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  1. #1

    Default Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I very surprised you didn't have a crescent wrench, nut drivers, robo grips, or something to get bolts off.
    I always carry bits for 1/4, 5/16, 3/8. and 7/16 since those are the sizes I see all the time.
    Off hand, I think you owe it to your client to make a return trip to open the panel. I would be embarrassed to admit I didn't' have a wrench to remove some bolts.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Right. They appear to be lag screws, which usually go into wood. That looks like an old fuse box, so I wonder what those screws are going into, maybe past the box into the studs. I carry a small crescent wrench which I use occasionally, and a few nutdrivers, too small for those heads. I would have gone out to my truck, where I have a larger crescent wrench, a few spanners, water pump pliers, vise grips, hammer, shovel, etc etc.

    A simple multitool can come in handy as well.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    What did it say inside that hinged door? FPE?

    If so, then the above posters open FPE panels regardless, I presume.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!
    .
    Lag Bolts (my wag) would be considered a Permanent Fastener much like a drywall screw is and out of the scope of HI " I got the Tools or no". http://www.inspectionnews.net/home_i...ccessible.html
    .

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I have a crescent wrench and slip joint pliers in the truck. Don't carry them around on every inspection because should not need them.

    Agree looks like lag bolts. If FPE, once door is open, would know enough to continue or disclaim. Lag bolts is a bad sign anyway.

    "The Code is not a peak to reach but a foundation to build from."

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Sorry,,,,,"...Didn't have the tool necessary to open it...." was a poor, even if factual, excuse. The fastener used is not one designed to prevent anyone from easy access to removal. Unlike "security screws" which require an unusual bit or driver for removal. Even though I say unusual "security bits/drivers' are readily available if you look for them and are not hard to find.

    Take a trip to Harbor Freight Tools and you can load up on tools for just a few dollars. Socket set SAE and Metric with a coupon $3, Security Bit set $3 to $6 and so on. For $30 you could get some tools and a bag to carry them in. That way you would not look incompetent the next time.

    I say look, not to say that you are, incompetent. The best carpenter will look incompetent showing up without a hammer.

    Did you check to see if the box was energized? Possible if the bolts tips were not cut off or were to long. Just one of the first things I would do seeing the bolts as upposed to the common box screws typically used.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Here is the tool holder I made so I have bits handy. By the way, my idea was published in this months ShopNotes magazine.
    Even if it was a FPE, I would probably still attempt to open it.
    Sorry about the three photos, I was getting the image is too large error message.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    What am I missing here? It looks like it's got a hinged door in the center of the cover plate. It's the cover plate that's mounted to the wall with the lag bolts. The only thing keeping the door closed looks to be the paint.


  10. #10

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I couldn't determine the manufacturer as both the outside AND the inside of the door was painted. The unit used to be an apartment, so there was no separate meter (condo fee included all utilities... no furnace or water heater either). If I can't open something with a screwdriver or nut driver, I don't open it. Like a previous poster said, "readily accessible."

    Welmoed Sisson
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    I couldn't determine the manufacturer as both the outside AND the inside of the door was painted.
    Welmoed,

    Did you take a photo of the breakers? If so, we might be able to identify it from the photo.

    Could you describe the breakers - color of breaker, color of handle, shape of handle, was handle 'on' facing outward from the center or inward toward the center, etc.?

    The concern some have raised about those being lag bolts is that if they are into wood, is there a panel enclosure back there, is the correct cover on the enclosure, etc., because if those are into framing on each side, then it is the wrong cover and all else is installed incorrectly too (if not "all else", then "mos all else").

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    And you didn't have this size nut driver?

    Its up to you to determine your comfort level, and where you draw the line on inspecting stuff. I understand that.

    However, 7/16" or 1/2" nut drivers are not uncommon. I wonder what the standard of care is in your area (how many other inspectors carry those size nut drivers and would remove that cover).

    No offense, but pulling the "readily accessible" card seems a little lame in this case.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Readily accessible does not mean easily opened.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    It would take no more effort to remove those fasteners than if the original panel screws were used.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Don't hold back Jack. Tell us what you really think.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    If the panel cover is painted shut, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the paint to remove the cover?

    If the panel cover is plastered over and shut, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the paint to remove the cover?

    If a panel is wallpapered over, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the wallpaper to remove the cover?

    If not, why not ... I did. Almost all of the time, unless I was specifically told not to.

    That seems to be the thinking in this thread - *if I do it, then everyone else should do it*.

    I was specifically told not to a few times, to which I replied 'No problem, I will just write it up as requiring an electrical contractor to remove the cover and inspect the inside of the panel.' - worked almost every time in getting them to change their mind and allow me to do it as I was going to do it neater than the electrical contractor would.

    There were a few times the seller did not budge, so the buyer said 'Take $1,000 of the price of the house and I will take care of it myself.' - those few sellers freaked out, usually the cost ended up being around $500 as I recall. Hey, it was my client's call and they made it.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    If the panel cover is painted shut, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the paint to remove the cover?

    If the panel cover is plastered over and shut, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the paint to remove the cover?

    If a panel is wallpapered over, do all of you guys use a razor knife and cut through the wallpaper to remove the cover?

    If not, why not ... I did. Almost all of the time, unless I was specifically told not to.

    That seems to be the thinking in this thread - *if I do it, then everyone else should do it*.

    I was specifically told not to a few times, to which I replied 'No problem, I will just write it up as requiring an electrical contractor to remove the cover and inspect the inside of the panel.' - worked almost every time in getting them to change their mind and allow me to do it as I was going to do it neater than the electrical contractor would.

    There were a few times the seller did not budge, so the buyer said 'Take $1,000 of the price of the house and I will take care of it myself.' - those few sellers freaked out, usually the cost ended up being around $500 as I recall. Hey, it was my client's call and they made it.
    Yes, I use a razor to cut through paint, wallpaper, and (you forgot) caulk.
    I have not seen one "plastered" over.
    I have seen some located:
    in a kitchen cabinet filled with cans and other stuff,
    inside a closet covered by clothes,
    and behind a refrigerator.
    Those, I did not inspect.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    .
    and behind a refrigerator.
    Those, I did not inspect.
    .
    You Don't Have and carry one of These in Your Truck ??
    ( or at least go to Rent-a-Center !!
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    Yes, I use a razor to cut through paint, wallpaper, and (you forgot) caulk.
    I have not seen one "plastered" over.
    I have seen some located:
    in a kitchen cabinet filled with cans and other stuff,
    inside a closet covered by clothes,
    and behind a refrigerator.
    Those, I did not inspect.
    It's going to depend on your comfort level sometimes. Antique panel needs to be replaced anyway.
    I've posted pics of the junk I've climbed over to get to the panel. I kneeled on the seat of a vintage Triumph motorbike one time. And I've unloaded the cupboard. When I do that I'm thinking "Don't be lazy. The clients need to know, and the cover hasn't been off since black and white TV."

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    There is a limit to how far I will go to remove a panel cover. I've seen some panels in living areas where the cover had become part of the wall. Somebody decided to use as much spackle as possible to make the edges of the cover blend in. I guess they thought it looked better. Without a seller present to say it was OK for me to cut into that glob and screw up their paint and wall finish (no matter how bad it may look), I'm not doing it. I'm a guest in people's homes and I intend to leave them as I found them. And I don't feel like getting a call from a PO'd homeowner either. Being an HI doesn't mean I can come in start pulling things apart. I get to what I can within reason and move on.

    I've disclaimed service panels that were blocked by china cabinets and big screen TVs too. The buyers have often volunteered to help move these items but I tell them to not touch or move anything. I once let somebody talk me into moving a fiberboard panel storage cabinet and the thing started cracking at the joints as soon as we moved it. The seller was pissed and I ended up working for free that day. Never again.

    I'll make an attempt at any panel but when I see I can't remove it without chipping part of the wall away and screwing up the paint surface, I stop and call it inaccessible.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel View Post
    .
    the cover hasn't been off since black and white TV."
    .
    But I Like me some B & W TV shows.
    .
    Wild Man From Borneo - YUM YUM EEAAAAT EM UP! - YouTube
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    While not my most inaccessible panel, and certainly not one of the ones wallpapered, painted, plastered, or, yes, lest I forget, caulked in, it is a favorite of mine.

    Dang! Where can that panel be? (scratches head walking around looking for panel)

    Agent asks 'What are you looking for?'

    Me 'The electrical panel.'

    Agent responds "Oh, that, that is over here.' (and points to a cabinet with no panel visible)

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Opening a panel with hex head screws is really no different that one with phillips head, or slotted head. The effort to remove the screws is the same in all cases. The only difference is the tool used.

    Just because the panel is old does not always mean it needs to be replaced anyway. After inspecting it, that might be the conclusion, but not just by looking at the closed cover.

    I have taken a knife to cut paint, wallpaper, and caulk. I have chipped out caulk and drywall mud from more screw slots than I can remember. I owe it to my client to inspect the panel, and I will try my best to get into it. I had a house recently where a very large entertainment center blocked my access to the electrical panel as well as the fireplace. I included a photo and explained why I couldn't inspect those two items, or evaluate the condition of the walls/floor in that area.


  24. #24
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    My guess is that panel has been converted into a junction box. When that happens the guts that often support the cover are removed and "different" fasteners are often used. The real panel is likely somewhere else. Was there another panel in the space - - - near by most likely ?


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I would have removed it.

    However... my level of concern is raised anytime I find non-standard fasteners... too easy for them to nick insulation.

    ______________

    For me, the decision is based on manufacturer/model + condition + access + fasteners, at some point, some dead fronts are just too problematic to remove, for example because a breaker is too likely to be moved to the OFF position.

    Like the Supreme Court Justice, "I know it when I see it".

    Last edited by Michael Thomas; 08-22-2012 at 04:17 AM.
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I guess I must have dated a lot of bride to be of Frankenstin; not perfect, not easy and not readily accessible.

    I have to say that I am taken back that someone would consider a not to strange fastener making the panel not "readily accessible".

    I would be embarrassed to say "if I can not open something with screw driver I can not open it". Disclaiming the opening and inspection on the basis of non approved fastener, not original fastener, to cheep to have a nut driver/ socket to fit would cause the entire report to be in question.

    Maryland's SOP is part of the Lic Law. Which follows ASHI SOP. It is a visual inspection (min requirement by law) with the exception of the service panel cover which is expected to be removed for the inspection though not specifically stated by law. We also have rental unit inspections that also expect the panel cover to be removed for the inspection.

    There is a great difference between moving a china cabinet, tires stacked to the ceiling or a 72" projection TV and only using a screw driver for a service panel inspection.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I'm with Welmoed on this one, but not for the reason she has.
    The color of the paint almost makes me puke.
    I seem to remember reading somewhere in an SOP that,
    "The inspector shall not inspect any panel box that will make the inspector puke".

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I just keep a Leatherman multi-tool on my belt. Have for years. Unless those bolt are really cranked on, it'll get them. Plus has the knife for cutting paint, etc., and the pliers work well as a wood probe in most cases. And of course it has both types of screwdrivers.

    I used to haul a tool belt around, now I just carry my flashlight, Leatherman, pen-type voltage detector, and outlet tester and leave everything else in the truck.

    I would have accessed that panel.

    Mark Fisher
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Using an uninsulated tool to open a panel, esp. one with obstructed access (apparently countertop in front in this case) and without PPE is especially unwise. Inquiry to building maintenance and primary shut off to main power feeder to unit. Doubtful 120/240 service to building and doubtful 120/240V main power feeder to unit as per circumstances described by OP.Disclaim and defer is not a problem. Improperly mounted bonding uncertain, unreliable bonding, unknown flash potential, unknown building system, Non-exclusive non-dedicated supply system, common (limited but not dedicated) system, as per OPs 2nd post. 70E, PPE.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 08-22-2012 at 08:59 AM.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Frankenstein's Bride?

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    Frankenstein's Bride?
    Looks more like Medusa.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    Frankenstein's Bride?
    Mark, I didn't know you work in Philadelphia.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Mark, I didn't know you work in Philadelphia.
    I'm sure I'd be right at home. Have plenty of those 'flat' roof row-houses, too. Philly, Baltimore, Cumberland, and to a certain extent Pittsburgh have a lot of similar housing types, especially 1950's and earlier.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    I guess I must have dated a lot of bride to be of Frankenstin; not perfect, not easy and not readily accessible.

    I have to say that I am taken back that someone would consider a not to strange fastener making the panel not "readily accessible".

    I would be embarrassed to say "if I can not open something with screw driver I can not open it". Disclaiming the opening and inspection on the basis of non approved fastener, not original fastener, to cheep to have a nut driver/ socket to fit would cause the entire report to be in question.

    Maryland's SOP is part of the Lic Law. Which follows ASHI SOP. It is a visual inspection (min requirement by law) with the exception of the service panel cover which is expected to be removed for the inspection though not specifically stated by law. We also have rental unit inspections that also expect the panel cover to be removed for the inspection.

    There is a great difference between moving a china cabinet, tires stacked to the ceiling or a 72" projection TV and only using a screw driver for a service panel inspection.
    It is NOT a service panel!!! I can only guess that you did not read/follow-along all of Mrs. Sisson's posts in this discussion thread.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Service panel or not.....SOP's say inspectors shall inspect "the interior components of service panels and sub panels."
    I'm baffled how HG could determine that it was doubtful that the building did not have 120/240V, and what that had to do with inspecting the panel.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    Service panel or not.....SOP's say inspectors shall inspect "the interior components of service panels and sub panels."
    I'm baffled how HG could determine that it was doubtful that the building did not have 120/240V, and what that had to do with inspecting the panel.
    Jack,

    His Majesty knows all and sees all ... he is the Wizard and the Wizard knows all and sees all and ... ("pay no attention to that man behind the curtain") ...

    Well, I'll give it a guess ... then I will discount the guess based on actual experience ...

    That panel is in a condo: "Found this at a condo inspection today."

    I have seen *a few* condos which have 120/208 volt power, sooooo ... based on that knowledge I will guess that Watson *KNOWS* that the old condo (that panel cover sure looks old) *HAD TO* have been supplied with 120 volt / 208 volt.

    I will now discount that guess as *MOST* of the condos I have inspected, either as a home inspector or as a code inspector, have had 120 volt / 240 volt power to the panels.

    I guess we just need to go with "THE JOKER KNOWS ALL ... and then makes up what he does not know and states it as fact."

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    I've also seen condos that have multi circuits/wire that share a common neutral between two (or more separate units). There is usually electrical closet in the hallway or even on a different floor.

    If two apartments share a common neutral and are not tied together at the main breaker (or even sub breaker (I know I'm going to get called on this)) there can be back feeding problems (dangers).

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by H.G. Watson, Sr. View Post
    Using an uninsulated tool to open a panel, esp. one with obstructed access (apparently countertop in front in this case) and without PPE is especially unwise. Inquiry to building maintenance and primary shut off to main power feeder to unit. Doubtful 120/240 service to building and doubtful 120/240V main power feeder to unit as per circumstances described by OP.Disclaim and defer is not a problem. Improperly mounted bonding uncertain, unreliable bonding, unknown flash potential, unknown building system, Non-exclusive non-dedicated supply system, common (limited but not dedicated) system, as per OPs 2nd post. 70E, PPE.
    All that from this?

    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!
    Must have missed the part about the countertop. I don't see a countertop in the picture either.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    I've also seen condos that have multi circuits/wire that share a common neutral between two (or more separate units). There is usually electrical closet in the hallway or even on a different floor.

    If two apartments share a common neutral and are not tied together at the main breaker (or even sub breaker (I know I'm going to get called on this)) there can be back feeding problems (dangers).
    Steven,

    We are talking earth-bound structures here, not underwater boat structures , but I understand what you mean ...

    If you have separate apartments or condos with common circuits, especially multiwire circuits, there are some problems there, some of which may be serious problems.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    The inspected property was described as a condo. The term "condo" covers many type of structures. A group of individual homes on 1/2 acre lots could be legally described as a "condo" as a descriptor.

    We have no idea of the type of "condo" that was inspected. Yes it could be a converted apartment building with 300 units or not. There may be a electrical service room in the hall, on the roof in the basement, but we do not know. We have no idea if the picture of the covering on the wall is the service panel or something else. I apologize for taking it as a service panel as the first source of electric past the meter with out knowing the electrical system design. I always look at a panel as the main service and treat it as such until I determine that it is not. Silly personal way of looking at I guess. Actually we have no idea what it is since it was not inspected, nor what was behind the door. The picture could have been a safe in disguise, someones idea of art or the entrance to a new dimension in a parallel universe.

    We all take leaps of faith and assume things. We take a situation and extrapolate different scenarios and that is part of the reason people have home inspections they want to understand what may happen. H.G. can take it to a new unknown level of extrapolation. Which can be interesting at times.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Get over yourselves.

    A tap or feeder is NOT A SERVICE, main power to the condo or otherwise.

    The service is to the building. There is no individual to the formerly apartment, now "condo unit" SERVICE. Mrs. Sisson has TOLD YOU SO.

    As far as the obvious in the picture - and those who may scan but do not look or see the obvious which has been pictured ...too bad, so sad.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    HG, I have gone over the original photo several times, yet can not see the counter top. While I can see an unidentifiable object at the bottom of the photo, I am not able to confirm that it is resting on a counter top.

    Could you please share your photo that shows the counter top?
    Thanks


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    H.G.,
    I understand your reluctance to share your methods of insight, trade secrets and location of the mother ship.
    .
    Found you a great opportunity if you are not already providing service.
    .
    Independent Contractor you work a flexible schedule, full or part time.
    .

    If you are a gifted and experienced Psychic, Medium, Clairvoyant.
    .
    HOME - The Psychics Connection Inc offers work at home Psychic ...


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    HG, I have gone over the original photo several times, yet can not see the counter top. While I can see an unidentifiable object at the bottom of the photo, I am not able to confirm that it is resting on a counter top.

    Could you please share your photo that shows the counter top?
    Thanks
    Jack,

    Watson was referring to the photos I posted, which includes a countertop, while referencing and discussing the original post.

    I suspect his x-ray vision must not have been able to penetrate the photos I posted and see through them to the original post's photos.

    While the rest of use are referencing the original post and its photo, Watson had wandered afield amongst the poppies and was a bit high.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    It is possible that H.G. may have been looking at the bottom right corner of the original post picture, there is also something at the bottom of the pict.. Combined with Jerry's picture creating an entire new picture experience.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    It is possible that H.G. may have been looking at the bottom right corner of the original post picture, there is also something at the bottom of the pict.
    The original post's photo shows the panel next to an upper cabinet. One could then assume that there is a counter below it ... which does not necessarily mean there actually is a counter below it, but it could be a reasonable assumption to make.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    The term "condominium" is not a description of construction, but is a type of ownership. A "condo" could also be commercial.

    Regardless of the type of building (or ownership), it doesn't matter if it is the main service to the building, a sub-panel , a remote electrical room or closet, or a panel in a particular unit. If it is relevant (generally) it should evaluated. If it is not evaluated, the reason why it was not evaluated should be included.

    The only thing this photo tells me is that the screws have been changed. The tool needed is not uncommon and should have be gotten.

    It could have had this, that or the other thing is why it should have been opened.

    Last edited by Steven Turetsky; 08-24-2012 at 11:24 AM.
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    It is possible that H.G. may have been looking at the bottom right corner of the original post picture, there is also something at the bottom of the pict.. Combined with Jerry's picture creating an entire new picture experience.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    The original post's photo shows the panel next to an upper cabinet. One could then assume that there is a counter below it ... which does not necessarily mean there actually is a counter below it, but it could be a reasonable assumption to make.
    Let's not forget to mention that "assumed to be there" countertop below the panel encroaches on the required safe working space in front of that panel and should not be there - if it was there - so one more item to write up.

    If there was a perceived unsafe potential for opening that panel, that assumed to be there countertop makes that condition worse.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!
    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    I couldn't determine the manufacturer as both the outside AND the inside of the door was painted. The unit used to be an apartment, so there was no separate meter (condo fee included all utilities... no furnace or water heater either). If I can't open something with a screwdriver or nut driver, I don't open it. Like a previous poster said, "readily accessible."
    Thought I would take things back to the original posting and information provided.
    Things become muddled as a post takes different twists along the was.

    Taking a look back over the posts something occurred to me.
    Welmoed do not take the comments personally, even thought it may seem personally directed. There is no desire to beat up on you by my self or others. For myself often it is a general comment on a specific situation.

    Thought it was gutsy to say why you did not remove the face of the panel, many others would not. I give you credit for exposing yourself in such a manor.

    Apologies if I offended you in any way.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    "Mrs. Bob" has clearly described a common (limited as it may be) element.

    She has explained that there is no unit metered power, and that the electrical energy to the unit is supplied by the Building. We do not know if same is via a riser, tap, or feeder. We do NOT know the amperate or voltage of same. We do NOT know ANYTHING about the electrical service or distribution system(s) (secondary or otherwise) of the building.

    The HI is NEVER required to "perform ANY procedure or operation that MAY be, in the opinion of the inspector, dangerous to the inspector or other persons OR damage the property, or its systems or components.

    Too many on this discussion have made mention of using any old tool (uninsulated, the "Leatherman" tool post, etc.), ignore 70E, and ignore the obvious visual clues regarding the vintage of the equipment appearance AND installation location, as well as what the inspector has indicated in the original post and her followup posts to this discussion thread.

    The MD licensing law SOP does not apply to the inspection of a dwelling unit in buildings containing in excess of 4 family living units ("C. Scope. The standards of practice set forth in this chapter apply only to the inspection of a residential building containing one to four dwelling units."). We do not know how many dwelling units are in the building, nor that the building is strictly residential occupancy, so for that matter Garry Sorrells reference to the MD HI SOPs may not apply at all; however, he mischaracterizes just WHAT the requirements SOPs are and ARE NOT regarding the infomation provided by the OP in this discussion which pertain to the subject topic.

    There is nothing in the MD licensing law which requires a HI to inspect common (or limited common) elements of multi-unit housing (such as condominimums), neither does it require inspection of a common condominum component or system.

    There is nothing in the MD licensing law which requires a HI to cut paint, plaster, spackle, caulk, or any other "seal" to explore an electrical panelboard, cabinet, etc.

    There is nothing in the MD licensing law (or the SOPs within) which requires an HI to move/remove personal property from any area to inspect any aspect of an "installation".



    "Readily accessible" AND "readily openable access panels" are defined in MD as:
    20) "Readily accessible" means available for visual inspection without requiring moving of personal property, dismantling, destructive measures, or any action that will likely involve risk to a person or property.

    (21) "Readily openable access panel" means a panel provided for homeowner inspection and maintenance that:
    (a) Is within normal reach;
    (b) Can be easily removed by one person; and
    (c) Is not sealed in place.
    During an electrical inspection, it's your judgment call. Document your judgment.

    In the final analysis then, the precise safety steps to be taken are up to the judgment of the inspector at the scene. The inspector should also document his or her action.

    If the building management is not available, access to the main power feeder, tap, etc. disconnect is not available, you find conditions unsafe, (or for example a control room which requires supervision and/or specialized training, precautions, or is unsafe for the HI to enter) or otherwise unwise to proceed, WHATEVER that may be. Memorialize those conditions, factors, etc. report same, and move on. There is nothing wrong, whatsoever, with reporting that additonal inspections, evaluations, verifications regarding conditions, coordination with building management, etc. are necessary. That includes removing the "dead front" cover when appearance suggests same is not properly "installed" or BONDED in the first place. The MD HI licensing law spells out same.


    The Commission regulates individuals who provide home inspection services pursuant to the provisions of Business Occupations and Professions Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, Title 16 and Code of Maryland Regulations, Title 9, Subtitle 36.

    The MD HI licensing law can be viewed on-line for free & without subscription here:

    http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/Sub...search=09.36.*



    Garry Sorrells,

    I Suggest you actually read 09.36.02 (General), 09.36.03 (Limitations and Exclusions) before you continue in your mischaracterizations of what 09.36.08 (Electrical Systems) really says on the subject. (Note site above will be down this Saturday & Sunday). You seem to have "a load" of opinions on how Maryland HIs "should" perform their professional activites for a home improvement contractor and not actually being a licensed HI in MD yourself.

    "Mrs. Bob" has not only recently acquired, and is most recently familiar with the current, she works with "Mr. Bob" who, also unlike you, is a long-practicing local HI, and IS a licensed HI in MD.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 08-24-2012 at 12:48 PM.

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!
    I don't see anything about counters in the way, or any other unsafe situation.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    Found this at a condo inspection today. Didn't have the tool necessary to open it so had to disclaim it. But really? Bolts? Never seen them used on a panel before. Guess the condo association really, really didn't want owners to mess with the wiring!
    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    I don't see anything about counters in the way, or any other unsafe situation.
    That may have been one of those things we think about when on-site, then don't think about when we are some place else and describing what was there.

    There was no mention of the paint, but it looks like she would have had to have cut through the paint too.

    There was also no mention of possibly not being able to get those bolts back in as she did not know what they were into or how.

    I believe it to be a bit short-sighted of us to pounce 'on the bolts' only when there are other things which could potentially be a problem too. At least those of us who have never forgotten to include some fact in a post and then lived to regret it and have to say 'Okay, let me start over, not only was there the bolts, there was ... and then there was ... and ... and, oh, yeah, there was this ... too.'

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    That may have been one of those things we think about when on-site, then don't think about when we are some place else and describing what was there.

    There was no mention of the paint, but it looks like she would have had to have cut through the paint too.

    There was also no mention of possibly not being able to get those bolts back in as she did not know what they were into or how.

    I believe it to be a bit short-sighted of us to pounce 'on the bolts' only when there are other things which could potentially be a problem too. At least those of us who have never forgotten to include some fact in a post and then lived to regret it and have to say 'Okay, let me start over, not only was there the bolts, there was ... and then there was ... and ... and, oh, yeah, there was this ... too.'
    I agree with you whole heartily. I am just going by the post, which is nothing more than a learning experience that I'm sure we all have had, and occasionally continue to have.

    I just find it weird. Every possibility that there is absolutely no indication of is being piled onto a simple occurrence turning it into a possible nuc_u_ler moment.

    Welmoed, If there were phillips head screws, would you have opened it?
    and please Wel, put an end to the suspense. Is there a countertop in front of the panel? (I guess no, just something hanging on the wall.)

    Anyway, while we are adding possibilities not at all indicated, let me add to the list:

    There may have been a Rottweiler chained below.
    There might be a claymore somewhere.
    There's a guy with a machine gun....

    Last edited by Steven Turetsky; 08-24-2012 at 05:59 PM. Reason: typo
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    Anyway, while we are adding possibilities not at all indicated, let me add to the list:

    There may have been a Rottweiler chained below.
    There might be a claymore somewhere.
    There's a guy with a machine gun....
    Now you are getting into Watson's clairvoyance area - heck, Watson can probably smell through the computer links whether or not there was a dog there, what breed, its weight, and how friendly it was.

    The claymore ... well, that is where Watson's PPE comes in.

    The guy with the machine gun? Uh, we'd probably walk up to him and tell him he can't shoot us like that, and when he says 'why not', some here would tell him 'because you the safety on' ...

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post
    Things become muddled as a post takes different twists along the was.

    I give you credit for exposing yourself in such a manor.

    Apologies if I offended you in any way.
    OK, these bold conjectures have gone too far.
    It was a condo. Not a manor.
    Garry, mind your manners, eh?

    Last edited by John Kogel; 08-24-2012 at 06:32 PM. Reason: 2 R's
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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven Turetsky View Post
    .
    I agree

    There may have been a Rottweiler chained below.
    There might be a claymore somewhere.
    There's a guy with a machine gun....
    .
    ..............
    .

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Yes, there was a counter under the panel, which would have made it more difficult to access it.
    It's been quite interesting following this whole thread. I'm learning a lot... especially that one needs to have a thick skin to post!
    There were other electrical issues in the condo (loose outlets, complete lack of GFCIs) that I had already recommended evaluation by an electrician. Since this particular condo ownership was "paint inwards", the wiring/plugs/etc was the responsibility of the condo association, so the seller was going to arrange for repairs to be made prior to closing.

    Welmoed Sisson
    Inspections by Bob, LLC, Boyds, MD
    "Given sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine."

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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Welmoed Sisson View Post
    Yes, there was a counter under the panel, which would have made it more difficult to access it.
    It's been quite interesting following this whole thread. I'm learning a lot... especially that one needs to have a thick skin to post!
    There were other electrical issues in the condo (loose outlets, complete lack of GFCIs) that I had already recommended evaluation by an electrician. Since this particular condo ownership was "paint inwards", the wiring/plugs/etc was the responsibility of the condo association, so the seller was going to arrange for repairs to be made prior to closing.
    Of course there was, shame you had to "confirm" the obviously already shared.

    "Plugs", I'm assuming you meant to say "receptacle outlets" or something similar, so you can now ignore the additional truckload of b.s. of trollish commentary that will likely follow.

    You can also ignore the Peckish "not underwater - "Sub" comments. Since he pretends to not read posts that preceed his own 'eureka' comments (such as, no one mentioned the paint, three posts after someone mentions seals & paint) and refuses to follow links and read on his own, he (as Garry Sorrells, apparently an HI wannabe) obviously isn't aware that the HI licensing law for MD, refers to "subpanels", etc. i.e. terms in the LAW.


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    HG,
    Sorry, but I view your post with amazement. Are you seriously trying to pull the "not readily accessible" and "potentially unsafe" card with this panel, because of a little paint, or hex head bolts? REALLY??????

    We also apparently have a different interpretation of the SOP regarding dwellings with 4 or more units. When I inspect a condo in a high rise that may have 40 units, I still adhere to the ASHI and TN SOP. I'm only inspecting ONE UNIT. Of course, there is the possibility that I am incorrect in sticking to the SOP.

    If I didn't inspect a panel because: 1. there was a table or counter in front of it, 2. It had the wrong screws, or 3. there was a little paint on the cover. I would be laughed out of town.

    I run into panels with padlocks on them all the time. I call the listing agent and ask if they know where the key is, and if they don't, do I have permission to cut the lock off. I then cut the lock off. Same with crawlspaces. I carry spare padlocks and will leave the seller a key to the new padlock with a note explaining why I had to cut the lock. Not once in 23 years have I had a seller complain that I cut their lock off, NOT ONCE!


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    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    HG,
    Sorry, but I view your post with amazement. Are you seriously trying to pull the "not readily accessible" and "potentially unsafe" card with this panel, because of a little paint, or hex head bolts? REALLY??????

    We also apparently have a different interpretation of the SOP regarding dwellings with 4 or more units. When I inspect a condo in a high rise that may have 40 units, I still adhere to the ASHI and TN SOP. I'm only inspecting ONE UNIT. Of course, there is the possibility that I am incorrect in sticking to the SOP.

    If I didn't inspect a panel because: 1. there was a table or counter in front of it, 2. It had the wrong screws, or 3. there was a little paint on the cover. I would be laughed out of town.

    I run into panels with padlocks on them all the time. I call the listing agent and ask if they know where the key is, and if they don't, do I have permission to cut the lock off. I then cut the lock off. Same with crawlspaces. I carry spare padlocks and will leave the seller a key to the new padlock with a note explaining why I had to cut the lock. Not once in 23 years have I had a seller complain that I cut their lock off, NOT ONCE!
    Jack,

    First off I pointed out EARLY ON that the Photo posted on the original first post SUGGESTED ("apparent") presence of a countertop encroaching on the WORKING SPACE clearance of the picture-frame cover. You've disputed that repeatedly, Mrs. Sisson has JUST CONFIRMED its (the encroaching countertop's) presence just two posts prior to your post. Are you intentionally obtuse, ignorant or oblivious to the implications, potential hazards and consequences regarding same regarding what has been pictured, described in Mrs. Sissons multiple contributions to the instant topic discussion?

    Apparently, YOU DO NOT GET that what is beyond that deadfront cover DOES NOT BELONG TO THE SELLER, it belongs to the BUILDING the building provides power & maintenance of same. If you go around cutting padlocks, entering building/condo common elements, etc. which are intended to be accessed and serviced only by permission and control of building managment and by QUALIFIED persons - you're potentially subjecting yourself and your client, to "all kinds of hurt". Of course, in your stomping grounds, I suspect you don't deal much with older multi-family buildings with more than four living units organized as a condominimum or co-op that are without a dedicated main power feeder, or without dedicated individual metered power.


    You're creating your own version (like others' fabrications) as to what I have said, "am saying", and ignored what I have NOT SAID, but you've "created" in your own mind, and that which has been said by others (NOT ME), etc. MY POSTS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES (As does the Standards of Practice for MARYLAND HOME INSPECTORS, in the MARYLAND Codes and Regulations!)

    As far as accessing a live electrical panel, removing a supposed dead front cover, and invading a common element system, which is neither the property or control of the seller, nor would it be that of the buyer, and most especially in opposite to the safety provisions, and when obstructed by flamable, static, obstructive personal property, and when obstucted by the presence of objectional, invasive, dangerous frankly should they exist in the working space clearance in front of the ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT - there is NO REASON, whatSOEVER, for Mrs. B, or any HI in Maryland to have done so. The obsolete panel cover, defaced, painted, questionably bonded, and of unknown supply should NOT be accessed. The panel, AGAIN as "Mrs. Bob" has TOLD YOU in her most recent post - IS NOT "condo" property. Removing of the dead front in this case REQUIRES permission of the building management, knowledge of the BUILDING SYSTEM, and very well may contain OTHER THAN JUST or EVEN 120/240V DEDICATED to THIS dwelling unit ONLY conductors, feeders, taps, risers, trunks, etc.).

    There ARE standards for safety regarding the inspection of existing electrical installations. THIS is NOT a free standing self-contained single-family dwelling OR single family building. IT IS NOT an IRC-type structure.

    I can only guess you don't inspect many mixed-occupancy or multi-family (more than 4-dwelling unit) type structures, OR you enter and/or "inspect" with common building systems which are under building managment control and/or serve more than one dwelling unit? Please show me exactly where the ASHI SOP applies to Common elements and system BEYOND the wall surface of the OP's subject converted apartment to condo unit AS SHE DESCRIBED IT.

    Your assumptions as to what the MARYLAND HI SOPs are and are NOT are in conflict with the LAW in Maryland for Home Inspectors - the reference for which I provided previously, and provided the LINK to same.

    If you, Garry S, and Jerry P, spent less time re-writing or presuming to stuff words and inject your own thoughts into what I actually said in a post (for example - I said "apparent..." with regards to countertop present - as what was IN the photo - that ribbon you couldn't identify suggested something bearing the ribbon supported by same - as did the upper cabinet area - and the other "clues" provided by Mrs. B in both her posts prior) you might have actually READ what the LAW and REGULATIONS in Maryland has to say on the subject. Don't be a Jim Port (and others) and continuously ignore all contributions of an Original Poster - and LOOK at the photo provided by same.

    The state site hosting the ann. codes will be down for maintenance this weekend, so hurry on over to the link and READ the sections I REFERENCED already - esp. 09.36.02 and 09.36.03.

    http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/Sub...search=09.36.*

    individuals who provide home inspection services pursuant to the provisions of Business Occupations and Professions Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, Title 16 and Code of Maryland Regulations, Title 9, Subtitle 36.

    <B>(16) "Inspect" means to examine readily accessible systems and components of a building in accordance with the standards of practice set forth in this chapter, using normal operating controls and opening readily openable access panels.

    (17) "Installed" means attached such that removal requires tools.

    (20) "Readily accessible" means available for visual inspection without requiring moving of personal property, dismantling, destructive measures, or any action that will likely involve risk to a person or property.



    <B>(21) "Readily openable access panel" means a panel provided for homeowner inspection and maintenance that:
    (a) Is within normal reach;


    (b) Can be easily removed by one person; and
    </B>
    </B>
    (c) Is not sealed in place.
    02 General.

    A. Purpose. In the general public interest, the standards of practice set forth in this chapter are promulgated to establish a minimum and uniform standard of performance to be exercised by a home inspector licensed by the Maryland State Commission of Real Estate Appraisers and Home Inspectors.

    B. Conflicts. If this chapter conflicts with other federal or State requirements, the home inspector shall follow the more stringent requirements.

    C. Scope. The standards of practice set forth in this chapter apply only to the inspection of a residential building containing one to four dwelling units.

    D. Inspections.


    <B>
    (1) The standards of practice set forth in this chapter:



    </B>
    (a) Identify the items, components, systems, and certain terms included in the scope of a home inspection; and
    (b) Apply to a visual inspection of the readily accessible areas of the included items, components, and systems to determine if, at the time of the home inspection, the items, components, and systems are performing their intended function or are determined to be significantly deficient.

    (2) A home inspection performed in accordance with the standards of practice set forth in this chapter:
    (a) Is intended to provide a client with objective information regarding the condition of the systems and components of a home at the time of the home inspection;
    (b) Acts to identify visible defects and conditions that, in the judgment of the home inspector, adversely affect the function or integrity of the items, components, and systems inspected, including those items or components near the end of their serviceable life;
    (c) May not be construed as a compliance inspection pursuant to any code or governmental regulation;
    (d) Is not intended to be construed as a guarantee, warranty, or any form of insurance;
    (e) Is not an express or implied warranty or a guarantee of the adequacy, performance, or useful life of any item, component, or system in, on, or about the inspected property;
    (f) Is based on the visual observation of the home inspector; and
    (g) Shall be performed in a time period sufficient to allow compliance with the provisions of the standards of practice set forth in this chapter.
    E. Representative Number. For the purpose of making a finding or conclusion as a result of a home inspection, a home inspector may consider for representative number:
    (1) Electrical outlets;
    (2) Exterior windows;
    (3) Exterior shutters;
    (4) Doors; and
    (5) Siding materials.

    F. Report. A home inspection report:
    (1) Shall contain the written opinion of the home inspector based on the judgment and experience of the home inspector;
    (2) Is not intended to be technically exhaustive; and
    (3) May identify items in need of further evaluation.
    03 Limitations and Exclusions.



    A. A home inspection performed in accordance with the standards of practice set forth in this chapter:
    (1) Is not technically exhaustive; and
    (2) May not identify concealed conditions or latent defects.
    <B>B. Except as may be required by lawful authority, a home inspector is not required to perform any action or make any determination unless specifically stated in the standards of practice set forth in this chapter.



    C. A home inspector is not required to determine any of the following:
    (1) Condition of a system or component that is not readily accessible;


    </B>(2) Remaining life of any system or component;
    (3) Strength, adequacy, effectiveness, or efficiency of any system or component;
    (4) Causes of any condition or deficiency;
    (5) Methods, materials, or costs of corrections;
    (6) Future conditions, including, but not limited to, failure of systems and components;
    (7) Suitability of the property for any specialized use;
    (8) Property boundary lines or encroachments;
    (9) Compliance of the structure with applicable provisions of local ordinances, regulations, or codes;
    (10) Market value of the property or its marketability;
    (11) Advisability of the purchase of the property;
    (12) Indoor air quality or sickness of any building, including, but not limited to, the presence or absence of all manner of biological activity, such as carcinogens, mold, insects, birds, pets, mammals, and other flora and fauna, and their consequent damage, toxicity, odors, waste products, and noxiousness;
    (13) Effectiveness of any system installed or methods utilized to control or remove suspected hazardous substances;
    (14) Operating costs of a system or component;
    (15) Acoustical properties of any system or component; or
    (16) Existence of manufacturer's recalls.

    D. A home inspector is not required to offer or perform any of the following:
    (1) Any act or service contrary to law;
    (2) Engineering services;
    (3) Work in any trade or any professional service other than home inspection; or
    (4) Warranties or guarantees of any kind.

    E. A home inspector is not required to operate any system or component that:
    (1) Is shut down or otherwise inoperable; or
    (2) Does not respond to normal operating controls.

    <B>F. A home inspector is not required to enter:
    (1) Any area that may be, in the opinion of the home inspector, dangerous to the inspector or other persons or may damage the property or its systems or components; </B>
    or
    (2) Under-floor crawl spaces or attics that are not readily accessible.

    <B>G. A home inspector is not required to inspect any of the following:
    (1) Underground items, including, but not limited to, underground storage tanks or other underground indications of their presence, whether abandoned or active;
    (2) Systems or components that are not installed;
    (3) Decorative items;
    (4) Systems or components located in areas that cannot be entered in accordance with the standards of practice set forth in this chapter;
    (5) Detached structures other than garages and carports;
    (6) Common elements or common areas in multiunit housing, such as condominium properties or cooperative housing; or
    </B>(7) A common condominium component or system or evaluated condominium reserve accounts.

    H. A home inspector is not required to:
    (1) Perform any procedure or operation that may be, in the opinion of the inspector, dangerous to the inspector or other persons or damage the property or its systems or components;
    (2) Move suspended ceiling tiles, personal property, furniture, equipment, plants, soil, snow, ice, or debris;
    (3) Dismantle any system or component, except as explicitly required by the standards of practice set forth in this chapter; or
    (4) Include in a written report any information from any source concerning previous:
    (a) Property, geological, environmental, or hazardous waste conditions;
    (b) Manufacturer recalls or conformance of proper manufacturer's installation of any component or system; or
    (c) Information contained in a consumer protection bulletin of publication.


    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 08-25-2012 at 03:10 PM.

  61. #61
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
    Posts
    26,252

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by H.G. Watson, Sr. View Post
    MY POSTS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES
    Watson,

    Your posts certainly do speak for themselves ... no one else can make up stuff as well as you do.

    You tend to throw in a few obvious facts, a few obvious WTF items, and then some general nonsense, the hit puree. After that you had your infamous food coloring to make the already inedible concoction putrid in color.

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

  62. #62
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    2,778

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    The problem with relying on SOP to be the default to not doing something is that all SOPs are minimum based as in the least that has to be done. Any job can be done to the minimal required standard ...........But to exceed the minimal is what makes something valuable.

    As with MD SOP and other SOPs it is the underlying mind set of being a minimal generalist and many are happy with that in life (which is an opinion). You seem to have an issue with opinions. Going beyond a minimal foundation of an SOP is a personal judgement and the reasoning may be just a personal opinion.

    02 General
    .
    A. Purpose. In the general public interest, the standards of practice set forth in this chapter are promulgated to establish a minimum and uniform standard of performance to be exercised by a home inspector licensed by the Maryland State Commission of Real Estate Appraisers and Home Inspectors.

    I found the font and color just like HG>

    H.G., The 4 unit section is to differentiate between residential, small commercial investment and that of large commercial. It has no bearing on a a particular unit in a condo association. It would pertinent if it was an inspection of the entire combined condo entity where there were more than 4 units or a building with more than 4 apartments. It differentiates between a home inspector and a commercial inspection. But I am sure you know that.


    It is a shame that you seem to have so little humor in your life and also seem to become overwhelmed when comfronted with dissidence. And have to lash out. So sad.

    As said in a song "Don't be sad------ be happy"


  63. #63
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Western Maryland
    Posts
    131

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    H.G. -

    By your reading of "readily openable access panel", we don't need to remove panel covers at all since "homeowner inspection" is limited to looking at the breakers or fuses. I think you are missing something - like when in conflict with other applicable standards, the stricter applies.

    Secondly, you contradict yourself by saying that she was within the standards to not open the panel, but then point out the standards don't even apply in a larger-than-four-unit building. So, technically, she wasn't even doing a "Home Inspection" governed by Maryland law and none of your exhaustive research and color-coded annotation applies.

    Whether or not she should be looking in the panel since the unit-owner doesn't own it is another question. You can argue the legal aspect all you want, but if it affects my client's unit (or life safety), or is in my client's unit, I'm going to look at it. By your logic, I could ignore a failed wall since the condo owns the framing. Or a failed flue located in a chaseway running through the unit since the condo owns the chaseway.

    Mark Fisher
    Allegany Inspection Service - Cumberland MD 21502 - 301-722-2224
    Home Inspections, Mold Testing, Thermal Imaging

  64. #64
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,446

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    " and ignored what I have NOT SAID,......"

    WTF does THAT mean????

    A nod is as good as a wink to a blind man. :-)

    Ignore what I have not said????? Sheeesh!

    Please read MY post where I said that I always ask permission to cut padlocks.


  65. #65
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    869

    Default Re: Frankenstein's electrical panel?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
    H.G. -

    Whether or not she should be looking in the panel since the unit-owner doesn't own it ....

    When did this become a fact, or shall we add it to the list... after the machine gun. Billy get out the machine gun.

    Steven Turetsky, UID #16000002314
    homeinspectionsnewyork.com
    eifsinspectionsnewyork.com

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