Thursday, March 18, 2010

Worst date night ever

Home ownership is wonderful!  Except when it's not.

Last spring, a few months after the hubby and I bought our house, we were sleeping in the basement while we did some work on the bedrooms upstairs.  One morning, I got out of bed and put my feet on the floor to SQUOOSH - two inches of cold water!

We figured out that the problem was a big crack in our foundation wall situated right behind the 3 inch copper pipe that comes down out of our bathroom.  Likely, the differential in temperature from the hot water in that pipe and the cold cement wall developed the crack over time.  Now, the ground water from all of the spring rain and melting snow was pouring through the crack.

In any case, we got some expert advice and solidly repaired the crack from the outside of the house.  It was a messy task of digging out clay soil and applying tar and plastic, but we haven't had a drop leak through that crack in a year.

Last night, I went downstairs and noticed that the carpet around that same area of the basement was wet.  I thought, "Oh no!  Is the crack leaking again?!"  Unfortunately...the water was coming from a much worse place.  The 3 inch copper bathroom pipe.

And not just any bathroom pipe but the branch coming from the toilet.  Right in the ceiling of the basement.

At one point, the hubby broke through the drywall box that the previous owners had built around this piping in the ceiling.  Toilet water just came pouring out everywhere.

So for some time now, toilet water has been collecting in the ceiling, running down the walls and soaking into all the drywall, wood and carpet in that area of the basement.  And the icing on the cake is that some interesting molds and mildew were growing everywhere.  Gross.

Last night was supposed to be date night.  Instead it was tear-our-basement-apart-and-clean-up-our-own-poo-water night.  Awesome.

This used to have a built-in bookshelf, TV stand and carpet.  All nice and finished.  Now, not so nice.

We've got most of the damaged material torn out now and we've cleaned everything with mold/milder killer and bleach.

Today, I get to call some plumbers and find out how much it will cost to repair or replace the copper pipe with the hole in it.  If its a lot, the hubby and I may attempt to repair it ourselves.  More adventures in home ownership!


  1. Ugh, ugh, ugh. I am soooo sorry. All the best as you get estimates and fix up the mess.

  2. Depending on your deductable I would call your insurance company. Our basement flooded last summer and by the time everything was said and done we were looking at 12,000 worth of damage. They won't pay to fix the pipe but they will everything else.

  3. Yikes. I wish you luck dealing with all of that.

  4. Yee haw, I feel your pain. Been there, done that, disposed of the nasty old t-shirt.