Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or you have been around the block a time or two, buying a new home is an exciting experience. Though, it can be fraught with surprises if you don’t take home inspections seriously. With all of the pipes, fixtures, drain lines, appliances, showers and toilets in your soon-to-be new home, there are too many variables at play which could cause water damage to take the plumbing system for granted. Navigate the inspection and home buying processes carefully, and work closely with your Minnesota plumbing professional so that you know what you’re diving into.
Plumbing Guide Before Buying a Home
The average American family uses more than 300 gallons of water in their home each day. Approximately 12% of that water used is wasted through water leaks. That’s at least 36 gallons of water dripping somewhere inside the home or on the property. That’s also a heap of wasted energy and potential for costly repairs. Following are many of the tasks you and your plumbing professional should perform during a plumbing inspection.
- Signs of water damage: Walls, flooring cabinets, fittings, fixtures and pipes should be inspected top to bottom for signs of water damage and leaks.
- Pipes: Many homes constructed before 1986 used lead pipes. Find out if lead pipes are used in homes you are considering for purchase. Scratch these homes off your list, or be prepared to re-pipe the home.
- Water pressure: Ideal water pressure is considered to be about 60 PSI. Water pressure lower than 45 PSI or above 75 PSI needs to be adjusted by installing a water pressure regulator.
- Water filtration: Wouldn’t you like to have clean and healthful drinking water in your new home? If the home you’re purchasing doesn’t have a water filtration system, ask your plumber the cost of installing a reverse osmosis water filtration system.
- Drains: Turn on all of the faucets in the home and check the draining. Beware of slow draining as there may be a deeper issue in the pipes or sewer line.
- Toilets: Running toilets are a simple fix, but it should be noted. Wiggle the toilets side to side. They should be solid and not move. Step on the floor around the toilets to check for soft spots — a sign of costly hidden toilet leaks.
- Baths: Check the water pressure at each shower head. Are they new or do they look like they need to be replaced or cleaned? Your plumbing professional should also check the pipes in the bathroom for leaks. Hidden leaks lead to expensive property damage and repairs.
- Water heater: Your plumber should inspect the water heater for function and age to estimate its remaining service life. Also, is it the right size water heater for your needs?
- Main sewer line: It’s highly advisable to have the main sewer line inspected. Replacing the sewer line due to cracks and tree root penetrations is an expense you don’t want to incur any time soon.
- Sump pump: The sump pump should be tested for function. Make sure there is a dedicated secondary power source in the event your home loses power when you need your sump pump.
As a new homebuyer, work closely with a reputable and honest plumbing professional before and after you buy a home. For the best plumbing service in Minnesota, contact us at Minnesota Plumbing & Home Services.