One thing you might want to do before you buy an older house is have the sewer line inspected. If there are trees in the backyard with roots that might be near the sewer line, the roots could give you problems in the months or years to come. An old home means old pipes if they've never been replaced. Old pipes crack, corrode, and crumble, and you want to know the condition they're in so you can anticipate costly repairs. Here's how a plumber can perform a sewer inspection and what the inspection might reveal.
A Sewer Inspection Provides A Visual Record
A sewer inspection is done with a camera that's capable of transmitting video back to the surface. The video, as well as still images, can be saved to show the seller of the house. If damage is found, you may be able to negotiate a price reduction or request that repairs be made before you buy the house.
The camera used for the inspection is rugged and waterproof so that it can withstand traveling through a sewer line. It's mounted on a flexible rod that the plumber advances through the pipe. The entire time the camera is moving, it records video that the plumber can watch on a monitor. This allows the plumber to position the camera just right to obtain the best views of the sides of the pipe or the seams.
The Inspection Shows Obstructions And Damage
The camera has a light on it so that the inside of the pipe is easy to see. The plumber can tell if the pipe is corroded, coated with grime and grease, cracked, collapsed, or damaged in any way. Clogs can also be seen if they're present. Clogs could be from tree roots or buildup.
If the house owner has had problems with clogs and had the drain snaked, it's possible the snake only punched a hole through the clog and left part of the clog clinging to the sides. This is important information to have if the clog is from tree roots because the roots keep growing and will fill the pipe again eventually.
The Sewer Camera Locates Problem Areas
Another bit of beneficial information provided by the camera inspection is the location of problem areas that may need to be fixed at some point. This is done by using a signal detector on the surface that picks up the location of the camera underground. This lets the plumber know where a crack is located and how deep the pipe is without having to dig it up first.
Knowing a damaged area is located under a shed, or concrete slab is important information since digging up a pipe in such a location would be more difficult and costlier than if the pipe was in an open area underneath only soil.
Sewer repairs can be expensive, so you want to know if any problems exist before you buy an older home. A bad sewer line may not be enough to keep you from buying the home, but you can use the information to calculate the cost of future repairs into the deal to negotiate a better buying price.
For more information, contact a company like Equisure Inspectors.