Had a city inspector come to check out my new gas furnace install. A
real young kid. The moment he walked in the door my clueless-o-meter
pegged out. He was chatting away, throwing out the occasional jargon and
quickly glancing my way to see if I picked up on it. I got the
impression he was floundering and hoping I didn't realize he didn't know
what the hell he was talking about.
After he went downstairs and looked at the furnace, he asked where the
vent pipes were. I pointed to the area immediately above his head. He
asked where they went. They go outside, said I. No, where do they run?
he asks. Obviously it didn't occur him that he could follow them with
his eyes and see for himself, so I suggested he do so.
He then tells me the install's fine, then changes his mind just as the
words come out of his mouth. He abruptly walks through the basement,
asking questions about my ceiling, my water well - you know, all the
stuff necessary to check out in a furnace inspection.
He comes back to the furnace, then asks about the water heater. Where
does it vent? I pointed to the vent pipe leading into the chimney. So he
goes outside to look at the chimney and notices - wow, there's a liner
in it. How come, he asks. Have I got a fireplace? NO, it's for the water
heater. Well, then, he says, where's the air intake for the water
heater? At that point, the best I could come up with was a stunned,
I suggested that, since he was inspecting the furnace install, he should
take a look at the furnace vent pipes from the outside. He walks over
and looks. Are these for the furnace, he asks. Yes, I just told you
that. Well, where's the air intake for the water heater?
Stalemate. He fails the furnace install. Call the furnace company, he
says, and tell them they didn't install an air intake.
This would be funny except that furnace install has to pass. So I called
the furnace company and told them the story; they sighed and said
they'll get in touch with the city inspector and get the confusion
resolved. All I can figure is that this guy was either a terrible
example of nepotism in action, or one of the inspectors was busy and
thought he could get away with sending his kid out to cover for him.