Electrical Home Inspection
The inspector will inspect and evaluate the readily accessible and visually observable electrical components. Typically this means the main circuit breaker panel and sub panels, testing a sample of electric outlets and switches, and reporting any visible defects or safety issues relating to the wiring or other electrical components.
The inspector is not providing a code compliance report.
What is the inspector looking at?
- The Service Drop (at the exterior meter box area) service entrance conductors, cables, the electric meter and the meter box.
This is the wiring (cable) that brings power to the building. Sometimes it is overhead and sometimes it is buried.
- Service equipment and main disconnects such as fuse boxes or circuit breaker panels / fuses and breakers
- Service grounding. Is the main panel grounded?
- Interior components of service panels and subpanels. Such as the condition of the wiring and circuit breakers or fuses inside the panel(s)
- Conductors, more commonly known as wiring / romex cables
- Overcurrent protection devices, like circuit breakers and fuses
The inspector will take covers off the fuse boxes and breaker panels when it is safe to do so.
- Testing a sample of (representative number) installed lighting fixtures, switches, and receptacles. Most people refer to receptacles as electric outlets.
- Testing of ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) outlets
- Inspection of GFCI breakers and AFCI breakers
- Making note in the report of any loose or exposed wiring
Common defects include poorly installed wiring, electric outlets that are not grounded, the lack of GFCI style outlets in locations where they are required by today’s standards, circuit breakers with too many wires attached, open holes on circuit breaker panels and/or junction boxes, “handy-man” wiring methods & electrical jobs that look like they were not installed by accepted standards.
Often, when electrical defects or safety concerns are found, the client will be advised to hire a licensed electrician for expert evaluation and cost estimates for repairs & corrections.