Hart offers Tacomans the following advice for checking the plumbing before closing the deal on a new house
Check for water leaks - According to the EPA, one drip per second can waste 3,000 gallons of water in a year, and unseen leaks can significantly increase monthly utility bills. To check toilets, place a few drops of food coloring in the back of each tank, wait about 30 minutes and then look in the bowls to see if any color is present. Watch for condensation inside kitchen and bathroom cabinets, near the faucets, and look for warped or discolored areas on your walls and ceilings. To check the entire home, make sure no water is being consumed and write down the meter reading. Wait ten minutes, then check again. If there's a change, there is a good chance a leak is present.
Inspect the gas lines - If your potential new house uses natural gas for any appliances, it's important that you check all of the lines for leaks. Gas leaks are always dangerous, and can sometimes be deadly. Signs of gas leaks include a sulfur-like smell, slight hissing sounds around lines and/or wet, bubbling areas near exterior lines. Never attempt a do-it-yourself gas repair or move a gas appliance on your own. Instead, always contact a professional and verify their license before allowing them to perform gas work in your home.
Check to see if the house comes with a sump pump - Due to the wet and soggy nature of the Tacoma area, sump pumps are commonly implemented into basements. A sump pump is a mechanism used to remove water that has collected in a low-lying sump basin. By pumping the water out of the home, the devices help prevent basement flooding that can otherwise lead to tremendous costs, like repairing water damage, mold remediation treatments and replacing destroyed property.
Sometimes, homebuyers think of plumbing as one of those features that's safe to assume is working flawlessly, Hart said. Unfortunately, that's not always the case - and it's a good rule of thumb to check on these things before you move in and become responsible for fixing them.
Tacoma residents looking for more plumbing tips or information about Harts Services can call 1-253-345-7222 or visit www.hartsservices.com.