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Most common defects found during a kitchen inspection.

The kitchen is one of the places inside the house that has the most defects. This makes sense because there are appliances and plumbing fixtures along with electrical outlets. All of these items can have problems and the older the house the more likely it is to have problems.

Following are the most common defects in a kitchen.

1. GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupt) outlets are not present or they do not work - GFCI outlets shut off the electrical supply when it detects current flowing on an unintended path such as a person or water. This protects a human from electrocution. The inspector has a tester which mimics a ground fault situation and all outlets are tested.

2. Sink - The sink can leak at the faucet handles, the water supply under the sink or the drain line under the sink. The faucet may also drip once the water is turned off. Sometimes the finish on the sink itself is damaged.

3. Counter tops - Counter tops can be loose, which is a safety issue. Counter tops can also be burned, stained, chipped or cracked. Quite often the grout at the backsplash is cracked.

4. Stove and/or oven - Often a cooktop (stove) element will be inoperable. Occasionally the oven will have a bad element. Rarely the entire stove or oven will not turn on, even after the inspector has checked the breaker. Other problems include oven doors that will not close completely or that have hardware missing and missing or worn controls.

5. Dishwasher - The most common problem with dishwashers is that they are not secured to the cabinets and countertop. Next most common problem is leaks under the dishwasher. And of course some dishwashers will not power on.

6. Flooring - Tile floors may be cracked. Vinyl or wooden floors may have scrapes or gouges in them. On occasion the installation is unprofessional.

7. Windows - Windows may be difficult to operate or painted shut. On occasion the window may be broken or cracked. Broken thermal seals (fog or moisture between panes) is also a common problem with windows.

This is not a complete list of kitchen problems, but it does include the most common defects.

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