There can be real potential safety risks in the home, and real
estate is the biggest investment most people make in
their lives. Can you afford to buy without an
We did an
inspection of a condominium in for Cheryl N of Redmond
WA. When we checked the electrical we saw several
Serious safety issues noted on her summary were:
electrical panel - see safety information on panel at www.hipspro.com.
Aluminum branch circuit wiring - more
information at Consumer
Product Safety commission.
Crack on main feed lug holder to panel. Possibly was
Missing smoke detector in bedroom.
We also verbally recommended replacement of the
Zinsco panel and repair the aluminum wiring and noted
it further in her report. See Cheryl's actual electrical
detail report page here.
We got a call 35 days after that inspection,
the recommended repairs didn't get addressed
immediately. She had an electrical fire in an outlet.
Fortunately, she was forewarned and was alert to the
potential hazard. She immediately recognized a
dangerous situation and called the fire department.
Luckily she was home and awake at the time of the fire
and the damage was limited to the outlet or this could
have been very serious.
She worked with a reputable electrician we
recommend. JJ has known the guys at C&R
Electric for almost 40 years. When their
electrician first got to work on this job, the breaker
box was malfunctioning to the point of heating up the
case. The components inside must have been very hot to
make the whole enclosure so warm. He diagnosed the
problem to be an overloaded circuit which caused the
outlet to catch fire. Electrical current had exceeded
the capacity of the outlet and a faulty Zinsco
panel never turned off the power.
It is our opinion, when you take into account both the
aluminum wiring and the Zinsco panel, there is a
significant hazard. This combined with the risk
multiplier of a condominium with many units likely
wired the same way causes our greatest concern. We
hope this moves the homeowners association to
investigate and repair this condition in all the
Here is excerpt from
the US CPSC article Aluminum
Wire Problems and Solutions
Inspections of Puget Sound
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Inspection Newsletter for great articles on home
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