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MICHAEL'S NEWSFLASHES & MEMORIES!!!

Capturing the events and memories that make up our lives!

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CPSC, Newsletters

Cool B-Day Card - www.WarmReferrals.biz

MLC-BDay-Card-01 How did Brian Hannigan pull this off... Impressive!
AUGUST 9, 2018 - I was amazed to open the snail mail today and see a belated birthday card featuring a photo that I had used in a Facebook post just a few days earlier. My longtime home inspection industry friend, Brian Hannigan, has done it again. For those that don't know Brian, he initially created the home inspector forum www.inspectionnews.net back in about 1997, and he branched out into the online marketing and continued business referral industry about the same time. If you are looking for marketing helps and strategies, then chase down Brian at www.hanntech.com . COST OF BUSINESS CALCULATOR In the inspection industry, Brian Hannigan made a name for himself by proving the concept that home inspector fees are not high enough. He trave...
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167 Hits
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Just Caulk It!

Just Caulk It!
"Seriously!" Yes, those words escaped my lips as I opened up the under sink doors in a recent vacant home. There I was, all alone and talking to myself. But that is what I love about being a home inspector, you never know what awaits you in the next room, under the next sink, or around the next corner. DISCLOSURE Do you think the seller disclosed this garbage disposal on their property disclosure document? No way! There was no mention of the failed unit. HAS IT FAILED? This is a good question. The steel case of the disposal fractured and allowed water to flow out of the unit, as evidenced by the stains. At this point the owner should have just opened their wallet and replaced the unit. When the case on a disposal is damaged, the unit has fa...
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Weird Roof Snow Melt = Poor Insulation???

Weird Roof Snow Melt = Poor Insulation???
HOMEOWNER'S GUIDE TO SELF-DIAGNOSE INSULATION WOES It is bitter cold here in Northern Utah and this 2015-16 snow season is much greater than recent years. The snow, combined with the below freezing temperatures makes it rather easy to tell which homes have good insulation and which homes are severely lacking. This blog entry will give homeowners a way to self-diagnose attic insulation issues. NOTE: If you live in snow country, then you will love the following information. However, if you are my warm weather friends catching waves in 60 degree weather in Southern California, then you will find it amusing at best. WHAT DOES ATTIC INSULATION DO? Attic insulation is designed to help keep the temperature inside the home constant. We spend lots o...
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2945 Hits
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Winter Prep - Do It While The Weather Is Still Good!

Winter Prep - Do It While The Weather Is Still Good!
MICHAEL'S "TOP 10 WINTER PREPARATION TIPS" OCTOBER 7, 2014 - The weather is fabulous outside and most of us are wanting to do everything other than house and yard work. But let's face it, there is a dusting of snow on Mt. Timpanogos and the cold winter weather is coming. So with that reality as our primary mindset, let's buck up to the task and get the following things done while the weather is warmer. The following "Top 10" list comes from my own experiences and also what I see on a day to day basis while inspecting homes in Northern Utah. Please help me and Like, Share, Re-Tweet, and Forward to your friends, co-workers, family members and circle of influence. The gutter is loosely mounted and water flows behind the gutter. There are also ...
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2421 Hits
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Squeaky Floors - Solution

Squeaky Floors - Solution
I found a solution for that squeak, squeak, squeak found in so many older homes with carpeted flooring. This is often complicated by newer carpeting that won't be being replaced for years to come. The solution is "Squeak No More." That's right, this is a specialty screw that gets installed right through the top of the carpet and then it gets broken off below the carpet line. It is a pretty clever fix. I just wish that they had them in stock. The best I can recommend is that you figure out how to order it into the store for pick-up. Priced at $19.95 for the kit, it is a great option. Michael Leavitt HOME DEPOT LINK
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2666 Hits
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CPSC RECALL - Crown Boiler Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

CPSC RECALL - Crown Boiler Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
The following is cast iron water boiler recall. In my area I have never seen a Crown Boiler, but this recall is a safety hazard that gets added to the list. The majority of homeowners here in Northern Utah have forced air gas fired furnaces and not radiant heat boiler systems. QUESTION: What is the risk associated with this recall? ANSWER: Carbon monoxide poisoning. QUESTION: What should you do if you have one of these boilers? ANSWER: Consumers with recalled boilers should immediately contact the installer or distributor from whom they purchased the boiler or Crown Boiler to schedule a free in-home repair. Consumers who continue using the boilers while awaiting repair, should have a working carbon monoxide alarm installed outside of sleepi...
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3346 Hits
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My House is SCREAMING at Me!!!

My House is SCREAMING at Me!!!
Houses can’t talk, or can they? I know that on the surface it sounds crazy, but I want to share from the perspective of a house whisperer like myself, houses are screaming for help. This is especially true in the wintertime when the snow has fallen, melted, and fallen again. About every 3 to 5 years we have one of those prime house yelling winters here in Orem, Utah, and this happens to be one of those years. Let me show you a house that is yelling loudly...   The house is mad that its light pink was painted drab grey light green. It decided to open up the flashing joint from the chimney above and allow rain and snow melt to run down through the roof and soffit areas until it could finally strip off some of the paint and expose the ori...
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Electrical Panels - Why Are Home Inspectors So Picky!

Electrical Panels - Why Are Home Inspectors So Picky!
Fellow Home Inspector Scott Neimann from Bay City, Oregon shared a great photo and asked, “Is this an acceptable method of installing the service conductors? IF not... what are the potential issues?” As Home Inspectors, the issues found behind the electrical panel covers are usually some of the most important finds during our inspections. Many of the agents and sellers complain about the findings, but we all have to understand that electrical issues cause fires and electrocutions; neither of which is desirable for new home buyers and their loved ones. CASTING JUDGEMENT - There is no way to avoid seeing the craftsmanship, or lack thereof, of the installer once we remove the cover of the main panel and subpanels. Electrical panel workmanship ...
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5124 Hits
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Baffle ‘em With Brilliance - The Turbo Entabulator

Baffle ‘em With Brilliance - The Turbo Entabulator
My good inspector friend, Jeff Herboldshimer, from the Yuba City, California area shared with me a great video that makes me think about the way many inspectors treat their home inspection reports and clients. Instead of speaking simply and directly, there seems to be a widespread use of inspectorspeak attempting to “Baffle ‘em With Brilliance.” You know, look smart by using phrases that nobody understands. Check out this video that describes the function of a Turbo Entabulator... You may recognize the item as a transmission. Here is the verbiage that helps to explain the video and how it came about... Many years ago Rockwell International decided to get into the heavy duty automatic transmission business. They were getting ready to tape th...
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3160 Hits
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Feds Remove 90% Furnace Mandate... Yeah!!!

Feds Remove 90% Furnace Mandate... Yeah!!!
Photo Courtesy of Ken Salvo - ASHI -  New Jersey   There was a big courtroom battle between the Department of Energy (DOE) and the American Public Gas Association (APGA) that has resulted in the backing off of a requirement that was set to greatly impact the majority of American homeowners regarding residential heating furnaces. Starting in May 2013 all installed residential furnaces in the northern states were going to have to be 90% or higher models. But now that mandate has gone by the wayside, we get to keep the lesser 80% or greater mandate in place. Let me repeat, you will NOT be forced to upgrade to a 90% efficient furnace when you lesser model fails. The affected states are: Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, ...
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3174 Hits
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USB Charging Receptacles

USB Charging Receptacles
If I had a Christmas wish beyond peace on earth, then it just might be to install these new USB charging duplex receptacles throughout my home, my city, Utah, and throughout the world. We took a trip back to Cape Cod a few weeks ago and we encountered them in some of the airport terminals. Legal?... Absolutely! Did they catch me by surprise, you betcha! They are supposed to run about $35, but I know that price is going to drop once they become commonplace. Here are some of the details. FEATURES - From Cooper Industries)     Standard AC duplex receptacle with two USB charging ports rated at 2.1A     Dual USB charging ports charge most compatible electronic devices that charge via a 5V charger adapter   ...
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1871 Hits
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CPSC - Window Hardware Recall

CPSC - Window Hardware Recall
The Consumer product Safety Commission has announced the recall regarding a specific window manufacturer's hardware. I doubt many of us will see this particular window, but I want everyone to understand the risk so that they can be more aware of the risks of their surroundings. In this case the window opens inward and this creates a fall hazard zone. Some residential windows operate this way, but this is more common in commercial building applications. This means openable windows in the workplace, office buildings, and shopping areas. My sharing this warning is not meant to be like “Chicken Little”, but meant to enhance your awareness of risks around you. Check out this link to the actual recall... WINDOW HARDWARE RECALL PAGE And for more i...
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1527 Hits
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CPSC Recall - Ceiling Light

CPSC Recall - Ceiling Light
CPSC RECALL NOTICE - I have prepared another CPSC recall page and video regarding a popular style light fixture. Due to the tripping of AFCI’s, Dolan Northwest is recalling 8,000 ceiling mounted light fixtures. These were supplied primarily to builders for new home installations and sold by lighting showrooms primarily to builders from 2008-2009. LINK TO ARTICLE AND VIDEO - http://www.thehomeinspector.com/Clients/CPSC/111512_Dolan_Light_Recall.html I hope that you find the information helpful! Michael Leavitt - Orem, Utah
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1865 Hits
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PARENTS!!! Swimming Pool Safety Warning

PARENTS!!! Swimming Pool Safety Warning
Parents.... 137 Kids Drowned This Summer - Be alert when your children are anywhere near pools, lakes, water slides, and bathtubs!!! The Consumer Product Safety Commission recently issued a warning regarding pool safety due to the fact that 137 children drowned during the summer of 2012. See the warning at http://www.thehomeinspector.com/Clients/CPSC/91312_Pool_Drownings.html You should also like my latest YouTube video dealing with the issue while relating some real life experiences and information. So visit the above link and enjoy!
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2669 Hits
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MLC Newsflash - CPSC Energizer Nightlight Recall

MLC Newsflash - CPSC Energizer Nightlight Recall
Target shoppers beware... The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issues a recall for Energizer brand nightlights sold exclusively at Target stores between January 2010 and January 2011. Please visit my website at  http://www.thehomeinspector.com/Clients/CPSC/82212_Energizer_Nightlight.html to see a video I created for the recall as well as the information and pictures that will help you identify if you have an affected unit. WHAT'S THE DANGER? The units are prone to overheating and smoking and when the client unplugs them they can be burned by the overheating units. But logically, what comes after overheating and smoking? FIRE!!! None have been reported yet, but that is the next logical progression if the units are continued...
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