Home inspection findings by Frank Schulte-Ladbeck, Professional Real Estate Inspector TREC# 9073

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The Importance of Doorstops

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Have you seen holes appearing in your walls? Holes in other doors? A simple doorstop can prevent so much damage, and yet we forget to maintain them.

You were looking for a controversial, sexy, or exciting post?  Not today. Part of what I do in a home inspection is to examine the mundane. Sorry, I am not sure how to make the mundane exciting. Maybe because something is mundane we tend to forget about it. I changed out my toilet seats this past week. This act of home maintainence made my wife quite happy, but it is not something we may consider doing (I have seen some toilet seats in pretty bad shape, and these are so easy to change out).  The other task that I set myself was new doorstops, so which one do you want a post about?  So read on dear visitor, as I try to convince you to change out your doorstops.
     My son hears a loud bang while sitting in the front room. Startled he asks what just happened. Since my wife and I remained calm with this bang, he was confused, so I told him that someone went into his room. How do you know? Because that is the bang we hear every time you walk through the house from your room. My wife comments that my son walks through the house like a charging elephant. He is not happy with this description, but it is accurate. What has made the booms of doors on walls worse is the fascination of my daughter with the springs of the older doorstops. She has removed a few of them, so now I have a hole in a closet door of the bathroom where the other door slams into it. During my home inspections, I mention the state of doorstops to my clients. Fortunately, the walls speak for themselves; look at those holes. I was impressed when one buyer asked the seller to fix this lack of doorstops on a home. This is the last thing people consider, yet this buyer saw the damage that was beginning.
    What doorstop to choose? As I mentioned, my youngest child was intrigued by the boing of the spring. Apparently, removing the cap from the spring was quite fun too. Moreover, I find that the spring version can bend to where the doorstop no longer stops the door in time. I replaced my stops with a solid metal piece that has a rubber end. These solid bars do a great job; the do not bend; and my daughter cannot remove them like she does with the springs. The solid metal stop screws into the wall as a single piece. Another type of stop slips over the hinge pin. This stop is effective, and is not difficult to install. You remove the pin that holds the two parts of the hinge together. This doorstop fits over the pin, which goes back into the hinge. There are doorstops that sit on top of the floor, but these can be kicked out of the way. I have seen homeowners install the doorstops that are attached to the floor. These are good, but you have to drill into the floor covering. I noticed that these are not always replaced when the floor is changed. Another option is a bumper that attaches at the wall where the door handle would meet it. I like these when you already have a hole. You can fill in the hole, then attach the bumper doorstop, so people do not notice the repair.
    A set of two solid doorstops cost me around $5. I needed six to make the repairs to the various doors. The project took a half hour. Cheap and easy. Now I do not have to worry about wall repairs, which can be frustrating (repair the wall and match the paint). Well, this was not exciting, but I hope to have encouraged you. 

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© Frank Schulte-Ladbeck Professional Home Inspector Houston, Texas
Frank Theodor Schulte-Ladbeck
home inspector, TREC# 9073
Houston , Texas , 77063 United States

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