Are you buying a new home?
Often we hear about people buying a home and then finding out they have plumbing issues that could have been detected before purchase. We’ve composed this list to help you avoid that happening to you.
Check the pipes. A lot of pipes may be hidden in walls, so you may not be able to see everything. Even so, look in the mechanics room or in the basement, under sinks and around toilets. Look for poor connections where leaks are most likely to happen. If you see evidence of water damage, stains, dampness and/or mold, start asking questions: Was this fixed? When? If you’re not getting specific answers, it may indicate that there are expensive repairs in the future.
Check the shut-off valves. You’ll find them around the water heater, behind bigger appliances, to the outside of the house for hoses and sprinkler systems, and to the main water supply. Do the valves twist easily or require a good deal of force? Do they leak when you turn the water off and back on? Do the taps still work a little even though you’ve turned the water off? You may want to have these replaced as a precaution if you have trouble turning the valves or they drip when you test them. When the valves are in poor working order, it’s best to replace them before there’s an emergency.
Check the taps and flush the toilets. How does everything work? Do you see any leaks? Is there a problem with the water going down? Do the taps continue to drip once you turn them off? All of the fixtures in a house may need basic maintenance, such as taps needing new washers or the main cleanout valve needing a cleanout.
Even if you detect some plumbing problems, you may decide the pros outweigh the cons. If you decide to buy anyway, your best bet is to ask for a professional plumbing inspection to provide an estimate. This decision can work to your benefit, as you can negotiate repairs into the final asking price, and avert problems before you move in. We can help.