Dangerous Situation Here

Home Inspector with Complete Home Inspections, Inc. TN Lic#050

As part of the inspection process, we are required to inspect all readily accessible electric panels in a property. Several times a week, my inspector or I run into the situation where either unhandy Andy or some lazy electrician has used improper screws to hold the dead-front cover on the service panel.

Improper Panel Fasteners

This is a very dangerous situation as the pointed screws can bite into the soft insulation on the conductors which can cause a short-circuit, electrocution or fire. Several years ago, one of my inspectors re-installed one of these screws and got the shock of his life. We do not re-install these screws any more.

These screws were taken out a cabinet in a new construction property! The final electrical tag had been placed on the cabinet stating that it was in compliance. NOT

Properly designed panel screws will have a wide flat head and have blunt ends to prevent damage to the wires. If you see hex head screws, wood screws or something similar to what I am holding in my hand holding the dead-front cover in place, have a licensed electrician replace them with the proper fastener.

This comment has been brought to you by Michael Thornton an ASHI certified inspector and president of Complete Home Inspections, Inc. proudly serving Davidson and Williamson Counties in the Middle Tennessee area.  

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Complete Home Inspections, Brentwood TN 615.661.0297


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Dallas Chambers
RE/MAX Agents Realty - Conyers, GA
Thanks for the information.  Good to know.
Dec 14, 2007 09:25 PM #1
Joseph Ellman
Realty Executives- Williams-Sykes Realty - Poughkeepsie, NY
Michael, thanks for this information.  It's amazing how something like this was able to pass muster.
Dec 14, 2007 09:30 PM #2
Vincent McKamy
Long & Foster - Fredericksburg, VA
Realtor Fredericksburg Virginia
Michael - this is a great posting - Thanks for the information - I would have never thought about this.  Are all inspectors looking for this when they take the panel off to do the inspection?
Dec 14, 2007 09:47 PM #3
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