Sewer Inspections: Protecting Home Buyers From Costly Repairs

Don't overlook sewer inspections during home buying. Identify potential issues and avoid unexpected expenses. Learn more in our latest article.


Amidst the excitement of finding the perfect home, it can be easy to overlook critical issues that may arise in the future.

One such issue is the condition of the underground sewer pipe. The financial implications of a defective sewer lateral can be significant. Therefore, it is crucial to include a sewer inspection as part of the home inspection process.

The Importance of a Sewer Inspection

Sewer systems are essential for the proper functioning of a home’s plumbing, and a malfunctioning sewer system can result in significant damage and repair costs. A sewer inspection can identify issues such as clogs, leaks, and other potential problems that may not be visible during a standard home inspection. An inspection can also provide information about the condition of the pipes, the type of material used, and the age of the system. All of this information can be crucial in determining the true value of the property.

The life expectancy of underground cast iron sewer pipes can vary depending on a variety of factors such as the quality of the pipe material, the soil conditions, and the level of maintenance and care. However, in general, cast iron sewer pipes are expected to have a lifespan of approximately 50 to 75 years.

Financial Implications of Sewer Issues

The cost of repairing or replacing a sewer system can be substantial, and it is not uncommon for homeowners to incur expenses in the tens of thousands of dollars. In some cases, an issue with the sewer system may require excavation, which can add significant costs to the repair. Additionally, issues with the sewer system can lead to damage to the foundation of the home or other parts of the property, which can result in even higher repair costs.

Waste Pipe Inspeciton
Master Inspector Tyler Gilger, ACI preparing to inspect the waste pipe.

Benefits of a Sewer Inspection

A sewer inspection can provide peace of mind for home buyers by identifying any potential issues before they become major problems. In some cases, a sewer inspection may even uncover issues that could be used as leverage during the negotiation process. A seller may be more willing to negotiate the purchase price if they are aware of significant issues with the sewer system.

In addition, if a home buyer chooses to forego a sewer inspection, they may be held responsible for any issues that arise after the purchase of the property. This can lead to substantial repair costs that were not anticipated or budgeted for. A sewer inspection can help ensure that the buyer is fully aware of any potential issues before making a significant financial investment in a property.

Talk About a S#*t Surprise

Don’t let sewer issues catch you by surprise – include a sewer inspection as part of your home inspection process to protect yourself from costly repairs in the future.

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