Background Reading: 6-S: Plastic Parts
There’s a variety of things to inspect along the shell perimeter above the water line, including cushions, skimmer weirs, valves/dials/levers, topside controls, etc.
-Scan the tub over carefully to see if you can spot anything missing or broken.
-Turn every dial and knob along the perimeter back and forth all the way to make sure they’re properly attached and mechanically sound
-Gently tug & wiggle every piece that’s attached to the tub that’s not part of the shell, to check for lose or broken bits
-Check the bottom of each removable dial/cap to check for cracked plastic. Since they’re usually held in place by friction, you can usually pull the cap/dial off by pulling upwards while gently twisting back and forth.
-If a cap/lever won’t come off, it could be that someone permanently glued or epoxied it on to keep it from popping off, making it hard or impossible to repair/replace in the future.
-With the caps/valve levers off, check for crumbling/gummy seals & gaskets. Look for signs of amateur attempts to seal things better (epoxy and/or silicone smeared around the edges).
-Most cushions pop on and off, held in by friction-fit. If possible, pop each cushion off to check what’s behind the cushions (is it filthy or damaged?).
-Check the skimmer weir, making sure it’s all working properly and nothing is missing or broken.
-Inspect the topside controls for readability, look for cracks in the overlay, especially around the buttons