Plumbing Inspection Checklist For First Time Homebuyers

Plumbing Inspection

Being a first-time homeowner, it’s natural to be skeptical about the fittings, furnishings, electrical, and plumbing systems in your property. Particularly, when it comes to plumbing, the checklist seems to be unnaturally long! 

Remember, the quality of plumbing in your home goes a long way in determining its value. Before you seal the deal, make sure to perform a thorough inspection to ditch financial pitfalls. 

In this regard, there are several aspects to check. Professionals like Clover Services have been assisting homeowners by thoroughly inspecting plumbing systems. Check here to consult a professional before going forward with your plumbing needs.

Things To Check Out During The Inspection

Keep an eye out for the following things when carrying out an inspection.

Water Heater

You cannot possibly overlook the functional value of your water heater. An average household needs significant amounts of hot water throughout the day. During the inspection, check out for possible leaks around the water tank. You might also come across stains, whining noises, and certain odors. 

The water capacity in the heater gets affected by these factors, along with deposits of minerals in the tank. Once you check these factors during the plumbing inspection and fix the issues, the system would get an extended lifeline. Professional inspectors also check the serial number and age of the tank.

Water Meter

Inspecting the water meter can help you keep track of your water usage, besides performing a leakage test. The valve in your water meter controls the water flow throughout the property. 

In case you find water pouring out of any shower or faucet even after shutting down this water meter, you need to repair the valve.

Toilet Test

This is a critical part of the inspection process, which would help you detect malfunctioning of the flushes. Here, you need to flush every toilet and keep your ears open to the trickling sound that follows. In case there’s a leak in the system, you can detect it by the trickling sound.

You might also insert a dye tablet or color additive into the tank, but do not flush the toilet. Check the color of the water after 15 minutes. In case the toilet is free from leaks, you would see the colored water intact in the tank. In case of leaks, you would notice colored water on the floor.

Water Stains

Look out for water stains in the property you are about to purchase. Detecting water stains often requires professional eyes. These stains reveal possible leaks in the roofs and pipes of the home. 

Apart from the walls adjacent to the washroom or other plumbing systems, check the ceilings and floors. You also need to inspect areas close to the insulator. Water stains can be anywhere in the home, depending on the intensity and radius of the leak.


The material and condition of your water and sewage pipes largely underline the health of the plumbing system. Make sure that the pipes come wrapped, which would prevent them from freezing during the colder months. 

Otherwise, you might experience pipe leakages during winter, as the frozen water might break or crack the pipes. In case the property has lead pipes, you may get them replaced, or avoid such homes altogether. 

The reason is that lead pipes pose health hazards, particularly in older properties. The human body is not meant for any level of lead intake. This results in serious damage to the bodily systems, particularly in children.

Sewage System

Inspecting the sewage system with professional assistance is imperative. It is the sewage system that transports the waste materials from your home to the municipal sewer or septic tank. 

In case you have a septic tank in your home, locate it and check its capacity. Also, take a note of the date when it was serviced. Check out the location of the drain field and inspect pools of water close by for unpleasant odors. For this, you would need the assistance of a professional plumber with a video camera.

Sump Pump

In case the property is located in an area susceptible to flooding or waterlogging during rains or storms, check out whether a sump pump is in place. In case the property already has one, inspect the system for loud noises. 

At times, these systems are worn out and need to be replaced. Also, note down the life expectancy of the pump–the older ones may take a toll on your energy bills.


Check whether the sink, bathtub, and toilet drains are working as they should be. Instances like slow drainage might indicate a developing clog. In some cases, you might find that the water level in the drain first rises and then gets emptied. 

Keep your ears open for gurgling noises. This might happen when the blockage in the system traps air and the water pushes it to get it dislodged.

Other Things You Need To Examine

  • Flush every toilet to examine whether they are in good health. In case any of these accessories are weak or are kept running for a long time, submit the issue to a professional plumbing company.
  • Check out the rain drains and downspouts of the property before making a purchase. Leaves and roof debris often lead to blockages in the system. Ground settling, root intrusion, and poor quality of pipes may lead to blockages. Failure of the drain system may block the discharge line originating from the property, ultimately leading to basement flooding.
  • Inspect the property for hose bib leaks. In case you fail to detect these leaks, they might lead to property damage.
  • Property owners often tend to overlook crawl spaces and basements during the inspection process. Look out for possible water intrusion or damage and leaking pipes. Your plumber would repair the pipes that are presently in a bad shape.


A competent team of plumbers can carry out the inspection process meticulously. After all, plumbing systems happen to be one of the most crucial installations in any property. 

Malfunctioning parts or concealed leakages can lead to long-term water damage to the property. This justifies why first-time homeowners hire established companies to inspect the plumbing systems before making their call.

Read Also: Things Everyone Should Know About Replacing Home Appliances

Plumbing Inspection Checklist For First Time Homebuyers

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