Then Wednesday my cousin - "A Better Handyman" came in to finish what the plumber seemed to have forgotten. The plumber said he would be in last Friday to install the sink and toilet. Friday comes and he doesn't show up. He doesn't answer my 5 phone calls on Friday or my phone call on Saturday. Either something has happened to him or he just doesn't want to talk to me anymore.
So...About 10AM my wife calls and says "There is water coming in the recessed lighting". My boss allowed me to go home and take care of the disaster.
First off...I am happy about 2 things:
- We took pictures of the rough plumbing
- We have flat ceilings
A picture taken after the water stopped "flowing". This isn't the "rainforest" option on the recessed lighting unfortunately. And these fixtures aren't rated for water :(
Me cutting the "access panel" where the tee joint was. I knew where the only place the leak could be was the tee joint where the cold water was split to go to the toilet and the sink.
Also, there is no way that I am pulling up the tile floor or the bamboo floor, so I am getting at this leak from the ceiling in the downstairs living room.
I looked at this picture and I can see that we are between the 2nd and 3rd stud for the sink drain. And the 2nd and 3rd joist for the Drain Wye. This is the same spot that the cold water is split off for the sink and toilet (unfortunately, we don't have a picture of that).
So...the joists and studs are 16" OC (On-Center), so we are between 16 and 32" from the LVL beam downstairs and the stair wall. I measure 24" in both directions and make a mark on my ceiling downstairs. I then mark 8" from that mark in both directions so I will have a 16" wide cut-out. Then I pull the recessed lighting can down that was leaking and find the closest furring strips (where the drywall attaches to). I mark a line between 2 furring strips. This gives me a 16" x 16" access panel.
I take my Dremel Multimax and make my cut. Pull the piece down and see the joint. It doesn't look wet, so I turn the water back on and immediately hear "It's leaking". So I guess we know that it leaks from there.
This is after I made my first disconnect. I pull the piece off and notice that it is a "Watts" Tee Joint that they sell at Lowe's. This is the same type of the one that I had a problem with when installing my outside spigot and had a leak problem. I curse the thing and the plumber for using it and head to Home Depot for the Shark Bite Tee Joint as I have never had a problem with those.
Of course my local Home Depot is out of Stock for the 1/2" x 1/2" x 1/2" Tee Joint. I have them check surrounding stores and find one that has it that is about 20 minutes away. Head there, pick it up, head home and have the piece installed in about 2 minutes. Turn the water back on and life is good.
Leave the plaster/drywall down for about 30 minutes to see if were getting any leaks (left the water at full pressure). None, so I reattach the plaster, tape the seams and put my first coat on.
Today I put my 2nd coat on at lunch and tonight I will do my 3rd and last coat. Then prime and paint tomorrow and it will be like we never had a leak...other than the $25 wasted in parts and $50 worth of time wasted by "A Better Handyman". Not to mention that I had to take an entire day off from work.
Overall, not a huge setback, but we have our first showing on Sunday, so we have some hustling this week (esp Saturday).
The mess. The insulation absorbed 80-90% of the water which kept the drywall from getting saturated.
The "Access Panel" and recessed lighting. I could have reused the recessed lighting fixture if I hadn't damaged the mounting clips while removing it. My walls are 1" veneer plaster and the fixtures are designed for 1/2" or 5/8" drywall, so they are a little precarious to get installed on a 1" thick surface.
I have left 3 messages with the plumber and called numerous more times than that. Looks like I may have to escalate this, but we will give him a week to get back to me.