What is Low-Voltage Wiring?
Low-voltage wiring is wiring that is about 50 volts or less and includes systems such as that from audio systems, coaxial cable for television, Cat-V cable for internet and sometimes home security systems.
Are Audio Systems and Phone / Cable / Internet inspected?
Typically not. These systems are not structural components of the home and require specialized training and knowledge to operate, often requiring low-voltage tradesman or electricians to perform the maintenance. When you take possession of a new home, contact your local Internet, phone and cable provider for a tech to come out and install new service; in most cases, these compononents are not reused and the installer will install brand new equipment. The only permanent portions of the system are those that are enclosed inside the walls, which like other systems and components enclosed behind an inaccessible space, are outside the scope of the inspection.
We typically don’t pay much attention to audio systems, regardless of their age. These are treated as appliances and are often removed and installed as someone takes possession of the home. If you have questions about a homes audio system, I would consult the homeseller to see if the system is included with the house and if so, ask them how to operate the system.
Are Alarm / Home Security Systems Inspected?
No, and if an alarm system is detected and the inspector thinks the system may be monitored, it may in fact limit the inspection. If we see that the alarm system may be monitored, we will note this and avoid testing any smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms that may be present on the home. More than a few times we have tested the smoke alarms only for the entire house sirens to engage; needless to say, this causes much unnecessary commotion.
If you have questions about the condition or operational status of an audio system installed in the home, we recommend consulting with a low-voltage specialist.
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