We discuss older modular homes whose electrical systems have been modified in the past because of renovations. For these situations there are both mandatory and recommended inspections to consider.
The other day we received a phone call asking for an inspection on an older mobile home. It was built in the 1980’s. There were various renovations done over the years and original CSA nameplate was hidden under new siding. The renovations were done without building permits. Now the buyer wanted an inspection.
In this case, there are really two different kinds of inspections to consider:
- Silver Label – by Electrical Contractor (mandatory in BC subject to conditions as discussed below); and,
- Home Inspection – by Home Inspector (optional by buyer).
1. Mandatory Silver Label Inspection
A Silver Label is not required when…
- the original modular house CSA approval label is visible; and,
- additions and/or renovations to the original electrical system have been done under permit; and,
- all permits are available for viewing.
A Silver Label is required when…
- the original modular house CSA approval labels cannot be found; or,
- additions to the electrical system have no permit for the work; or,
- renovations to the electrical system have no permit for the work.
In this case an electrical contractor must be hired to review the installation and correct any deficiencies. Once the corrections are made and supporting documentation is submitted to the BC safety authority, then the Silver Label is issued to the Electrical Contractor, who will then affix the tag to the electrical panel.
Technical Safety BC has an information bulletin including a Used Mobile Home Inspection Report. It contains the relevant checklist that an electrical contractor must follow. Note that not only does the electrical contractor have to do the inspections but he is also required to make the necessary corrections.
2. Optional Mobile Home Inspection
A mobile home inspection is recommended but optional for the buyer’s benefit. A home purchase is a big investment. For your peace of mind, you need a competent professional to evaluate the structure and all its systems (heating, plumbing, mechanical, electrical, insulation).