BUILDING INSPECTIONS

FORENSIC ENGINEERING

(561)-37-BUILD (561)-372-8453

Plumbing Supply Inspections

Drinking water is distributed to buildings through a system of pipes which lead from city and county plants to homeowners and commercial buildings. Elevated pressure drives distribution from treatment plant to your faucet. Municipal water pressure in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach Florida Counties are about 50 to 60 pounds per square inch (psi) for homes but higher pressures may be found in taller buildings. The need for upward distribution in office buildings or condominiums may require pump stations periodically located a few stories apart. 561 BUILD's Forensic Engineering inspection services can help you determine what precise plumbing system your home has and identify any present or future concerns.

Galvanized plumbing pipe leak at connection

CPVC plumbing pipe connection drip within wall

Plumbing supply pipes are usually made of elemantal Copper tubes soldered together at joints and fittings. Copper pipes themselves or connections rarely fail if soldered properly. Common failures from plumbing supply systems generally stem from peripheral items such as shut-off valves, flexible sink hoses, or their connections to the copper pipes. Due to historic upswings in the price of copper, certain older era homes may have galvanized steel pipes. Many times, within the same home, larger main pipes were galvanized while the smaller distribution pipes within the home were copper. As steel rusts over time, galvanized pipes present age-related problems at a certain point.

Some modern shifts in building materials raise causes for concern. CPVC pipes have been widely used in newer home due to their economical price and installation techniques. CPVC is similar to common PVC but rated for hot water use. More recently, flexible PEX pipes were installed in many modern homes. Initially, PEX pipes were known for connection failures and their use was briefly stopped. The connection problems were addressed and PEX is currently being installed in new homes and renovations.

Plumbing Drain Inspections

Drainage which carries waste from buildings is provided by way of precisely sloped pipes which direct waste water away from structures toward treatment plants. Drainage pipes in buildings connect to vertical risers which inlet air required for proper flow. P-traps (named for their curved shape) are an integral part of any drain system as a small amount of water is retained which blocks gasses from backing up into buildings. Drain pipe leaks usually originate from connections, and are periodic in nature due to intermittent fixture usage.

Kitchen sink p-trap

Cast iron drain pipe crack

Historic South Florida homes from the 1940's to the 1970's generally have cast iron drain pipes. As an iron based material frequently exposed to water, pipes may rust, which can lead to a variety of problems. As technology evolved, PVC became much more common in the 1970's until today. PVC is still commonly used and accepted as the industry preferred material for drain pipes. PVC pipe failures generally stem from usage issues like blockages, improper installation or alterations, rather than issues with the material itself.

Plumbing Drain Camera Inspections

561 BUILD drain camera video inspections precisely record and locate conditions hidden within plumbing drain systems and allow us to diagnose difficult plumbing issues. We also offer electronic leak detection and evaluation of all plumbing related issues.

This video depicts water retained within sections of the cast iron drain pipe, which indicated the presence of a drain pipe depression, or belly, that resulted from long-term soil settlement. Accumulated mulch was found settled in the belly, which entered the drainage system through a washing machine located on the exterior of the home. In this case, we recommended rerouting the plumbing drain pipe around the exterior of the home, which avoided the expense and disruption to the homeowner of removing the interior floor slab to access the pipe.

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2787 East Oakland Park Blvd. Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33306

Serving All of South Florida Broward Miami-Dade Palm Beach County