Thursday, January 15, 2015

Fix One Thing...

...find ten more.  With an older house, that's how it feels.  Particularly with an older house with crummy construction.

When we were in escrow and the pre-purchase inspection was done, mold was discovered growing in the linen closet that sits on the other side of the wall from the master bath shower.  Plumbers ripped out the dry wall at the back of the linen closet and checked the pipes.  No leaks were found so we believed the leak to be ancient history.  The mold was treated/eliminated and the hole sealed up.

We moved in and all was well.  One night Brett was upstairs taking a shower while I made dinner.  Water began seeping, then plopping, and soon a rapid splat splat drip was coming out of the ceiling and landing on my counter.  I ran to the base of the stairs and shouted up to Brett.  He couldn't hear me, of course, but finished his shower and turned off the water.  The dripping immediately stopped.  For a week, it didn't happen again.  Then it began to be an intermittent problem and I kept a big metal mixing bowl sitting on a towel spread on my counter top.  Another plumber came out but he and Brett could not get the shower to leak.  They filled the pan with water.  Brett put on his swim suit and sloshed around.  Nothing.  So, we stopped using the shower and waited to gather enough money to replace the shower.  Thanks to a generous gift from my dad at Christmas, we are able to not only replace the shower but remodel the entire bathroom.

It isn't a large bathroom and while we didn't like the flooring or countertop much, it was bearable.

Brett couldn't turn bend over to wash his toes without hitting his head on the side of the shower, so we are expanding it from it's matchbox size to something more reasonable.

Today demolition began.  The bathroom looked like this when I got home tonight.

They were taking out the sink while Brett ate his breakfast.  He noticed a puddle of water on the floor next to the kitchen table.  They don't think that there was another leak there -- just a plugged up pipe that broke loose when they knocked it out.  They also noticed daylight in the hole they cut where the sink pipes go into the wall..  The siding is gaping, leaving a nice hole for water and critters.  Brett looked around outside and is convinced there are more holes.

They also found a 3x5 glamour shot of a blond woman, smiling coyly, in the wall.  Brett took the picture over to Marv's house and he identified her as one of the previous owners -- the one who built the barn.  He said she didn't look glamorous while she lived here -- she was running a horse breeding ranch.

And, they think they found the source of the shower leak.  It wasn't in the shower pan as suspected, nor was it in the drain pipe.  There was a crimp in the pipe waaaaay up at the top of the shower.  Water must have been seeping out there, running down the pipe onto the subfloor, and then spilling out into the kitchen.

So, once the bathroom is done, we can add siding to the list of things that need to be replaced.


  1. I remember when your parents wanted to help you renovate a bathroom years ago, but then helped you buy a horse instead. Now you've got both!

  2. We made the mistake of starting a few things around here too. Your words of warning are true. One thing then another and on and on. It is going to be great when you are done. Hug B

  3. wow. quite the undertaking, even if it is a small space! we have one of those matchbox showers, here. teeny tiny but at least it's available for guests, etc.

  4. Oh man, this sounds like our place! It's like the never-ending story. Oh well, I hope you end up with a new leak-free bathroom that you really love!


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