Everyone Loves a Warm Bath

Home Inspector with JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC HOI 394

You have finished up a long work out session with the lawn or maybe you just finished exercising, you're sticky, stinky and your muscle ache. A nice hot bath is just the ticket to loosen those tired tight muscles. If you happen to have whirlpool tub, so much the better.

I see whirlpool tubs in quite a few homes I inspect here in Connecticut. I also see many that aren't used often. How do I know? When I fill the tub and run those massaging jets, black goop spurts into the bubbling water.

Part of inspecting a jet tub is as I said filling and running it. Another part is to look for a an access to the plumbing and motor so it can be serviced and inspected. Many tubs have a large panel right in front that is easily removed and provides a fair amount of space for viewing.Rodent stains on tub plumbing

On a recent home inspection, the home had a built in whirlpool tub in the main bathroom. This tub had the large pull away front panel. Once I filled the tub and turned it on, no black goop, it must get used often, I kneeled down and worked off the panel cover. As the cover came free my olfactory sense was immediately assaulted by a pungent odor. No, this wasn't mold or any type of flora, this stench was produced by animated, four legged creatures, mice.

Looking at the snaking white tubes for the tube jets, I noticed distinct stains of a rodent highway. Various bodily fluids left from those nervously skittering creatures as they make their way from here to there.

I imagine they had found the combo tub and shower an inviting, warm place, especially while those jets were in operation. After all everyone loves a warm bath.

Posted by

James Quarello
Connecticut Home Inspector
Former SNEC-ASHI President
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC

 ASHI Certified Inspector

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Serving the Connecticut Counties of Fairfield, Hartford, Middlesex, New Haven, Southern Litchfield and Western New London.


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Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

Good morning James,

Eeeeeuuuuuu - a great reminder for anyone with a removable panel to open it and clean around under the tub deck!

May 06, 2012 09:08 PM #1
Clint Mckie
Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections - Carlsbad, NM
Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586

Hey James,

Like going under a home with all the "CAT" smells. Can't wait to close it back up.

Have a good day in Connecticut.

Best, Clint McKie

May 06, 2012 09:25 PM #2
JOSH EVANS *JoshEvansHomes 516-655-5000
Village Properties of Mineola, LLC - Mineola, NY
Great blog and great job. Keep up the good work and good luck to you this year. Thanks.
May 06, 2012 09:40 PM #3
Joe Petrowsky
Mortgage Consultant, Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS # 2709 - Manchester, CT
Your Mortgage Consultant for Life

These tubs can be problematic. We just finished renovating a house that had one. Instead of doing all the repairs necessary, it would have been less expensive to redo the area and put in a new one.

May 06, 2012 09:46 PM #4
Donald Hester
NCW Home Inspections, LLC - Wenatchee, WA
NCW Home Inspections, LLC

Jim, Got to love how rodents tinkle as they go. Leaves such a nice smell and trail. 

May 07, 2012 01:37 AM #5
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

You didn't just spoil a great, residential mouse habitat did you?  Isn't that like a wetland violation? 

Be careful what you post.  You never know when some "agency" will pull up to the house!   ;>)

May 07, 2012 05:44 AM #6
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

P.s.  After a work-out session with the lawn, a hot bath is the last thing I want!

A lot of iced liquid is good and a cool shower maybe.  But a hot bath?

May 07, 2012 05:45 AM #7
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

Lisa, Yes I guess you could take it that way.

Clint, How about the whole house? Can't just close that up. 

Josh, Thanks for your insightful comment.

Joe, or just remove it. No?

Don, Yes it does. Behind this tub was ripe.

Jay, Everything has a place and mice do not belong in a house. Let 'em come :)

May 09, 2012 09:03 PM #8
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James Quarello

Connecticut Home Inspector
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