Does a home inspector check insulation?

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Home inspectors are required to do a visual examination of a home’s insulation where it is accessible to view, according to the Standards of Practice of both national home inspector associations, the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) and American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), along with the State of Florida and some other states.

    Here’s how it is stated in the InterNACHI standards: “The inspector is required to inspect insulation in unfinished spaces, including attics, crawlspaces and foundation areas.” Also, the inspector is not required to "disturb insulation, identify its composition, or R-value, or determine the types of materials used in insulation or wrapping of pipes, ducts, jackets, boilers or wiring." ASHI requires inspection of “insulation and vapor retarders in unfinished spaces.” 

   The absence of insulation in these areas, damaged insulation, or other visible defects are noted by the inspector. Insulation that is not readily accessible to view, such as inside a wall, is not part of the inspection.

    Even if the requirements and exclusions are not stated directly in the home inspector’s contract agreement, one of the Standards of Practice mentioned above will be referenced as part of the contract agreement.

    While the Standards of Practice set minimums, a home inspector may choose to exceed them and report in more detail on insulation. Also, the inspection may be limited to less than what is outlined in the standards when agreed to by the homebuyer and specified in an inspection agreement. A four-point insurance inspection would be example of a limited inspection. 

    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 •• Garage door opener •• 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 air conditioners •• Window blinds •• Wiring 

Here’s links to some of our other blog posts about INSULATION: 

What are the common problems with attic insulation?

Why is vermiculite attic insulation a problem for both buyers and sellers of a home? 

 Why is the garage so hot in the summer?

How can I tell if a house has insulation? 

Why is spray foam used for attic insulation?

Should I wrap the water heater with an insulation blanket? 

• Should I put some more insulation in the attic?

• What does the "R-Value" of home insulation mean? 

• Is pipe insulation flammable?

• What is minimum requirement for the insulation of a mobile/manufactured home according to the HUD-code? 

How energy efficient is a mobile home?

 • Why is insulation not allowed to touch around a gas flue in the attic even if it’s not flammable?

 Is cellulose insulation flammable? 

What does the U-value of insulation mean?  

• Does code require water pipes in the attic to be insulated? 

• Does code require water pipes in a crawl space to be insulated?

What do those numbers on the manufacturer's stickers in new windows mean?

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