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Jerry Simon

Receptacle above kitchen sink

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Eli is a Canadian. Don't listen to him. [:)]

No kidding, Canadian rules are not the same for the kitchen. We only need a GFCI within 59 inches of the sink. Also, we can now use either 20 amp or 15 amp split duplex outlets. 20 amp only if the wiring is #12 gauge.

Older kitchens in Canada used #14, so they must remain 15 amp split duplex. If it's a kitchen reno, then they would need 15 amp GFCI breakers on each leg in the panel.

In Canada, that double receptacle would not be allowed. The left half is above the sink.

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What's all this talk about a needing a GFCI breaker to maintain the four outlets? A single GFCI duplex receptacle could easily feed the other duplex and accomplish the same thing.

Like I said, Don't listen to the goofy Canuck. [:)]

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Improper receptacle location above the right side of the sink? Should it be moved, or just changed to a GFCI type?

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If I were inspecting the house, I'd just tell them to make sure that it's GFCI protected.

Moving it a few inches away from the sink won't change the risk.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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What's all this talk about a needing a GFCI breaker to maintain the four outlets? A single GFCI duplex receptacle could easily feed the other duplex and accomplish the same thing.

good luck finding that cover plate!

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What's all this talk about a needing a GFCI breaker to maintain the four outlets? A single GFCI duplex receptacle could easily feed the other duplex and accomplish the same thing.

good luck finding that cover plate!

What? You've never seen Leviton Decora outlets?

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Improper receptacle location above the right side of the sink? Should it be moved, or just changed to a GFCI type?

If I were inspecting the house, I'd just tell them to make sure that it's GFCI protected.

Moving it a few inches away from the sink won't change the risk.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

That's what I said in the first place. I said that i'd recommend a GFCI! (If it's not already present).

Then, I have no clue of what the hell happened in here! lol, someone said to not listen to the Canadian, who, I think, was right! :P:)

Sorry Jerry. I think you got your answer(s).

Eli, you said either move it or install GFCI. In the US, the code requires all new kitchen receptacles to be on GFCI's, no matter where you moved it to. In Canada, yes, you can move it away from the sink 1.5 meters and not put in a GFCI. We are scary that way.

Just making sure you got the code rules straight.

GFCI breakers in the panel are required only on the Canadian 15 amp split duplex circuits within 1.5 meters of the sink if the kitchen is being renovated, therefore, if new code rules come into effect in an old kitchen. New kitchen, you will see 20 amp circuits installed using the much cheaper GFCI receptacles.

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Here is a little chart indicating where and when the US needed GFCI.

The receptacles cost about $10, take less than 15 minutes to install, and save lifes. Sure, I recommend them to be installed in every house no matter when they were built. Only required since 1978.

Download Attachment: icon_adobe.gif GFCI Dates.pdf

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In NJ, smoke and carbon monoxide detector certification is needed as part of the house closing process. Some of the municipal inspectors are now also requiring GFCI upgrades to kitchen and bathroom outlets as part of the C of O.

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Fire exting. in the kitchens in NJ also. In my town you need GFCI's or no CCO, along with other things as in proper railings, no broken glass, debris on property, stair riser heights, etc. Depends on the municipality.

In an adjoining town a fire inspector walked through ridiculous entry door (about 4 1/2 feet high) down a ridiculous set of stairs ( no rails, open risers and sittiing on bare soil) and pointed out the need for a smoke detector above a clothes dryer. Not so tough.

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So in a 1971 house, you can recommend a GFCI in the bathroom, but it is not mandatory, choice goes to the clients. As for a house built in 2011 a GFCI in the bathroom will be recommended by the inspector and is mandatory, so the clients have no choice but to install one.

Thanks for the info!

No. I can recommend a GFCI in any age house regardless of when GFCI were required or when the house was built. I view it as a Safety issue and recommend they be installed in every house.

It is always the buyers choice what do with the information in a home inspection report. There is no mandatory requirement the seller or the buyer fix or upgrade anything in a home inspection report including GFCI.

It is only "mandatory" to install GFCI during new construction or during significant electrical upgrades to the property that requires a permit.

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I tell my clients to install gfci's wherever they are needed now in spite of how old the house is, why not. They're cheap and effective. In a few years we will all be saying the same thing about Arc Fault breakers.

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Here is a little chart indicating where and when the US needed GFCI.

The receptacles cost about $10, take less than 15 minutes to install, and save lifes. Sure, I recommend them to be installed in every house no matter when they were built. Only required since 1978.

Download Attachment: icon_adobe.gif GFCI Dates.pdf

21.1 KB

I see that Jerry has removed the name of the co-compiler of the majority of that - Norm Sage.

Figures.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Oh i see!

So in the US whenever there is a receptacle in the kitchen, it immediately needs a GFCI!

Not quite. In the US, GFCI protection is required at all 15- and 20-amp receptacles that serve kitchen countertops. The other receptacles in a kitchen don't require GFCI protection. These might include receptacles behind refrigerators, down low near the floor, inside a cabinet to serve a cooktop, etc.

It's true that in Canada you can either move it 1.5 meter away from the pluming system or install a GFCI!

That used to be the case in the US also. We became more strict.

Now, what I am thinking is, why did Jerry asked that question if the GFCI is mandatory? Moving it or not makes no difference then!?

He asked if it should be moved or *just* changed to a GFCI. I think that he's perfectly aware that the GFCI protection is a good idea either way.

Maybe it's an old kitchen? Do the rules change in the US if it's an older kitchen or you still need to advice the client about installing a GFCI?

The reporting requirements vary from state to state. I believe that some (Texas?) require home inspectors to recommend GFCI installation in certain places. Other states have no such requirements and the decision about what to recommend is left up to the inspector.

In Canada, no matters if it's a new house or not, you need to advise your clients to install a GFCI if the receptacle is less than 1.5 meter.

Is that a code requirement or a requirement for home inspectors? If a home inspector requirement, who makes that rule? Is the rule nationwide or does it vary by province or city?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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In Canada, no matters if it's a new house or not, you need to advise your clients to install a GFCI if the receptacle is less than 1.5 meter.

Is that a code requirement or a requirement for home inspectors? If a home inspector requirement, who makes that rule? Is the rule nationwide or does it vary by province or city?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

Jim, don't listen to dat goofy Canuck. Nothing is required.

I call for GFCi's in the bathrooms of old houses.

Not the kitchens. Know why? 15 amp split duplex wiring makes it a royal PITA.

Eli can do whatever he wants. No licensing in la provence du Quebec.[:)]

We have licensing in BC now, but no SOP attached. I think it's just a token license and a cash grab. We may see changes in the near future.

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In Canada, no matters if it's a new house or not, you need to advise your clients to install a GFCI if the receptacle is less than 1.5 meter.

Is that a code requirement or a requirement for home inspectors? If a home inspector requirement, who makes that rule? Is the rule nationwide or does it vary by province or city?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

Jim, sorry for the time taken before answering you and thanks for the time you take to answer my questions.

It is mandatory to have a GFCI on a exterior receptacle, in a bathroom and if the receptacle is less than 1 meter from a pluming system! The rest is up to the inspector to decide if a GFCI is recommended or not!

It is true and so unfortunate that a license is not mandatory to become an inspector, but we are working on it, but this doesn't mean we have no rules concerning houses, electricity, pluming system etc!

Exterior, bathroom and less than 1 meter from pluming system will required a GFCI! The rest is up to the inspector!

If there is no licensing for Home Inspectors, then inspectors can choose to do whatever they want. It is ALL up to the inspector.

I think you are confusing mandatory new construction building codes and home inspection reporting standards.

One of the hardest things for new home inspectors to learn is when to call out current code violations on homes built before the code was enacted. It boils down to safety. If it is unsafe, report the condition. It does not matter what the code was at the time the house was built. No railings on a staircase is unsafe, always and forever past and present and future. Similarly with GFCI.

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it is safer for the client to make business with an inspector who's part of an association!

That's the biggest crock of sh*t I've ever heard and it's, frankly, insulting.

Maybe you need to get dry behind the ears and spend some time in the business learning what it's about before you start parroting the pablum you'd swallowed in your "school".

There is absolutely nothing about belonging to one of the alphabet soup associations that makes an association member any more competent or any more professional than competent professional independents.

Put that in your naive pipe and smoke it, rookie.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Hey Bruce,

Well, inspectors are supposed to base their recommendations on a few things.

First, as you mentioned, safety!

Second, on the National Building Code of Canada

Third, electricity code

You left out 'horse sense'.

it is safer for the client to make business with an inspector who's part of an association!

That attitude is precisely the reason why I changed my mind about joining an association 8 years ago when I started out. I still haven't joined any and I don't miss 'em.

If the inspector don't base his inspection on any building code, standards of practice nor service agreement and the client get the wrong recommendations, the inspector can get sued.

You can get sued on much less than that.

Marc

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it is safer for the client to make business with an inspector who's part of an association!

Associations have nothing to do with the customer. It has to with the inspector. Associations are clubs for home inspectors. They are used primiarily for marketing to convince potential customers that associations members are somehow better than non-members. As already mentioned, horse hockey.

Associations provide a marketing channel. They sometimes arrange and deliver training. They provide a way for mostly individual business owners to discuss common business problems and bitch about stupid customers. Belonging to a particular association does not instantly make an inspector better.

I belong to both statewide and national associations. Neither made me a better inspector just because I belong. The entrance requirements consist of me paying dues or something so simple it only means I have been an inspector for a year or two. Once in the club, there are no ongoing requirements besides sending them a check every year. The national club "requires" I take X number of Con Ed each year but they only radomly audit so I could belong for years and take no Con Ed.

Licensing is about as useful. Pass a simple test, pay your annual dues, and take 16 hrs of continuing education. At least there is a mandatory con ed requirement. But since all inspectors are licensed in my area, we are all the same from a customers point of view. Inspector who got his license yesterday and one who has 10 yrs experience are all the same.

TIJ is really just a virtual association. Inspectors come here to bitch about stupid customers and ask an occasional question for clairification because it is easier and quicker than looking it up in the code books.

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Licensing is about as useful. Pass a simple test, pay your annual dues, and take 16 hrs of continuing education. At least there is a mandatory con ed requirement. But since all inspectors are licensed in my area, we are all the same from a customers point of view. Inspector who got his license yesterday and one who has 10 yrs experience are all the same.

Another fallacy,

Potential customers certainly do not consider all licensed inspectors equally qualified. Seriously, where do you come up with this stuff? Where is the proof of that?

We have licensing here too. I'd say that before licensing the field was already very level. There were no standards for inspections, no standards for a report, no requirement for contracts, no requirements for basic competency, and nobody to go to for help if you were a home buyer and got a crappy inspection. Other than an inspector's word and the recommendation one received from friends or a realtor, there was no way to know whether an inspector had ever met a basic level of competency. The profession was already dumbed down and everyone was viewed just as suspiciously as every other inspector because consumers had no way to know whether an inspector could walk and talk at the same time let along inspect a home.

Licensing here forced every inspector - the guy who'd been in the business 30 years as well as the guy who'd been in the business 30 days - to prove that he or she could do what he or she claimed to be able to do, inspect homes, by forcing all to, at a minimum, pass a test of basic inspector competency. How does that hurt the consumer? It seems that the consumer benefits from that.

That was a starting point but not the end point and consumers I've encountered certainly know that licensing doesn't mean that all inspectors are equal; yet I infer from your statement that when a consumer knows everyone is licensed the consumer apparently loses all motivation to interview an inspector to decide which inspector is more qualified than the next.

That is a little bit odd - especially since consumers apparently still choose their plumbers, electricians, architects, engineers, lawyers, doctors etc. by comparing the experience of those professionals and by getting referrals from friends and co-workers. Odd that it doesn't work the same way with inspectors - oh wait,.....it does work the same way with inspectors; in fact, it's been my experience that during first phone contact now consumers are asking more questions than they ever had prior to licensing.

If anything, it seems like consumers don't want to assume that an inspector's license means that all inspectors are equal in skill. Then again, maybe we simply have smarter, more discerning consumers out here than can be found where you are. Maybe over there they are all automatons that are easily led around by the nose and deceived into believing whatever they are told. I dunno, I don't live there so maybe I've got it wrong.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Licensing is about as useful. Pass a simple test, pay your annual dues, and take 16 hrs of continuing education. At least there is a mandatory con ed requirement. But since all inspectors are licensed in my area, we are all the same from a customers point of view. Inspector who got his license yesterday and one who has 10 yrs experience are all the same.

Another fallacy,

Potential customers certainly do not consider all licensed inspectors equally qualified. Seriously, where do you come up with this stuff? Where is the proof of that?

We have licensing here too. I'd say that before licensing the field was already very level. There were no standards for inspections, no standards for a report, no requirement for contracts, no requirements for basic competency, and nobody to go to for help if you were a home buyer and got a crappy inspection. Other than an inspector's word and the recommendation one received from friends or a realtor, there was no way to know whether an inspector had ever met a basic level of competency. The profession was already dumbed down and everyone was viewed just as suspiciously as every other inspector because consumers had no way to know whether an inspector could walk and talk at the same time let along inspect a home.

Licensing here forced every inspector - the guy who'd been in the business 30 years as well as the guy who'd been in the business 30 days - to prove that he or she could do what he or she claimed to be able to do, inspect homes, by forcing all to, at a minimum, pass a test of basic inspector competency. How does that hurt the consumer? It seems that the consumer benefits from that.

That was a starting point but not the end point and consumers I've encountered certainly know that licensing doesn't mean that all inspectors are equal; yet I infer from your statement that when a consumer knows everyone is licensed the consumer apparently loses all motivation to interview an inspector to decide which inspector is more qualified than the next.

That is a little bit odd - especially since consumers apparently still choose their plumbers, electricians, architects, engineers, lawyers, doctors etc. by comparing the experience of those professionals and by getting referrals from friends and co-workers. Odd that it doesn't work the same way with inspectors - oh wait,.....it does work the same way with inspectors; in fact, it's been my experience that during first phone contact now consumers are asking more questions than they ever had prior to licensing.

If anything, it seems like consumers don't want to assume that an inspector's license means that all inspectors are equal in skill. Then again, maybe we simply have smarter, more discerning consumers out here than can be found where you are. Maybe over there they are all automatons that are easily led around by the nose and deceived into believing whatever they are told. I dunno, I don't live there so maybe I've got it wrong.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

Licensing is not bad, but it does not solve all problems. Yes, licensing limits the worst from becoming inspectors. According to the licensing board 1/2 fail the state test, regardless of how many times a candidate takes the test. Yes, it forces a basic minimun knowledge base to pass the test. Yes, licensing defines an SOP and reporting standard. Yes, licensing provides an enforcement body that can penalize inspectors that do not meet the minimun. Yes, continuing education is a good thing. But licensing standards are so low that just because one is licensed, does not mean the individual is capable of providing a reasonable inspection or report.

I am a member of the statewide associations Peer Report Review Committee. Members submit a report which has the client name, client address, inspector name and identifing information removed before it is sent to the committee. I would presume that canidadates would submit reports that they felt would presumably meet the SOPs. Most reports are about 90% there. Most are horribly written. If I as a home inspector cannot figure out what they mean, what chance does a layperson client have? The License Board has the legal ability to request audits of inspector reports but has never in 13+ years. They claim not enough manpower or money to hire manpower. Unless a client drops a dime to the licensure board as a complaint, inspectors are left to their own devices.

Once licensed, unless the inspector fouls up enough to piss off a customer so they lodge a formal complaint, or does not meet the ConEd requirements, they are left unmolested by the board. Less hassle is nice but does not provide any assurances to the quality of the inspectors for clients.

Potential customers call me and their very first thing out of their mouths is how much do you charge. Not how much experience do you have, how much training did you attend, what format is your report, can you provide references, are you available during these days/times. Only how much do you charge.

I have my phone pitch and dont say anything about price until the end. My phone pitch could be the worlds worst and maybe that is why I am not convincing more callers. But I am also hearing that pricing is the overiding factor. My customer reviews are positive and I often get referrals from my customers. But they have to become a customer first.

"Seriously, where do you come up with this stuff?" From talking to potential clients.

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