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Glossary - E

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E&O Insurance: Errors and Omissions Insurance.

Earnest Money: A sum paid to the seller to show that a potential purchaser is serious about buying.

Earthquake Strap: A metal strap used to secure gas hot water heaters to the framing or foundation of a house. It is intended to reduce the chances of having the water heater fall over in an earthquake and causing a gas leak.

Easement: A formal contract which allows a party to use another party's property for a specific purpose, e.g. a sewer easement might allow one party to run a sewer line through a neighbor's property.

Eave: The part of the roof which extends beyond the side wall.

Eaves Flashing: Additional layer of roofing material applied at the eaves to help prevent damage from water backup.

Edge Clearance: Nominal spacing between the edge of the glass product and the bottom of the glazing pocket (channel).

Edge Grain (Vertical): Edge-grain lumber has been sawed parallel to the pith of the log and approximately at right angles to the growth rings; i.e., the rings form an angle of 45° or more with the surface of the piece.

Edge Metal: A term relating to brake or extruded metal around the perimeter of a roof.

Edging Strips: Boards nailed along eaves and rakes to provide secure edges for re-roofing with asphalt shingle after cutting back existing wood shingles.

EER: Energy Efficiency Ratio is figured by dividing BTU hours by watts.

Efflorescence: A white powder on the surface of walls due to evaporation of water. It forms on the surface of bricks.

Egress: A means of exiting the home. An egress window is required in every bedroom and basement. Normally a 4x4 window is the minimum size required.

EIFS: Exterior Insulating and Finish System; exterior wall cladding system consisting primarily of polystyrene foam board with a textured acrylic finish that resembles plaster or stucco.

Elastomer: An elastic rubber-like substance, such as natural or synthetic rubber.

Elastomeric: Of or pertaining to any of the numerous flexible membranes that contain rubber or plastic.

Elbow: An angled fitting that alters the direction of the water line.

Electric Lateral: The trench or area in the yard where the electric service line (from a transformer or pedestal) is located, or the work of installing the electric service to a home.

Electric Resistance Coils: Metal wires that heat up when electric current passes through them and are used in baseboard heaters and electric water heaters.

Electrical Entrance Package: The entry point of the electrical power including: (1) the 'strike' or location where the overhead electrical lines connect to the house. (2) The meter which measures how much power is used. (3) The 'panel,' 'circuit breaker box 'or 'fuse box' where the power can be shut off and overload devices such a fuses or circuit breakers and located.

Electrical Rough: Work performed by the Electrical Contractor after the plumber and heating contractor are complete with their phase of work. Normally all electrical wires, and outlet, switch, and fixture boxes are installed (before insulation).

Electrical Trim: Work performed by the Electrical Contractor when the house is nearing completion. The electrician installs all plugs, switches, light fixtures, smoke detectors, appliance "pig tails", bath ventilation fans, wires the furnace, and "makes up" the electric house panel. The electrician does all work necessary to get the home ready for and to pass the municipal electrical final inspection.

Electrolytic Coupling: A fitting required to join copper to galvanized pipe and gasketed to prevent galvanic action. Connecting pipes of different materials may result in electrolysis.

Elevation: A side of a building.

Elevation Sheet: The page on the blue prints that depicts the house or room as if a vertical plane were passed through the structure.

Ell: See Elbow.

Emissivity: The measure of a surface's ability to emit long-wave infrared radiation.

EMT (Electrical Metallic Tubing): Electrical pipe, also called thin-wall conduit, which may be used for both concealed and exposed areas. It is the most common type of raceway used in single family and low rise residential and commercial buildings.

Emulsion: In roofing, a coating consisting of asphalt and fillers suspended in water.

End Dams: Internal flashing (dam) that prevents water from moving laterally within a curtain wall or window wall system.

End Lap: The amount or location of overlap at the end of a roll of roofing felts in the application.

Energy Efficiency Ratio: An air conditioning efficiency rating system which indicates the number of BTU's delivered per watt of power consumed.

Engineering Service: Any professional service or creative work requiring engineering education, training, and experience and the application of special knowledge of the mathematical, physical and engineering sciences to such professional service or creative work as consultation, investigation, evaluation, planning, design and supervision of construction for the purpose of assuring compliance with the specifications and design, in conjunction with structures, buildings, machines, equipment, works or processes.

Enter: To go into an area to observe all visible components.

EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer): A single ply membrane consisting of synthetic rubber; usually 45 or 60 mils. Application can be ballasted, fully adhered or mechanically attached.

Equity: The "valuation" that you own in your home, i.e. the property value less the mortgage loan outstanding.

Escrow: The handling of funds or documents by a third party on behalf of the buyer and/or seller.

Escutcheon: A trim piece or decorative flange that fits beneath the faucet handle to conceal the faucet stem and the hole in the fixture or wall.

Estimate: The anticipated cost of materials, labor, and associated cost for a proposed construction, repair, or remodeling project.

Estimating: The process of calculating the cost of a project. This can be a formal and exact process or a quick and imprecise process.

Evaluate: To assess the systems, structures or components of a dwelling.

Examine: To visually look. See Inspect.

Excavate: To dig the basement and/or all areas that will need footings/foundations below ground.

Exhaust Fan: Extracts air or excess heat from the interior of a home.

Expansion Coefficient: The amount that a specific material will vary in any one dimension with a change of temperature.

Expansion Joint: A device used to permit a structure to expand or contract without breakage. In residential construction, a bituminous fiber strip used to separate blocks or units of concrete to prevent cracking due to expansion as a result of temperature changes. Also used on concrete slabs.

Expansive Soils: Earth that swells and contracts depending on the amount of water that is present.

Exposed Aggregate: A method of finishing concrete which washes the cement/sand mixture of the top layer of the aggregate - usually gravel. Often used in driveways, patios and other exterior surfaces.

Exposed Aggregate Finish: A method of finishing concrete which washes the cement/sand mixture off the top layer of the aggregate - usually gravel. Often used in driveways, patios and other exterior surfaces.

Exposed Nail Method: Application of roll roofing in which all nails are driven into the cemented, overlapping course of roofing. Nails are exposed to the weather.

Exposure: The portion of the roofing exposed to the weather after installation.

Exposure I Grade Plywood: Type of plywood approved by the American Plywood Association for exterior use.

Exterior Glazed: Glazing infills set from the exterior of the building.

Exterior Stop: The molding or bead that holds the light or panel in place when it is on the exterior side of the light or panel.

Extras: Additional work requested of a contractor, not included in the original plan, which will be billed separately and will not alter the original contract amount, but increase the cost of building the home.

Extrusion: An item formed by forcing a base metal (frequently aluminum) or plastic, at a malleable temperature, through a die to achieve a desired shape.

Eyebrow: A flat, normally concrete, projection which protrudes horizontally from a building wall; Eyebrows are generally located above windows.
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Stephen Stanczyk
 Licensed Home Inspector #221


Safe Haven Home Inspections
PO Box 124
Kapowsin, WA  98344


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