Homebuyer’s Checklist: How to Check a Home’s Plumbing Before Buying

Checking Plumbing Before Buying Home | Bonney Going on the hunt for your next dream home is an exciting process that signifies the next chapter in your life. Although you probably have an extensive list of aesthetic home features, don’t let yourself be so dazzled by the hardwood floors and stone countertops that you forget what’s important: function. As you’re touring potential homes, you’ll want to ensure the most vital and expensive to repair systems work correctly, especially the plumbing. Add these items to your house tour checklist to make sure the home you’re interested in won’t cost you thousands in plumbing repairs.

Test Everything

Many potential homebuyers become so engrossed in the appearance of a home’s bathrooms or kitchen that they fail to check if any of that upgraded hardware actually works. Homeowners should test every faucet, toilet and showerhead in the house to ensure there are no clogs, leaks or disconnected pipes in the home.

When flushing the toilets, time how long the system takes to refill the reservoir. Properly functioning toilets will refill within three minutes and remain filled until they are flushed again. If you notice the toilet refilling without being flushed, there may be a leak somewhere in the pipeline. Check the base of the toilet where it is adhered to the floor and the pipes connected to the wall behind the toilet for warping, discoloration or wetness. If everything seems fine but the toilet is still refilling by itself, there may be a more serious leak elsewhere in the house.

Everyone loves a high-pressure shower to work out those aches and pains, so it’s quite disappointing when you’ve committed to a home only to find the showers have mediocre pressure. Test the showers for your desired pressure. Low water pressure could be an indicator of a leak somewhere in the house or small pipes.

Run the faucets throughout the home and check beneath the sink to ensure there are no leaks. If you want to be even more thorough when checking for leaks, find the exterior city water meter and watch the numbers when the plumbing in the home is not in use. If the number increases, there may be a problem.

Check the Water Heater

A home’s water heater should offer all the hot water you need for those steamy showers or extra hot dishwasher cycles. It’s in your best interest to make sure it’s in good condition before you choose to make an offer on the home. After all, a water heater replacement could end up costing you thousands in the future.

The water heater should be a full-size tanked model that holds enough water to serve your needs or a tankless water heater capable of meeting your heat and volume demands. Examine the heater thoroughly for signs of rust, corrosion and damage. If it’s more than ten years old, you may want to consider the cost of replacement, as well. Ask the seller when it was last serviced, as this may also be indicative of its condition and functionality.

Examine the Crawl Space

Areas that are situated beneath the house itself are at the highest risk of flooding or leaking because water often remains inside the pipes nearer to the ground. If the home you’re touring has a basement or crawl space, it’s wise to check it for signs of water damage.

Any discoloration, warping or musty odors in the ceiling, floor or walls may point to a long-standing leak. Additionally, basements and crawl spaces could be the victims of shoddy plumbing repairs because they are used infrequently. If you’re unsure what an inadequate fix may look like, call a professional to examine the room themselves.

Call the Pros at Bonney Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning & Rooter Service

Plumbers are an excellent resource for homebuyers who want to ensure they’re making a wise investment. In addition to checking the home’s interior plumbing for functionality and longevity, plumbing professionals can also inspect the exterior sewer pipes for damage or clogs.

If you’re ready to take the next step toward owning a home in the Greater Sacramento area, Bonney Plumbing has you covered. Our highly-trained plumbers have been providing fast, friendly service to Sacramento residents since 1978. We’re proud to offer the area’s most reliable HVAC and plumbing services and have worked hard to earn our A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Schedule your appointment online or call 800-444-0551 today!