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Hmmmm


crusty
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Does anyone know anything about this?

Here is the comment from my report.

At the time of testing the water flow, while both sinks and the shower were in operation, utilizing both the hot and cold water supplies, it was noted that the cold water at the left master bathroom sink was flowing through the faucet into the hot water piping.

RECOMMENDATION : Further evaluation and correction by a qualified state licensed plumber.

It was a two handled faucet. I was able to pick it up from the fact that after I shut the faucet off, I immediately turned the hot alone on and it ran cold for awhile.

I would like to know more about the problem if anyone is familiar with it.

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The factor that stands consideration is with all the fixtures open there'll be very little pressure. It then becomes a matter of whatever side is plumbed larger with fewer turns and shorter origin to destination lengths to determine where the water will flow. The plumbing with the least resistance gets the water even if it's going backwards through the fixture.

I've resisted answering this post until now because I knew my response would sound obscure. I was right.

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Pressure weirdness; I have no idea why. I see this in old inner City high rise apartments all the time. Why it would occur in a "new"(?) home is mysterious. In the older buildings, it always boils down to crappy old pipe, & unsatisfactory pressure differential. It could also simply be a faulty valve, which in this case, sounds like the culprit.

I gotta comment on the reportage. It is bad passive voice. "It was noted that....", in particular, is extremely poor use of language. One would never talk this way in anything other than a home inspection report using InspectorSpeak language.

"When I tested the faucets...etc., etc....., cold water flowed when the hot water valve was opened; I have no explanation for this. (Insert appropriate safety comment here, scald potential, etc.,...)RECOMMENDATION: Have it repaired, yadda, yadda....

InspectorSpeak is so pervasive, & used by so many folks, hardly anyone notices it anymore. "It was observed that....", technically, doesn't mean anything. Don't say it.

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Kurt,

Is there a grammarian in the house?

It was noted, with some chagrin, that this site appears to be haunted by opinionated English majors!

During a summer job in the college library one of my tasks was to file and shelve masters' degree theses.

Believe it or not, some guy got his masters in journalism with a thesis on justifications for the use of passive voice in headlines.

While general rules of prose style do say that for techo-speak the best sentences are SAAD, (simple, active, affirmative, declarative) sentences, I often use just such passive phrases as Crusty did. I think it is a way to de-personalize the report, and I also think it is OK, as long as it is not overdone.

Yours in the struggle for better prose style,

Jim

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Originally posted by Jim Baird

While general rules of prose style do say that for techo-speak the best sentences are SAAD, (simple, active, affirmative, declarative) sentences, I often use just such passive phrases as Crusty did. I think it is a way to de-personalize the report, and I also think it is OK, as long as it is not overdone.

Jim

Everyone uses it often; that's the problem. It has become "acceptable" to be a bad writer in our profession.

As far as de-personalizing the report, that is also bad. We are people, hired by other people that perceive us as their advocate. It's time to get personal.

"As long as it's not overdone..."; if it's done @ all, it's overdone.

I am as guilty as everyone else. Crappy passive voice creeps into all my reports, but I work @ getting rid of it. It's so pervasive, sometimes I'm not even aware I'm doing it.

Glad to have someone on board w/ restoring gooder writing into this thing that we do.

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At the risk of commissioning Major Boredom and General Apathy, I'll just chime in briefly on the report writing aspect. I don't have a clue what might be wrong (or right) with Crusty's plumbing.

Everything you write has to be aimed at an audience. I think most inspectors write in a way that they think impresses other inspectors, which is a BIG mistake. Write for your client. Impress them by telling them what is wrong, what it means, and what they should do. I'd almost go so far as to say that if other HI's like your report style, there's a good chance it is seriously flawed.

I think some of us think the passive voice sounds professional, and in some instances it may. For the work we do, it sounds weaselly, phony, and non-committal. I agree with Kurt: Exorcise it from your reports.

Further ivestigation by a licensed professional is suggested means what, exactly? I'm serious. You'd better be able to answer that question if you write that way because one day a guy you used to wedgie, wearing a suit you can't afford, is going to ask you that very question and your answer had better impress the judge.

"You should hire a plumber to figure this out and fix it." is far better. Who doesn't know what that means? It's not personal, it's professional. I have yet to see anyone improve on: "I saw this. It means that. You should..."

What would you think of a physician who told you: "Mr. Inspector, your cholesterol is through the roof, you flunked two consecutive stress tests, you are fifty pounds overweight, you can't seem to stop clutching your heart and shouting 'It's the big one, Elizabeth, I'm coming to join you honey!'. Further investigation by a qualified professional is suggested."?

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Originally posted by Jim Morrison

At the risk of commissioning Major Boredom and General Apathy, I'll just chime in briefly on the report writing aspect.

Me too, I'm just glad you didn't discuss the Private Parts of your writing philosophy.

I think some of us think the passive voice sounds professional, and in some instances it may.

I know exactly where I first turned down that road. The software I bought when I started out was (is) full of it. Most of the inspection contracts I robbed reviewed while composing my own were also an influence in the "CYA by InspectorSpeak" mentality. I got the distinct impression that was how it was done. By the time I heard different...well, I was hooked and it's a hard habit to break.

What would you think of a physician who told you: "Mr. Inspector, your cholesterol is through the roof, you flunked two consecutive stress tests, you are fifty pounds overweight, you can't seem to stop clutching your heart and shouting 'It's the big one, Elizabeth, I'm coming to join you honey!'. Further investigation by a qualified professional is suggested."?

I'd think he was either an idiot or in cahoots with my wife. [xx(] [-crzwom]

Brian G.

Recovering InspectorSpeakaholic [:-paperba

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