If you’re a first-time home buyer, you’re probably excited, and you’re getting ready to close on the deal, and purchase your dream home. That’s great – but before you act too quickly, you need to make sure you truly inspect your home thoroughly.
Sure, you may have gotten a home inspection before you put in an offer on the property, but even a home inspection is not enough to catch every problem. To make sure that your property is free of any major issues, you also need a sewer scope inspection. If you don’t, you could miss a number of potential issues that could cost you a lot of money in the future.
What Is A Sewer Scope Inspection?
It’s exactly what it sounds like. A sewer scope inspection uses a special, flexible borescope camera, which is fed through the drainpipe of your home, and into the sewer lines. This allows the inspector to look for any potential problems with the sewer lines, such as clogs, cracks, broken pipes, and other such faults.
Getting a sewer scope inspection is very easy. All you have to do is find an inspection company in your area, and hire a professional to come take a look. The process usually takes less than an hour, and it’s usually very affordable.
Once the inspection is finished, your inspector will provide you with a detailed report about their findings, and their opinion about the quality and condition of the sewer line.
What Are The Most Common Issues That Are Found By A Sewer Scope Inspection?
A sewer scope inspection can reveal a number of different problems with a home’s sewer line. Some of the most common issues are:
- Collapsed or failed lines – This is a big problem in homes that were built in the 1950s or earlier. Many of these homes used “Orangeburg Pipe”, a type of pipe that is made from layers of wood pulp and tar, pressed together tightly.Over time, these pipes disintegrate and collapse. If the sewer line is built out of Orangeburg pipe, it must be replaced. And the only way to know if this is the case is to check with a sewer scope.Orangeburg pipes aren’t the only concern, though. Even pipes made of PVC, metal, or other materials can fail, as the ground shifts and compresses the piping.
- Tree root invasion – Tree roots can compress and crack sewer lines as they grow, and even make their way into the line itself. Depending on the extent of damage, you may be able to replace a single section of the pipe, or you may be forced to replace the entire sewer line.
- Pipe corrosion or leakage – Older metal pipes made of steel or iron can corrode and break down over time. In addition, all types of pipe, including PVC and ABS plastic, can leak if a joint or another pipe fitting is knocked out of place or damaged.
These are the most common issues with sewer systems – but there are dozens of other problems like clogs, bellied pipes, and pipe misalignment that can be detected by a sewer scope inspection.
Do I Really Need To Inspect The Sewer System When Buying A Home?
Absolutely. You don’t want to find out that a sewer is faulty or needs to be replaced after you buy a home. If you fail to get a sewer inspection before you purchase a home, you’re solely responsible for all of the repair costs, which could cost you anywhere from $3,000-$6,000.
But if you inspect the sewer system before you buy a home, you will know for sure that it’s clean and in good condition. And if the sewer has issues, you may be able to walk away from the deal, or negotiate a better price. That’s a win-win.
Are Sewer Inspections Included With Home Inspections?
This depends on the home inspector you use. Some home inspectors will offer sewer inspections, while others may refer you to a third-party inspection company.
However, it’s important to note that even if your home inspector does offer a sewer line inspection service, this is not usually included in the price of a standard home inspection.
You will have to pay an extra fee, just like you would for a radon test, mold test, or a termite inspection. Expect to pay somewhere between $125-$300 for the inspection, depending on the size of the home, your geographic location, and a number of other factors.
The Benefits Of A Sewer Scope Inspection
Still not convinced that you should get a sewer scope inspection, in addition to a standard home inspection? Here are a few more benefits that might change your mind.
- Peace of mind – If the results of the inspection are good, you’ll know that your home’s sewer system is in great shape, and that you won’t have to worry about the unexpected cost of a repair.
- You can be proactive – If the scope inspection shows a small clog or another minor issue, you can simply fix the problem after you close on the house. However, if you don’t know about the problem, it could get worse over time – resulting in high repair costs later on.
- Avoid costly repairs – If the sewer line has major faults and must be replaced, inspecting it will allow you to avoid the cost of the repair.You may be able to use your inspection contingency to negotiate a lower price for the home, or to get the other party to fix the issue before you move in. If they don’t agree to do so, you can walk away from the deal. Either way, you avoid the expense of replacing the sewer line yourself.
Don’t Overlook The Sewer System – Schedule Your Appointment Today!
Don’t make the all-too-common mistake of failing to get a sewer scope inspection. You could end up paying thousands of dollars in repair costs, which will certainly put a dent in your home improvement budget.
Protect yourself, your family, and your property. Schedule a sewer scope inspection with Inside & Out Property Inspectors in Jacksonville or St. Augustine, and make sure that you’re protected from unexpected repair costs.