Electrical - Ottawa Home Inspections
The electrical inspection will determine if the service to the home has been safely installed and meets the requirements of the homes systems.
The ground fault circuit interrupter outlets (GFCI's) will be tested for proper operation and a representative number of outlets and switches are tested for proper wiring configuration.
In some older homes, knob and tube (K&T) wiring is still present and your insurance company may have issues with providing you coverage. If found within the home, the inspection will report on its presence and whether it is still an active source of the wiring distribution. It is important to know that even when a home owner performs electrical work within their own home, it must be under permit and inspected by the ESA (Electrical Safety Authority) the governing body in Ontario www.esasafe.com.
Samples from other inspections
The home owner followed us on this inspection. He didn't seem to think that there was an issue with having to jam a small stick in this light switch. "I need it there to keep the lights on" is what he said. My clients agreed with me and said that they wouldn't have it there very long.
The receptacle beside this sink is not protected by GFCI (ground fault circuit interruption). The age of the home would not have required it as part of the code at the time of construction. If you are doing any renovations to the layout of the kitchen you would be required to provide a GFCI outlet within 1 meter of the sink. I recommend that any outlet close to any sink be updated for safety reasons.
This 90° fitting is providing power to a shed at the rear of the property. The connection to the pipe has failed which could allow water to enter into the pipe. Although the wire is rated to be installed in this exterior pipe it is not rated as an exterior wire so the moisture could cause problems and result in loss of power and/or electrocution.
The breaker on the top has two (2) wires connected to it. Unless a breaker is specified by the manufacturer to allow two conductors, only one is permitted. This is what is known as "double tap". Although not permitted by the specific codes it is often seen with one of the conductors being the wire feeding the step down transformer for the door bell.
In the ceiling of this basement I found this electrical connection (yellow wire nut). All electrical connetions must only be made within the appropriate junction boxes.
In the mid to late 70's the low cost of aluminum made builders sway towards installing aluminum wire in homes. The biggest problem in this change was many of the devices used (switches and outlets) were not rated for aluminum wire. Also if connections to copper wire (a.k.a. pigtails) were not made with the properly rated wire nuts, the connections would become unsafe to the expanding contracting differences between copper and aluminum.