When you’re buying a home, you can complete an inspection of the property before closing the deal. It allows you to examine the house and ensure that everything is as described. If all the things check out, the place probably is worth the asking price. However, most homebuyers don’t know what they need to check. Everyone remembers to see if the kitchen, living room, and master bath are in pristine shape. But people often forget to check the plumbing system. This isn’t how things should be, so we decided to help and give you a plumbing inspection checklist prior to moving in.
Plumbing features in your home are crucial. You can’t afford to overlook the things like a shower, water heater, and sewer pipes. If any of them are in bad shape, that can dramatically affect the value of a house. On the other hand, if the plumbing is modern and well-maintained, that’s a good sign that the home you’re looking at is a solid investment.
All in all, if you want to avoid all the common plumbing problems new homeowners face, make sure to do an inspection. Here’s what you should know about it.
Hire a plumber to help you out
In the ideal scenario, the owner of the house already called a plumber, and the inspection has been done. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world. So, all the chances are that you’ll have to do it.
Now, a proper plumbing inspection can cost you up to a couple of hundred dollars. However, when you know that the average cost of plumbing in a new house is around $10,000, that number doesn’t seem that high. In fact, it’s a worthwhile investment.
Therefore, the best thing you can do is call a professional and let them do what they’re trained for. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t things you can do on your own. Here are some basic checks you can perform even before your plumber arrives.
Inspect how the water smells and what it looks like
Before you take your belongings out of the storage that you rented at simplifystorage.com and put them inside your new home, there are a few things you want to do. And inspecting the water visually is the first of them.
You want to turn on every faucet in the house. Run both hot and cold water for a few minutes on each of them. Also, make sure to try all combinations and run them both separately and together. During the process, notice how the water looks and smells.
You’re looking for things like an extensive chlorine smell, discoloration, or even sulfur smell. If everything looks fine, the next thing you should do is fill a clear glass with it. Check if anything is floating in it. If you see tiny black specks, don’t be alarmed. These aren’t necessarily harmful, but you should inspect them further.
Ensure that all the toilets flush
Non-flushing toilets are usually an easy fix. We all know that. However, that doesn’t mean this shouldn’t be on the plumbing inspection checklist prior to moving in. And the convenience is the reason why. You don’t want to be unpleasantly surprised on the first day living in your new home.
So, during your walkthrough, give each toilet a quick flush. There are only three things to look for here.
- They should flush quickly.
- They shouldn’t clog.
- You want them to fill right back up again. If they’re running for ages, that can be a sign of dysfunctionality.
Check if there are any issues with the boiler.
One thing that you must understand is that leaking or broken boiler is much more than an inconvenience. It’s a potential hazard. Because of this, you shouldn’t mess with it at all. Instead, let the plumber check it and make sure that it’s in good condition.
The usual life expectancy of water heaters is about ten years. So, ask the owner to tell you when it was last changed or repaired. That can be a good hint on what you can expect.
After the checkup, ask your plumber if the boiler is the right size for the house. If it’s too big, you can substitute it with a smaller one. That will lower your bills, which is undoubtedly a good thing. On the other hand, if it leaks, that’s a definite sign that you need to upgrade or replace your plumbing.
Look for leaks or drips.
Leaks are troublesome and can turn into pretty substantial repairs if you leave them unchecked. Not only will they raise your water bill, but they can also damage your property with mold or water stains.
You won’t have any problems noticing the obvious leaks while you’re turning the taps on and off. However, there are often hidden ones as well. These are harder to detect, and because of that, they’re potentially more dangerous.
Luckily, there is a way to find out if there are any of them. Read the water meter twice in a couple of hours when the house is unoccupied. If there’s a difference in numbers when no one is home, there is a leak that you should take care of.
Make sure that the water isn’t contaminated.
This is one of the most critical things on the inspection checklist. If you buy a house with contaminated water, you’ll end up with a hefty bill to fix it, but more dangerously, you might harm your loved ones. That’s something no one wants, but you can’t do this check on your own. So, that’s one more reason to hire professional plumbers.
Even if the owner has already done the plumbing check, you want to bring in your expert as well. This test will also bring up hidden problems like invasive roots damaging the pipes, the presence of lead, rust, and so on. It’s a crucial thing, and it shouldn’t be overlooked. That’s why it is the final item on our plumbing inspection checklist prior to moving in.
Meta: Here is the best plumbing inspection checklist prior to moving in. Learn what you need to call a professional for and what you can do yourself.