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What you should know about plumbing issues in older homes


Looking through magazines might convince you that purchasing a “fixer-upper” is the beginning of an amazing adventure. However, that doesn’t mean you should strap on your tool belt and dive in to your first project. Older homes often have secret charms and hidden problems. Sometimes you don’t know what you’re getting into until you’re in too far to stop. One of the major problems often involves plumbing issues in older homes.


Common Plumbing Issues in Older Homes


The plumbing issues in older homes tend to fall into two categories. The first is because today’s building codes are strict. This may mean that the material used when your dream home was built needs a substantial upgrade. The second factor can be found in decades of successive ownership, which likely led to many DIY fixes.


Galvanized Piping


Galvanized piping is common in homes built before the Kennedy Administration. Made from steel piping coated with layers of zinc, this was an improvement over the lead piping used during the 1930s and 1940s. Unfortunately, galvanized piping came with its own set of problems.


Corrosion is a concern with galvanized piping. It can impact your water pressure or negatively affect your water quality with discoloration from iron seeping into the water. Worse, old corroded galvanized pipes can allow traces of lead to leak through into your drinking water.


Polybutylene Piping


It’s hard to believe that the decade that brought shag carpet also brought something called polybutylene piping. Often used in homes built beginning in the mid-1970s, they remained popular throughout the 1990s due to the relatively low cost of the material.


Like most things in life, you get what you pay for. These new plumbing systems began to deteriorate due to the chemical pressure of how the piping reacts to oxidants that naturally exist in water molecules. The water damage caused by a failed plumbing system can lead to extensive damage to homes.


Former Owners


Plumbing doesn’t last forever. Over time, any type of pipe is subject to leaks or damage. During the lifetime of a home, there are probably times when former homeowners tried to get “creative” with failing plumbing systems to save a few bucks. Needless to say, a patchwork of repairs will only increase the plumbing issues in older homes. A thorough home inspection can help you understand the state of your plumbing system before you take the plunge and purchase your dream home.


Call the Experts at Forrest Anderson for Plumbing Help


When you need professional help dealing with plumbing issues in older homes in the Phoenix area, contact Forrest Anderson. We explain what you can expect from the plumbing in your home. We also offer annual plumbing maintenance service contracts to help spot things before they become bigger (and messier) problems.


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