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Chinese Drywall: Is It the Next Gold Rush?


hausdok
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Ten years ago, the media hype over alleged "toxic" mold spawned a whole new crop of home inspectors; many of whom were poorly trained and focused mainly on finding something to justify their fees and scaring the hell out of folks about mold in order to ramp up fear and increase their businesses.

As time went on and the mold hysteria finally lessened somewhat, some of these charlatans fell by the wayside; however, many are still out there and they continue to ride the mold is gold bandwagon to this day. Now we have the sulfur-containing Chinese drywall issue, and a whole new generation of quasi-inspectors has sprung up in Florida and is quite successfully ramping up peoples' fears.

Unlike the mold issue, which is driven mostly by media hype and junk science, it appears that the sulfur-containing drywall issue is very real and can in fact cause damage to some components in peoples homes. A lot of research needs to be done yet to identify definite links between drywall and ill health; but in Florida, where there is a sizable population of seniors, the spin meisters are working overtime to play up the health angle and get their foot in many doors, and stories of crooked drywall inspectors are becoming pretty common.

Are we about to experience another full-blown influx of gold diggers who will once again help to diminish our credibility as a profession? To read more, click here.

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Absolutely. The "Happy Home Inspector" and one of the other large outfits from the big city to the north are doing the chicken little at every realtor function available. Of course they are now offering a specialized inspection to detect the deadly Chinese drywall. I'm also starting to receive phone calls almost daily from venders selling their Chinese drywall detection wares. I'm not convinced there are any health issues related to the drywall (neither is the CDC) but that won't stop the train.

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Mike

You summed this one up well. I think your choosing of the words "media hype" and "junk science" are fitting.

If the lead, asbestos, formaledhyde, mold, (and now) chinese drywall does not get us......maybe the radon from granite counter tops will. :)

Yet it amazes me how many people worry about these things, and then light up a cigarette......go figure.....

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Yes,

Yesterday, a lady asked me specifically how I was going to test the radon in her countertops. I pointed out to her that she lives in a world where she is literally encapsulated in electro-magnetic radiation, carries a cell phone and sits in front of a television with is also an emitter. Then I told her that if she wanted that checked, she needed to call an environmental testing firm 'cuz it's not something that home inspectors do. She got it....I think.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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I test for Chinese drywall. I put a small dent through the surface paper with my thumb nail and lick it twice; first time for the control and second time for the test. If it tastes salty, I declare it Chinese and leave the area.

We, as inspectors, brought all this nonsense on ourselves! We are a vain bunch and profit motivated at the same time.

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I test for Chinese drywall. I put a small dent through the surface paper with my thumb nail and lick it twice; first time for the control and second time for the test. If it tastes salty, I declare it Chinese and leave the area.

We, as inspectors, brought all this nonsense on ourselves! We are a vain bunch and profit motivated at the same time.

Be carefull testing it that way. I heard they use alot of MSG in that stuff.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It seems to me that we often just respond to these issues, and the level of our response, as well as our ethical stances, defines us. The only way we can weed out the real issues from the hyped issues is to have more experts teaching us, such as Joe Lsteburek, and by being vigilant in service to our customers.

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