Are you thinking about buying a new home? Do you think that you might have found the perfect house? If you're thinking about putting in an offer, you're probably already making plans to have a professional home inspector come out to take a look at the house. While this is certainly a good idea, you may want to consider having a local plumber perform an inspection as well. Here are some things that a general home inspector might miss, but that plumbers should be able to spot:
Water heater that needs to be replaced: Contrary to what you might think, a water heater may show no external signs of breaking down, yet still be wearing out. If you live in an area with hard water, there could be several inches of calcified debris lining the bottom of the water heater. If this debris is disturbed or removed, it could paradoxically cause your water heater's tank to start to leak. There is also a sacrificial part inside of every water heater called an anode rod. Its job is to corrode so that the water heater tank itself does not. If this rod is not replaced in a timely manner, the water heater could start to corrode and leak. A general home inspector may simply note that the water heater is currently in working condition and move on. Plumbers can pull out the rod to make sure that it is still in relatively good condition, as well as shine a light down inside the tank to check for signs of internal damage.
Collapsing sewer line: The line that runs from your house to either the city sewer or a septic tank may settle over time. If you have a very old line that was made out of iron or clay pipes, it may also be corroding or decaying underground. From above ground, there may be no obvious signs that anything is wrong. A general home inspector will note that the drains work and that will likely be the end of it. But modern plumbers can send a camera along the line to check for signs of damage or decay. While this type of inspection may not be cheap, it will allow you to decide whether to buy the house and spend a lot of money fixing the sewer line almost immediately or to keep looking for a house that doesn't have these potential issues.
Uninsulated pipes: No matter where in the country you live, it can be a good idea to have insulated pipes. In the winter, uninsulated pipes can obviously freeze and rupture, potentially costing you thousands of dollars in repairs. But you should also be concerned about cold water pipes collecting condensation year-round. This condensation can drip from the pipe, causing water damage over time. Insulated pipes may not be covered in a standard home inspection, but you can ask plumbers to check on whether or not the pipes are sufficiently insulated.
For more information, contact South West Plumbing or a similar company.