Why 535 Plumbing Recommends Plumbing Inspections for New Construction

When you’re building your dream home from the ground up or, more specifically, a General Contractor is building your dream home for you. It might seem counter-intuitive to think a plumbing inspection for new construction would be necessary when everything is new. Our years of experience, however, provide ample evidence that having an independent plumbing inspection for new construction is a wise decision. 

In fact, a consultation with a plumber that is fully abreast of current plumbing materials and technologies and highly experienced in both new construction and service is an invaluable asset to any architect, builder or their clients. Their experience and industry awareness will bring the very best balance of quality, performance and price that will far exceed the minimal investment for their time. 

Builders should welcome the opportunity to have their homes inspected by private home inspectors as a chance to show off their product with pride and as a time to put a second set of eyes on the lookout for any potential construction errors to be discovered and addressed before they become major problems when they are under slab or behind wallboard. 

It doesn’t matter how thorough the municipal inspector is; problems are still often missed. This is not meant as a knock against builders, municipal inspectors, or any tradespeople. This is simply meant to let new homebuyers know that “new” does not necessarily mean “perfect”.

Here are some key inspection issues in your plumbing and water management systems that we’ve seen repeatedly over the years:

Shower Inspections

Even new stuff can leak. When tiled showers leak, it’s a big deal. 

Every tile shower floor should receive a flood test by flooding to the shower dam. 

At 535 Plumbing, in conjunction with flood testing we also use infrared cameras to check ceilings below showers for leaks, and we can usually detect leaks before any water is ever visible. 

Once while scanning the ceiling for a shower leak with an IR camera a leaking shutoff valve for the bathroom sink was discovered. This was a very slow leak, but the builder was very thankful that it was found before major damage to the client’s new home was found. This would have been a huge hassle if the ceiling had to be repaired — for the builder and the homeowner.

Plumbing Vents

When the drain, waste, and vent pipes are installed in a new home, everything requires a pressure test. To do this the plumbing vents get capped off. After the pressure testing is complete, the caps need to be removed, but it often goes forgotten. We make sure everything is good to go.

Plumbing vents and drains need to be pitched so water drains out.  535 Plumbing makes sure they are pitched properly to avoid long term water damage to your new home.

Dishwasher And Bathtub Drains Drains

Dishwasher drains are supposed to be looped to the underside of the countertop. This is done wrong on a lot of new homes causing backwash of grey water into the dishwasher.

Sometimes access panels for bathtub drains give access to a solid wall or to an access hole that’s woefully undersized. 535 Plumbing will ensure that the access to your bathtub drains is adequate for any future service or drain cleaning.

Water Heaters

Each gas appliance, including your new water heater, requires a union or some method of disconnecting the gas piping after the shutoff valve. We’ll make sure it has been done right.

Here’s a partial checklist of items we’ll inspect in your new home:

  • Check water filtration systems
  • Examine fixtures, supply lines, drains
  • In-depth investigation of all above-ground, exposed plumbing, including shut-off valves and traps under kitchen, bathroom, and laundry room sinks;
  • Inspect sinks, showers/bath, toilets
  • Inspection of bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room draining and venting systems
  • Inspection of the storage tank water heater or tankless water heater
  • Plumbing video camera inspection of underground sanitary drains and sewer pipes, where we look for cracks and misalignments that can lead to future drain blockage or collapse.
  • Shut-off valve inspection
  • Sump pump and discharge inspection

Ensuring that your plumbing system is in good working order before finalizing the purchase of your newly constructed home will not only give you peace of mind and minimize the chance of significant water damage to your home later, it’s just good old-fashioned common sense. 

Call us today to schedule an appointment or ask any questions.

535 Plumbing is here to make your life easier — especially when you’re about to make your biggest lifetime investment.