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Homeowners

July 31, 2018

Galvanic Corrosion

Galvanic corrosion (also known as bimetallic corrosion or dissimilar-metal corrosion) is an electrochemical disintegration that occurs when dissimilar metals come in contact with each other while immersed in an electrolyte. Galvanic corrosion is of major concern anywhere moisture can reach metal building components. Corrosion as a broader category is defined as the disintegration of a material into its constituent parts, which may be caused by crevice […]
July 16, 2018
Stains on asphalt roofing shingles make a house look shabby, which detracts from its value.

How to Clean Algae and Moss Off Asphalt Shingles

Stains on asphalt roofing shingles make a house look shabby, which detracts from its value. In some cases, stains are merely a cosmetic issue. But sometimes they’re symptomatic of a problem that, if left unchecked, can lead to more serious damage and, eventually, roof failure. It’s not always hard to distinguish the causes of stains, nor, in most cases, to get rid of them and prevent […]
July 2, 2018
Anti-scald valves protect individuals from accidental burns while using fixtures such as showers

Anti-Scald Valves

Anti-scald valves, also known as tempering valves and mixing valves, mix cold water in with outgoing hot water so that the hot water that leaves a fixture is not hot enough to scald a person. Facts and Figures Scalds account for 20% of all burns. More than 2,000 American children are scalded each year, mostly in the bathroom and kitchen. Scalding and other types of burns […]
June 25, 2018

Childproofing Windows and Stairs

The number one hazard for children is falls, which are the leading cause of non-fatal injuries in the U.S. for this age group. About 8,000 youngsters wind up in emergency rooms every day for injuries related to falling, adding up to almost 2.8 million per year. With those statistics in mind, it is worth looking at what can be done to prevent such injuries in the […]
June 22, 2018
Dryer lint accumulation presents a fire hazard for homeowners

Dryer Vent Safety

Clothes dryers evaporate the water from wet clothing by blowing hot air past them while they tumble inside a spinning drum. Heat is provided by an electrical heating element or gas burner. Some heavy garment loads can contain more than a gallon of water which, during the drying process, will become airborne water vapor and leave the dryer and home through an exhaust duct (more commonly […]
June 18, 2018

Attached Garage Fire Hazards

The purpose of this article is twofold. First, at Lake City Inspections, we’d like you to take measures to prevent a fire in your garage. Fortunately, there are ways this can be done, some of which are described below. Secondly, garage fires do happen, and we’d like you to make sure that a fire cannot easily spread to the rest of your house. While you can perform […]
June 12, 2018
A wood frame window can be repaired in a few easy steps

Top 5 Fast Fixes for Faulty Windows

There’s a common misconception that if your home has older windows that are in less-than-perfect condition, you must replace them with new windows. But as long as the window is structurally sound, you can fix most problems and extend the window’s service life by many years. Of course, there are instances when a window is so badly damaged that it’s beyond repair, such as when the […]
June 11, 2018
Home inspectors may use a smoke pen to detect a backdraft issue

Backdrafting

Backdrafting is the reverse flow of gas in the flues of fuel-fired appliances that results in the intrusion of combustion byproducts into the living space. Many fuel-fired water heaters and boilers use household air and lack an induced draft, which makes them especially vulnerable to backdrafting when indoor air pressure becomes unusually low. How does backdrafting happen? Fuel-fired water heaters, boilers, wall heaters, and furnaces are […]
June 6, 2018
Most homes for sale in North Idaho qualify for a USDA loan

USDA Loan Basics

USDA loans are housing loans that are backed through the Rural Housing Division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).  Simply put, the USDA offers competitive loans for borrowers in rural areas. Purpose In the wake of the mortgage crisis in 2008 and 2009, lenders have become more cautious, so it’s harder for home buyers, especially first-timers, to secure financing, especially those with low incomes or […]
June 4, 2018
HVAC systems should be inspected and services by a qualified HVAC technician at least once a year

Check On Your HVAC Systems (Before They Check Out On You)

Have you ever woken up in the middle of a winter night, shivering under the blankets and able to see your breath? Or have you ever watched the thermostat creep into the upper 80s during a record-setting heat wave, realizing you haven’t heard the air conditioner kick on? If so, your heating or cooling system was on the fritz—and (of course), it happened at the worst […]
June 4, 2018
There are basic tools that every homeowner should own for everyday DIY maintenance tasks

15 Tools Every Homeowner Should Own

The following items are essential tools, but this list is by no means exhaustive. At Lake City Inspections, our Certified Professional Inspectors love to help new homeowners learn more about how to maintain their home. If you have any questions about tools, feel free to ask during your inspection! 1. Plunger A clogged sink or toilet is one of the most inconvenient household problems that you […]
June 3, 2018
FHA loans are a common alternative to traditional loans for first time home buyers

FHA Loan Basics

An FHA loan is a federal-assistance mortgage loan offered by qualified lenders and backed by the Federal Housing Administration. During the Great Depression of the 1930s, soaring foreclosure and default rates led lenders to tighten their loan requirements to the detriment of the prospective homeowner. The FHA was created during this time to provide lending institutions (such as banks, savings and loan associations, and mortgage companies) […]
May 31, 2018
Military families use VA loans to gain advantages not available among other loan types

VA Loan Basics

A VA loan is a mortgage loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Like FHA loans, VA loans are backed by the federal government in order to protect lenders against default, an assurance that removes barriers to home buying for prospective homeowners when they attempt to get a mortgage. This loan guarantee has its origins in the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act (more commonly known […]
May 30, 2018
Lake City Inspections is backed by a $10k Honor Guarantee

Our $10,000 Honor Guarantee

The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors is so certain of the integrity of Lake City Inspections Certified Professional Inspectors that they back us up with a $10,000 Honor Guarantee. What does this mean? InterNACHI will pay up to $10,000 (USD; maximum collective aggregate) for the cost of replacement of personal property lost (and not recovered, restituted or insured) during an inspection and stolen by an […]
May 28, 2018
Radon is present at elevated levels in many North Idaho homes

Why Idaho Homeowners Should Care About Radon

Radon is an invisible radioactive gas created from natural deposits of uranium and radium in the soil. Uranium breaks down to radium, which in turn decays into radon gas. Radon is an inert gas, which means it does not react or combine with the other elements in the ground. Because of this, radon can move up through the soil into the atmosphere, where radon is easily […]