Potential Plumbing Pitfalls When Buying a New Home
So, you’ve found your dream home; it has a great yard, plenty of space, and the right price. Before signing on the dotted line, you need to ensure that the house is not suffering from common plumbing
pitfalls. There could be issues within the walls and pipes of your new home, which could cost you thousands of dollars. Here are some simple guidelines to reduce the risk of buying a lemon.
Placement of the Water Heater
While you may have run the taps to ensure that there is hot water, you may not have considered the placement of the water heater. Is the heater located in the basement, or in a location that is easy to clean should a leak occur? Check if the unit has been placed where there is a risk that carpeting, wood floors or walls could be ruined if there is an unexpected issue. If the property is older, you may also need to consider whether the installation and performance of the unit adhere to local code. A local plumber will be familiar with local codes to eliminate any potentially costly surprises.
Although you may have checked that the shower has sufficient pressure, the toilet flushes, and the faucets work; these are not the only issues with bathroom fixtures. There are some other serious issues, which need to be checked before you buy. These include checking that the sinks and toilet bowls have been firmly installed. The fixtures should not move if gentle pressure is applied. Additionally, check the floor and walls around the fixtures for any sign of discoloration or warping. If the surfaces feel spongy or soft, or appear warped or discolored there could be a leak, which is in need of repair. Even the smallest leak can cause severe structural damage over time, but there are usually some signs highlighting the issue.
The Main Sewer Line
Main sewer issues can become a real drain on your finances, with repairs potentially requiring that the driveway or yard is excavated. The main warning sign of a main sewer line issue is slow draining water or clogged drains in the kitchen or bathroom. While this can be an internal pipe issue, it could be an indication of more serious issues with the sewer outlet. Either situation can be a costly problem, so it is vital that you have a sewer inspection conducted before you make the final agreement. A qualified plumbing specialist will be able to use video camera equipment to check the pipes and main sewer line to ensure that there are no nasty surprises waiting to cause difficulties.
There are numerous plumbing pitfalls when buying a new home, so it is important to ensure that there are no underlying issues. You can save money and hassle by having a qualified plumber inspect the property first to highlight any potentially serious issues. The report may show something that can help you negotiate a sales price reduction. If there is something serious enough to dissuade you from purchasing the property, you are likely to breathe a huge sigh of relief.
By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing
Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solutions.