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Old 06-16-2011, 08:08 AM   #1
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


OK, another of my threads- I have an old cottage- 1920's, cast iron plumbing. First floor ceiling shows damp spot/water stain. So, I cut out with sheet rock saw a 2X2 square. It exposed the toilet drain- cast iron pipe. So, I figured, maybe theres a crack in the cast iron(?). I go upstairs, flush the toilet 2X, run downstairs (good excersise), and observe up in the area with flashlight, and I see NO leak. Dang...........

Any other way to test that toilet, people? I was hoping it was the wax ring, but wouldnt that also show a water leakage around the toilet fLOOR (on the second floor, not downstairs) . No leakage around toilet upstairs. Floor around toilet is dry. (Ther is also a tub, and sink a few feet away, of course, but leak is directly below toilet, so I assume it has to be the culprit, but maybe not?)

Thanks!

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Old 06-16-2011, 11:51 AM   #2
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


It could be coming from any of the fixtures. Most of the houses I work in are over 100 years old, and of course the old-timers didn't have the fancy hole saws (or building codes) etc that we have today. To get a pipe through a joist, they had to either drill a series of holes in a circle, then "connect the dots" with a keyhole saw, OR (usually) they simply notched out the entire joist - sometimes even removing sections of a joist. This would obviously weaken the floor framing, and since, the toilet requires the largest pipe (and holes/notches), the toilet area becomes the "low point" as the floor settles under the strain/load. So any leaks at any of the fixtures will eventually come to settle/puddle on top of the first floor ceiling beneath the toilet area.

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Old 06-16-2011, 03:13 PM   #3
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


I remember a tip (but never had a need to try it yet) regarding plumbing leaks. Tip was to wrap toilet paper around pipe to see if it was leaking. Maybe try it on every pipe in the vicinity?

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Old 06-16-2011, 03:44 PM   #4
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


from what you are saying Iam assuming that it is not a constant flow of water coming downstairs. so I would say there are 2 possible things 1) the shower someone has a bad habit of getting the floor wet and it accumulates in the area of the toilet. 2) there is possibly another fixture near the toilet. this is if you have determined that the water closet is not the culprit.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:46 PM   #5
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


By the way yes tp does help to point you in the rite direction.
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Old 06-16-2011, 04:39 PM   #6
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


Thanks,, people. OK- I will go back there to try to find the culprit. Will flush the smitherines of the toilet first, and wait for water to appear. If nothing, will try to immitate an overzealous vacationer taking a aggressive shower and see where water drains with gravity. Only other fixture is sink......quite away from area.

For the toilet papar idea, good one, but will do only if i have to tear up the ceiling again, if necessary.

Thanks!
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:49 PM   #7
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


Geez, people were in the upstairs a few days ago, and leakage noted. So, then, people left, and people came in downstairs and after they left, no leakage- old leak/water stain dried all up. So, I figured thats a smoking gun for usage of upstairs bathroom as when up stairs is vacant, all leaks stop.

Well, today first time in a while that no one is around, so I tackle the job- I tear up all my beautiful plaster job on the ceiling patch. I go upstairs and flush touilet 7 times , go down to inspect (tied touilet paper around pipe too) and bone dry. Then, I turn on shower for 5 mmin, then even sink and go down again, and look up into the floor between th e2 floors, and all bone dry.
Geeeeeeeeeeez!

What is it?? All I noticed were some rat poop- man, cant be rat pee causing that water stain, huh?? Doesnt stink so bad so as to be rat pee. Also, why would rats only peee when someone is upstairs???

Anyway, Ive had it. Set a trap to see- besides the point of whats causing the leak. Only thing left to do is not to plaster the ceiling "permanently- but to frame it in with trim, and put in a pop up false ceiling. No ugly deal.

I will let yous know what happens tomorrow- ifn I catch a rat that pees........
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Old 06-28-2011, 08:41 PM   #8
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


I got it! I got it! Figured out where the leaks coming from! Its from the top most part of the flange, looking from underneath.

Soooo, I went upstairs, yanked the toilet off, and discovered the wax ring which joins the black plastic "neck" was shattered! man, how do those things just shatter??

Anyway, I HOPE thats all it is. I installed a new one, and crossing my fingers no more leak downstairs. Oh, it is possible that the shattered plastic flange was not the culprit? I mean, isnt that a bad thing to have such a thing busted/shattered ? Opinions appreciated.
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Old 07-10-2011, 03:16 PM   #9
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Water dripping from second floor toilet area


I have a similar problem. Is your problem solved ?

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