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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Alabama
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    77

    Default Dishwasher distress

    I did an inspection on a foreclosed property. The agent mention to me that the property had been de-winterized prior to my inspection. My question is two-fold. Who operates dishwashers? and What happens to a dishwasher when a home is winterized. For the record, I did not operate the dishwasher, and the agent gave me some e-mail heat about it. Any insight would be great.

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    David D. Whitt
    1st Steps Home Inspections

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
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    4,519

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Most who winterize don't do anything to the dishwasher.

    rick


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
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    4,311

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Hi Dave,

    First thing I do after walking in is to Start the Dishwasher on a Normal Cycle.

    * it usually takes about 45 minutes to run a complete cycle.
    ** if she's a leaking bad I' m Greeted back in the Kitchen with a Nice Puddle in front.
    *** a Quick look under and Snap Shot ( after the Kick Plate is Removed ) will find Most Leaks.
    .

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    579

    Post Re: Dishwasher distress

    I check all dishwashers. It's a pretty simple inspection. Open and close door, check racks/rollers, make sure it's properly attached to cabinets or countertop. Run it through a complete cycle, check for leaks, report on defects, unusual sounds, etc. I always open the door at end of cycle to determine that it has drained properly.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
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    3,473

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I remove the bottom kick panel after running it to look for leaks at the water supply line or drain line. It's always a good place to find mouse turds.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    St Paul, MN
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    1,628

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I check them the same as Billy.

    MinnesotaHomeInspectors.com
    Minnesota Home Inspectors LLC
    ASHI #242887 mnradontesting.com

  7. #7
    Patrick McCaffery's Avatar
    Patrick McCaffery Guest

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I had one a few weeks ago, after it went off, the clients called me up from the basement to say that the dishwasher had started smoking. The smell was that of an electrical problem. There were other electrical issues with the house, that caused the client not to buy it.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    The Treasure Coast
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    240

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    It is one of the first things I check when I start the interior inspection.
    It is also the last thing I check when I leave.
    The dishwasher below was brand new and didn't drain. Well, it actually would have, if the person who installed the disposal would have removed the knockout for the drain line!

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    Eric Van De Ven Magnum Inspections Inc. (772) 214-9929
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    I still get paid to be suspicious when I got nothing to be suspicious about!

  9. #9
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I check them. any dirt inside, no run, Any leaks. no run. Any noise. no run.

    Tile floors are always a good find that you can not remove the unit unless you remove the counter top As the tile floor installer tiles up to the dish washer and now you can't get it out for service.

    Best

    Ron


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    5,847

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I turn them on and let it run a cycle. First thing I do when I get into the home. I would say that 30% of the time the DW has some type of problem. With DW costing from $300 to $2000 I would be ticked off if my home inspector did not run it to see if it worked or had problems.

    I just don't understand why folks don't test some of the most used items in a home to see if they are working or not. We all should be turning on the kitchen appliances to see if the smoke, leak, squeal, hiss or just don't do anything.

    How many turn on the bathroom vent fan? I bet every single inspector does.

    If a home has been "Winterized" it should be de-winterized prior to a home inspection. This means a plumber or whoever comes in and turns the water on to all fixtures, fills the water heater, etc. It is then ready to go for the home inspection. I always ask if the water is on and if the home has been winterized if I'm dealing with a vacant home.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  11. #11

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I'll also turn the spray arms to 12:00 before starting to see if they spun during the cycle.
    On a 45 minute cycle they should be at 12:45 when done.

    Clarksville Home Inspection
    JW Goad
    TN License #307 | KY License #2402

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
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    4,170

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Run them.
    If you don't run or test anything, tell the client that you did not and why.
    Unless it is obvious that there is a hazard or the unit is toast, why would you not inspect it?

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    26,243

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    First thing I do after walking in is to Start the Dishwasher on a Normal Cycle.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    I turn them on and let it run a cycle.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    Run them.

    I always ran them through their longest cycle with all the 'hot start', 'hot rinse', 'pots and pans', whatever to use the most water and the hottest water - things sometimes take time to leak and 'hot' water helps that along faster.

    Like Scott and the others above ... why would you NOT run it?

    If you turn it on and it smokes (has happened to me) or it arcs and spits fire (has happened to me) or floods the house (has happened to me) then you have something good and juicy to put in your report, that is a lot better than 'I think it might not work, so I did not run it'.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Las Vegas, NV
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    222

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Nevada State law requires we run them through one complete cycle. Like others have said, it's common to find problems. I keep lots of towels in the truck!

    Beacon Inspection Services
    Proudly Serving the Greater Henderson and Las Vegas Valley Area in Southern Nevada!
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  15. #15
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    Mar 2007
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Knauff View Post
    I keep lots of towels in the truck!

    I didn't - that was not my job.

    That was the agents job.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Las Vegas, NV
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    222

    Smile Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    I didn't - that was not my job.

    That was the agents job.
    Yeah...right!! How big of a whip did you carry. Ha! The agents here show up just long enough to open the door and are gone in a heart beat. Just the way I like it!

    Beacon Inspection Services
    Proudly Serving the Greater Henderson and Las Vegas Valley Area in Southern Nevada!
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  17. #17
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Knauff View Post
    Yeah...right!! How big of a whip did you carry. Ha! The agents here show up just long enough to open the door and are gone in a heart beat. Just the way I like it!
    I worked for my client's best interests, they are, after all, my clients and the ones who paid me.

    On more than one occasion I have had water leaking from (you name the source which should not have been leaking) and the agent ask me what I am going to do about it, I say 'Guess I might as well turn it off now, we KNOW it is leaking, then I need to finish my inspection.', when they replied 'What about all that water? You DO carry towels with you to clean it up DON'T YOU?!', I would reply 'Nope, no towels, guess you need to call some cleaners pretty quick ... IF THE SELLERS HAD DISCLOSED THAT LEAKED I WOULD NOT HAVE OPERATED IT ... ' then I would go back into the attic or wherever I was when they shrieked and called my to where they were.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  18. #18

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Interestingly, the state of Massachusetts does not require inspecting appliances. A lot of inspectors, consequently, don't inspect them. A bad ideal I inspect dishwashers, disposals, stoves, and kitchen exhaust fans. I won't inspect compactors... I'm not sure why but I just won't test them. I do have a disclaimer, however, that says I can tell if it the appliances runs but not how effective it is. I once had an (honest) homeowner come up after I turned on the somewhat newer dishwasher- which went through its cycles normally - and state that the unit simply would not clean dishes properly.
    Also, what do you say about screeching disposals? They may work, but they are making loud sounds. 'May need repairs or replacement', I guess.
    Ernie Simpson


  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    930

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I check for proper air gap or reverse trap and improper mounting of the unit as my biggest find issues.

    Often times contractors just use caulk to hold the metal brackets and that never holds.

    The drain is important because backup can cause bacterial infection.
    Some have a built in check valve , but you have no way of knowing that.


  20. #20
    James Vincent's Avatar
    James Vincent Guest

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I remove the bottom inspection cover for a closer look because have found on several occasions the electrical outlet box laying on the floor under the dishwasher which if there is a water leak and one was standing in that puddle of water it could lead to a shocking situation.


  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,445

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I check for operation, see if they are secured to the cabinet or counter top, and that the spray wand rotates and that it shuts off when the door opens.
    I turn the spray arm to 12/6 o'cock, and during the cycle, open the door to: 1. see if it shuts off when the door opens, and 2. to see if the spray arm rotates.
    I have had both of those things not work right.


  22. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    The Treasure Coast
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    240

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    I worked for my client's best interests, they are, after all, my clients and the ones who paid me.

    On more than one occasion I have had water leaking from (you name the source which should not have been leaking) and the agent ask me what I am going to do about it, I say 'Guess I might as well turn it off now, we KNOW it is leaking, then I need to finish my inspection.', when they replied 'What about all that water? You DO carry towels with you to clean it up DON'T YOU?!', I would reply 'Nope, no towels, guess you need to call some cleaners pretty quick ... IF THE SELLERS HAD DISCLOSED THAT LEAKED I WOULD NOT HAVE OPERATED IT ... ' then I would go back into the attic or wherever I was when they shrieked and called my to where they were.
    Another reason why Realtors liked you so much Jerry!

    I carry extra towels to clean up any mess I make. I am after all, a guest in the homeowners home and I try to leave the home the way I found it.
    A case could be made that it wasn't leaking before you got here and although the old "failed under testing" line could rear up, I prefer not to have to worry about it. If it takes five minutes to clean it, I think it goes a long way to keeping things civil.

    Chasing a 2 year old around, I have enough to contend with, without having to worry about some upset homeowner calling me complaining about a half a gallon of water that they found on their kitchen floor when they came home for lunch.

    Eric Van De Ven Magnum Inspections Inc. (772) 214-9929
    www.magnuminspections.com
    I still get paid to be suspicious when I got nothing to be suspicious about!

  23. #23
    Greg Frazier's Avatar
    Greg Frazier Guest

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I always test them. Here's a tip: some dishwashers with electronic controls have a sensor that will shut themselves off if hot water is not "sensed" within a minute. Then you have to know the specific sequence of buttons to push to reset it. Don't know why, but I have one like this in my house. So I turn on the hot water at the sink first to verify hot water.


  24. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    New Westminster, B. C., Canada
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Hi, ALL &

    'Ditto' - for the most part; I've always checked appliances (unless specifically asked 'NOT' to, or if my Client says "don't bother")...

    No harm in esceeding the "min. requirement" laid-out in many /most SOI & Clients really appreciate it.

    I usually run the DW once starting in that space and if not finished it's cycle in time, I 'fast-forward' it so see & hear it draining.

    I always state "not tested /not confirmed for efficiency", however...

    Interestingly, I hear "Wow - don't usually see that from /with other Inspectors..."


    CHEERS !

    -Glenn Duxbury, CHI

  25. #25

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    I used to check all dishwashers, then I read the horror stories about leaking dishwashers and Pergo flooring so I stopped inspecting them if the kitchen had laminate flooring. I recieved to much greif from clients as to why I would not check it and they were right.

    I check everyone now regaurdless of the flooring in the room. If its not on the disclouser then its not my fault.

    Steve Reilly


  26. #26
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Charlottesville, Va.
    Posts
    292

    Default Re: Dishwasher distress

    Quote Originally Posted by A.D. Miller View Post
    Send this to the agent:

    eLCOSH : Dishwasher exploded
    Never heard of that....thanks for posting it.


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