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  1. Good information. Thanks, Dennis. -David
  2. With gas units I check the supply plenum with a CO detector with a MonoxerII with a probe.(Usually on the QT.) If there's CO in that short space between ignition and blower, then I document it. If there's no CO, then I don't report that I've even done the test, but just use the standard HE disclaimer. Works for me. With oil, I tape the inspection port cover open with foil tape, and hold my hand a comfortable few inches away from the open port. If I get a blast of hot air when the blower comes on (blower pushing duct air into the chamber), I report a HE breach. -David Lee in VA
  3. Ye-e-e-s? They the same as smoke tablets? Hmm? And I agree with George about uses - but would add that I can't imagine any use for a HI. Doing combustion analysis is beyond the scope of beyond the scope. -David
  4. Assuming that you have a data base or other software that can do mail merges, here's what I do: 1. Four months after the inspection, I mail to each client a mail-merged letter on letterhead a "welcome to your new home" letter. And express hopes that they found the inspection report helpful. I enclose a "jar gripper" with myname and logo on it. These fit into a catalog 6X9" envelope within the one ounce postage limit. I also in that letter expressly ask them to pass my name along to "fiends an associates, and refer also to my URL. 2. Twice a year I send out single sided, letter folded, newsletters. These are seasonal Maintenance Tips typeletters that are 90% helpful - plus 10% advertising. They have my name, photo, logo, URL and also again ask people to refer me to friends. I schedule these three mailings so that my clients get the three pieces within 12-16 months after the inspection. Dennis - steal this, if you find it worthy. I also have a web site that sells for me. If I can get people to it, they're sold. So in all my print material, and in all my outgoing phone messsages, I refer people to my site - where they can see a sample report. http://www.dlee.com -David Lee in VA
  5. Chad, what's an O2 barrier lining and how does it prevent/inhibit O2 getting to boiler parts? And I assume any PB with it would say so on the outside - right? -David Lee
  6. Jeff, what you did not say, but undoubtedly know, is that unlike an all electric HP, a dual fuel will not run both aux heat and HP at the same time. When the ambient temp is above the set point (around here it's 40 deg), the easy way to test the gas unit is by running it in Em Heat mode. When it's below the set point outside, there's no easy way to run the HP. Short of warming up the sensor outside. And I wouldn't have a clue about that. -David Lee
  7. I use my Protimeter frequently. When I describe a surface as dry now, damp now or now, I add "tested with a moisture meter." There are circumstances when I record the numbers for damp as "16-19%" or wet, "over 20%" when I want to make a specific case for correction. I use it for basement walls, floor assembly from a basement or crawl space, around commode bases through vinyl flooring, etc. etc. I find it especially handy for X-ray vision, i.e., when the owner has done a cover up paint job in a basement and I can say, with confidence, "This wall is wet." Cool. -David Lee
  8. Terence, from your description the furnace sounds like a mid-efficiency unit, with draft that is probably best described as "induced." These need to be "fan-assisted" because they will not draft on their own steam, so to speak. Typically the flue gases are still under negative pressure with respect to the room air, though, so that the WH draft generally is not impeded when it meets the furnace draft. This is especially true if the installer has been smart enough to use a "Water Heater Wye" for the vent union. When T's are used the WH often will backdraft for a while before getting up to speed with the furnace draft. Even a wye union will result in WH backdrafting if the WH is running, and then the furnace fan comes on. Until the furnaces lights up, its start-up draft is cool ikn temp and will usually stop the WH draft dead in its tracks. I call that out if it lasts more than a minute. Usually doesn't. This may be more than you asked for, or maybe even none of what you asked for. You just pushed my Answer Button. -David Lee
  9. Thanks, George.That's helpful. I used the SureTest on a couple of houses and decided there was a better way to make a living than worry about what AWG was indeed inside the wall. Ditto re Mike's practice of checking rec's furthest away from the panel. I may not in fact wind up ever calling a voltage drop. But in the meantime I need to build my own experience with this new toy. Thanks to both - -David Lee
  10. Chip: Bill? Bill who? I didn't see a Bill. This is a weird forum for names. And was your response sarcastic? Looked it. -David Lee
  11. I'm adding this post just to get this topic back to the head of the line. Everybody's ignoring mu question. And I just paid 250 for this thing. I may have to get in the line to call Suretest. Behind the guys who are calling about GFCI trip points. -David Lee in VA
  12. Chip, if you're from an area cold enough to have an auxiliary heater to back up the heat pump, then the thermostat will have settings for Cool/Off/Heat/EmHeat (or AuxHeat). In warmer climes there often is not any auxiliary heat. Going outside, with your flashlight, look into the condenser unit. What you're looking for is the reversing valve. Heat pumps have'em, AC's don't. While the shapes differ somewhat from maker to maker, you're looking for a gizmo that's a small canister about 1.5-2" in diameter and 6-7" tall -and with four regrigerant tubes going in and out of it. Once you know you have a heat pump sometime, go out and look for this, and you'll get to recognize these. -David Lee
  13. Thanks, Douglas. I'll get on the horn tomorrow and see if any suppliers have any. I'm describing these receptacles to my client as having "passed" the SureTest, but not really securely or optimally grounded. That sound accurate to say it that way. -David
  14. How come this doesn't violate the fire separation? Is there a firewall between house and garage attics? -David Lee
  15. I'm doing some receptacle inspections for a company that has a program for homebound computer operators. They're hiring me to check receptacles for grounding and polarity. I know that BX around here is commonly grounded just by screwing the 3-slot receptacle into the metal wall box - and the SureTest reads "OK" with that. But I'm inclined to say that such are not optimally grounded, and that greater ground security can be made by connecting from the receptacle to the box with wire. Agree? Or am I being too picky? -David Lee
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