A carpet inspector by nature is a unique, inquisitive individual. One that has and continues to develop both standard and unusual talents in and outside of the carpet industry.
A carpet inspector looks at carpet differently than a manufacturer, dealer, installer, cleaner, consumer and others. The carpet inspector is looking at a carpet or other floor covering to determine if the product is performing normally, and if not, who or what has caused the problem.
The Responsibilities of a Carpet Inspector
The inspector must judge by using established and excepted industry standards. In the absence of these standards be able to use their knowledge and experience as a guide in reaching an honest, fair and reasonable conclusion. The inspector must not allow emotions, greed, or feelings to get in the way.
The carpet inspector is an individual who must maintain a non-bias position. They must search out and presenting factual information that can be backed up in court.
The inspector is the “eyes and ears” of the carpet industry, reporting what is seen and heard. The inspector is also the “advocate” of the consumer whose issues may go against those of the carpet industry.
Characteristics of A Qualified Carpet Inspector
A qualified, expert carpet inspector must be a motivated individual, a self-starter with a great deal of industry knowledge. A qualified, expert inspector must be punctual and complete a project in a timely manner.
Ideally, a carpet inspector will have a well-rounded floor covering background. Knowledge that will include floor covering sales, carpet manufacturing, carpet construction, fiber production. The ability to recognize visible and latent defects. Knowledge of expressed and implied warranties. Padding specification and performance, cleaning procedures, installation procedures. Carpet dyeing methods, adhesives and their uses. Laboratory testing procedures, investigative processes, report writing and management techniques.
The inspector should also be a communicator and an exceptional listener; a typist, chemist, psychologist and detective. Practically speaking, few if any will have such a background. They must enrich their knowledge through reading, talking with others, attending training courses and seminars. Gain hands on experience in areas where they are lacking.
A qualified, expert carpet inspector must construct reports so they are accurate, understandable and diplomatic.
The expert carpet inspector is a detective that will search out and reconstruct many unusual problems. Some problems they may be seeing for the first time, even after many years in the business.
The qualified, expert carpet inspector is a psychologist. They must be able to understand and work with others. From manufacturers, consumer, dealer, installer and others that may be associated with a given claim.
The qualified, expert carpet inspector must have a thick skin. Be a diplomat and psychologist. It is not unusual for the floor covering inspector to be spoken to rudely by the upset consumer who has been receiving the run around from the dealer and/or the manufacturer. The qualified carpet inspector will accept the fact that it is not them you are upset with but the situation itself and the inspector is often the first face to whom the consumer has had the opportunity to express their anger.
A qualified carpet inspector need not be a chemist. They must be willing to gain some of this knowledge as they will perform many basic chemistry tests.
The inspector must be willing to travel to inspect concerns at the site of installation. When you add the driving time on to the inspection time, report writing time, and office time a qualified carpet inspector will often work very long days.
A qualified carpet inspector must be able to listen and not talk too much. The information that they are gathering is generally for the eyes and ears of the one that commissioned them. It is up to the commissioning party to decide who they share the inspection report with.
A carpet or floor inspector should be certified by an organization such as IICRC, FCITS and NFIC. A certified inspector will often provide carpet inspections for carpet manufactures. Certification alone does not make the inspector expert or qualified. Others such as the nationally known Weinheimer Group, also provide them for homeowners, dealers, installers, insurance companies and others.
Article modified from Carpet Inspectors Handbook written by Terry Weinheimer and Kevin Weinheimer of The Weinheimer Group.
Terry Weinheimer and Kevin Weinheimer are Certified, Qualified, Expert Carpet Inspectors and Flooring Inspectors. Click here for their website, or call 800-621-3427