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The Essential Home Inspection Tools: 17 Different Types & Their Uses

Last Updated on May 19, 2020

home inspection tools

When inspecting a home, the whole house needs to be checked for safety. Testing various things means that you will need different types of tools. We have composed a list of the top 17 tools that home inspectors need, in order of importance.

1. Flashlight



Light is needed to see what you are looking at. Some homes may not have power, but in most there will just be dark spots where extra light is needed. We recommend that you always carry extra batteries, as well as a backup flashlight in case one dies.

2. Ladder

a ladder

Thorough inspections include the attic and roof. A reliable, sturdy ladder is needed to get to those high places.

3. Penetration Probe

a penetration probe

Penetration probes are used to measure the temperature in the home’s HVAC system.

4. Voltage/OHM Multimeter

ohm multimeter

The voltage/OHM multimeter is used to check the electrical current and continuity of wires. It is used to test items while the power is off, for safety from electric shock when checking appliances.

5. Moisture Meter

a moisture meter

The moisture meter is used to get moisture readings of wood, drywall, and masonry. This meter tells you if an area has too much moisture or is too dry.

6. Infrared Thermometer

The infrared thermometer is used to detect the temperature of an area. It can test heat registers, hot water, circuit breakers, and more.

infrared thermometer

7. Gas Detector

A gas detector can detect even small amounts of combustible gases. It is mainly used to check for gases that don’t have a scent, such as carbon monoxide.

gas detector

8. Telescoping Mirror

The telescoping mirror is used to see into limited spaces that you can’t get into.

telescoping mirror

9. Screwdrivers

Screwdrivers are needed for a variety of things, like removing electrical panels. Screws come in all shapes and sizes, so make sure you have a full set of screwdrivers, including flat-head and Phillips head.


10. Icepick

The icepick is used when probing something to see if it has any deterioration.


11. Pocket Knife

You never know when you might need to cut something. For example, if you want to remove an electrical panel and the screws have been painted over, you can use the knife to cut the paint out of the screw lines. Pocket knives are easy to carry and just nice to have available.

pocket knife

12. Respirator

You never know what kind of environment you will be walking into when inspecting places like attics and crawl spaces. Use the respirator whenever you go anywhere that may have substances that are harmful to breathe.


13. Tape Measure

The tape measure is used to measure things like the rise of stairs, to make sure that they are up to code.

tape measure

14. Four-Foot Level

The level is used to check floors and walls for any bowing.

four foot level

15. Safety Gear

Since you don’t know what the environment will be like, you should always have safety equipment to protect your eyes, skin, and clothes.

safety gear

16. Camera

Pictures are important to include in your reports, especially if you’re reporting damage.


17. Laptop

Having a laptop allows you to write your report while it is fresh in your head, before going on to the next inspection.

If you are looking at a career in home inspection, this list is a good one to go by for those tools that you will need to get started.


About the Author Adam Harris

Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!