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Why You Should Get a Plumbing Inspection Before Buying a New Home

home-for-saleBuying a home is a huge investment and a massive responsibility. Unfortunately, many houses, new or old, have some problems that may not be readily evident and may need fixing before a new owner moves in, such as leaking toilets or roof and structures that are compromised.

Don’t be fooled by the fresh coat of paint on your potential new home that could be hiding serious problems. Taking things at face value can cost you a lot of money down the road if you happen to encounter problems especially with your plumbing system.

Instead, take the logical step and have a complete house inspection including plumbing to ensure that it is a worthwhile investment and a safe place to live in.

You can still do the inspection yourself if you have the time, and know what to look for. You can also use the report from the plumbing inspection to negotiate for a discount that will cover the plumbing costs.

What to Look For

If you are doing your own plumbing inspection, be ready to get your hands dirty. Wear protective clothes to shield you from dirt and wetness and do not forget to carry a flashlight with you. Many buyers are afraid of going deeper with their inspection for fear it may change the perception of the home they have fallen in love with.

A professional home inspector will not mind going through everything and would probably give you an accurate disclosure of the state of your home. A good home inspection is not necessarily a deal breaker. Here are some of the things you should look for when doing a plumbing inspection.

1. Check Your Water Meter

First, turn off all the taps inside and outside of the house. If you have done this and there is water running, you could be in for some serious plumbing repairs. Secondly, locate your water meter and check if the shut-off valve is in good working condition.

If the house uses well water, turn off the valve which is usually located under the sink inside the house. This will result in no water coming out when the taps in the house or any other area are turned on. Typically, plumbing repairs are required when the shut off valve is not working.

2. Inspect the Water Heater

checking-a-water-heaterEvery homeowner wants a sufficient flow of hot water to meet their cooking, bathing and laundry needs. Inspect the water heater for any signs of corrosions on the tank and its parts.

Check whether it is located in a safe place and find out how long it has been there. Make sure that it is large enough to accommodate your family’s needs. If it looks old or in poor condition, request the seller for a replacement as part of the sales agreement.

3. Check the Faucets, Sinks and Toilets

All faucets, sinks, and toilets must be functional with no leaks. Leaky fixtures may appear like a small problem but when left unattended for an extended period may cause serious plumbing problems. Check all faucets, sinks and any pipes that are exposed. Turn taps to their maximum “ON” setting to see if the water runs under pressure and that it drains down the sink immediately.

As for the checking-for-hot-watertoilet, check around the floor and tank for any signs of heavy sweating.

Check whether the water drains completely from the tank when flushed and if it fills up again to its maximum capacity. If this is not the case, it may mean your system is clogged and in need of fixing.

4. Inspect the Sewage System

Sewage problems are unhygienic and expensive to resolve. When doing a wastewater inspection, first find out what kind of system is installed in the house, whether waste drains in your own septic tank or the municipal’s sewage system, the size and the location of the lines. If it flows into your septic tank, find out its location and the last time it was emptied.

Check for signs of bad odor, standing water, leakages and seepage. Fixing sewage related problems should be the responsibility of the seller.

Inspecting the sewage is tedious and may require professional help. Most professional plumbers use modern technology where they just place a video camera down the sewer. This technology records the inner workings of the entire system, highlighting problematic area.

The plumber can easily interpret and provide necessary solutions for these complex areas. The sewage system may also be contaminated, and if you are not well protected, it may lead to serious health problems. Professionals have the equipment, tools and knowledge for tackling such jobs.

5. Check the Pipes

Check the pipes for lead, leaks, cracks, rust and other problems that may prompt repairs.

Homes built back in the day used lead pipes which are considered hazardous. Lead is known to be toxic. If that’s the case, make sure the pipes are replaced before you move in. Ensure that the pipes are prevented from freezing during cold seasons.

Inspecting a home before you buy it is something that is highly recommended. A properly inspected home gives you peace of mind and also provides ground for further negotiation when purchasing a house.

If your inspection reveals the need for plumbing repairs contact a plumbing professional simply by calling Allied Plumbing and Pumps, LLC in Wenatchee, WA through (509) 662-6622. The plumbing company will disclose any plumbing problems in your home after doing a thorough home inspection.

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