Home, Condo, and Co-op
Interior Inspections

Professional Engineers apply scientific and engineering principles and common sense to home and building inspections.

Pre-Purchase Home, Building, Condo, and Co-op Inspections in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, Putnam, and Westchester.

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In keeping with Governor Cuomo's announcements, Heimer Engineering℠ has stopped performing home inspections.

Many homes, buildings, condo units, and co-op units have had changes made to the interior.The interior of the home is examined as part of a Professional Engineer's home inspection. While inside the home, building, condo, or co-op, the Professional Engineer evaluates the structural system, the heating system, the air-conditioning system, the electrical system, the plumbing system, the windows, the appliances, etc. Ways you can help protect the environment are reported. Concerns such as evidence of water in the basement, roof leakage, and wood-destroying insect evidence are examined. The engineering reports include an expense analysis where appropriate.

Many homes, buildings, condos, and co-ops have had changes made to the interior. A change could be as simple as a dishwasher installation or as complex as major renovations. The change may not have been done correctly. Our Professional Engineers looks for indications of problems that exist in the interior of the structure. You are also advised of potential Certificate of Occupancy issues.

The home, building, condo, or co-op inspection includes examining the fireplace. Unfortunately, using a fireplace in a new or renovated home or building can be hazardous.

Fireplace Hazards

Windows and Doors

The windows and doors are important functional components of a house or building. Most windows and doors are functional in that they can be opened and closed, although sometimes this requires considerable effort.

In some home inspections, building, condo, and co-op, especially older buildings, poor operation of windows and doors is due to normal settlement or normal wear and tear. Sometimes, improper window or doors operation is due to structural defects in the building.

The Professional Engineer analyzes the window and door operation to determine if there are structural defects. For any problems found, the expense analysis in the inspection report helps you plan for future expenses.


Window replacement is an expense many buyers choose to undertake.Window replacement is an expense many buyers choose to undertake. The Professional Engineer's evaluation of windows determines whether they function properly. This includes checking for evidence of excessive wind or water leakage, damage, etc. Even if the Professional Engineer finds that the windows function, you may choose to replace them for personal reasons.

Windows are also checked for other concerns such as the need for caulking, draftiness, ease of operation, and leakage. Many older windows are drafty, leak when it rains, and are difficult to operate. Even newer windows may have problems.

Old windows are not as energy efficient as modern windows. Buildings constructed during the 1960s may have leaky aluminum windows, while older houses have leaky double-hung wooded windows. Buildings constructed before World War II may have leaky metal casement windows.

Even with storm windows in place, the old windows are not as energy-efficient as modern windows. Today, windows are typically double-glazed to help reduce heating and cooling costs. New windows are better insulated and require less maintenance than older windows.


Just like with the operation of the windows, door operation can be a clue to structural problems in a building.Just like with the operation of the windows, door operation can be a clue to structural problems in a building. A door that binds may just be swollen due to moisture, or the binding  may indicate an underlying structural defect. A doorframe that is not level may be the result of normal settlement or may indicate a structural defect. A gap around a door may be present due to an underlying structural defects.

Older doors are not as energy efficient as modern doors. Even with storm doors in place, the old doors are not as energy-efficient as modern doors. Often, old doors have significant air leakage.

Today, doors typically contain insulation to help reduce heating and cooling costs. Doors also require less maintenance than older doors.


Drywall refers to gypsum between two sheets of relatively strong paper. Drywall is also referred to a plasterboard, wallboard, sheetrock, gypsum board, and many other names. Some of the names that drywall is referred to are trademarked. These trademarked names are often used generically to describe drywall.

Drywall is called drywall to distinguish it from its predecessor for walls and ceilings: plaster. Plaster is applied wet over wood or metal lathe and needs time to dry after application. Drywall is delivered in 4 foot by 8 foot sheets and requires no drying time.

Both drywall and plaster do not burn quickly. This makes them a good material to slow fire spread. Neither drywall nor plaster are fireproof – they simply slow the spread of fire to allow occupants of a building to get out.

Drywall is held in place by fasteners. Until about 20 years ago, drywall nails were used to secure drywall. Drywall nails are designed to resist being pulled out of wood. However, drywall nails can be pulled loose, especially if they are not nailed in place properly. Improper hammering of drywall nails can damage drywall. Today, drywall screws are used to secure drywall. Drywall screws are faster and easier to insert, and seldom damage the drywall.

There are seams in the sheetrock and marks where the drywall fasteners are installed. These are covered with tape and sheetrock compound. Contrary to popular belief, neither drywall tape nor drywall compound serve any structural purpose.

The use of the term wall in drywall is potentially misleading. Drywall is used on walls, ceilings, and other flat surfaces that do not have large concentrated loads. Drywall cannot be used on a floor, as it could not support the weight of furniture or a person. Regardless of the name the drywall goes by (drywall, gypsum board, sheetrock, etc.), its characteristics are similar.

Home Appliances

Heimer Engineering's Professional Engineers check appliances for general condition, correct installation, and functionOur Professional Engineers check appliances for general condition, correct installation, and function. You are also advised of possible problems repairing old appliances.

Most homes, condo, and co-op have a wide variety of appliances including a range, refrigerator, microwave oven, conventional oven, dishwasher, clothes washer, clothes dryer, and other appliances. Since it is not possible to run every appliance through every cycle during a pre-purchase inspection, our Professional Engineers are trained to look for indicators of problems. You are provided with an expense analysis of needed repairs in the inspection report.

Most homeowners depend on their appliances every day, so most appliances are at least partially functional.Homeowners depend on their appliances every day, so most appliances are at least partially functional. The appliance hookup may be incorrect or even hazardous.

The Professional Engineers often find houses that have had an electric self-cleaning oven, an electric dryer, or a room air-conditioner installed after the house was constructed. The original electrical service may have been sufficient when the house was built. The added loads have created a hazardous condition. An incorrect appliance gas hookup can be extremely hazardous.

Fireplace and Wood
Stove Hazards

Fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, and coal-burning stoves can create hazards in a home:Many people like fireplaces, and look for a house that has a working wood-burning fireplace. Fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, and coal-burning stoves can create hazards in a home:

  • Fireplaces and stoves often have hot surfaces exposed. This means an increased risk of fire, and an increased risk of burns. Small children, elderly people, and pets are especially at risk for injury.
  • Energy-efficient windows and other steps to make homes use less energy result in less ventilation. This can result in toxic gas buildup, which can cause serious injury or death.
  • Wood and coal may give off carcinogenic substances when they burn.
  • Soot give off by burning wood and coal can dirty the interior of the home, condo unit, or co-op unit.Carbon-monoxide gasses, which can cause injury or death, may build up inside the home from burning wood or coal.

Carbon Monoxide

In addition, there are other issues created by the use of a fireplace in a home:

  • Soot give off by burning wood and coal can dirty the interior of your home.
  • Dust is often carried in with the wood and coal, which dirties the interior.
  • Fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, and coal-burning stoves can pollute the atmosphere.
  • For all of these reasons, it is recommended that you not burn wood or coal in your home.Fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, and coal-burning stoves may increase energy usage. This is because cold air from the outside is drawn in when the wood or coal burns.
  • Wood and coal often come in heavy packages. There have been reports of back injuries from carrying wood and coal into a home.

For these reasons, it is recommended that you not burn wood or coal in your home. Note that gas-burning fireplaces have some, but not all, of these issues. If you would like a fireplace, consider a propane or natural gas-burning fireplace.

Inspection Info

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Applying Scientific and Engineering Principles and Common Sense to Home Inspection and Building Inspections

Contact Heimer Engineering℠

Call Heimer Engineering℠ for a Home InspectionHeimer Engineering℠ has stopped performing home inspections in accordance with Governor Cuomo's order. We cannot provide any information as to when home inspections will resume and cannot provide fee information.

Clients with questions and Attorneys with personal injury questions can email PE@heimer.com.

Heimer Engineering℠ PC BBB Business ReviewHeimer Engineering℠ serves the Greater New York area, including New York City (Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island), Long Island (Nassau County, Suffolk County, and Upstate New York (Rockland County, Putnam County, and Westchester County).

Heimer Engineering℠ respects your privacy. Some home inspection firms share information with insurance, landscaping, home maintenance, moving, cable, mortgage, and other companies. You will not receive phone calls or solicitation emails from third parties as a result of providing Heimer Engineering℠ with personal information. For more information, see Heimer Engineering's℠ Privacy Policy.

Call 911🚑 🚒 🚓 In the event of a life-threatening emergency call 911. Emergency situations need to be handled by first-responders who can evacuate buildings, shut utilities off, and take other steps necessary to preserve life.

Standards of Practice
and Code of Ethics

Heimer Engineering's℠ Professional Engineer Home Inspectors substantially adhere to the InterNACHI® Code of Ethics, to Subpart 197-4 of the State of New York Code of Ethics and Regulations for Home Inspectors, the ASHI® Standards of Practice, and the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE®) Code of Ethics. In the event of a conflict, the Professional Engineer Home Inspectors use Engineering judgment to decide what standard or Engineering principle takes precedence. All State of New York Licensed Professional Engineers are bound by New York State Education Law Article 145.


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Inspections are performed only after the client signs a Pre-Inspection Agreement. Use of this website is governed by our Terms of Use. This website is made available for informational purposes and does not represent a professional opinion of your situation.

Heimer Engineering PC℠ performs home inspections, building inspections, condo inspections, and co-op inspections in the State of New York. Expert witness services are provided regarding playground injuries, parking lot, walkway, and stairway slip, trip, and fall.

The Heimer Engineering PC℠ website was designed and is maintained by . The contents of this website were written by . This website is not intended to offer Engineering opinions or advice. Sitemaps and indexing information can be found at Page Sitemap, Image Sitemap, Mobile Sitemap, and Video Sitemap.

To protect an individual's privacy, images of people used on this site are either licensed stock images or used with permission. The images of the clients who emailed compliments to Heimer Engineering℠ are not of the actual client.

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©1997-2020 Andrea and Harold Krongelb. All rights reserved. Used under a revocable license by Heimer Engineering PC. All documents and methods used by Heimer Engineering PC are owned by Harold and Andrea Krongelb and are used under a revocable license.

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Heimer Engineering℠ PC
2171 Jericho Turnpike
Suite 230
Commack, New York, USA 11725-2947

Heimer Engineering℠ PC
PO Box 1078
Commack, New York, USA 11725-0942

Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island: 📞 646.757.4500, 📞 718.544.3000
Nassau County, Suffolk County, New York: 📞 516.487.2100 📞 631.858.5500
Westchester County, Putnam County, Rockland County, New York: 📞 914.576.6100 📞 845.638.4900
Fax: 631.858.5599
Text: 📲 888.769.6910
Basic Info:
Pre-Inspection Agreement:
Email: 📭 PE@heimer.com