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

home-for-saleIn today’s real estate market, properties cost more than ever. As a result, buying a home will be the biggest purchase people will make in their lifetime.

Needless to say, a buyer wants their home to be in the best possible shape when they take ownership of the property. One way to ensure this happens is to get a plumbing inspection before finalizing the deal, which will indicate if any problems big or small exist in the home.

Whether it’s inspecting pipes for corrosion or making sure the faucets don’t drip, an experienced plumber will know exactly what to look for during the course of their inspection. Before deciding on a plumber and getting started, here are a few of the most important things to look in a prospective home that could spell trouble down the road.

Water Heater Inspection

checking-a-water-heaterWhen it comes to plumbing issues within most homes, the water heater can provide some of the most troublesome and expensive problems homeowners will face. When a plumber inspects the water heater, one of the first things they will look for is standing water at the base of the heater. If this is found, it’s a good bet the tank is leaking.

In most cases, this is due to the age of the tank, and will require having the tank replaced. Along with this, a plumber will look for corrosion at the top and bottom of the tank, which could lead to leaks as well. In many homes, water heaters may be close to 20 years old, which is far beyond the recommended age for replacement.

If a plumber discovers an old water heater in the home you want to buy, discuss it with the seller. If they are eager to close the deal with you, they will often pay for a new water heater and have it installed for you.

Toilet Inspection

Along with the water heater, a home’s toilet should be looked at for any current or potential problems. If the tank has water around its base, it could be leaking. And if it is leaking, there’s a good chance the water could be rotting, causing the floor to rot as well, so the plumber should also inspect the flooring for any damage.

It’s also important for potential buyers who are touring a home to flush the toilet to see if it empties and fills back up as it should. If it doesn’t, this indicates that a problem exists within the tank or possibly the sewer line, which could be on its way to getting clogged.

flush-the-toiletA plumber should also check to see how old the toilet is, since older models use far more water than today’s low-flow models. On average, newer toilets only use about one gallon of water per flush, while older models may use as much as four gallons per flush.

If the home is more than 20 years old, it probably has an older toilet that will waste gallon after gallon of water. Here again, the seller may be willing to upgrade the toilet in order to ensure you buy the house.

Discolored Water

If there is one thing you certainly do not want to see when you turn on the faucets in a new home, it’s discolored water. However, if you or a plumber happen to find this during an inspection, all is not lost. In some cases, it may mean the home has hard water. A term used to describe water that contains too much iron, it can stain sinks, bathtubs, showers, washers, or numerous other things it comes in contact with.

discolored-waterIf hard water is not the cause, the discoloration could mean the home’s pipes are corroding from the inside, allowing rust to get into the water. This might become an expensive problem to fix, so if this happens it may be time to talk to the home’s owner.

If they are unwilling to install a new plumbing system, they might be willing to reduce the price of the home in order to compensate for the replacement and keep you from walking away.

Faucets and Fixtures

Along with looking for discolored water, it’s a good idea for a plumber to check the faucets and fixtures for damage. Not only should none of these be leaking, but they should all have adequate amounts of water pressure. If they do not, that could indicate a clog somewhere in the pipes or water line.

To find out the nature of the problem, a plumber can run a camera through the pipes or water line to see what is wrong. In some cases, the problem may be tree roots that have found their way into pipes or lines through very small holes over the course of many years. This could present a problem, since your only option will usually be to replace the pipes or water lines as well as cut down the tree to eliminate the roots from growing any further.

A plumber can advise you on the best decision, but realize ultimately you will be the one living there.

Video Inspection is Key

The unseen drains under the floor and buried in the yard can be one of the most costly repairs, while also being one of the easiest to overlook. Also, many cities hold the homeowner responsible for main sewer repairs, even if they are under the city street. A video inspection is one of the key elements that you need to do before buying a new home. It’ll give a general scope and visual aspect of what’s wrong with your drains.

Video inspections will also give you peace of mind in regards to knowing what work you need to be done. Our group of certified professional plumbers, will be glad to get to the bottom of any specific issues within your drains.

By having an inspection, you can hopefully avoid any unexpected problems. If you are in need of expert plumbing service in your Independence, MO home, please contact All-n-One Plumbing at (816) 886-7600 as soon as possible.