i left something on the dangle here…
…as in what happened the rest of wednesday.
so, the plumber shows up, and i give him the ME approved version of what’s up…
(i.e. the short version)
thursday night had water leaking out, ran drano and all was well for a day or so, then it came back, so i did more drano and a drain snake, then all was well until last night, so i repeated and today (wednesday) came the great flood…
in a way i feel like having the plumber over was a waste of money. thinking he might need access to the back end of the shower fixtures, i realized that the wall right behind them was the closet in my “stacked with stuff” guest room. thirty minutes later i had the closet open and emptied, and discovered that the wall had already been cut open (i assume by other plumbers past) and then taped back in place with duct tape. i should have looked, but waited for pipe boy to arrive.
the first thing he asked was if we had access to the back end, and when i showed him, he had me pull off the tape and pull out the chunk of wall…and that’s where the source of that mornings tsunami became apparent – you saw the elbow joint of the tub drain, and the t coming out of the slab, and connecting them was four inches of DEAD FUCKING AIR and nothing more…but a four inch chunk of pipe lay off to the side.
“well, that’ll be simple”, i commented.
“not really, bro…this is an expensive job”, pipe boy replied, “like around six HUNDRED dollars or so…”
“SIX HUNDRED FUCKING DOLLARS?!?!?’, was my response, in a not so “indoor voice” – “for FOUR FUCKING INCHES?!?!? dude, this is plumbing, not penile enlargement surgery!!!”
(not that i need such a thing, i’d like to add)
“well, that MIGHT be the source of the leak…but it might be further down. what we have to do is chisel up your slab, and then crack this iron pipe off the main in the slab, which given the age of your house is probably lead…so that will take some doing. then we re-run the pipe from the main up, reset this t-joint, and re-connect to the tub there. that four inch chunk probably separated due to the house settling, but might not be the actual cause of your water leak…”, pipe boy rambled off.
“ya know, we’re not in vegas or anything…”, i quickly replied, “and while there is a chance that the source of the water i had to mop up this morning COULD be further down in the slab, or along the main, or an underground spring guarded by leprechauns, or whatever, i think the smart money is it came from the water’s inability to JUMP from the drain on the shower to the pipe from the slab…water doesn’t JUMP well unless there’s some pressure on it, which a drain wouldn’t have…so i think it’s safe to bet the farm on THIS being the source of the leak. i tell you what…how ’bout i pay you $100, you slap a pipe to connect those two, and if the leak persists i’ll call y’all back and we can explore the $600 option…deal?”
“no can do, dude”, he responded, “we’ve got to go the full way on this”.
“then you can go”, i said, and paid the $35.
and from there the day got longer than this entry…so i’ll finish this up tomorrow.
2020 UPDATE: since i have no idea if i have the wrap up, i connected the two myself, which couldn’t be done with straight pipe (not that even) or accordion pipe (not that varied) so i used car radiator hose (no bullshit) because it was flexible enough to do the job and i know damn well the shower never gets hotter than engine coolant. up to code? no. workable? yes. and the problem was solved…for twelve dollars. fourteen years later it’s still good, i might add. fuck that $600 bullshit.