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How Do Home Inspectors Inspect Plumbing Systems?

Buying a home can be an exciting and overwhelming experience, especially for first-time homebuyers. A home inspection is an essential part of the process as it helps identify any issues that might require repairs or maintenance. The plumbing system is one of the critical components that home inspectors evaluate during an inspection. In this post, we will explore how home inspectors perform a plumbing system inspection and common defects they might find.

The first step in a plumbing system inspection is to identify the type of water and drain pipes in the home. The most common materials used for water pipes are copper, CPVC and PEX. Drain pipes are general made of PVC/ABS, cast iron and terra cotta/clay. Home inspectors evaluate the condition of the pipes, checking for any leaks, corrosion, or damage. They also inspect the water supply lines, drainage lines, and waste pipes to ensure that they are properly connected and in good condition.

One of the most common defects home inspectors find during a plumbing inspection is leaks. Leaks can occur in various areas, including the pipes, valves, and fixtures. Leaks can cause water damage and lead to mold growth if left untreated. A home inspector will check for leaks by looking for water stains, water damage, and visible water on the pipes or fixtures.

Another common issue home inspectors look for is low water pressure or flow. Low water or pressure or flow can indicate a problem with the water supply line or blockages in the pipes. Inspectors will check the functional water pressure at different fixtures to identify any issues. If the water pressure is low, they will investigate further to determine the cause and recommend appropriate repairs.

Another issue that can be found during a plumbing system inspection is outdated or non-compliant plumbing fixtures. For example, older homes may have galvanized pipes, which are prone to rust and corrosion. This can cause water discoloration and a reduction in water pressure. In addition, older fixtures may not meet current building codes, such as low-flow toilets and showerheads, which can affect water efficiency.

Sewer line issues are also commonly found during plumbing inspections. A sewer line inspection involves sending a camera down the line to look for blockages or damage. If the sewer line is clogged or damaged, it can cause backups and lead to sewage backups in the home. Home inspectors will also check for proper ventilation of the plumbing system to prevent sewer gas from entering the home.

In conclusion, a plumbing system inspection is an essential part of a home inspection. Home inspectors will evaluate the condition of the pipes, fixtures, and drainage systems to identify any defects or issues that require repairs. By identifying these issues early, homebuyers can make informed decisions and negotiate repairs with the seller before closing.

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