Sewer Pipe Inspections: Is Your Association Prepared to Deal with a Plumbing Emergency?
Sewer line back-ups, overflowing toilets, flooded bathrooms, leaking water heaters or condensate lines? There are a variety of pipes within association buildings that have the potential to fail over time. These emergency situations can often leave property managers and board of directors reeling from the repair costs. Once the water is turned off and damage is assessed, you can be left saying, “how are we going to pay for this?”
Most associations have an emergency maintenance budget to cover any unexpected repairs. It’s important that reserve funds for plumbing repairs are built into that budget especially if your building is over 25 years old, because the likelihood of failing pipes increases with age. While setting aside reserve funds for plumbing repairs is wise, avoiding plumbing problems entirely is even smarter.
Plumbing systems run 24⁄7 and, like most operating systems, require maintenance to keep the system running smoothly. To lessen the chances of being blindsided by a plumbing failure, have your pipes inspected to identify any potential problem areas. The only way to really know what’s going on inside your pipes is to have them inspected with a drain line inspection camera. A closed-circuit television camera is fed through your buildings’ plumbing, to determine the condition of your pipes, look for corrosion, build-up, leaks, or cracks, and even determine the age of your pipes. Knowing the condition of your plumbing system will help your association plan for future repairs, while addressing any immediate problems that could lead to emergency plumbing situations.
Be Prepared: Include Video Camera Line Inspections in Reserve Studies to Avoid the Unexpected
Sewer pipes are often overlooked assets in your building, however, including a sewer condition assessment in your reserve study can be extremely beneficial. Video camera line inspections help assess pipes that are hidden behind walls and under the ground to help uncover hidden problems that may exist. The value of having a video camera line inspection during a reserve study can be the difference between avoiding a disastrous plumbing emergency costing hundreds of thousands of dollars and a simple repair. With a better understanding of your sewer pipe conditions, your HOA will be able to budget accordingly for maintenance and repairs down the line. Don’t wait!