Remodel Horror

I am sure there is a say from Murphy, but I can’t recall one that fits the situation. While installing the new bathtub today I ran into a few issues. I guess this is how things go when fixing up a “money pit.” Everything was going well, albeit a bit slow but I guess that’s how it must be if and when you do home projects. I am no contractor, never learned any of those trade skills, but as a homeowner you learn while doing.

After removing all the old plumbing and tub there was a good amount of water than spilled out onto the drywall beneath the plywood flooring (which would be the ceiling of the first floor). I was not really worried about it. I dried up much of the freestanding water and took a fan to dry it.

That got me thinking today when I finally put two and two together. The drywall that was wet just happened to be the unfinished ceiling in the pantry (closet) just off the kitchen. Out of curiosity, I went downstairs, opened the pantry and started feeling the ceiling. To my surprise it was soft and wet, not two words I want to use when describing drywall.

Upon futher inspection there was some standing water on the top shelf, so I pulled out all the food and shelves to take a closer look. I unscrewed the drywall that makes up the ceiling and removed the supports that held it up. What I found…not only one, but two cracked ABS (the black stuff) pipes.

The first crack had me worried, as it was on the joint where a 4″ piece of 1.5″ diameter ABS connects to a wye that branches off in two directions. Vertically it vented up through the roof and horizontally it carried the used water. There was all sorts of calcium around the crack, which leads me to believe it had been cracked for some time and was not new, which would account for the condition of the drywall ceiling. The crack in the vent did not have me worried as I could use silicon to fill in the crack.

This repair it beyond my skill level considering where it is. Thankfully it is fairly easy access to the pipes which make up the p-trap and drain for the tub. I have called a plumber and hopefully he can stop by in the next few days to help me repair these aging (20 years) pipes. This does have me worried as to the condition of other pipes in the walls of the house. I examined the master bathroom shower and there are no telltale signs of cracks.

Once these pipes are repaired I will be able to get the tub in place and continue with the remodel. So much for having things go as planned.