Acquiring a new home is a big decision. There are many things to consider before you can make the big leap. Aside from the obvious things like price and how pretty the house looks, you should also take a look at its overall structure, wiring and electrical system.
But one aspect you should never overlook is its plumbing. There might be issues requiring expensive repairs and they’re all hiding behind the walls and floors of your new would-be house. Don’t expect the seller to be too keen in telling you about these problems. So never take anything at face value and do your own inspection.
Some plumbing problems are easy to fix and can be ignored. But others aren’t as minor. If you’re buying a home, what are the things you need to look for about the plumbing? It helps to know what red flags to watch out for so you won’t run into bigger problems in the long run.
Old Water Heaters
The average lifespan of a water heater is about 10 years. If the water heater installed in the house is older than that, it might need replacing—and it doesn’t come cheap. Imagine, hot water tanks can go as high as $2,000!
There are obvious physical signs of ageing water heaters such as corrosion and dampness. But professional plumbers in Melbourne will be able to tell how old it is based on its model, serial number, the mineral deposits inside the tank among others.
It’s not just the age of the water heater you should be concerned about but also its location. Is it near a living space? If it leaks or cause flooding, will it cause further damage by affecting your furniture, wood flooring and carpet as well? Also note if the tank big enough for all your household needs.
Deteriorating Septic Tank And Sewer Lines
Checking the health of the main sewer line isn’t as obvious as say, checking if the flush works or not. But first things first…
Is there a septic tank installed in the property or do wastes go to the municipal sewer system? If there’s a septic tank, where is it? How much can the tank hold? When has it been emptied last? Is the standing water near the tank, any noticeable odors?
To check the condition of the sewer lines, you will need a professional plumber to do a video inspection. The lines might be on the verge of clogging or collapsing and you won’t even know it until it’s too late!
Houses built before 1986 often have galvanized or lead plumbing—which is bad. Lead is a common metal that although useful has adverse environmental and health effects. It is known to cause poisoning and behavioral and physical problems.
Leaks are characterized by discoloration of the surface, corroded joints and sometimes, in worse cases, tiles don’t feel secure if you step on it. It doesn’t matter if the leak is obvious or just the size of a pinhole. Leaks are leaks no matter how small and they must be repaired. If not, it will rot your subfloor and ultimately, the finished floor which can cause you more expense.
If you turn on the tap and the water doesn’t immediately go down the drain, then the pipes are clogged. Clogged drains are normal what with hair, grease and other things getting into the drain—it can’t be helped.
However, it’s also possible that the clogging (or slow flow of water into the drain) is caused by having small pipes. Your plumber should be able to tell if your pipes are big enough (or what is big enough) for a specific area or not. The size of the pipe will also determine the water pressure you will have in your new home.
Don’t Close The Deal Too Quickly
Have a professional plumber in Melbourne inspect the house for problems. If there are issues, let the owner or agent fix them first before closing the deal. You can also haggle for a lower selling price or better yet, ask for a warranty that will cover any issues that might arise for a specific period of time.
Buying a home cost serious money. But if you don’t do due diligence, like inspecting its plumbing system, it will cost you much, much more later on.