Plumbing is an important part of any house, and it’s important to inspect the plumbing in old houses. Here are 4 reasons why you should do so.
Old Houses Usually Have Old Plumbing
Plumbing is one of the most overlooked parts of home repair. A leaky pipe can lead to a flood, and an old mainline can be corroded by rust. It’s important to inspect plumbing in old houses because it often runs underneath walls that are not easily accessible; this means you have to dig up your backyard or tear down part of your house before you’ll find them!
Old homes are susceptible to a variety of concerns, including ungrounded outlets, outmoded cooling, and heating systems, and, perhaps most pervasively, plumbing problems.
Many plumbing issues in older homes go unnoticed. It’s possible that you won’t find concealed leaks until your water bill skyrockets or you notice property damage, such as obvious stains on walls or musty smells.
If you’re thinking about purchasing an older home or if your present home is showing its age, a plumbing check is a good idea.
4 Reasons To Inspect The Plumbing In An Old House
There are other reasons to get your old home plumbing evaluated, in addition to taking proactive efforts in avoiding the aforementioned typical issues.
1. You’re Thinking Of Buying An Old House
It’s difficult to resist the allure of an older house. However, before making one of your most significant investments, you should take the necessary precautions to avoid being trapped in a money hole.
This is not only a wise investment for you, but it may also be required by your home insurance. Insurers may request a comprehensive home inspection as part of the qualifying procedure for a basic policy if your home is over 25 years old and hasn’t been assessed lately.
In addition, the house appraisal is an important stage in the home purchasing process. A house evaluation is usually required before a mortgage lender would finance the loan.
The assessment procedure includes compiling a detailed report that details the home’s location, condition, and worth in comparison to others in the neighborhood. It’s a good idea to schedule your personal inspection while your lender arranges the assessment.
Simply said, a complete inspection provides you with peace of mind and confidence when acquiring an older home by allowing you to better understand the status of the ancient plumbing pipes and other systems.
2. You’re Experiencing Water Flow Restrictions
You may notice a drop in water pressure over time. Several reasons, including the accumulation of minerals and other deposits, might generate this.
In reality, the minerals and pipe materials may induce a chemical reaction that leads to the growth of germs, which can be harmful to tenants’ health.
Water flow constraints in ancient home plumbing systems may also be caused by:
- The pressure regulator isn’t working properly.
- The water meter valve isn’t all the way open.
- The main cutoff valve for the home is not completely opened.
- On the interior, the pipes are corroding.
Act quickly if you observe a reduction in water flow and seek plumbing inspections. Your property will be less damaged if you respond quickly.
3. It’s Possible That Toxic Materials Are Present In Your Plumbing
A sad reality about plumbing systems in homes constructed before the 1990s is that many of the materials used in the pipes are deemed hazardous to one’s health.
The following are three of the worst kinds of pipes you could find in your ancient house:
- Polybutylene – When disinfectants from public water treatment facilities mix with this substance, it becomes brittle and prone to leaking over time, causing serious water damage in homes.
- Galvanized steel — As the zinc coating on the piping erodes, the internal walls rust, corrode, and develop calcium deposits, causing a buildup that inhibits water flow and may ultimately lead to damaged or collapsed pipes.
- When swallowed, lead is a poisonous substance that may have negative impacts on a child’s health, including learning, development, hearing, and behavior issues.
4. Sewer Lines May Deteriorate Over Time
Sewer lines in older homes are prone to degradation, which may significantly reduce the pipe’s lifetime. The following are some of the most frequent sewage lines found in older homes:
Sewer Pipes In Transit
These pipes, which were mostly erected in the 1950s and 1970s, are prone to failures and leaks at the joints. These pipes have an average lifetime of roughly 70 years.
Sewer Pipes Made Of Clay
Clay pipes may be seen in homes constructed before the 1950s. These endure around 50 to 60 years on average. They are, however, quite rare.
Sewer Pipes Made Of Cast Iron
These were popular in residential areas during the 1950s and 1970s. Their life expectancy is between 70 and 100 years.
Sewer Pipes Made Of Orangeburg
Sewer Pipes in Orangeburg were used for a long period of time, from as early as 1860 to as late as 1972. Unfortunately, their lifespan is short; they start to deform after 30 years and likely fail by the 50-year mark.
Sewer Pipes Made Of Lead
As previously said, they are quite harmful. Homeowners with lead pipes are in greater danger of leaking lead into their water supply, despite its 100-year lifetime.
Sewer Pipes Made Of PVC
They’ve been around for a century and have been in use since the 1940s. Fortunately, if your home was built in the 1940s and has these in its system, you won’t have to worry about them failing completely until 2040. Inspections are, nevertheless, a smart idea to verify that your pipes are properly cared for.
If you live in an ancient home or are thinking about buying one, you should have it inspected regardless of your circumstances. Your examination will benefit you in more ways than one. It can protect you and your family from possible health concerns while also providing you with peace of mind in the comfort of your own home.
What To Expect During A Plumbing Inspection
Plumbing examinations by professionals cover all the basics. You can anticipate a full examination for older home plumbing concerns, including examining pipes beneath the house and water heater testing, as well as discovering leaks in hydrants.
Simply, a professional plumbing inspector will examine all areas of your home where water flows. The most essential thing to know about plumbing inspections is that they are supposed to prevent problems from occurring.
In older homes, water may inflict the greatest damage. Repairing and cleaning up water damage may cost anywhere from $1,144 to $4,693, with an average national cost of $2,881.
Plumbing checks are a great way to avoid significant, expensive problems that are frequent with older plumbing systems. The following are the most prevalent plumbing issues in older homes:
- Pipe belly formation – As homes settle, pipes may become bent and buckled, reducing the effectiveness of pipework used to transport water from the sewage line.
- Soap scum clogs the pipes. Sewage. Gunk. It may accumulate after many years of usage, causing drains to get clogged.
- Tree root incursion – Tree roots may ultimately break through sewer systems, producing sewage backups.
- Metal corrosion occurs when the protective zinc coating on pipes erodes, exposing the pipe’s iron, which then rusts. This renders the water unfit for human consumption.
- Bad repairs — Some DIY plumbing projects from years ago may not have been the greatest answer, and defective work done before might create major issues today.
Having the house examined is the greatest method to avoid older home plumbing issues.
If you are on vacation or working while staying in someone else’s home (or renting yours out), solving emergency plumbing issues may be required at some point. For more, read Tips For Avoiding Airbnb Plumbing Issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the common plumbing issues in homes?
A: The most common plumbing issues in homes are clogged drains, dripping faucets, and broken/broken or malfunctioning appliances. These can be remedied by using a plunger to clear the blockage from your sink drain, replacing parts that have been worn out due to excessive use, and washing dishes with hot soapy water instead of just filling them up with cold tap water.
What kind of plumbing do old houses have?
A: Some houses are actually designed with a primitive form of plumbing. Types of pipes used in old homes include copper, cast iron, and Orangeburg.
How do you run plumbing in an old house?
A: You may want to start by looking at your plumbing code and seeing what it requires of you in order to run pipes. If there is a sewer line, then you will need a permit from the city that governs how much pipe length can be used per property or if any permits are required for digging holes around service lines.
- plumbing pipes