Reuben Saltzman

Home inspector training: how to find water problems at walls (video)

This is a moisture intrusion training class for new home inspectors at Structure Tech that I’ve decided to make public. I’ve been teaching a one-hour continuing education class with a lot of the same content to real estate agents for many years. I turned that into a two-hour water intrusion class for home inspectors, and I’ve taught that class to other home inspectors all over the country.

For new home inspectors in my company, I wanted a more customized version of this class that also incorporated some of our internal values and advice, so I made this video. Once I was done, I decided to make it public. While the intended audience is new hires at my company, there’s a ton of content in this 85-minute class for anyone who wants to learn more about water intrusion problems with houses.


Author: Reuben SaltzmanStructure Tech Home Inspections

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5 responses to “Home inspector training: how to find water problems at walls (video)”

  1. Michael Leavitt
    March 10, 2020, 12:11 pm

    Reuben, thanks for sharing this 85-minute class with those of us in other parts of the country. I look forward to watching it all the way through. I have always respected your desire and ability to help educate the masses. I follow your blog entries and love the information that you take so much time in preparing. At-A-Boy Reuben! Michael Leavitt – Orem, Utah –

  2. Reuben Saltzman
    March 10, 2020, 5:55 pm

    Thank you, Michael! Much appreciated.

  3. Kate Johnson
    March 11, 2020, 8:24 pm

    Great info, as always! Gutters not being on a house in Maryland is very unusual- can’t imagine it being the norm as you make your area sound.

  4. Reuben Saltzman
    March 12, 2020, 4:16 am

    Thank you, Kate! Gutters are actually pretty standard around here, but the houses that don’t have them are the ones I seem to remember.

  5. Michael Leavitt
    March 16, 2020, 12:08 pm

    Reuben… I promised to watch and I left this on your YouTube page…
    Reuben, I loved the video training on the moisture entry. Some regional perspectives skewed the training, but I have no doubt that the information is spot on for your inspection area. Being from Northern Utah, we have everything from extreme heat and arid dry out periods to major rain and deep snow. Your rain gutter info is valid up until about 7,000 feet where the snow starts getting so deep that they just get ripped off the homes in resort areas like Park City. I also smiled as you downplayed the interior investigations for moisture entry. As you well know with your experience, you can identify the slightest interior evidences and they fortify the recommendations for the fuller and more robust exterior invasive evaluations that sellers rarely want to agree to having performed. That may include slight warping of wood floors below the windows, staining and rusting on carpet tack strips, separation gaps at the windows to interior frames that indicate sheathing swelling. My point is that many inspectors fail to identify these easy to find evidences and then they fail to put them together with the exterior visual evidences, and ultimately miss the depth of water entry. We could easily do another video stressing the importance of the interior investigations. For me, it is job security. I am really experienced at finding the interior clues (without damaging finishes) and it leads me to proving the need for the exterior invasive testing. We deal with 95% basement style homes and do not have the luxury of seeing the unfinished rim joist areas from the crawl. We have completed wall finishes from the top floor to the base of the foundation. Lifting carpet in basements is key along the exterior walls where water collects on the exterior. If you don’t lift carpets (and most inspectors in my area scoff at that idea), then most water entry issues are overlooked, glossed over, and the client gets burned when they learn about it alter. Thank you for taking that huge amount of time to prepare the training, and then share it with me here in Utah for free… If you make it out this way, then consider our home open for your visit and I will cook you an amazing dinner. Michael Leavitt – Orem, Utah –

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