Why Is There Frost In My Attic? – Part 3

Hello, and welcome back to our blog here at Safe Investment Home Inspections. This is part two of our series about attic frost, so if you haven’t already, you can ready part one here. Believe it or not, attic frost is a relatively common issue, and although there are many people who think that it can be prevented with more insulation, there are actually several major factors that can cause or make the issue worse. Attic frost will eventually melt, leading to structural damage and mold formation that could be a health hazard for you and your family. Keep reading to learn more about this issue and contact Safe Investment Home Inspections today for a full-home inspection in Denver.

Lowering humidity

Another way to prevent frost in the attic is to reduce humidity in your home. Typically, homes that have issues with a lot of frost in the attic are caused by humidifiers running 24/7. If you need a specific area of your home to be humidified, use a desktop humidifier that won’t have an enormous impact on your home. Large whole-home humidifiers can damage your home and lead to costly repairs.

You can also reduce your humidity by ensuring that you leave exhaust fans on in your bathroom for at least an hour after showering and while cooking in your kitchen. You can also install heat recovery ventilation (HRV) which will replace humid indoor air with dry outdoor air without removing too much heat.

Maintaining air pressure

Not only does humidity increase your chances of accumulating frost in the attic, but if the air pressure in your home is off, it may also increase the likelihood that this will happen. Because warm air rises, homes are designed so that air enters the towards the bottom of the home and exits at the top. If your home has a combustion air duct attached to the return plenum, it will pressurize when the furnace is running. As a result, the effect of an attic air leak will be increased, bringing more hot and humid air into your attic. Instead of being connected back to return plenums, your combustion air ducts should be dropped down into the room.

Poor HVAC ductwork will also cause pressure issues, thus resulting in more humidity in your attic. You should be sure to seal up any holes or gaps in your furnace ductwork. Too many return openings in the basement ductwork will result in unbalanced pressure between the basement and the rest of your home. Test this by opening your basement door slightly and turning on your furnace. If the door closes, the ductwork isn’t balanced and you may be contributing to the issues caused by air leaks in your attic.

Many people think that maintaining their home’s energy efficiency and preventing humidity and frost in the attic comes down to how much insulation is installed. Although having insulation installed is an important part of the process, it certainly isn’t the only. And if you already have a frost problem, adding insulation will actually make the issue worse. Not to mention, the humidity will ruin what insulation you do have installed.

Contact Safe Investment Home Inspections  

Are you worried that attic frost may have caused permanent damage to your home and led to the growth of harmful molds? Although there are several steps you can take to remedy this issue on your own, your first step should be to call a certified home inspector at Safe Investment Home Inspections. We will examine the issue and direct to a specialist that will be able to reverse the damage done to your home and make it a safe place for you to live again. Contact us today.

Why Is There Frost In My Attic? – Part 2

Hello, and welcome to part two of our blog series about attic frost. In part one, we talked about what causes attic frost and what effects it can have on your home. In part two, we’re going to talk a little bit more about the air leak inspection process for your attic. Since attic frost is caused by warm humid air that rises into your attic during cold days, it’s crucial that even the smallest holes or cracks are patched. If you suspect that attic frost has caused water damage in your home or has resulted in mold growth, contact a home inspection expert at Safe Invest Home Inspections immediately.

Check your attic

The first step is to enter your attic and check for any air leaks. There are two ways that you can test for these leaks: blower doors or fog machines. If you’re having trouble locating a leak, you may want to try using a fog machine, however, a blower door will usually do the trick. Not only will this device help you locate leaks in your attic, but it will tell you the general airtightness of your home which is useful information for saving money on energy bills and controlling humidity. If you’d like more information on how to use both blower doors or fog machines to locate leaks, we’ll talk more about them in our next blog. If you have neither of these devices, you’ll need to locate the leaks just by looking. Although this is by no means the most effective way, you should be able to find the majority of the leaks this way.

Once you’re in the attic, it shouldn’t be too difficult to locate problematic areas. If your floor has fiberglass batt insulation, look for any stains or dirt accumulation. Typically when batts get dirty, it’s due to an air leak like a crack or hole. When air rushes over the batts, it acts like an air filter collecting dirt and dust. A sunken batt could be a sign that there is a dropped ceiling under your insulation and the lack of an air barrier. Check around exhaust fans, ducts, or plumbing vent pipes. These can also be common leak areas, especially if they’re old and worn out. Once you’ve located a leak, it’s time to patch them.

Patching a hole

Holes that form above utility chases, dropped ceilings, and soffits can all be patched with gypsum drywall, oriented strand board (OSB), or plywood. However, a much easier way to patch these holes is with foil-faced polyisocyanurate which is easier to cut and place. Whichever material you decide to use, cut it to the appropriate size for the hole and secure it in place with nails or screws. After that, you can use a canned spray foam, acoustical sealant, or caulk to seal the area around it.  

If you’re dealing with a gap around a brick chimney, you’ll need to use a different material than for holes about soffits because they can get hot. You should be sure to cover these with sheet metal and sealed with high-temperature silicone caulk.

For a metal chimney, you’ll want to overlap two pieces of sheet metal. However, be aware that most building codes require 2-inches of space between framing lumber and the metal chimney, so you shouldn’t fill this area with insulation.  

Smaller cracks and holes

Other potential leak areas you should look for in your attic include cracks near recessed can lights; around ceiling-mounted duct boots, plumbing vent pipes, ceiling electrical boxes, between partition drywall, and more. You should also check kneewalls, ventilation baffles, insulation dams, and duct leaks. Once this is all said and done, you can seal up your attic access hatch. The problem with these is that they usually aren’t properly insulated and don’t usually have weatherstripping on them.

Depending on whether you have an attic hatch or pull-down stairs will change how you insulated it. You should glue rigid foam on the hatch, then install weatherstripping where the hatch rests. You should ensure that once the hatch is closed, it is pulled tightly against the weatherstripping.

If you have pull-down stairs, however, the process may be slightly more difficult. There are several products out there for sealing pull-down stairs including Battic Door attic stair covers, Attic Tent, Draft Cap, or Energy Guardian. Which one you use will depend on your home and what your needs are for energy efficiency.

Contact Safe investment Home Inspections

Are you concerned that attic frost has done irreversible damage to your home in Denver or the surrounding area? Melted frost can lead to your roof sheathing deteriorating, mold, ruined insulation, water stains, and warped wood that ruins the structural integrity of your home. Contact Safe Investment Home Inspections today to learn more about our home inspection process.

Why Is There Frost In My Attic?

Have you ever walked into your attic only to see a layer of frost covering the ceiling? The purpose of an attic is to separate your indoor air from the air from your roof and to provide your home with ventilation. So, why does frost form in your attic? The most probable cause of this is that humid, warm air from throughout your home has leaked into the attic. On a cold day, water will begin to condense on the ceiling and turn into frost. Although the frost itself won’t do much damage, the issue comes when the weather outside warms up and the frost begins to melt. This can lead to your roof sheathing deteriorating, mold, ruined insulation, water stains, and warped wood. Keep reading to learn more about frost in your attic and how to prevent it.

Where does it come from?

Frost starts to form in your attic due to air leaks and attic bypasses. If you go into your attic one day to find that it smells musty and mold is forming, this probably started with frost formation on a cold day. Just like the rest of your home, your attic needs to be well ventilated. You need to make sure that there are enough exhaust fans going directly out of the attic and not just directed at a roof vent. This won’t do enough to keep warm, moist air out of your attic.

Another thing you need to worry about is air leaks in your attic floor. Although small crevices and leaks may seem like they’re not a problem, on cold days, a lot of moisture will make it up into your attic, especially if you have your heater on. When you go about sealing these leaks, make sure you don’t just get the big ones. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Attic air sealing

Even if you aren’t experiencing frost forming in your attic, it’s a good idea to seal your attic. When you do so, less air is escaping from your home, meaning you’ll be saving money on your energy bills by containing your heating and cooling within the part of your home that you actually inhabit. Think of it like replacing or repairing old windows. You wouldn’t live with leaky or cracked windows in your home, so why would you tolerate air leaks in your attic? Attic air sealing can be broken down into four steps:

  • Checking your attic to locate any leaks
  • Patching holes
  • Sealing small cracks or holes  
  • Putting weather stripping on the access door

For more details on the attic air sealing process, read part two of this blog series.

Contact Safe Investment Home Inspections

Attic frost poses not only a huge issue for your home itself but for your safety. Water damage can lead to dangerous mold growth and ruin the structural integrity of your home. If you’re concerned about water damage in your home, contact Safe Investment Home Inspections for a full-home inspection.

What Can A Home Inspector Do For You? – Part 2

Home inspections are an important part of being a homeowner. Although we tend to think of our homes as a safe space, there are things that can go wrong that will make it unsafe to live in. Some of these issues may be obvious, but others require testing from an experienced and certified home inspector in order to diagnose. Safe Investment Home Inspections will not only perform a thorough and affordable inspection of your home or office, but we’ll provide you with expert knowledge on how you should deal with potential threats to your health and safety. Keep reading to learn more about what a home inspector can do for you and read part one of this blog series if you missed it.

Air quality

Air quality testing goes beyond your HVAC system. Although your air filter plays a major role in removing allergens, dust, and dirt from the air, ensuring that you’re promoting healthy air quality in the first place is equally important. The difficult part about tracking indoor air quality is that poor air quality can be the result of a number of different things. And many homeowners don’t realize they have poor air quality until someone starts having side effects like coughing, a runny nose, or trouble breathing. For people with asthma, these issues will only be made worse and could lead to serious health conditions if left unchecked.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, your health is at a much higher risk due to indoor air quality than outdoor air quality. This is mainly due to the fact that your home is a contained environment. When an allergen enters your home, it is usually recirculated by your HVAC system and can end up covering your walls and furniture in addition to your floors. An inspector at Safe Investment Home Inspections will perform a thorough and comprehensive air quality test that will reveal the source of this issue, so you know exactly what steps to take in order to eliminate it.

Mold is another significant contributor to poor indoor air quality. Although some mold won’t pose a huge health risk to your Denver home, mold spreads, and certain mold like Stachybotrys Chartarum or “black mold” are especially hazardous for your health. If your home is especially humid, musty smelling, or you’ve just experienced any type of water damage like your basement flooding, you should call a home inspector immediately.

Radon testing

Radon is a gas that can’t be detected by humans without the use of special instruments. Radon usually results from the decay of uranium which is found in a home’s foundations. Radon is one of the most common causes of lung cancer, so it’s important to have your home inspected regularly in order to ensure that radon is not present and that you and your family are safe.

Safe Investment Home Inspections will use Sun nuclear testing equipment and your home or office will need to be closed for 12 hours for testing. Once the test is completed we will determine if the radon levels are too high. If they are, we will recommend steps you can take to lower your home’s radon levels and make your home safe for living again.

Electrical inspections

If you’re buying or selling a home, electrical inspections are a must. However, if you want to ensure that your home is as safe as possible for you and your family, routine electrical inspections are recommended. Having your electrical system inspected will help you prevent electrical fires before they happen. If you run a business, your office may have a very complex electrical system. You’ll want to hire an expert inspector for this situation in order to make sure the inspection process is done thoroughly and for an affordable price.

Contact Safe Investment Home Inspections

Safe Investment Home Inspections is your Top Rated Local® Home Inspection Company in the Denver and Lakewood area. Our highest priority is to provide you with a thorough inspection that will leave you feeling safe in your own home. If there is any issue with your home’s condition, we will let you know and present you with a solution to the issue. Contact us today to learn more.

What Can A Home Inspector Do For You?

If you’re a new homeowner, condo owner, or townhouse owner, you may still be settling in and getting used to your new life. If you’ve lived in apartments previously, chances are, you’re used to your landlord performing regular air quality, safety, and HVAC inspections. However, now that you’ll be responsible for maintaining the safety of your own home, it’s important that you find a reliable home inspector to perform routine inspections. But home inspections are about more than just air quality testing, keep reading to learn more about what a Denver home inspector can do for you, and if you have any questions at all, be sure to contact your local home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspections.

Our standard home inspections will last around two to three hours depending on the size of your home. With each visit, you can expect us to inspect the following parts of your home:

Walls, windows, and doors

Your walls, windows, and doors are important parts of your home. They keep you safe, comfortable, and secure. We will, first and foremost, inspect the structural integrity of your home. A house is only as strong as its foundation and if your home’s foundation is threatened, you deserve to know about it. Poor soil conditions, moisture from flooding or humid indoor atmosphere, and cracks in your wall can all contribute to a poor foundation for your home. Our professional and certified home inspectors will scour your entire home for any of these signs as well as ask you questions that will help him/her diagnose any issues that may be present.

HVAC and sewer

The great thing about calling a home inspector is that you won’t have to worry about calling your HVAC or plumbing specialist afterward. All of our home inspectors are certified master inspectors and will provide you with the most thorough inspection in the area. When we inspect your sewer line, we will direct a video camera through your home’s sewer system. As it’s pushed through, the footage will be recorded so we can identify leaks, broken pipes, and other obstructions. Since sewer line repairs and replacement are costly, we can also inspect them after the fact to ensure that the job was done correctly and that there’s no threat of the issue recurring.

Your HVAC system is another important aspect of maintaining a healthy and secure home. Modern HVAC systems are not only responsible for maintaining the temperature in your home but also the air quality. Your HVAC system is designed to circulate air throughout your home, and without proper filtration and clean air ducts, you will be pushing harmful allergens, dirt, and dust throughout your home. When you call Safe Investment Home Inspections, you won’t have to waste time and money calling an HVAC company and plumbing company afterward unless we determine that you need repairs or replacement. Whenever you call us for an inspection, we’ll make sure both your HVAC systems and plumbing are working as intended and not posing any potential health risks.

Contact Safe Investment Home Inspection

Are you ready to call an experienced and certified home inspection expert for your home or office? Our top priority is to provide you and your family or employees with a thorough and comprehensive inspection for you and cover every aspect of safety such as air quality, electrical systems, HVAC, plumbing, and building structure. We will try to have the whole process completed in two to three hours, however, if additional testing is needed more time may be needed. Contact us today to learn more about our inspections.

 

If you’d like to learn more about our home inspection process, read part two of this blog.

The Different Types Of Mold

Most people are aware that mold can be a dangerous thing to have in your home, but not many people know what types of mold there are and which ones will pose a threat to you and your family. Not only that but having a mold-infested home will significantly reduce the value of your home. Potential buyers will likely demand a mold remediation company come to fix the issue or just avoid buying the home altogether. In this blog, we’re going to go over all the types of mold that could grow in your Colorado home and tell you which ones are dangerous and which aren’t. However, just because a mold doesn’t pose an immediate threat to your air quality doesn’t mean that it can’t lead to other health risks.

Alternaria

This type of mold is commonly found outside, but can also be found inside homes or offices. It’s usually gray or black and is caused by water damage. If you or a loved one is experiencing bad allergies, it could be caused by this mold.

Aspergillus

This is a common indoor mold that can be white, black, or yellow in color. This type of mold grows in dark, wet areas and can lead to respiratory issues.

Cladosporium

This type of mold is typically recognized by its powdery, dark green or black appearance. It’s typically found on surfaces like carpets, upholstery and wood.

Penicillium

This mold typically grows really fast and has a suede or velvet look. It’s usually blue, green or white in color but can vary depending on the climate. This mold is responsible for the antibiotic penicillin but is harmful when it grows inside homes.

Stachybotrys Chartarum

It’s hard to pronounce, but this is what people typically think of when they hear the words, “dangerous molds.” Stachybotrys Chartarum is a dark black color, wet, and can often form in inconspicuous areas after a flood. You won’t want to take any chances with this mold because it has a nearly endless list of health issues associated with it.

How to handle it

Above all else, mold poses a threat to your home’s air quality. And when it comes to dealing with mold, it should not be taken lightly, whether you’re continuing to live in the home or you’re trying to sell it. Many homeowners will leave the issue unchecked leading to a serious issue that can only be handled by an experienced professional. Mold is even more dangerous to people with asthma, bad seasonal allergies, or respiratory conditions. And, additionally, mold can be a significant threat to the structure of your home. Outside, mold is not as much of a threat, but indoors, the allergens emitted by mold will be circulated throughout your home, essentially contaminating everything. You need to contact an indoor air specialist regularly to inspect your home for mold and have the air quality tested. If you’re due for an inspection, be sure to call your local Denver home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspection.

Home Inspections In Denver Colorado

Hiring the right Denver home inspection company to inspect your new home, is your best bet. Our company has over 6000 inspections performed, and has the absolute best training program in the industry. If you are looking for a home inspector that can do Mold Inspections, Radon Testing and Sewer Inspections, we are the company for you. Also our home inspections are top notch. We have over 213 reviews on google !  If you are in need of a home inspector, that inspects everything in the home from top to bottom call us today!

How To Improve Air Quality In Your Home – Part 3

Hello, and welcome back to our blog here at Safe Investments Home Inspection. This is part three of our blog series on how to improve your indoor air quality. If you missed out on the first two blogs, you can read them here and here. If you suspect that your home may have poor indoor air quality, you should the professional Denver home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspection today. Keep reading to learn more about indoor air quality prevention.

Avoid synthetic fragrances

Synthetic fragrances are often found in cleaning products with a pine or lemon scent. This includes things like kitchen products, air fresheners, and laundry detergents. Generally, fragrances are made from petroleum products and don’t get tested for to see if they’re healthy for humans to inhale. This is why many fragrances with toxic substances make their way into our homes, ruining our air quality even though they claim to do the contrary.

 

When you purchase a fragrance at the store, look for naturally-scented products. Try to avoid using aerosol sprays like air fresheners, furniture polish and hairspray.

Clean your air filter

Another way to improve indoor air quality is by replacing your HVAC system’s air filter on a regular basis. Originally, these filters were intended to protect the HVAC system itself, but eventually became a powerful tool for improving your home’s air quality. If you’ve checked your filter recently, you’ve probably seen all the junk that builds up on it, and if you have pets, there’s probably even more. You should replace these filters about once every month or two and make sure that the new one fits properly and is secured in place.

 

MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) is the rating scale used to determine the efficiency of your filter. Filters that are higher on the scale will catch more allergens so you should make sure to use a filter that has a MERV rating of at least 11.

Avoid smoking in your home

With 4,000 chemicals in every cigarette, it’s no wonder that smokers carry so many airborne contaminants wherever they go. If you’re a smoker, you’re going to have to work extra hard to prevent these chemicals from making it into your own home and that starts with not smoking indoors. However, if you want to completely eliminate the chemicals from entering your home, you’ll need to stop smoking altogether. These chemicals will attach themselves to your clothes and spread all over your home, along with ash. If you have kids with asthma this will have an even bigger impact on them.

Are you ready to call a home inspector in Denver and get the air quality testing that you deserve? Poor indoor air quality has been linked to a variety of issues like headaches, fatigue, sinus problems, and these issues are only amplified in someone with asthma or other respiratory conditions. If you’re concerned about the safety of your home, contact Safe Investment Home Inspections today to learn more.

How To Improve Air Quality In Your Home – Part 2

Hello, and welcome back to our blog here at Safe Investment Home Inspection. This is part two of our blog series about how you can improve your home’s indoor air quality. Ultimately, your indoor air quality is the most crucial aspect of maintaining a safe and comfortable indoor environment. There are a lot of factors that contribute to poor air quality, so it’s important to understand them and what you can do to prevent it. Keep reading to learn more.

Call a carpet cleaner

Carpet cleaning is another essential aspect to improving indoor air quality. Generally, cleaning hard surfaces like wood or porcelain is simple because it’s unlikely that airborne contaminants will get stuck on them. However, with soft materials like carpet, they pick up thousands of tiny unseeable particles that are constantly being knocked into the air and inhaled. And the truth is, the longer your carpet, the more you’ll have to clean it.

 

Vacuuming is a great way to remove the majority of the allergens stuck in your carpet, but without annual, professional carpet cleaning, you won’t be protecting your home and improving air quality as much as you could be. For many homeowners, this is a difficult thing to remember to do because they may not see physical evidence of these airborne allergens. But believe us, they’re all over your home, waiting to be inhaled!

Maintain humidity

Humidity is a major factor in determining the safety of your home’s indoor air quality. If your home is too humid, it could lead to the growth of molds that will produce allergens and mycotoxins. Some people may experience allergic reactions to these toxins and those with asthma may have an asthma attack. However, some molds are more dangerous than others and you shouldn’t take a chance with any of them. You should, first of all, track your home’s humidity. It should be between 30 to 50 percent humidity. Anything over that will increase your chance of seeing mold growth. If you’re taking a shower or cooking, make sure to open a door or window.

 

There are a lot of ways that mold can grow in your home. One thing that many people don’t realize is that if their attic isn’t ventilated properly, it may result in mold growth. During certain times of year, your attic can become very hot and humid if there isn’t air flowing through it. In this case, you’d need to unclog or add more ventilation to your lower and upper roof, allowing air to pass through normally.

 

If you have any suspicions that mold may be growing in your home, you should contact the Denver home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspection.

Use an air-filtering plant

Some plants will help you maintain your home’s indoor air quality by eliminating toxic agents like trichlorethylene, formaldehyde, and benzene according to the NASA Clean Air Study. These plants can absorb certain VOCs, however, be aware that these plants will not do too much to improve your home’s air quality. They will, however, slightly improve a single room’s air quality.

English ivy and Variegated snake plant will both help filter out xylene, toluene, trichloroethylene, formaldehyde, and trifasciata.

Peace lilies and Florist’s chrysanthemum will filter out all of these toxins, only more effectively, in addition to ammonia.

Home inspection Denver

Your first reaction if you think you may have poor indoor air quality is to call an expert home inspector at Safe Investment Home Inspection. Our top priority is to provide you with a comprehensive home inspection that will reveal the safety of your home and provide you with solutions. Contact us today.

How To Improve Air Quality In Your Home

If you ever think of how you can improve your home’s safety, chances are, improving indoor air quality has come to mind once or twice. What many people don’t realize is that their home’s indoor air quality is much poorer than that outside due to a lack of circulation. With that being said, simply opening your windows can go a long ways to improving your home’s air quality and making you feel more comfortable in your own home. However, there are many other ways that you can improve your home’s air quality, so it’s not necessary to have your windows open 24/7. Keep reading to learn about several ways that you can start making your home a safer place to live.

 

If you need a home inspection in Denver, don’t hesitate to contact your local home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspections today. Our Denver home inspectors are certified by the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors and are willing to do whatever it takes to make your safe free from mold, poor air quality, radon, lead, asbestos, and more. Contact us today if you’re ready to schedule an appointment or if you have any questions for us.

Open your windows  

Like we said earlier, simply opening your windows is a great way to release many of the allergens and toxins that can build up in your home. In addition to this, you’ll have better circulation so your home will feel much less stuffy and allow more oxygen in so you can breathe a bit better. Generally, it’s a good habit to leave your windows open for an hour a two each day, but if you’re painting, applying polish to furniture, or spraying any other chemical in your home, you should always open the nearest door or window immediately after. You may think that these chemicals dissipate, but the truth is, they hang around for quite some time, and you’ll be breathing them in.

Clean often

It’s easy to avoid cleaning your home—we know. Sometimes our cleaning duties just get pushed further and further to the side as we live our lives. However, even a small amount of cleaning each day can help to improve your indoor air quality. You should make it a habit to pick up after yourself after eating, clean your room, dust, vacuum, and use wet wipes on the table. However, if you’re going to dust, make sure you follow that up with vacuuming.

Dusting by itself, although helpful for removing dust from your table or desk, won’t do anything to improve your home’s air quality. In fact, it will make it worse. If a table is dusted off, the dust will land on the floor and get kicked up every time someone walks over it. Living in a dirty home is difficult for people with allergies, asthma, or other respiratory issues and can be easily prevented with regular and thorough cleaning.

If you’re ready to get a home inspection, call your Denver home inspectors at Safe Investment Home Inspections.