If you’ve read our first post on how to avoid buying a home with plumbing problems, you’re in luck. This is our follow-up article on how to avoid plumbing problems after buying a house. As with anything, prevention and inspection are key to avoiding mishaps. Don’t get stuck in a home with expensive plumbing repairs—follow these tips first.
Plumbing Problems After Buying a House: 3 Tips
- Check the Water Meter to Find Leaks
If the home you wish to buy is equipped with a water meter, checking the reading is a good way to look for leaks. In Arizona, most homes have their water meter located outside. Your first step is to turn off all of the faucets in the home. At this point, your water meter should be still—this is an indication that no water is actively running inside of the home.
But if you notice that the water meter is still moving, that could be a sign of a leak. While you should get a plumbing inspection in any case, this is definitely a situation to call a plumber for leak detection. Be sure that the seller resolves any leaks before you settle into a new home.
- Check the Shut-off Valve
There’s no universal location for a home’s shut-off valve, but you might find it in a few different places. Does the house have a basement or underground space? Check these areas first.
Is the home built on a slab? Go ahead and inspect the garage or water heater area for signs of the valve.
If you’ve looked in every feasible location inside of your home but don’t find it, you will need to look outside. Check near any outside faucets. This is an especially common location for warm climates like those of Arizona since we don’t often have to worry about frozen pipes.
You might have a wheel valve that twists or you might have a valve with a handle. To shut wheel valves off, twist them clockwise until you can’t twist anymore. For valves with handles, lift the handle up one quarter of the way until it’s directly perpendicular to the pipe.
Once the shut-off valve is off, try to turn on any faucets in the home. No water should drip or gush out. In the case that it does, you’ll know that the shut-off valve needs repairs.
- Check Your Pipes
To avoid plumbing problems after buying a house, determine the age and material of the pipes within. If the pipes seem like they’re old and haven’t been replaced, you will probably want a plumber to take a closer look at them.
Copper or plastic pipes are usually an indication that the pipes have been replaced. Galvanized steel pipes tend to be fairly old since they were commonly used between the 1930s to 1980s. Since they degrade and rust easily, you will probably want to request a complete repiping of the home.
If the house has lead pipes, you will definitely need to replace them since they’re unsafe. Lead can cause significant health issues if it gets into your drinking water.
Trust Us to Catch Plumbing Issues Before You Buy
Need a plumber to come out to your dream home and perform a home inspection? Our plumbing professionals are happy to provide you with a free estimate. Call us at 602-883-2761.