As a homeowner, there’s one thing you don’t want. You don’t want to be in a house where there are plumbing problems, and you have no idea where to begin. Whether the home is new or you have been in there for a while, it is essential to know how to check the plumbing. Before you can purchase a house, you shouldn’t take the word that the plumbing system is ok. It’s good to take a look and determine for yourself that the house plumbing is properly functional.
If you already have a house, it is useful to be aware of some of the common plumbing problems that homeowners face. This way, you can easily notice and fix issues before they get out of hand and become a major nuisance or lead to costly damages. If you want to conduct your plumbing inspection, here are a few things that should be on your real estate inspection checklist.
1. The Bathroom
The bathroom is among the most frequented rooms by all members of a household. This makes it more susceptible to plumbing issues. You can imagine a situation where you have used the toilet, only to realize that it won’t flush the bowl contents, or it is leaking. It can be a real mess. To be on the safe side, look at the following when conducting a plumbing inspection in the bathroom:
- Taps – due to their constant use, they tend to either start leaking. If the house is new, check to see if they are still functional. Sometimes if they are not in use for quite a while, they become rusty and fail to work. Also, check the pressure of the water. If the water flow is irregular or you notice low pressure, this could indicate a limescale build-up on the aerator.
- Drains- the sinks in the bathroom might be clogged by hair or even soap. These are minor issues, but it is essential to address them before becoming much of a problem. If the drainage rate is not fast enough, you will want to do something about it.
- Toilet – toilets have many parts that are vulnerable to wearing down and causing leaks. To detect some of these leaks, flush the toilet and then wait for the tank to refill. Open the tank and add some food coloring. If you notice some color on the bowl, then calling your plumber could be a good idea. You should also check for leakages at the base of the toilet. There is a wax ring around that area that is meant to prevent any leaks. If you notice any leaks, then that ring could need a replacement. If you can’t do it, call your plumber. You don’t want to be in a house with a leaking toilet.
2. The Kitchen
The kitchen is the other part of your house that needs inspection, mainly because it’s filled with multiple plumbing fixtures. For some of the parts here, like the sink and the faucets, you can refer to the instructions given above. Making a full-scale inspection can be tiring and time-consuming. To simplify the task for you, here is a list of some parts that are commonly forgotten.
- Shutoff valves – it isn’t harmful to be prepared for the unknown. At times, there might be a very serious issue with your plumbing, and on running to the shutoff valve, it isn’t working. Before you can get to fix it at that point, the damage might have been done. Therefore, to make sure you are on the safe side in case your entire plumbing system decides to fail you, make sure the shutoff valves at all points are functional.
- Dishwasher- this machine helps ensure there isn’t a build-up of dirty utensils in your kitchen. It is also instrumental in determining whether the water and plumbing system is working well enough. If it takes time to fill up, then the pipes might be clogged, or there could be a problem with the shutoff valve. At the same time, look at the drainage rate. If it takes time for the water to be drained, take a look at the water discharge hose for clogs.
3. Check for Leaks
At times, the variation in temperature and pressure in the pipes can lead to leaks at different points in the plumbing system. To be on the safe side, inspect the piping system to ensure there are no leaks in the house. They may often develop into a much bigger issue and become a disaster if they come into contact with electric cables. Before winter begins, make sure your pipes are weather-proof. Ensure that all fixtures are tightly closed, pipes are insulated, and that there are no leaks.
4. Inspect the Hot Water System
If you have some background in science, you might know that hot water systems are clogged faster than cold ones. This is usually because heating water removes these minerals from the water and deposits it on the pipes’ sides and the hot water tank. When doing your inspection, make sure you look at these pipes. Look at the pressure that the hot water is coming out at. That will tell you if there is a clog or not. Also, make sure to check the water heater. Depending on the type of water in your area, it is important to clean after its effective functionality. This means flushing the hot water tanks to remove any mineral deposits that might be in there.
5. Seek an Inspector’s Services
If you don’t trust your inspection skills or have done what you thought was necessary and yet there was no change, you can always get yourself an expert to do the rest. This is especially essential when heading to the winter season. An inspector will use a camera to detect root intrusions, cracks, punctures, and corrosions in your plumbing system. With their expertise, they will help determine where exactly repairs are needed, and which ones cannot wait. They can also help inspect messy parts of the system, such as the sewer lines. It is good to have such a professional inspection done once in a while to avoid any ugly surprises.
Whether you are purchasing a home or you have had it for a while, it is good to inspect your plumbing system. If you doubt your plumbing skills, you can always seek the services of an experienced plumber. A professional plumbing inspection can help ensure your safety, comfort, and convenience.