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Buying a House? Here’s Your Complete Plumbing Checklist! - featured image
By Guest Expert

Buying a House? Here’s Your Complete Plumbing Checklist!

Excited about getting a new place?

We know the feeling!

It's a big step and a bigger investment.

But with a new pad comes new stuff to take care of.

Top on that list?

Your home's plumbing system.

Plumbing System

Hiding behind the walls are potential leaks.

Then, there's the chance of stumbling upon out-of-date stuff.

These plumbing problems can get pricey and pesky to fix.

As our friends at Plumber Near Me shared:

"A thorough plumbing inspection can reveal hidden problems like leaks, corroded pipes, or outdated plumbing systems that could lead to costly repairs in the future."

Don’t want your dream home turning into a plumbing nightmare?

Use a checklist for all about plumbing to guide you when you're house hunting!

Plumbing System 2

Plumbing Made Easy: A Quick Peek Inside

Plumbing is like your home's blood vessels.

Imagine trying to take a shower or cook dinner without it.

Impossible, right?

So, what's in a plumbing system?

Let's simplify it a bit.

Pipes and Fittings

Let's start with pipes, the backbone of any plumbing system.

They used to be copper, but now there is a shift to more durable and pocket-friendly plastic types.

Pipes come in different sizes for handling different water speeds.

Now, fittings are the puzzle pieces that connect these pipes, shaping the water path through your home.

Drains, Traps, and Vents

Think water just disappears down the drain?


Drains guide wastewater through a network of pipes out of your home.

That U-shaped pipe beneath your sink?

It's a P-trap and its job is to catch water and keep sewer gas out of your home.

Air is also important!

Vents allow air into pipes, so wastewater keeps moving smoothly toward the sewer line.

Valves and Control Devices

Valves are the traffic cops of your plumbing.

They control water flow inside the pipes.

Control devices like faucets and shower heads let you adjust the water flow and heat as you like.

The Water Meter and Main Shutoff Valve

Your water metre is what your utility bill is based on.

It counts how much water comes into your home.

Another biggie is the main shutoff valve.

It’s your life-saver in plumbing emergencies, allowing you to halt the water supply.


1. Check for Water Leaks

Water leaks can cause trouble, from mould to water damage.

So check out these spots:

  • Faucets: No drips allowed.
  • Toilets: Flush 'em good and watch for leaks.
  • Showerheads: Make sure the flow is steady with no leaks.
  • Water stains on walls or ceilings: It may hint at past leaks.

2. Inspect the Water Heater

No one likes a cold shower!


  • Age: Ideally, it should be less than 15 years old.
  • Size: It should be adequate for your needs.
  • Efficiency: ENERGY STAR®-labelled models are your friends.
  • Leakage: Avoid water puddles around the heater.

Pipe Checks

3. Examine the Piping System

Old or damaged pipes can cause extensive water damage and attract pests.

Check these points for signs of trouble:

  • Visible Pipes: Check for leaks, corrosion, and stains.
  • Sewer Line: For older homes, request a video inspection.
  • Pipe Material: Some materials (like lead, polybutylene, or galvanised pipes) are more prone to failure.

4. Assess the Sump Pump

Protect your home from flooding and water damage with a properly functioning sump pump can.

Examine the sump pump by:

  • Activating the Pump: Pour water into the sump pit to ensure the pump turns on and drains the water.
  • Checking the Float: The float ensures the pump is activated at the right water level. Look for issues like sticking or improper positioning.
  • Inspecting the Outlet: Make sure its outlet dispenses water away from your home.

5. Check the Water Pressure

You need just the right pressure:

  • Shower Test: Should be robust but not damaging.
  • Faucet Test: Kitchen and bathroom faucets should maintain equal pressure.

6. Test the Sewer and Drainage Lines

Maintain your health and avoid water damage by testing sewer lines and drains.

Sink, tub, shower, and toilet tests should show quick, clear draining.


7. Inspect the Septic System

For homes with a septic system, call for a professional inspection.

They'll check out the tank and drain field.

8. Examine Outdoor Plumbing

Don't forget the outside:

  • Hose Bibs: Look out for leaks.
  • Irrigation System: Test sprinklers for leaks and damage.
  • Gutters and Downspouts: They should direct water away from your foundation.

9. Consider Homeowner Modifications

If the previous owner was a DIYer, best to consult a professional to ensure all modifications are correctly done and up to code.

10. Consult a Professional Plumber

House plumbing inspections are crucial.

For extra peace of mind, consider hiring a plumbing expert alongside the general inspector.


Why Hire a Professional Plumber?

Hiring a professional plumber?

You bet it's a win-win decision!

Here's why:

Experience: Pro plumbers have seen and done it all.

They spot major plumbing system failures in a snap and give you top-notch advice about your plumbing system.

Detailed Check: Plumbers do a far more comprehensive inspection than you could.

This means they'll catch hidden stuff that could cost you later and do plumbing repairs as needed.

Specialised Tools: Pros have access to nifty equipment like video cameras and pressure gauges.

These tools give them an edge in accuracy and thoroughness when checking your drainage system.

Peace of Mind: With their seal of approval, you can kick back knowing that all are safe and up to scratch.

Expert Tips: After checking things out, they'll give you top tips on maintaining your system, potential upgrades, and sorting out any current issues.

That’s gold dust if you're a newbie homeowner.

Plumbing 3

Navigating Your New Home's Plumbing With Confidence

Alright, let's wrap this up.

By nailing this household plumbing inspection checklist, you'll have peace of mind when you buy that new home.

You'll be on top of the plumbing situation, steering clear of nasty, unexpected costs.

If you're ever in doubt or met with a problem, remember to give a shout to a professional plumber.

They're the superheroes of your home-buying journey.

About Guest Expert Apart from our regular team of experts, we frequently publish commentary from guest contributors who are authorities in their field.
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