SUNDAY, MARCH 9, 2008 tuu.y HKRAi.n sv.r.noN 8 PAGE 9 Plumbing issues should have been caught Q. I purchased a brand new home — a bank-owned, "as- is" property. On the day of the home inspection, there was no hot water because the bank refused to turn on the gas service. Because of this, the home inspector did not discover that the upstairs bathrooms were piped with hot water only. So now I can't use the tubs or showers because the water is scalding hot. Our plumber says there is a cross-connection of the hot and cold water lines somewhere in die building and diat it will be difficult to find where the problem is. I can't afford to re-pipe the house and don't know what else to do. What do you advise? A. Your house probably does not need to be re-piped, but some investigative work will be needed to determine where the faulty pipe connections are located. To do this, some of die drywall will need to be removed to enable inspection and evaluation of the pipe layout. You should consult widi your plumber to determine the least intrusive way to approach diis process. At the time of the home inspection, this problem could have been discovered, even without .gas service or hot water. Your home inspec- tor could have turned off the supply valve at the water heater. This is how home inspectors verify that Barry Stone faucets have Home inspector cold on the ===== right side and hot on the left when the gas service is off. Q. We purchased a home that was repossessed by the bank, and we hired a home inspector to check it out. After moving in, the gas company red-tagged the water heater because of improper exhaust venting. The gasman said diis should have been disclosed by our home inspector, and according to our plumber, a new vent pipe will cost $629. Is the home inspector liable for diis costly repair? A. Without knowing the specifics of the vent violation, I cannot comment. The most surprising aspect of your situation, however, is the incredible cost for a new vent pipe. For $629, you could have a new water heater installed. As for the home inspector's liability: If you have not already replaced the vent (\eekwoocl Homes The Craftsman $604,900 535 Independence Ct, Sycamore, IL Directions 1-88 - West to Peace Rd North to Bethany Rd East to Kipan's Parkside Estates North on Parksicte to Independence Ave. West into cuf-de-sac or Rt 64 West to Kishwaukee Rd. South Loft on Prirksido Right on Independence Cl. Sat & Sun 1 - 4PM or Call to schedule a private viewing 847-464-5208 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, bonus room with bath, hardwood, stainless appliances, wired for sound, full interior trim package. This is a must see! www.creekwood~liomes.com 406 CLEARVIEW-LAKE VILLA Backs to preserve! •) Br, 1st lloor office & 2nd lloor bonus room! New wood floors all 1st lloor! Large kitchen w/maplc cnbincts, all apples! Btkfsi rm w/slidcr to patio, large yard. 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Upgraded brick exterior! Architectural details & art niches. Ingrd. sprinklers! Island kitchen! 2-story FR w/fplc, dbl high windows! Fabulous master w/walkin cist, lux bath! English bsmt! Deck, fence. Country views-no home behind! Almost 3000 s.t! $354,900 SHOWCASE 5445 Grand Avenue Qurnee, IL 60031 Kurt 4 Leslie Nauta St» virtual tourt on www.nautatMm.cbin pipe, you should notify your inspector about the problem and request that it be rein- spected. That call should have been made as soon as the gas company pointed out the problem. Many home inspection contracts specify that the inspector must be given the opportunity to view the defect before it is repaired. Otherwise, the home inspector may be relieved of liability. If the vent pipe has already been replaced, you have two separate issues: 1) You may have been grossly overcharged for the repairs; and 2) The home inspector may no longer be liable. If the repairs have not yet been done, call the home inspector and get two more bids for the cost of repairs. • Barry Stone's column appears every Sunday in Homes Plus. E-mail questions to him at www.housedetec- tive.com or write AMG, 1776 Jami Lee Court, Suite 218, San Luis Obispo, CA 94301. Grooming controls household dog hair BY GWKN SCHOEN 'I'lif Snmimrnto lire When it comes to controlling dog hair in your house, die best approach is to stay on top of the source, say dog owners. "You need to groom your dog frequently," says Robin Baker, who breeds golden retrievers. "A lot of people use a brush to groom their dogs, but that doesn't really get the loose hairs out. You need to use a comb and give them a bath about every two weeks." Even being diligent about grooming won't solve the problem completely. Two years ago, the design staff at the Bissell vacuum manufacturer introduced the first vacuum cleaner designed to tackle pet hair problems. "This first vacuum was introduced at Target in '06," said Dan Heidenga, director of vacuums at Bissell. "It was an instant success. In our research, we discovered that rubber creates a static charge that pulls pet hair out of carpet. We used mat technology to design a vacuum just for dealing with pet hair problems." Bissell now has two vacuums designed for homes widi pets, the Pet Hair Eraser (about $150) and the Lift-Off Revolution (about $170). In addition, it offers a Pet Pack accessory kit ($30) that includes tools that can be used with nearly any brand of vacuum cleaner. Most of the Bissell products are carried at Target stores. "These vacuums designed for households widi pets have a lint brush type of design in die front," explains Heidenga. "When you pull the vacuum back it collects pet hair, and when you push it forward it releases the hair so it can be sucked up." The Dyson vacuum company also has several vacuums designed for homes with pets. The line is called Animal and retails for $500 to $600. And soon, Dyson plans to introduce a new hand-held vacuum designed to tackle pet hair. Eureka's Capture+ comes with tools designed to combat both pet hair and fleas. The vacuum is a bagless upright with a sealed HEPA filtration system that locks in dead fleas. It retails for $170 at Lowe's. Hoover has several models that it recommends for animal hair, but none is designed to tackle that specific problem. Or you might resort to Joan Gibson Reid's method for dealing with pet hair: camouflage. "I have Oriental rugs," said Reid, an American Kennel Club judge who lives in Elk Grove. "They have so much pattern in them that the dog hair doesn't show." 1118 E. Main Street St. Charles, IL 60174 www.RealtorProsI .com 1772 S. Randall Road • Suite 100 Geneva, IL 60134 www.Excelsl .com I , .'-, "j ~ft &,. -, ST. CHARLES $359,000 ROUGH DIAMOND Quiet country lane yet close to shopping. Set among mature oaks. Big Rooms. Two FPs. Walk in closets. 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