How to find an inspector?
What type of WETT-certified professional do I need?
WETT primarily certifies individuals in the following categories (and combinations thereof):
SITE Basic Inspector — These are individuals who can perform a level-1 inspection.
Technician — These are individuals who can install or perform maintenance on wood-burning appliances. They can also perform a level-1 inspection, or a level-2 inspection when an appliance or major system component are replaced.
Chimney Sweep — These are individuals who can clean and maintain your entire wood-burning system, including sweeping the chimney. They can also perform a level-1 inspection.
SITE Comprehensive Inspector — These are individuals who can perform level-1, -2 or -3 inspections. These individuals are also technicians and/or sweeps.
How can I verify that someone is certified?
It is important to note that WETT certifies individuals, not companies. Companies may advertise that they have WETT-certified people on staff. When contacting companies, you should make it clear that you are looking for a WETT-certified individual to complete work on your behalf. WETT professionals are issued photo ID cards, which include a sticker. This sticker must be for the current year.
I Need My Wood-burning System Inspected
Inspections for wood-burning systems (fireplaces, chimneys, woodburning stoves, central heating systems) are conducted for a variety of reasons. Typically they are conducted for insurance purposes, for real estate transactions or to investigate a concern with the way the system is functioning.
Can I get a WETT inspection or WETT certificate?
A WETT inspection is the inspection of a solid-fuel-burning system, performed by a WETT-certified professional, for compliance with applicable codes and standards. Appliances cannot be WETT certified.
WETT frequently receives requests for a “WETT Certificate,” a “WETT Certification,” a “WETT Approval” or are asked if it’s a “WETT-certified installation.” We also receive requests for companies that are “WETT Certified.” These are common misconceptions — they do not exist. What is issued is an inspection report completed by someone who is WETT certified.
What you need to do is contact a WETT-certified professional to inspect your solid-fuel-burning system. WETT has adopted a process to help identify the level of inspection required. We call this SITE.
What kind of SITE inspection do I need?
SITE is a set of standardized guidelines and procedures that are recommended by WETT for the inspection and/or evaluation of wood-burning systems.
Level-1 Inspection — “Readily Accessible”
Readily Accessible can be described as quickly or easily reached for inspection. It would not require the use of special tools for opening or the removal of any panel, door or other covering; nor would it require the use of ladders. A tape measure, light, mirror, camera, magnifying glass and binoculars may comprise are the usual tools required to perform this type of inspection.
Level-2 Inspection — “Accessible”
Accessible can be described as being reachable for the purpose of inspection/evaluation. Access could first require the moving or removal of a panel, door or other covering and could require the use of ladders and common tools such as a screwdriver, wrench, hammer or related service tools/equipment. Access does not require any invasive action to the building or property.
Level-3 Inspection — “Concealed Accessibility”
Concealed Accessibility can be described as accessible only by invasive means. This may require the removal of constructed (but not structural) areas of the system or building to gain access for the purpose of implementing a level-3 inspection/evaluation. It may also require the use of specialty tools and equipment.
SITE outlines three levels of inspection:
An inspector will be able to help you assess which level is required based on your needs. For most insurance and real estate inspections, a level 1 is sufficient. If, during the course of the inspection, the inspector sees signs of concern, a level 2 or level 3 may be recommended.
If your wood-burning system is not functioning properly or causing concerns such as smoke spillage, rapid creosote accumulation, etc., you should contact a WETT-certified technician or sweep.
What kind of report will I receive?
The report details the areas in which the installation meets or does not meet the requirements of the manufacturer’s installation instructions and the appropriate codes. An installation is either compliant with the relevant building and installation codes or it is not.
As part of an inspection, you will receive a written inspection report. WETT provides members with recommended inspection forms for their use. Members may use these or they may have different formats that they use. Typically, most level-1 inspection forms will capture information that includes appliance type, certification markings, clearances and if the installation meets the relevant codes. Given the detailed nature of level-2 and level-3 inspections, additional information may be captured.
For how long is an inspection report valid?
The nature of any inspection report is that it records what was seen at the date and time of the inspection. After completing an inspection report and leaving the premises, the inspector has no control over, nor knowledge of, any changes to a solid-fuel-burning system. Consequently, an inspection report can only warrant what was seen and recorded at the time of the inspection.
What is the cost of an inspection?
WETT’s authority does not include regulating how much WETT-certified professionals charge for their services. This question can be asked when you call to arrange for an inspection. Pricing may vary depending on the level of inspection required, travel distance for the inspector and documentation provided.