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Old 01-17-2009, 01:23 PM   #1
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Rotten toilet flange and sunken slab

I walked into a rental of mine for the first time in a year to discover all of the interior walls had dropped away from the ceiling by as much as a 1/2 inch. It seems this occurs most prevalently right in the center of the home where all the plumbing is and we can't determine the cause.

Thus far, we've had plumbers come out to examine the main drain line and only modest tree roots were found out about 8 feet towards the road. We were told this couldn't have been the problem as it didn't prevent any drainage...no where near a complete block. We had it snaked and all is clear now.

We couldn't get the plumber or any plumber thereafter to check the smaller drains despite being told by slab jacking companies and foundation repair companies that this absolutely had to be checked and was warned that plumbers would tell us that it couldn't be done and to bypass those plumbing companies. All the plumbing companies that we dealt with (about 4) said that it couldn't be done just as we were fore warned. We have finally been provided by one of the foundation repair companies the name of a plumber that does do it. We haven't as of yet had it done, but expect to have it done this week.

We've also discovered in removing one of the severely rocking toilets that 1/2 of the flange was rotted. Additionally, we found a washing machine that was leaking a small river from underneath it. How long were both of these things going on? God only knows as the tenants never informed us of either. Can't ask them as they disappeared into the night before our annual inspection. But I'll tell ya, from the looks of it, that rotten flange has been there for a while. At any rate, we were told by a leak locating company that the rotten flange rocking commode absolutely could have caused all of the problems. Still yet, when this information was ran past one of the four plumbers, he said absolutely not. It couldn't have leaked enough water to wash all of that dirt away from under the slab. First off, it has to get past all of the stone that is there. He keeps throwing a contractor's name at us that he just knows will fix all of our problems. After talking to the contractor, he keeps throwing that plumbers name at us for all the plumbing work even if the plumber himself can't do the work but then expects to subcontract some of it out. For instance, he doesn't own a camera (deduced after having talked to him specifically about that) and yet the contractor said that that plumber was our man for that job. I just feel like they are pimping each other. There's more to all of that, but for brevity's sake, I'll move on.

Additionally, we had the city out to remove the water meter cover to determine if there was a leak in one of the incoming lines. They came out, removed the cover, looked at the meter for about 5 seconds and then returned the cover. They informed us that there was no leak. In researching this information on the internet, we discovered that a 5-second look wouldn't cut it. Again, the leak locating company stated that that was not good enough. They said that what they do is take a picture of the meter denoting the time and then go back 24-hours later and do the same again. During this 24-hour period, the customer is to NOT use any water whatsoever. We've learned that a period of anywhere between 10 minutes and 24 hours is used as a waiting period and that 5 seconds was in no way shape or form good enough. So, I'm set to carry out just as soon as the toilet problem is fixed and the water to the toilet is turned back on as we were told that all cut-offs had to be in the on position.

One other thing, we've noticed that the hot water just doesn't stay hot for any period of time. When we go to take a shower, we have to increase the hot water constantly, like every couple of minutes. That is even if you are the first one to take a shower. We took a look at the heat setting on the hot water taken (about a 40 gal. tank) and it is set all the way to hot. Could this be a factor of some sort or just a tank that is going bad on us or needing drained?

So, I'm wondering what it is that we've been told is true and what is not. I don't know who to believe anymore. I don't know how to go about determining the cause of our problem or at least eliminating possible causes. It seems that for every person that we have come through that front door, we are just throwing more and more money away without any definitive answers. Please, we need answers and a course of action before there is no money left to fix the problem.

Oh, and before commenting on what lousy tenants we had...believe you me, we know and considering them to be our last tenants. Our lease clearly stated that we were to be immediately notified of any plumbing problems. You'd think they'd have done that if for no other reason than to avoid using a rocking toilet. I'd have to say, though, that the bigger motivator to me as a tenant would be to take myself out of the liability mix. But I suppose this is another topic for perhaps a legal forum.

I've included some pics of the rental:


Last edited by mcmarsha67; 01-17-2009 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 01-17-2009, 01:41 PM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2

Rotten toilet flange and sunken slab

I forgot that I wanted to share the movie that I took of the moving toilet. You can view it with the following link: http://video.google.com/videosearch?...Rotten+Flange#

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