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New Construction Plumbing - A Thud Inside The Wall, Then This!

This is a test.  This is only a test on New Construction plumbing - a thud inside the wall, then this!

It was the last of 6 bathrooms.  When the tub handle was turned on only a trickle of water came out.  Then the sink was turned on with a similar trickle.  Turning off the sink faucet first, then the tub handle second a loud thud was heard inside the wall.  The agent on the middle level heard the thud as well.

Then the scream, "Turn the water off, there's a leak!"

Well, the water was off.  But I heard spraying inside the wall.  Running to the basement I turned off the water main for the house.  By that time the water had been spraying inside the wall for 30 or 45 seconds.

Moments later this was the result in the main level hallway, immediately below that bathroom.  Dripping can be seen in the doorway.

Light fixtures in the ceiling of the bathroom and hallway in the basement below the photo above also started dripping, one conveniently into the bath tub, and the other onto the carpeting in the hall.  The buyers had not yet even come to the property.  This was a disaster in the making.

Waiting a while Mighty Mo got some images of the ceiling and walls.

And this shot from the other side of the hallway above.  Water everywhere.

We'll have to wait to see how this unfolds.  Obviously water got into the drywall in the ceilings and walls, into the framing, and the engineered hardwood flooring and OSB subfloor. 

Mopping things up as quickly as possible it is still unknown how much water was absorbed by the plys of the hardwood flooring.  If too much was, in time the flooring will swell, cup or warp.

Interestingly, the couple had debated on whether or not to have a home inspection.  The wife wanted it and won out in the end.  They were to close in two days.  Can you imagine moving into the house, using that bathroom for the first time, and having this happen?  Do you think anyone in the family (here in the United States only about a month) would know what to do and turn off the water main?  My turning that off so quickly saved hundreds of gallons of water from cascading through the house and doing severe damage, which is what would have happened had they moved in without this home inspection.

My recommendation:  this house had a few issues outside, but this was the main thing indoors.  And a big main thing it was!   In time this will be corrected and they can move on.  But it's a good thing they relented and decided to have the home inspection.

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 18 commentsJay Markanich • October 27 2016 03:11AM

Comments

Good morning Jay.  What a disaster, good to hear the wife won out and this was found before the closing.

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) almost 4 years ago

The disaster, and ill feelings, that would have happened had this not been found before moving in would have been huge, James.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

An inspection fee is a small price to pay for the potential disasters that can be avoided.  Your post is a perfect case in point Jay Markanich 

Posted by Lisa Von Domek, ....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless! (Lisa Von Domek Team) almost 4 years ago

Good morning, Jay Markanich well, some plumber screwed up and the plumbing inspector missed it!! or maybe didn't even look!!  but the builder will make out just fine and so will an insurance public adjuster..... they'll make a score.... the buyer should move on ...that won't be ready in 30 days and that's they typical extension here to make a home ready to occupy....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) almost 4 years ago

Indeed! A home inspection is a must for resale and new homes alike. Obviously, this was an expensive home with six bathrooms.... Good thing they hired you.

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty) almost 4 years ago

Lisa - that is true to the max.  I sometimes wonder if buyers appreciate the money spent and stress they are avoiding by doing a home inspection.

Don't know Barbara.  I assume all this was checked pre-drywall for pressure, but something happened in the meantime.  It was nothing I did wrong - all I did was turn on the faucets.  I suspect the shower/tub handle in the wall was not adjusted properly and kaboom, the pressure sent a pipe inside the wall cavity into something hard like a stud or drywall.

Kat - in that area there is no land to build on so builders/investors buy a small, older home (50 or 60 years), raze it and build a McMansion on the site.  This was some house!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Jay Markanich What a disaster. Wondering if this issue was due to excess pressure, and failure to use air hammers?

Posted by Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI, Presence, Persistence & Perseverance (HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc.) almost 4 years ago

The plumbing was CPVC, S&N, and I expect it was a connection issue which was forced apart by pressure.  But I don't know exactly.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Jay. A testimonial to the necessity of a home inspection with new construction! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) almost 4 years ago

Yet another example of why you get a Home Inspection on New Construction!!

But, "The Builder" said I didn't need to get one!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Jay. Good thing they had the inspection for sure. Great catch.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) almost 4 years ago

Yet again, the iron is hot, Wayne.

Fred - here the builder did say that!  And the husband bought it.  He'd have been in a small dog house had they moved in and this happened.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Sheila - yes, but it was hard to miss!  All I did was turn on the tub and sink faucets!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Sounds like someone didn't use enough pipe cement.  What is surprising is that it held for so long before letting go.

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) almost 4 years ago

There were lots of things that had not been tested in this house, Stephen, and the kitchen appliances that had not had the shipping materials removed.

My test might have been the first for this hardware.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Your story is a testament to why I whole heartedly believe in home inspections.  I'm reluctant to close a transaction without one!

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) almost 4 years ago

No one likes to encounter that type of mistake, but better it's found before the closing.

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) almost 4 years ago

Myrl - and yet I understand that only about 70% of transactions, in this area, get home inspections!

That would have been a huge disaster after settlement, Ed.  And the people would not have known what to do about it and the damage would have been very extensive.  I had the main turned off in less than 1 minute.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

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