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You should have been there

1049 Views 2 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Speedball
Because this involves flooring, I'll post under flooring: I had a call today to look at a bathroom floor that was described as having a "soft spot". This is a small bath, a toilet and tub with approximately 18 sq. ft. of actual floor space. The soft spot was from the toilet to the farthest wall, from the tub to the opposite wall. Big soft spot. First thought is-toilet seal has been leaking for some time, gotten under the linoleum, and the subfloor is rotted. I ask the homeowner for permission to go under the house to look for any damage, and the extent, sure go ahead. The scuttle hole in the back of the house is typical, it had a six inch brick casement, a stretched metal screen, just remove the screen and instant access. When I got my head and shoulders in and took a good look I had to stop and regroup. The A/C main trunk line, which had to be 10" with insulation was lying on the ground the full length from the unit to the opposite end of the house. There may have been four inches of clearance between the top of the truck line and the bottom of the floor joist. Now I'm 5'-9" and 230# ( I know) and there's no way I can get through this to go where I want to. I go back out and tell the homeowner, he states "Well the bug man goes under there every year for inspection and he's your size or so". I ask if he's sure he does an inspection and he assures me the bug man stays under there for 30-45 minutes. I take my digital camera, take pics as close as I can get, and show him on my laptop. He's not happy now. He calls locally owned bug prevention company and want the "bug man" out there ASAP. Maybe fifteen minutes Mr. Bug Man arrives, he's my height but certainly not as round. We discuss what is going on and he says "You have to now how to get under Mr. Smith's (alias) house to do an inspection. Please--show me how you do this. He goes under the house with me right behind him, he gets to the main A/C trunk line, reaches to the left and removes some insulation, then some duct tape and voila-there's a ragged cut joint. He then moves to the right and does the same thing, another ragged cut joint. He physically removes about a four foot section of this trunk line and sets it out of the way so he can continue to crawl under the house. I stop him at this point and ask him how he knew this was there. "I cut this in her about five-six years ago so I could get under here." I take more pictures of this and excuse myself, asking him to put it back in place. He has to exit to get his duct tape. I show the homeowner and he blows his stack big time. He goes after the "Bug Man" like a wildcat. Now the homeowner is 76 years old and frail. I get involved and stop him as I know him and he would have made contact. He calls the bug company and demands the owner on the phone, of course they know each other, and gives him some new words for the day. The owner and another man come out and actually go under the house to look at this and are not happy with dopey, and they are all grumpy. The A/C trunk line will be fixed properly, the Bug Man will not inspect this house again, and there is still no way for me to view the bottom of the bath floor. I convince the homeowner I will work from the top as the floor is comprimised for sure. I leave there laughing my natural rear end off at this. I'll fix the floor next week. Thanks, David
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What an incredible find. At that age I too would have "gone after" the Bugman. Think of the money lost for heating/cooling bills over the years from his little duct removal trick.:eek:
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