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Homebuyer's Plumbing Guide

March 7, 2017

 

Finding the perfect home for your family can be stressful and complicated.  You’ve considered the location, the number of rooms, the fixtures, and other aspects of potential homes.  Have you considered the efficiency of the plumbing setup in any of them?

 

Did You Know?

The average family of four uses 400 gallons of water every day.  If you are thinking that there is no way your family is actively using that much water, you would be right!  In fact, 14% of household water use comes from leaks.  If that is shocking to you, you would also be surprised to learn that over 25% of household water use can come from flushing the toilet.  That’s right, one quarter of your water supply is literally being flushed down the drain. 

Of course, every house was designed differently, and every house will have a different maintenance record.  That is why it is extremely important that you investigate a prospective house’s plumbing operations before you sign anything.  For a comprehensive list of suggestions, continue reading below.

 

Check for Clogging

Why it’s important: A toilet clog is generally an easy fix.  However, if any other plumbing fixtures in the house have also gone awry, then you could be dealing with a clog in the main sewer line.  A professional plumber is required to address any issues with a clogged sewer drain.

 

What you can do: You can check for clogs by flushing all toilets, running all sinks, running a washing machine or dishwasher, and paying attention to the effects of each of these tests.

 

Check Pipe Sizing

Why it’s important: The size, or diameter, of your pipes affect the quality and reliability of your water pressure.  Pipes that are improperly fitted will not produce sufficient water pressure.

 

What you can do: Verify that all pipes that run from the water source to your home are at least 3/4 inch pipes.  Additionally, verify that all pipes leading to faucets are at least 1/2 inch pipes.

 

Check Water Heater

Why it’s important: Rust and corrosion are the result of exposure to moisture over an extended period of time.  If either of these are present on or near the water heater, consult a professional before moving forward.

 

What you can do: Inspect the water heater and all pipes connected to it.  Ask when the water heater was last serviced.  If you suspect the water heater is too old, ask to have it replaced.

 

Avoid Lead Piping

Why it’s important: Lead is a highly poisonous and dangerously toxic chemical.  You can generally expect newer homes to be free of lead.  However, there is a risk of lead being present in older homes.  Increased exposure to lead results in damaging effects to the brain and body.

 

What you can do: There are some tests that you can conduct to determine if your water is being tainted by lead piping.  For your safety and peace of mind, consult a professional if you suspect or encounter any lead piping.

 

Check Garbage Disposal

Why it’s important: A garbage disposal that is not functioning properly can be a serious health and safety hazard.  Moreover, if you notice unpleasant smells coming from the drain, your garbage disposal might be releasing sewer gases due to a clog.  Not only are these smells repulsive, but also dangerous for your family’s health.

 

What you can do: Run the garbage disposal.  Carefully check the temperature of the garbage disposal unit under the sink to ensure that it is not overheating.  Investigate the source of any foreign smells after safely disconnecting the garbage disposal from its power source.  If you are unable to locate the source of an unpleasant smell, consult a professional plumber before moving forward in your home selection process.

 

Check Basement or Crawl Space

Why it’s important: The basement or crawl space in a house may be out of sight, but it should never be out of mind.  Over time, these spaces are exposed to temperature fluctuations and other factors that contribute to leaky pipes and water damage.

 

What you can do: If there is any evidence of water damage, or if you have reason to believe that any of these issues have occurred in the history of the home, verify that all repairs were executed properly.  Inspect all areas of the basement or crawl space for moisture and secure all pipe connections.

 

For guidance when dealing with any of the above issues, please call Jolly Plumbing at (719) 473-8545.  Jolly Plumbing has served the plumbing repair and construction needs of Colorado Springs since 1955.  Call now to have your plumbing issues addressed today.

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