How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured and modular homes
Does a home inspector remove the electric panel cover plate and examine the inside of the panel?
Saturday, July 21, 2018
When we first started doing home inspections about fifteen years ago, we would occasionally find a homeowner that was surprised when we opened their electric panel to check the wiring. “The last home inspector we had didn’t open the panel,” was the usual comment, and then their rationale for being annoyed that we were writing up defects inside the panel. But, also during that era, we heard of inspectors that claimed that only a licensed electrician was allowed to open a panel. That may have sounded logical, but it’s nonsense. Actually, only making repairs or modifications to an electric panel is restricted to a licensed electrician.
The panel cover plate is called a “dead front” and American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) has required that inspectors remove them to examine the panel interior for many years as part of their Standards of Practice—as long as there does not appear to be a safety hazard in doing so. But the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) specifically exempts the inspector from removing the dead front.
The State of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s Standards of Practice for Home Inspection, that went into effect on October 22, 2013, essentially overrode the InterNACHI standards for home inspectors in Florida, by stating that home inspectors must examine the “interior components of main service panels and sub panels,” which cannot be done without removing the dead front.
Click on any of the links below to read other articles about what is required to be included, or not, in a home inspection:
AFCI •• Air conditioner •• Ants •• Appliance recalls •• Appliance testing •• Attic •• Awnings •• Barns and ag blgs. •• Bathroom exhaust fan •• Bonding •• Carpet •• Ceiling fans •• Central vacuum •• Chimneys •• Chinese drywall •• Clothes dryer •• Dryer exhaust •• CO alarms •• Code violations •• Condemn a house •• Crawl space •• Detached carport •• Detached garage •• Dishwasher •• Docks •• Doors •• Electrical •• Electrical panel •• Electromagnetic radiation •• Fences •• Fireplaces Furnace •• Garbage disposal •• Generator •• GFCIs •• Gutters •• Ice maker •• Inspect in the rain •• Insulation •• Insurance •• Interior Finishes •• Grading & drainage •• Lead paint •• Level of thoroughness •• Lift carpet •• Low voltage wiring •• Microwave •• Mold •• Move things •• Help negotiate •• Not allowed •• Outbuildings •• Paint •• Permits •• Pilot lights •• Plumbing •• Plumbing under slab •• Pools •• Questions won't answer •• Radon •• Range/cooktop •• Receptacle outlet •• Refrigerator •• Reinspection •• Remove panel cover •• Repairs •• Repair estimates •• Retaining walls •• Roaches •• Rodents •• Roof •• Screens •• Seawalls •• Septic loading dye test •• Septic tank •• Sewer lines •• Shower pan leak test •• Shutters •• Sinkholes •• Smoke alarms •• Solar panels •• Specify repairs •• Sprinklers •• Termites •• Toilets •• Trees •• Troubleshooting •• Wall air conditioners •• Walk roof •• Washing machine •• Water heater •• Water pressure •• Water shut-offs •• Main water shut-off •• Water softener •• Water treatment systems •• Well •• Windows •• Window/wall air conditioners •• Window blinds •• Wiring
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
To learn more strategies for getting the best possible home inspection, here’s a few of our other blog posts:
To read about issues related to homes of particular type or one built in a specific decade, visit one of these blog posts:
of Blog Posts
Top 5 results given instantly.
Click on magnifying glass
for all search results.
Buying a home in North/Central Florida? for a team inspection by two FL-licensed contractors and inspectors. Over 8,500 inspections completed in 20+ years. In a hurry? We will get it done for you.