If you are purchasing a home with a well or septic tank, then you should consider getting a well or septic inspection.  These systems can be very expensive to repair or replace and you will want to know if there is an issue prior to closing on your new home.

Well Inspection

The majority of homes today have a municipal water source that is regulated by government and EPA health standards.  According to the EPA, about 15% of homes have water wells.  If you are purchasing a home with its own water source, you should have it inspected.

What is a well inspection and what do inspectors look for during well inspections?  

A well inspection is a process where an inspector evaluates the condition of the water well.  The inspector may collect water samples to test for things such as e-coli bacteria, arsenic and nitrates.  They will inspect the well’s pump to make sure that it is operating properly and they will evaluate the amount of water the well can produce.  Inspectors are looking for red flags or issues that can be seen in the house or through testing the water.  They look to see if the outside of the pressure tank is rusty and ensure that the water pressure is good and steady.  They listen for any strange noises or vibrations coming from the water pipes.  Additionally, they look to see if the water sample is clear or cloudy.

How much is a well inspection?

A well inspection can run anywhere from $45 to $150 per hour depending on where you live.  The average job takes from 1-3 hours.  Therefore, most of the inspection companies will charge $325-$600 to inspect a well.  This is a broad range, so you will want to get several estimates if you get a well inspection to find out what the going rate is in your area.

Septic Inspection

If you have a well, there is a good chance you also have a septic system and you should have it tested as well. If you have these tested at the same time, it is usually cheaper than having them tested separately.  We recommend that you get your water, well and septic at the same time if you are going to get the tests.

What exactly is a septic system? 

A system that uses a tank that is typically underground to collect sewage that is then allowed to decompose through bacterial activity before being drained.

What do inspectors look for during septic inspections?

Inspectors will inspect to see that the septic system is operating and that there is no evidence of leaking to the ground surface.