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Old 08-14-2012, 09:16 PM   #1
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Water leak under linoleum?

Hi there plumbing pros - I posted this question on flooring as well, but I'm not sure where to go first - a flooring person or a plumber, so I'd really value your help!

Just outside the shower door in my upstairs bathroom, the white linoleum is showing a blob shaped yellowish discoloration, with a few small darker bluish spots throughout the blob. It is the approximate size of the floor mat we've had there, but with very irregular, blob-shaped borders. Because the mat is blue, I had always thought that the blue spots were from the dye from the floor mat bleeding onto the white linoleum. I have scrubbed the stains with everything under the sun to no avail. Upon further inspection, I now see that the stains could in fact be UNDER the linoleum, or in it, as it's almost like looking through foggy ice - the depth of the spots is further away than surface scratches etc.

There are NO other signs of water leak. The sheet rock just next to the shower is intact, as is the carpet just a foot over, there is no buckling or bubbling or raising of the linoleum, and the ceiling underneath appears normal.

We are hoping to put our house on the market soon and debating as to whether or not we should/could look under the linoleum with the fear of finding damage to the sub-flooring and discover a slow leak, which would not be covered by our insurance. Or option two, cover it all up with another layer of linoleum. This feels extremely unethical to me, but because we see no other signs of water leak (despite the YEARS of unchanging discoloration), I don't feel as if we're handing over an active problem to potential new owners. I'm also afraid that diagnosing the problem will get us into a ton of money to repair something that wasn't even broken, because we'll have to open up the floor to inspect the source of the water leak. Am I right?

I'm loosing sleep over this - is there anyone out there who can help me?



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Old 08-14-2012, 09:31 PM   #2
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Can you hold it closer to the screen so we can see what your seeing, or better yet post a picture.

Linolium can be stain from above or below the surface of something is left there long enough.
If it's a blue item laying there and the stain is blue, likly to just be a stain.
There's several linoliums that can be layed right over the old stuff if it's still in good shape, Just have to remove the vanity, toilet and any 1/4 round moulding, under cut the door casing so the material can slide under it.


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Old 08-14-2012, 09:58 PM   #3
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Thx Joecaption- using my iPod here & it's not letting me post a photo. Will get back with it. Many thx for your quick reply!
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:56 PM   #4
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Is this spot next to the shower threshold? Sounds like water stain from bad caulking. A picture would really help.
When posting in forums, letting us know your location will help others give better feedback/advice/solutions to your questions
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Old 08-15-2012, 07:02 AM   #5
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Here's a photo

Yes, it is indeed just outside the shower threshold. The caulking looks a bit old, but the seal is fairly intact. As I said, the ceiling from the first floor underneath this space looks fine. No stains or texture marks.
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