It doesn't matter if you are a first time buyer, relocating, or someone that is buying another house as a investment - before you purchase a new home you should inspect the plumbing system. Although we suggest calling a professional to do a final inspection before signing any paperwork, below are some things you should check out during the initial house tour:
- Flush Every Toilet - Make sure you flush the toilets in each bathroom. Doing this allows you to see if the toilets have a weak flush, if it runs for too long, if there are any leaks, ect.
- Check Pipe Age and Material - Ask the age of the water lines and verify the type of pipe that is installed i.e. copper, plastic, galvanized. Galvanized pipes typically need to be replaced after about 30 years.
- Check Flow from Fixtures - You should turn on all the fixtures and even the shower to make sure they have good flow. This is the only way you can be sure that the water lines do not need any work.
- Check for Proper Operation of all Shut Off Valves - Making sure that the shut off valves work properly is important because during a plumbing emergency, you need to be sure that you can isolate the water supply to the fixture that is leaking.
- Check the Water Heater - Ask the realtor or homeowner if you can take a look at the water heater. Do a physical inspection and check for corrosion, buildups, or leaks. You should also ask the realtor the age of the water heater and the last time the water heater was professionally serviced.
- Check Behind the Scenes - Basements and crawl spaces are often overlooked areas during a house tour. Make sure to inspect these areas! Check for any possible water damage or intrusion, leaking pipes, or repairs to pipes that were not professionally done.
- Check Operation of Outside Hose Bibs - It is common for hose bib leaks to go undetected, potentially causing property damage.
- Check Functionality of Rain Drains and Downspouts - Roof debris and leaves often cause blockage in the rain drain system. Root intrusion, ground settling, and inferior pipe type/thickness can cause blockage in the discharge line running away from the house. If your rain drain system fails, rainwater can infiltrate your crawl space or basement causing interior damage and inviting in unwanted rodents.
- Video Sewer Line Inspection - This is not included in a standard full house plumbing inspection but we highly recommend that you have it done. Getting a camera in your sewer line can show you if there are any breaks or root intrusions in your line that would otherwise go unnoticed.
If after completing this checklist you have any questions or concerns, give Evenflo a call and we will send out one of our highly trained professionals to perform a full house plumbing inspection. Even if everything looks good to go, we still suggest a full house inspection. Our technicians are trained to check every possible problem and can seek out issues that would often go unnoticed to the public eye. Buying a new home can be a very stressful task, but we're here to help things flow smoothly. When you're looking to buy a new home and need a pro, go with the flo!