Sewer and storm drain

Many older homes have by design the basement floor drain, foundation drain and sewer drain all tied in together and going out to the street. If the city has not separated the storm drain from the sewer drain there is a chance that it can all come backing up into your basement.  It was a common practice in the forties and fifties to route the storm run-off and sewers to the water treatment plant for treatment. Many communities have or are in the process of separating the storm water runoff from the sewer in a effort to safe on water treatment activities and costs. You can check with your local municipality to see if this is the case with your home.

Older homes that still have the original plumbing are prone to drain problems. Galvanized drain pipe in the home is prone to clogging, deterioration and leaking. The main seer drain that leads out to the street is often cast iron and the basement drains are made of clay tile segments. All of this material is prone to clogging and deterioration. Worse yet, if the home has vacant for any period of time and the plumbing not in use, sediment and plant growth can clog the main drain. During the home inspection we run a lot of water into the system to challenge the system to see if all of the plumbing is functioning properly. It is not uncommon for the new home owner to come in to the once vacant and after using the toilet and flushing solids and paper, clogging and drain problems occur. We always leave the client with a high index of suspicion and recommend frequent monitoring of the plumbing in a home with plumbing, especially one that has been vacant.

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