new one in.

Check your unit’s documentation to determine what size and type of filter you need, and what minimum efficiency reporting value (MERV) range the furnace should fall into. A high MERV filter with a very tight mesh may be too much for some units, resulting in a situation a lot like a clogged air filter, even just after you’ve changed it.

According to the Department of Energy, replacing a dirty filter with a clean one can reduce energy consumption by as much as 15%.

How Long Does a Home Inspection Take?

Generally speaking, a detailed professional home inspection by a certified inspector will take anywhere from two to five hours to complete – if it is done correctly. During the home inspection your inspector should insect the following:

  1. Roof
  2. Attic
  3. Exterior & Grounds
  4. Windows
  5. Doors
  6. Driveway/Walkway
  7. Electrical System
  8. Plumbing System
  9. Central Air System
  10. Heating System
  11. Walls
  12. Ceilings
  13. Floors
  14. Foundation
  15. Basement
  16. Structural components

There is no definitive time frame for home inspections as each home is unique and the time involved can vary for many reasons, such as total square footage (or area) of the home, age of the home, age of major systems, number of major systems in the home, overall condition of the property, how accessible certain areas are, a joining structure to be inspected, pool/hot tub inclusion, additional ancillary inspection services requested (mold, radon, air quality, water quality, lead-based paint, etc), weather conditions, questions that clients ask, etc.

The bottom line to remember here – is that you want your home inspector to take as long they need to ensure that you receive a first-rate comprehensive inspection. After all – who do you really want to hire – the home inspector that does the most or fastest inspections – or the home inspector that does the most comprehensive inspections? It’s your money – and you will get what you pay for.

So, if you are looking for the best Home Inspection in Albany, Leesburg, and the Southwest Georgia Region – let us take the stress and worry over your home inspection away! At Sentry Home Inspections, LLC We Inspect Your Home As If We Were Moving Our Own Family In. We’ve Got Your Back!


Important Clothes Dryer Maintenance & Safety Tips

One major area of homeowner awareness that normally does not receive a great deal of attention is the importance of proper maintenance of your clothes dryer. Properly maintained clothes dryers can provide years of safe efficient service. However, un-maintained clothes dryers are not only a major energy waste but are a major source of house fires. In fact, more than 10,000 clothes dryer fires occur every year in USA.

According to firefighters, the most common reason for starting a fire in a house is in the back of the clothes dryer and inside the exhaust duct, which extracts hot air and the combustion gases. When left un-maintained all the ingredients for starting a fire are there: extreme heat, fresh oxygen, plus a highly flammable fuel: lint.

Normal use of the clothes dryer produces small amounts of lint, which accumulates in the dryer lint trap. Regular cleaning of the lint trap ensures adequate air flow and increases the operating efficiency of the dryer.

Even with a regularly cleaned lint trap, over time lint builds up in the back of the dryer, exhaust ducts and cavities. This starves the dryer from having safe adequate air flow and raises the operating temperature of the dryer – causing overheating. With hot air created by a heating element or an open flame, dryer lint can easily catch on fire. Any occasional overheating is a possible fire risk in your home.

At the factories, manufacturers rigorously inspect, certify and test dryers before they are manufactured and sold to ensure that safety standards are met. Once the dryer machine is installed at home, a basic preventative maintenance and cleaning is necessary to keep it in good working order. If the dryer and its venting ducts are not periodically and properly cleaned, lint accumulation and reduced airflow feed on each other to provide conditions ripe for starting a fire.

Here are Some Common Symptoms of Lint Accumulation:

Is your dryer taking twice as long to get through one load of laundry?

Do you need to do an extra cycle just to get your fabrics dried up and ready for folding?

Is your laundry hotter than normal at the end of the drying cycle?

Does your dryer feel hot when you touch it?

Is your outside exhaust vent flap only partially opening?

Does your laundry area or room feel more humid than it normally does?

Have you noticed any hot or burnt smells?


If you are experiencing any of these situations discontinue use of your clothes dryer and have it inspected by a qualified technician immediately.


Here are Some Simple Safety Suggestions to Keep Your Dryer and Home Safe!

  • Always clean the lint screen/filter before or after drying each load of clothes
  • Never run your clothes dryer at night while you are asleep
  • Never run your clothes dryer while you are out of the house
  • Keep the area around your dryer clean and free of clutter – especially behind the dryer, where lint can build up on a regular basis
  • Use the dryer in the lowest heat setting or a drying cycle that has a cool down period at the end of the cycle
  • Do not dry clothing and fabric that have been soiled with cleaning agents, gasoline, paints/stains, and other volatile chemicals
  • Do not leave the dried clothes in the dryer or piled in a laundry basket, in order to prevent clothes from igniting after drying
  • Have you dryer inspected at least annually by a qualified service technician
  • Always keep always a fire extinguisher available and know how to properly operate it


What To Expect From Your Home Inspection

So, the seller has accepted your offer – but before the purchase is complete – you need to hire your own home inspector. To provide enough time for additional inspections or contingency negotiations with the seller, you’ll want to schedule a home inspection as soon as possible once you’re under contract.

A professional home inspection is a visual assessment of a house’s physical structure and mechanical systems, including the roof, exterior, foundation, ceilings, walls, floors, windows, doors, and interior features. Typically, the inspection follows a very detailed checklist of specific items which are checked during the inspection process. Our list uses over 250+ items.

The inspector will check the major installed appliances that are remaining with the home, scrutinize and test the heating and air-conditioning system, examine the roof, chimney & attic, plumbing, electrical system, and foundation.

The objective of a professional home inspection is to uncover issues with the home itself. Home inspectors aren’t hired to tell you if you’re getting a good deal on the home or offer an opinion on the sale price. The home inspector is hired to conduct a detailed inspection, issue a report on the home, and give you the necessary information you need to make a sound investment decision. Is the home a sound investment – or is it a bottomless money pit?

A professional home inspector should take several hours to complete a detailed walk-through of the home you’re looking to buy. During that time, the inspector will be taking notes and pictures, which will go into your home inspection report. Most importantly, the inspector will provide an unbiased objective opinion on the home’s condition, detached from the emotional roller-coaster you’ve been on during the entire home buying process.

While a professional home inspector will focus on the home and its major systems, they should also keep a strong lookout for any potential health & safety issues that might surface during the inspection. After all the home inspector works for you and your family’s health and safety should be their top priority. A home inspector won’t usually address aesthetic issues in a home unless it might suggest a more broad possible issue.

Although professional home inspectors will have a keen eye for detail, no matter how good they are – they won’t be able to detect the unseen – nor can they predict the future performance of the home and its major systems. In short – home inspectors don’t have a crystal ball. That means hidden pests, asbestos, mold or other potentially hazardous substances might go unnoticed. Areas that aren’t readily accessible, like the septic tank, won’t be covered, either. Those sorts of issues can require specialized evaluations.

Remember – a Home Inspection is not an exam. It does not have a “pass or fail score.” No fixes are mandatory after a home inspection, but it can certainly identify known issues and arm you with factual information that you can use during negotiations with the seller(s). Which may in turn, save you thousands of dollars. With a professional home inspection, you will certainly learn much about the home and you will gain confidence in your decision to either purchase the home or keep looking for that dream home.

At Sentry Home Inspections, LLC – We inspect your home as if we were going to move our own family in! We’ve Got Your Back…

What Household Appliances Get Inspected During A Home Inspection?

In addition to the homes’ major structure areas and major systems, a professional certified home inspector is going to take an in depth look at the kitchen area in general, which contains the household appliances within the home. In addition to the kitchen cabinets and counter top areas, household appliances need inspecting because they can be major safety risk if they are dysfunctional or non-operational. They can also be a major fire hazard and they can be dangerous to you or your family.

Read on to learn about the likely appliances that home inspectors will take a look at.

Inspecting Appliances

Since home inspectors are looking at any element that may potentially harm the homeowner, they’ll also look at appliances. However, they won’t look at every appliance.

For instance, home inspectors aren’t required to inspect appliances that aren’t built-in, such as your regular counter-top microwave. Refrigerators / Freezers are often not considered built-in, so they’re also exempt. As a customer courtesy some inspectors will note whether or not the units appeared to be functioning visually.

Here are some of the typical appliances that home inspectors will look over:

  • Kitchen Range/Oven
  • Kitchen Cook Top
  • Range/Oven/Cook Top Vent
  • Dishwasher
  • Built-in Microwave
  • Food Waste Disposal

Remember that home inspectors aren’t necessarily experts on all of these appliances. They aren’t certified or licensed appliance repairmen and they do not work for the manufacturer of the appliances. They do however have experience in evaluating appliances for safety issues and concerns. The home inspector has a series of test or checks that they perform to make sure your appliances are operating correctly and are safe to use.

Range/Oven/Cook Top

Home inspectors will turn on the range/oven or cook top and keep it on for about 10 – 15 minutes to ensure that the appliance is operating properly. They will also look for any damage, rust, significant wear, lighting, etc or other signs that may indicate the need for a appliance professional to conduct a more in depth assessment.

Range/Oven/Cook Top Vent

A home inspector will conduct a surface review of the venting or fan, test all the buttons to ensure proper operation and to make sure that the cooking light(s) work as well as the fan levels. They’ll also determine what type of venting system it has and make sure that the system is adequate and intact. While there are great many venting fans that filter and circulate air internally to the kitchen, ideally the system will remove that air from the kitchen area and vent it directly outside of the home.


The dishwasher is typically run on normal cycle to ensure that the dishwasher is functioning correctly and does not have any apparent leaks. If a dishwasher is full of dishes or other items – the home inspector is not allowed to test it for liability reasons.

Built In Microwave

A home inspector will conduct a surface review of the microwave and test the general functions to determine that it is operational in general. They do not cook meals or operate the unit for an extended time.  If the microwave also serves as the oven/range/cook top vent hood, they will operate all the buttons on the hood to make sure all the lights work, the fan is operational and no unusual noise is present during operation.

Food Waste Disposal

The inspector will cut on the water to the sink and run it to ensure proper operation, proper balance and proper extracting of processed water into the homes waste/plumbing drain system. Of course, the inspector will check for any signs of leaks from the unit, around it or the plumbing pipes.


Your home inspector may or may not inspect your fridge depending on if it’s considered built-in or not. If they do inspect it, they’ll be looking at the seals to make sure they’re in good condition. They’ll also check the fridge’s coils to ensure it’s cooling correctly. If they don’t inspect it – as a customer courtesy, some inspectors will note whether or not the units appeared to be functioning visually.

Most Common Appliance Defects

Some of the most common defects that home inspectors find with appliances are:

  • Range burner controls broken or cook surfaces that don’t heat properly
  • Ovens not having anti-tip over anchors, not working/not warming to the set temperature and lights not working
  • Range Hoods fans not working, lights not working or vented into attic
  • Dishwashers not extracting
  • Food Processor blades loose, clogged, making unusual noises or not working at all

If you are looking for a certified professional home inspector in the Albany, Leesburg or Southwest Georgia area. Contact us today to do your home inspection.

At Sentry Home Inspection Services – We’ve Got Your Back!

The 10 Most Common Problems Found During Home Inspections

Buying a house is perhaps the most serious investment most people will ever make in their lifetime.  Whether you’re buying a brand new home or an older that may require a little TLC, having a professional home inspection done before you commit to a home is vitally important.

Making sure that you hire a certified professional to inspect your home is the best way to get a thorough evaluation of the home.  Experienced professional home inspectors have a pretty good idea of what they need to really focus on when inspecting your home. This is because of the training and experience they bring to table for your best interest. Here are some of the most common problems we see on a regular basis:

1. Faulty, Damaged, Or Neglected Roof, Vents & Chimney

Water is your home’s worst enemy – period. Most home inspectors agree that water damage to the structure because of a faulty, damaged or neglected roof, plumbing vents, roof vents or chimneys is one of the most damaging and costly problems you can encounter.  Water intrusion into your home’s “envelope” is the leading cause of wood rot,  masonry deterioration, costly structural damage, foundation damage, wood destroying insects and toxic mold. Typically the most common roof issues are: outdated or worn roofs, broken or damages shingles, missing or damaged flashing and drip edge, improperly installed shingles, double or triple shingled roofs, etc.

2. Absence of a Solid Gutter or Water Run Off System

The absence of a well maintained solid gutter system can result in water intrusion to the home’s roof, fascia and overhang areas, exterior walls, windows, doors and foundations.  A sound gutter system along with diversion elements – such as French Drains, ensures that the rain runoff water is directed away from your home as opposed to pooling and creating significant damage.

3. Poor Drainage and Grade Sloping 

This issue is often linked to water intrusion around your home’s foundation or within the crawlspace. When the property around a home slopes toward the home – and not away from it – it will find it’s way into or under your home. That’s a promise.

4. Electrical System Issues

Another costly problem is problematic electric systems.  These issues usually show up as aged outdated electrical panels, undersized panels, old cloth woven or “knob & tube” wiring, improper or unsafe electrical wiring to the panel, wrong sized wires attached to breakers, double lugged breakers, unprotected junction boxes, exposed wiring, electrical system overloads, inadequate or unsafe fuse boxes, hot spots within the electrical system, lack of AFCI & GFCI protection, unprofessional or DIY wiring, etc… While older homes have never had to meet today’s safety standards, many insurance companies will often refuse to insure a home with major electrical issues and all of these issues are critical to your family’s health and safety.

5. Older – Faulty or Inadequate Plumbing

Older homes often have outdated or risky plumbing due to plumbing materials used during the original construction such as cast iron and galvanized steel. Over time these materials break down, rust and ultimately fail at some point. When this happens serious expensive replacement cost will be involved. Many home owners often try their hand at “fixing” plumbing issues and use inappropriate plumbing materials or perform poor DIY efforts, which often result in damage. Then there are the homes that simply had original plumbing that was professionally done. Some plumbing systems may only need minor repairs to correct the issues.  However, it is not uncommon at all to find a home with plumbing issues where the total system needs to be replaced.

6. Older or Neglected Air Conditioning & Heating Systems

On older homes we often find cooling and heating systems that are nearing or are at the end of their life-expectancy time frames. It is not unusual to often find systems in place that are older than the home itself. Often systems have been extremely neglected, not routinely serviced or are simply non-functional. Regardless of the situation, odds are that you will be covering expensive repair or replacement cost within the near future.

7. Older Deteriorating Exteriors, Windows & Doors

Homes built anytime prior to the mid 70’s will likely have their original single-panned wooden windows unless they have been replaced a some point due to long term exposure issues or an energy efficiency up-grade effort by the owner. Many times these homes will also have wooden siding. Unfortunately, that means the home may have inherent issues such as: improper flashing, wood rot, wood cracking, or need repainting. Wooden windows may have inefficient sealant, damaged or cracking window pane caulking, worm paint, hardware deficiencies, be difficult to open due to wear or paint, etc.

8. Foundation Flaws

Many homes have serious or significant foundation issues. If there are significant problems with the foundation of the home, you may find things such as sloping floors, doors and windows that stick, or even doors that swing in one direction when left ajar.  Cracks in the foundation walls or slabs can be simply normal aging or they can be caused by a number of other serious issues.  These repairs can range anywhere from simple filling and sealing to having foundation replacement, which can be a significant expense.

9. Aged Damaged Driveways & Walkways

Many homes with paved or concrete driveways and walkways may have various degrees of surface issues. Surfaces of these areas are subjected to full weather and wear conditions which can result in chipping, cracking, busting or simple deterioration and breakdown. Many times – simple cracking can be remedied by filling with an all weather epoxy based product, which will seal water out.  more severe issues may require excavation and re-pouring or resurfacing.

10. Non-Professional or DIY Decks, Patios or Porches

It is almost enviable that most homes are going to have decks, patios or porches that were not originally built to today’s modern professional safety standards. Issues with these decks can range from something as simple as replacing rotten or split decking boards, repainting or resealing to complete demolition due to significant construction shortfalls and major safety issues. Make sure that your home inspector uses the 2012 Prescriptive Construction Guide to evaluate these areas.

Finally – The Most Common Problem Of All! Simple Neglect or General Disrepair

Regardless of the age of the home, poor home maintenance or neglect of the home will always lead to costly repairs.  Any home that has not been maintained, will require considerable investment to return it to a manageable state.   Depending on exactly what is required this can involve something as simple as repainting – or in more serious cases – significant renovations.

While there are many other common generic issues found on any home inspection, these are the most common ones we see on a regular basis.

Useful Tip: Armed with your home inspection report, you and your realtor can negotiate the outcome of any necessary repairs with the seller, whether they’re paying before you buy or you’re paying after.