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Thread: Leaking bathtub

  1. #131
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Common sense is at the very very least what all home inspectors should have. If that is lacking then find a job where you do not need it.

    No, I am not coming back with documentation. Cases. Legal ethics. Moms permission. Cousin Vinni's blessing.

    Common sense.
    Common sense? It's common sense not to cause unwarranted water damage to a home. Do inspectors dump a 5 gallon bucket of water on the floor of a finished basement to make sure the floor is sloped to the floor drain? No, there are other ways to check it.

    Documentation? Everything a home inspector inspects for or the process they use to inspect needs to be backed by some sort of documented building requirement, manufacturer's specifications or any of several authoritative bodies. We can't just make up our own testing procedures, damage people's home and say, "Oh, that's the way it's done." Neither can we take a manufacturer's installation process out of order and claim it's an approved method.

    The banter between Jerry and myself really has nothing to do with whether or not to test or inspect shower pans. He claims flooding the shower pan during a home inspection is an approved method for testing. I claim there is no approval for flooding a shower pan after the shower is fully assembled. I asked him to show documentation for his "approved" method. He can't because it doesn't exist.

    Last edited by Ken Rowe; 02-03-2012 at 09:41 PM.
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  2. #132
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Ken, I agree.

    Ted /Jerry
    Where in the world do you get the notion that shower pans are meant or designed to HOLD water. They are specifically designed to DRAIN water. Being constructed and designed without any method whatsoever to prevent the free flow of water, they are nothing more than a large funnel, preferably impervious to water as it flows down the neck (drain hole). If holding water was important and an integral aspect of their function, why are they sloped to the unstoppered drain? A drain, incidentally, fully one third larger than a typical tub drain.

    Granted, some pans may be custom built with some kind of stopper mechanism but the vast majority are not. Those, if they exist, should 'hold' water because they are intended and designed to do so and tested acccordingly. Typical shower pans are not.

    By Ted's analysis, guttering should be installed level and not drain to a downspout. Do you test the guttering by plugging the downspout and flooding it to see if it 'holds' water? Probably not. Do you pull up the carpet to look for possibly cracks in the slab when no adverse indications exist? Do you jam a screwdiver blade into a receptacle to see what happens at the panel? And if not, why not... because you use experience, knowledge, common sense or other non-injurious methods, which should be consistent throughout an inspection, not picking and choosing what area you want to apply your interpretation of common sense to.

    There are several aspects of a home inspection that we 'disclaim' without harm or foul, not subjecting a pan or a tub to extremes (and rare in the real world), are just two of many.

    If the pan leaks, it leaks. If the leaking is visible (by whatever means) and that leaking is caused by normal (even abnormal but not absurdly excessive) application, report it. If you don't find anything, using whatever methods you chose in your normal sop, you report that to. All reports should say that items checked and examined were normal/satisfactory or abnormal/unsatisfactory - within useful expected life or whatever, however you chose to report it, at the time of the inspection. If you miss something - we all do - you hope the consequences are not great or too costly.

    Last edited by Ian Page; 02-05-2012 at 12:07 AM.

  3. #133
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Like I said earlier, I learn more from Mr. Peck than anywhere else. I don't make it a steady practice to ask the seller in advance. I will in the future.

    JLMathis


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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Page View Post
    Where in the world do you get the notion that shower pans are meant or designed to HOLD water.
    What is so hard to understand about "REPEAT UNTIL THE INSTALLATION IS LEAK FREE"?

    How does one know that it is "LEAK FREE" unless one tests it?

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  5. #135
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrey L. Mathis View Post
    I don't make it a steady practice to ask the seller in advance. I will in the future.
    Jeffery,

    I had a short one page 'Seller Questionnaire' of questions I would ask the seller or their agent, with the most important questions leading to them saying that it was okay for me to test everything because everything worked and nothing leaked.

    If it did not work or did leak ... any resulting damage was not of my concern - THEY gave me permission to test it. Worked for me and for many other other inspectors in South Florida.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  6. #136
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    All i will say is

    Robots following. Script.

    Funnel water huh? Well i guess in your not so logical common sense a faulty, poorly built pan would funnel some of the water to the drain and leak the rest into a home if someone, like many take a long shower and the wash cloth fell on the drain and a bit of water fills into the pan.

    Mopped in, metal pan, poly, plastic. Any and all were meant and are meant to hold water.

    Why the heck do you think they are there. Why do you think so much effort continuously goes into newer and better designs. Why do you think they are put there to hold water back from the structure.

    Oops. Hold water back from the structure.

    And you have rehabbed how many homes. Done how many pans over. Why did you repair/replace the pans. Oops. Water was leaking thru.

    Dont replace those pans/liners. Darn things are not meant to hold water. Just tile on the plywood or slab. When water gets behind that tile you will find out faster when water starts getting thru.

    This keeps going and going for the sake of no common building sense.

    Books, reports, documentation. Show me the money or i will keep diing it wrong forever.

    Ya know. I bet you dont need documentation or case study to know it hurts like hell to smash your thumb with a hammer

    No, absolutely not is the answer to what some believe what a home inspection is. Documentation to verify all your findings. Case studies for proof. If its wrong write it up. Damn it all to hell with case studies.

    I want to meet some of these folks that taught some of you how to be a home inspector.

    A mind of your own and not one that was implanted by someone else. A free thinking individual with common sense.

    Oh well. Back to work. See yea.

    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 02-04-2012 at 05:18 PM.

  7. #137
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    What is so hard to understand about "REPEAT UNTIL THE INSTALLATION IS LEAK FREE"?

    How does one know that it is "LEAK FREE" unless one tests it?

    What is so hard to understand "REPEAT UNTIL LEAK FREE" is stated in the middle of the installation instructions and before you finish the install it needs to be leak free. What is so hard to understand that this has nothing to do with testing after the installation is complete?

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  8. #138
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    All i will say is

    Documentation to verify all your findings. Case studies for proof. If its wrong write it up. Damn it all to hell with case studies.

    I want to meet some of these folks that taught some of you how to be a home inspector.

    A mind of your own and not one that was implanted by someone else. A free thinking individual with common sense.

    Oh well. Back to work. See yea.
    So besides flooding the shower pans, what other procedures do you do while performing a home inspection that you cannot show some sort of procedural documentation?

    What else do you write up without any documentation to support your findings?

    How would you know if it's "wrong" unless there was some sort of documentation?

    Just curious.

    Instead of going into a half page tirade, just answer the question.

    You know, this reminds me of a conversation I had with a couple of local code inspectors. We were discussing testing of GFCI outlets. Their claim is the only approved method for testing is with a three prong GFCI tester. My argument was the manufacturers don't recognize the handheld testers and neither does the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Even after showing them manufacturer's instructions and the documents from the CPSC they wouldn't believe it. Even after they could find nothing to document their case. Just because a product is available (water pan testing stoppers, GFCI testers, flexible waste pipes, air admittance valves) doesn't mean they are approved for use whenever and wherever you want.

    Last edited by Ken Rowe; 02-04-2012 at 10:38 PM.
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    So Ted, now we have gone from "...holding water." to, "...holding water back from the structure." Your description, not mine and there is a significant difference between the two. Shower walls, waterproofing membrane, tile, glass, fiberglass etc, do that. The shower pan should only accomplish the same. No-one, repeat, no-one, myself included, is saying that pans should not be leak free. Of course they should, no disagreement here.

    The only argument is what method(s) is acceptable and to what lengths should one go to to satisfy a leak-free determination. I, and others, are of the opinion that filling the pan to near capacity holds inherrent risk of avoidable damage. You, and others believe it's the only way to test it's integrity. Any resulting damage, though preventable, is both acceptable and collateral.

    I, and others, prefer to err on the side of caution absent any documentation supporting the need or requiremeent to semi-flood a finished pan, with consideration given to potential damage. You, and others, obviously do not. You seem to care not if damage, caused by your testing method, ensues because it is satisfactory proof of a leak. I wonder, do you return or call the homeowner, days later to seee if any water has seeped into the ceiling after the filled pan has been allowed to drain? I, and others, have attempted to provide rationale for our position. Your position is, it's the only way to perform a meaningful test. As I have said repeatedly...to each his own.

    Jerry, in your "Sellers Questionnaire" do/did you also specifically describe the manner by which you would test the integrity of the shower pan and further explain that damage could be caused by such a testing method, for which you would not be held accountable? Perhaps you could post a copy of your Questionnaire. Though I rarely see sellers, it may be useful to have something similar on hand.

    Last edited by Ian Page; 02-05-2012 at 12:04 AM.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Ian,

    Apparently some inspectors like to do things quick and easy and don't care if they cause avoidable damage. They enjoy finding this huge leak for their customers. It makes them feel important. Personally I like to find the small leaks before they turn into big leaks and avoid damaging property that doesn't belong to me.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Ken

    Amen to that...No ego-boosting here. Just honest, professional and considerate service to all parties involved in a real estate transaction.


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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Page View Post
    Jerry, in your "Sellers Questionnaire" do/did you also specifically describe the manner by which you would test ...
    No, I did not specifically state that I would insert my SureTest circuit tester into each receptacle outlet; nor did I specifically state that I would be switching all lighting fixtures on/off; nor did I specifically state that I would be inspecting the attic/crawlspace with a bright flashlight; nor did I specifically state that I would be operating the dishwasher through the longest cycle, or the clothes washer through the longest cycle, or the clothes dryer through the longest cycle; nor did I specifically state that I would be operating the microwave oven or the range/cooktop; nor did I specifically state that I would be testing all GFCI receptacles; nor did I specifically state that I would be filling the tub to the overflow level (which is the same as operating the appliances through their longest cycle); nor did I state that I would be filling the shower stalls up to just below the tile/marble/granite at the threshold/curb (which is the same as operating the appliances through their longest cycle); nor did I specifically state that I would be removing the covers to the electrical panel, the air handler, etc.; nor did I specifically state that I would be looking up into the fireplace and down the chimney; nor did I specifically state ad infinitum.

    Perhaps you could post a copy of your Questionnaire. Though I rarely see sellers, it may be useful to have something similar on hand.
    I have copied and pasted the information on the seller questionnaire below:
    - ON-SITE SELLER INTERVIEW INFORMATION

    - - CLIENT SHOULD ALWAYS ASK THE SELLER TO PROVIDE THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION:

    - - - ARE YOU THE CURRENT OWNER? -
    - - - OWNER IN SINCE / OR HOW LONG -
    - - - ARE THERE ANY APPLIANCES, EQUIPMENT, OR FIXTURES THAT WE SHOULD NOT OPERATE / INSPECT / TEST? -
    - - - - IF SO, WHY SHOULD WE NOT OPERATE / INSPECT / TEST THOSE ITEMS? -
    - - - ARE THERE ANY ROOMS OR AREAS WE SHOULD NOT ENTER? -

    - - - APPROXIMATE SQUARE FOOTAGE OF LIVING AREA (HEATED AND COOLED SPACE) - SF
    - - - APPROXIMATE SQUARE FOOTAGE OF TOTAL AREA (INCLUDING GARAGE/PORCHES) - SF

    - - - APPROXIMATE YEAR BUILT OR AGE OF BUILDING -
    - - - APPROXIMATE YEAR OF ADDITIONS (IF ANY) -
    - - - APPROXIMATE YEAR OF MAJOR REMODELING (IF ANY) -

    - - - APPROXIMATE YEAR FASCIA REPAINTED LAST? -
    - - - APPROXIMATE AGE OF ROOF OR YEAR REPLACED -
    - - - REPAIRS MADE HOW LONG AGO AT: -
    - - - CURRENT KNOWN ROOF LEAKS: -

    - - - TERMITES? -

    - - - PLEASE MARK ANY AND ALL THAT APPLY:
    - - - DRAINAGE OR FLOODING PROBLEMS, WHERE? -
    - - - STORM DAMAGE, WHAT AND WHERE? -
    - - - SMOKE, FIRE OR RELATED DAMAGE? -
    - - - KNOWN SETTLEMENT CONCERNS? -
    - - - KNOWN PAST OR PRESENT OTHER LEAKS OR WATER STAINING/DAMAGE? (SUCH AS AROUND WINDOWS, DOORS, THROUGH WALLS, ETC.) WHERE? -
    - - - KNOWN PAST OR PRESENT ELECTRICAL PROBLEMS? -
    - - - KNOWN PAST OR PRESENT PLUMBING PROBLEMS? -
    - - - KNOWN PAST OR PRESENT A/C PROBLEMS? -
    - - - ANY DO-IT-YOURSELF WIRING, PLUMBING, A/C OR STRUCTURAL WORK? -
    - - - ANY ADDITIONS, REMODELING, ALTERATIONS DONE WITHOUT THE PROPER PERMITS? -

    The questionnaire looks innocent enough - but I get the information I am looking for.

    Why questions like: APPROXIMATE YEAR FASCIA REPAINTED LAST? Because if the fascia has been repainted recently and I see water stains from leaks, then I know the roof *is still* leaking, that the damaged fascia was repaired to try to hide the damage, etc.

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  13. #143
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    No, I did not specifically state that I would insert my SureTest circuit tester into each receptacle outlet; nor did I specifically state that I would be switching all lighting fixtures on/off; nor did I specifically state that I would be inspecting the attic/crawlspace with a bright flashlight; nor did I specifically state that I would be operating the dishwasher through the longest cycle, or the clothes washer through the longest cycle, or the clothes dryer through the longest cycle; nor did I specifically state that I would be operating the microwave oven or the range/cooktop; nor did I specifically state that I would be testing all GFCI receptacles; nor did I specifically state that I would be filling the tub to the overflow level (which is the same as operating the appliances through their longest cycle); nor did I state that I would be filling the shower stalls up to just below the tile/marble/granite at the threshold/curb (which is the same as operating the appliances through their longest cycle); nor did I specifically state that I would be removing the covers to the electrical panel, the air handler, etc.; nor did I specifically state that I would be looking up into the fireplace and down the chimney; nor did I specifically state ad infinitum.


    .
    Of all the things listed above, the two I bolded are the only ones that have a higher than normal potential for creating stains or moisture damage where none previously existed.

    We are guests in the homes we inspect. Despite what some may think, we do not have free run to do whatever we please. Yes, we have a job to do and that is to inspect and find defects. But we should also leave the house as we found it. If a testing procedure used by the inspector is known by said inspector (based on their experience) to have a high probability of creating a leak and moisture damage/staining, then the inspector has an obligation to let the seller know beforehand that the test he will be performing has a high probability of creating leaks and staining their ceiling. From there, it is up to the seller to decide if they want to allow the inspector to perform that test.

    Walking a roof, taking the cover off a service panel, taking a hood cage cap off a flue, and operating a dishwasher do not have high probabilities of creating damage. Testing a shower pan in a manner designed to force water to leak through unseen gaps and voids does. The seller should be made aware of the planned testing procedure and given the choice to allow or refuse the test. I suspect we would all like to have the same courtesy extended to us in our homes.

    Last edited by Nick Ostrowski; 02-05-2012 at 11:50 AM.
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  14. #144
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Of all the things listed above, the two I bolded are the only ones that have a higher than normal potential for creating stains or moisture damage where none previously existed.
    Nope.

    That is why I would run the clothes washer and dishwasher on their longest cycle - that is typically *not* done, and just because it does not leak on the normal cycle does not mean it will not leak on the longest cycle.

    Which is no different than Ted explained about filling the tub to the overflow - many people will fill the tub so full that when they get in, the water displaced by their body rises above the overflow and runs out it - filling to the overflow simply tests for the worst case condition, and a condition that happens all too frequently.

    And which is really no different than filling the shower for a shower test to make sure the shower pan does not leak when the plumbing is stopped up, which is also a condition that happens all too frequently (once is all too frequently, and we hear about plumbing getting stopped up all the time - I for one did not want to receive a phone call stating that their plumbing stopped up, their shower filled up, and leaked through the walls, and that the plumber told them that their home inspector should have discovered the leaking shower during their home inspection last year).

    You guys can keep coming up with all your reasons as to why NOT to test the showers, no problems, I've said that several times in posts above.

    Just don't try to blame NOT testing showers on "insurance" - I've also said that above too.

    And don't try to blame NOT testing showers on your thinking that shower pans are not designed or intended to hold water and not leak - several of us have present documentation that shower pans are designed and intended TO NOT LEAK.

    Don't want to test showers? That is your call.

    Just don't try to blame 'your call to not test showers' on anything other than your own thinking ... there are no reasons 'not to test showers', there are plenty of reasons 'to test showers', just man-up to the fact that you decided on your own to 'not test showers'. No one is going to ridicule you for not testing showers; however, will some of us will try to give you the evidence and facts on why you should test showers, yeah, we will try to do that.

    But it is your call to make. Accept that it was your call to make and move on. Don't try to put the blame for that call on anyone or anything else.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  15. #145
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Jerry, thank you for posting your Questionnaire. However, I see nothing in it that warns/advises the homeowner that certain test procedures may result in damage. Is that intentional? Don't you think that such a warning might be advisable? I can't believe it is your intention to trick, trap or mislead the homeowner. However your, "... looks innocent enough..." statement, infers such. If a warning were included do you assert that homeowners would still permit testing of the tub/shower in the manner previously described?

    On another, but related note. There are many Inspectors reading these posts who rely on your expertise. On occasions I, and others have differing, yet just as valid opinions and share a responsibility to advise that Jerry's word is not gospel, that there are/maybe alternatives. I do generally appreciate your knowledge and insight, however. On this occasion, you and those that support your view for the flimsy reasoning attested, are IMO, just plain wrong. Man up and admit it...


  16. #146
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Jerry,

    I notice you didn't say that you created a partial blockage of the discharge tubes for the dishwasher or washing machine to see if they would leak. Why would you create a blockage in the shower?

    As I've previously stated, "Normal operating control". You set the washing machine to run at the longest setting. That's normal, there's a dial or knob for that. Creating a blockage in the shower drain is not normal operating controls.

    And yes, it was me who decided that I would not test showers by flooding the pan. The reasons for that decision are:
    • flooding the pan is not an approved testing method after the shower is completely built
    • my insurance will not cover non approved testing methods
    • there are other ways to find the leaks without risking water damage to the house
    See Jerry, I make decisions based on information available. There is typically a reason behind everything I do or don't do during an inspection. I just don't do or do something just for the heck of it.


    I don't jamb a rag down the furnace vent to see if it will back draft either.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Page View Post
    Jerry, thank you for posting your Questionnaire. However, I see nothing in it that warns/advises the homeowner that certain test procedures may result in damage.
    You mean like including something like: 'my circuit tester may find a loose electrical receptacle and cause that to move around when I plug the tester in, which in turn may cause the conductors to short or ground out, which in turn may cause a fire and burn the house down.'?

    Of course not, who do you think you are kidding? EVERYTHING the home inspector does/touches COULD CAUSE DAMAGE. Now you are just being childish like Ken in trying to defend your not testing showers and tubs.

    Like I said, if you decide not to test them, then just man-up and admit it, and don't bother trying to blame someone or something else for your choice not to test them.

    DO YOU ADVISE THE HOMEOWNERS THAT SOMETHING YOU DO OR TEST COULD CAUSE DAMAGE? Of course not. But something you do or test *could* cause damage.

    Do you probe wood to find out if the wood is damaged? Do you tell the owner that you may be damaging their wood when you probe?

    Some people here are just getting to silly and way out there in trying to defend their decision. Go talk amongst yourselves and work out why you don't test tubs or showers, I am sure the majority of the people here are long past being ready for this thread to end.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    I notice you didn't say that you created a partial blockage of the discharge tubes for the dishwasher or washing machine to see if they would leak. Why would you create a blockage in the shower?

    See Jerry, I make decisions based on information available.
    Apparently you do not think about things much, not if you make decisions based on information available and then post the above.

    Ken, THINK, man, THINK ... why would I, or any home inspector, NOT PLUG the shower drain ... (so the darn thing does not overflow the threshold/curb).

    Was that so hard Ken? You are beginning to no longer ... er ... you have been not ... making much sense in your defense of not testing tubs and shower.

    THINK, Ken, THINK.

    Crimeny, some of these guys are really getting weird and way out there in trying to defend a decision they made.

    (sigh)

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  19. #149
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Below is a form I use to inform the HO and purchaser about testing the shower pan

    Request and Authorization to test Shower Pan


    Notice to purchaser and homeowner.
    A standard test of the shower has been or will be performed.
    The standard test is very much like normal use of the shower.
    Sometimes the normal activity of using the shower may not reveal a defect in a shower pan.
    Therefore a Shower pan test is recommend to be performed.
    Before consenting to the shower pan test you need to understand
    The test does not create a leak;
    However the test may expose an existing defect that will allow water to leak.
    If a defect exists, water can leak causing substantial damage.
    Some defects and leaks may not be readily observable or detectable.


    The shower pan test consist of:
    #1 Removing the shower drain cover plate
    #2 Inserting the appropriate plug into the drain of the shower to stop water from draining
    #3 Filling the shower pan to within of the shower curb height
    #4 Allowing water to remain in the shower pan 4 hours or longer
    #5 After the allotted time, remove the drain plug, and observe water drainage
    #6 Observe for water that has leaked around the shower, and if practical under the shower
    #7 Reinstall shower drain cover
    #8 Report observations and make recommendations.

    I understand and agree to; the limitations, and accept the risk involved.

    Address: __________________________________________________ _____________________


    Property owner or agent: __________________________________________________ ________

    Date: ___________________________________________


    Prospective purchaser or agent: __________________________________________________ ___

    Date: ___________________________________________

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    You mean like including something like: 'my circuit tester may find a loose electrical receptacle and cause that to move around when I plug the tester in, which in turn may cause the conductors to short or ground out, which in turn may cause a fire and burn the house down.'?
    Plugging something into a receptacle is "normal operation". Flooding a shower pan is not. Thank you for a great example.



    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Like I said, if you decide not to test them, then just man-up and admit it, and don't bother trying to blame someone or something else for your choice not to test them.
    You're getting the terms "testing the shower pan" and "flooding the shower pan" mixed up. Nobody here has said we don't test or inspect shower pans. We just don't flood them. Or are you saying the only way to check for a leaking shower pan is to flood them?


    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Do you probe wood to find out if the wood is damaged? Do you tell the owner that you may be damaging their wood when you probe?
    Probing wood is a requirement and has a definition in nearly all home inspection associations. There is not only documentation to support this action it is mandatory by most associations. Flooding the shower pan is not a requirement and there is no documentation to support it being done in a completed shower.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post

    Ken, THINK, man, THINK ... why would I, or any home inspector, NOT PLUG the shower drain ... (so the darn thing does not overflow the threshold/curb).
    Why? Because there is no need to and no documentation to support this activity. A good inspector can find if the shower pan has leaked in the past and doesn't need a big wet spot to figure it out.

    It's nothing more than grandstanding at the expense of the seller's house.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Rick,

    Where did you get this process from?

    #1 Removing the shower drain cover plate
    #2 Inserting the appropriate plug into the drain of the shower to stop water from draining
    #3 Filling the shower pan to within of the shower curb height
    #4 Allowing water to remain in the shower pan 4 hours or longer
    #5 After the allotted time, remove the drain plug, and observe water drainage
    #6 Observe for water that has leaked around the shower, and if practical under the shower
    #7 Reinstall shower drain cover
    Just curious because it's not the same requirements in the IBC.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    Rick,

    Where did you get this process from?

    Just curious because it's not the same requirements in the IBC.
    I came up with it on my on after reading from several sources.

    Last edited by Rick Cantrell; 02-05-2012 at 04:25 PM. Reason: spelling
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    Below is a form I use to inform the HO and purchaser about testing the shower pan

    Request and Authorization to test Shower Pan


    Notice to purchaser and homeowner.
    A standard test of the shower has been or will be performed.
    The standard test is very much like normal use of the shower.
    Sometimes the normal activity of using the shower may not reveal a defect in a shower pan.
    Therefore a Shower pan test is recommend to be performed.
    Before consenting to the shower pan test you need to understand
    The test does not create a leak;
    However the test may expose an existing defect that will allow water to leak.
    If a defect exists, water can leak causing substantial damage.
    Some defects and leaks may not be readily observable or detectable.


    The shower pan test consist of:
    #1 Removing the shower drain cover plate
    #2 Inserting the appropriate plug into the drain of the shower to stop water from draining
    #3 Filling the shower pan to within of the shower curb height
    #4 Allowing water to remain in the shower pan 4 hours or longer
    #5 After the allotted time, remove the drain plug, and observe water drainage
    #6 Observe for water that has leaked around the shower, and if practical under the shower
    #7 Reinstall shower drain cover
    #8 Report observations and make recommendations.

    I understand and agree to; the limitations, and accept the risk involved.

    Address: __________________________________________________ _____________________


    Property owner or agent: __________________________________________________ ________

    Date: ___________________________________________


    Prospective purchaser or agent: __________________________________________________ ___

    Date: ___________________________________________

    Thanks for sharing this Rick. This is a good common sense approach that sets the expectation in advance and covers your own butt. Using this type of form is the only way I would consider making this type of shower pan test part of my inspections.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Thanks for sharing this Rick. This is a good common sense approach that sets the expectation in advance and covers your own butt. Using this type of form is the only way I would consider making this type of shower pan test part of my inspections.
    Not trying to offend anyone, but I think it's irresponsible not to advise the buyer on the need to perform a shower pan test, and just as irresponsible not to advise the HO of the risk of the test.
    If the HO accepts the risk I test it, if the HO does not, I don't test it.
    Some do, some don't.

    BTW I posted this 4 months ago on a similar thread.
    http://www.inspectionnews.net/home_i...hower-pan.html

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    I came up with it on my on after reading from several sources.
    If you know the sources, please list them if you can.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    If you know the sources, please list them if you can.
    Look in the thread of the link I provided.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Every installation of shower pans is filled with water and allowed to set over time.

    If they leak then then are emptied and inspected further to find out where the leak is.

    Any building inspector on the planet will fail a shower pan of any kind if it leaks water. It won't get a little gold star because it does not hold water.

    Any plumber fills a shower pan/liner with water and tests it for leaks. If it leaks they repair the leak or rip out the pan liner and start over if it does not hold water.

    Hold water. Hold back water. Hold in water. Keep water off, away from, From getting to, the surrounding home. This can cause damage to a home just from a small drip over time. Rooted plywood, sub floor, surrounding framing, surrounding drywall wall near the pan liner, cause mold inside the walls and I guess we can go on for days.

    Fact and absolute fact is no matter what you refuse to read, look up, not read, not listen to, any of those and another page full, the pan liner, gasket to etc etc etc etc, is meant to hold water no matter which term you wish to use.

    If you find a leak in the liner, pan etc, then you pull it apart and repair it to make it water tight, hold water, hold back water, hold in water etc etc etc etc

    Please stop with the foolish statements that there is no test, no documentation and the best of all, no reason if you are a good inspector.

    If you don't want to test don't. It is that absolute and simple un til the test becomes required due to the vast amount of leaks are found

    This is not grandstanding stupid, dumb, ignorant, dishonest or any other statement you wish to choose.

    Yes. Your, no matter who you are, statements are foolish. Stop, think, digest exactly what happens when a shower pan/liner is installed and then inspected by every municipal inspector out there (unless he is just not doing his job). They fill that liner to inspect for leaks. Why? because it is designed to hold water. If it doesn't it fails by the inspector and by the plumber putting it in. The plumber knows the ramifications if his liner/pan leaks after the folks find it when they move in. That's right. They get a call for a warranty repair for a shower pan leak and have to pull it apart and repair it....... for a service charge at best and the rest is free.

    Ken and Ian. Just keep walking into those bathrooms and turning the water on long enough to make it look like you ran it, take a picture of it and tell the folks everything appears to be in good order. That is the easy way out and what a scripted inspector does that just learned the "process " of home inspection.

    Someone on here said that once. "Anybody can learn the "process" of home inspection". That is a scripted inspector that will find every reason there is to be able to run thru an inspection as quick as possible and cause no ripples on the way.

    Again. Please look at a picture of a pan liner before inspection or should I say before it goes on to the finishing of the shower and ask yourself just how and why would anyone want to fill it with water. Why does anyone go to all that trouble to make basically a bath tub that holds water if it were not necessary. Then ask yourself just how the best way to test it to see if a tare happened or someone ran a bunch of screws or nails real low in that liner.

    A shower may have water getting behind the tile and a drip drip may happen that takes a long time to become noticed and then there is a good bit of damage to the surrounding wood, framing, flooring, drywall ceiling below etc etc etc.

    You are not going to find evidence by being a "good inspector" and just walking past it and flashing the water on for a few minutes or seconds to wet the walls.

    Here. I will post a picture of a "water proof" ( I wonder why they use a water proof liner) liner for you so you don't have to do any of your own looking. Just stare at it for a long while and contemplate what you are looking at. What it is for. What it is meant to do and best yet.....the best way to test it.

    That is all the help I can give you folks. You are a bunch of nice guys but seriously.....Look at the picture and think. Please. Nothing of the installation of this particular liner. I just did what anyone can do and found it in Google images.

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    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 02-05-2012 at 08:23 PM.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    It's nothing more than grandstanding at the expense of the seller's house.
    TOTALLY WRONG ... it is nothing more than DOING MY JOB FOR THE BUYER ...

    Ken, I don't know about you, but *I* *DON'T WORK FOR THE SELLER* (you seem to be more concerned about the seller than the buyer).

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    and just as irresponsible not to advise the HO of the risk of the test.
    If the HO accepts the risk I test it, if the HO does not, I don't test it.
    Some do, some don't.l
    What if the house is bank owned?

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc M View Post
    What if the house is bank owned?
    Marc,

    I'm going to leave this thread to you and Ted to finish. I am apparently not getting through to some of the guys here.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Jerry, you don't have to win all the time (or maybe you feel you need to). Just because you don't have everybody agreeing with you and thanking you doesn't mean this wasn't worthwhile. You're right that some shower pans have hidden defects that cannot be found by just turning the shower on and letting it run for a minute or two. But in the same breath, you're wrong to not advise the seller that your test may bring hidden defects to light that may create damage to their home.

    I'm sure many of us can come up with things we do during our inspections that the many inspectors do not. It doesn't make us better. It just makes us different and maybe time and experience will lead us to change the way we do things.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Let's take a look at just how wrong you are Ted:

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Every installation of shower pans is filled with water and allowed to set over time.
    I'll guarantee the shower pans put in prior to 1990 have never been purposely flooded to look for leaks. Sorry Ted, but most of the houses I inspect are over 40 years old. Maybe you meant to say "Every current installation..." but that isn't what you said.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Hold water. Hold back water. Hold in water. Keep water off, away from, From getting to, the surrounding home. This can cause damage to a home just from a small drip over time. Rooted plywood, sub floor, surrounding framing, surrounding drywall wall near the pan liner, cause mold inside the walls and I guess we can go on for days.
    Which can be determined by a diligent inspector without damaging the house.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Please stop with the foolish statements that there is no test, no documentation and the best of all, no reason if you are a good inspector.
    I've asked you to provide documentation of testing procedure after the install is completed and you can't.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Ken and Ian. Just keep walking into those bathrooms and turning the water on long enough to make it look like you ran it, take a picture of it and tell the folks everything appears to be in good order. That is the easy way out and what a scripted inspector does that just learned the "process " of home inspection.
    Apparently you missed my post regarding bore scopes, moisture meters and thermal cameras. But, you seem to miss things quite often.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Someone on here said that once. "Anybody can learn the "process" of home inspection". That is a scripted inspector that will find every reason there is to be able to run thru an inspection as quick as possible and cause no ripples on the way.
    Like I said, flooding the shower pan and damaging the house is the quick and dirty way of inspecting. Pretty easy to plug the drain and turn the shower on then wait for the damage. It takes more time and knowledge to actually inspect for the damage without damaging the house.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    A shower may have water getting behind the tile and a drip drip may happen that takes a long time to become noticed and then there is a good bit of damage to the surrounding wood, framing, flooring, drywall ceiling below etc etc etc.

    You are not going to find evidence by being a "good inspector" and just walking past it and flashing the water on for a few minutes or seconds to wet the walls.
    The same thing can be said for a loose piece of siding or trim, but I'm sure as heck not going to take 10 gallons of water and dump into it to see if it stains the drywall in the house. This job is all about common sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Menelly View Post
    Here. I will post a picture of a "water proof" ( I wonder why they use a water proof liner) liner for you so you don't have to do any of your own looking. Just stare at it for a long while and contemplate what you are looking at. What it is for. What it is meant to do and best yet.....the best way to test it.
    Yes, the best way to test that shower pan is by flooding it. However, it seems to be missing something. Hmm, maybe tile and grout. You know, the stuff that finishes off the shower? The same stuff that's present in every house a home inspector inspects.
    We aren't code enforcement plumbing inspectors. We aren't there during the installation process.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    TOTALLY WRONG ... it is nothing more than DOING MY JOB FOR THE BUYER ...

    Ken, I don't know about you, but *I* *DON'T WORK FOR THE SELLER* (you seem to be more concerned about the seller than the buyer).
    Doing your job is finding the leak. Doing your job well is finding the leak without damaging the house. I didn't say anything about the seller or working for the seller. I said I don't want to damage the house by doing a procedure which does not have verifiable documentation. I also gave examples previously of how I inspect shower pans. How exactly is not damaging the house related to working for the seller?

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    Look in the thread of the link I provided.
    After going through 2 other links from the one you provided I saw you posted several installation links (testing prior to finishing the installation) and a DIY site for testing shower pans. Nothing to do with home inspectors and certainly not industry standards for home inspectors and nothing even close to the IPC testing requirements.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Ted

    Thanks for the picture...I have but one question. Is the stopper/plug supplied with the pan after completion? No? Really?
    I rest my case.

    Jerry - if you are still here. With all your knowledge and experience of what unforseen damage can occur from a leaking shower, previously unsuspected. Not to mention your litigation and consultation experience, would you ask/suggest/expect and recommend flooding the pan to a brand new Inspector conducting his/her first inspection? Or would you explain that there are risks involved and allow them to make their own decision? If they chose not to flood-test the pan would you consider their actions lacking and a dis-service to the buyer?

    Last edited by Ian Page; 02-06-2012 at 12:04 AM.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Now I might be guilty of sitational ethics, but this is how I see it:
    If the house has some age and the fixtures are over finished living space, I'm not going to risk damaging the property. The unit has functioned as intended.
    Common sense dictates that it is not a leak issue.
    If it's new, test it.
    If it's on the first floor-flood it, test it. water on framing won't kill anything. I'm not doing any harm to a property just to make a point. That's why we have image problems at least around here-invasive testing.
    The damned inspector came in and now it's broke.
    But I don't check wood rot with anything other than my finger either.

    JLMathis


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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    I can understand someones hesitation to fill the shower pan, I had the same concern. But I also see the need to confirm that the pan is or is not leaking, that is why I came up with the shower pan test form.
    If the seller agrees to the test, they have accepted the risk.
    I perform the test.
    If they refuse the test, I don't test.
    REO's are as is, no test.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    Jerry, you don't have to win all the time (or maybe you feel you need to). Just because you don't have everybody agreeing with you and thanking you doesn't mean this wasn't worthwhile.
    Nick,

    I don't have to be right all the time, and in fact I am not right some of the time and I acknowledge that.

    There are enough people agreeing with me that I am letting them carry this on for those who continue to dismiss it ... that is if they even want to carry this on - at some point one understand that some people simply will not, do not want to, consider the reason for change, and at that point there is no need to continue to try to educate those people.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Page View Post
    would you ask/suggest/expect and recommend flooding the pan to a brand new Inspector conducting his/her first inspection?

    If they chose not to flood-test the pan would you consider their actions lacking and a dis-service to the buyer?
    They should first understand how the shower pan is constructed and why the shower pan is constructed that way, and that the shower pan *is not supposed to leak*. Once they understand that, which should be a priority during their training, then, yes, I would expect them to test shower pans as described, and, yes, I would recommend they get permission to test as that alleviates and 'risk of damage' as the seller or sellers agent (i.e., seller through their agent) has stated that the home inspector can inspect everything and that nothing leak and everything works as it should.

    If they did not test the shower pan, they are doing a disservice to their client and they would be setting themselves up for writing a check to replace the leaking shower pan and *all* the tile in the shower. Do you think their client should be left on the hook because the new inspector did not understand the importance of testing the shower pan? How about not going on a low and easy to access roof? How about problems with the electrical panels?

    Where would YOU draw the line as being a good inspector and not doing much for your client?

    Makes it a bit hard to draw that line, doesn't it?

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Rick,

    I'm curious as to the percentage of sellers allowing the test compared to those who refuse.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    I can say in my nine years of inspecting, I have not one received one callback/complaint about a leaking shower pan nor have I received a complaint that I missed something my client(s) feel I should have found in regard to the shower install.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    I can say in my nine years of inspecting, I have not one received one callback/complaint about a leaking shower pan nor have I received a complaint that I missed something my client(s) feel I should have found in regard to the shower install.
    Same here. I've found many leaking pans and never flooded a pan.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Nick,

    Where would YOU draw the line as being a good inspector and not doing much for your client?

    Makes it a bit hard to draw that line, doesn't it?
    As I said previously, a good inspector can find the leak without damaging the house. The other guys are are quick and dirty and don't care if they follow documented protocols or not. That's the line you speak of.

    Even with flooding the pan a small leak over a finished ceiling may not show up at the inspection or even days, possibly weeks before it finally seeps through the drywall. So you wouldn't see it during an inspection and may show up shortly after the client closes on the house. What good is that?

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    The only sure way to test the integrity of a finished pan by flooding, is; using a plumber's plug, fill it with a known volume of water, wait a specified time - at least 4 hrs, the standard for a liner/waterproofing membrane install during construction but probably significantly longer for a finished pan and then re-measure the water. Anything less than the exact original amount proves a leak. Hardly practical but anyone interested in making your inspection a 2 dayer...? Or, you can flood it to a level of your choice, wait up to four hours, if no outward sign of a leak, roll the dice and call it good to go. 'Cuz that's the way Ted and Jerry do it....

    Last edited by Ian Page; 02-06-2012 at 11:45 PM.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Rowe View Post
    Rick,

    I'm curious as to the percentage of sellers allowing the test compared to those who refuse.
    Except for foreclosures about 50% accept the test
    Foreclosures, 0%

    Those most likely to leak are:
    DIY's, Unskilled workers, Flippers, 70-80% regardless of age

    40+ years old, 50-70%
    30-40 years old, 25-35%
    20-30 years, 5%
    <20 years, Have not found any (except for DIY and flippers)

    These numbers are estimates, I do not keep statistical records.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    all

    what i don't get is why are you talking to sellers on what you can and can't do. they are not your client. are you asking the sellers agent if you can. i don't want to talk to seller or their agent--just want lock box to get in and them gone. thats my take

    cvf


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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    "if no outward sign of a leak, roll the dice and call it good to go. 'Cuz that's the way Ted and Jerry do it...."

    Now that's original....


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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by CHARLIE VAN FLEET View Post
    all

    what i don't get is why are you talking to sellers on what you can and can't do. they are not your client. are you asking the sellers agent if you can. i don't want to talk to seller or their agent--just want lock box to get in and them gone. thats my take

    cvf
    Georgia does not have a state license for home inspectors, however, the city I live in (Columbus) does have license requirements for home inspectors. One of the requirements is; the home inspector is responsible for damages the home inspector causes. Additionally, the home inspector is required to have $100k in GL insurance to cover damages. So even if I did not cause the leak, my actions did result in additional damages that I could be responsible to repair. I would not be responsible to repair the shower pan, but I may be responsible to repair damages that result from the leaking shower pan. This is why I came up with the shower pan test as an additional service, and the shower pan test form. With the shower pan test form, the homeowner (not the buyer) is requesting the test. Now the rules have change since the HO is requesting the test, the HO is accepting the risk.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Bam...! Nother notch..

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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    One more...hey.., that makes 2 for 2 this week. Or 100%. Can you imagine if I "didn't " test them?
    In this image you can see the heat through the wall, from the HOT water I ran.

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    so so, California
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Confirmation..

    ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images ***IMPORTANT*** You Need To Register To View Images
    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
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  52. #182
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Is there a way to stop getting the email notices for a specific thread?


  53. #183
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    so so, California
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    Is there a way to stop getting the email notices for a specific thread?
    just unsubscribe..

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  54. #184
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    If I unsubscribe, that stops all email notifications. I don't want to stop all the notifications, just for specific threads. Oh well.


  55. #185
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    so so, California
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    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    If I unsubscribe, that stops all email notifications. I don't want to stop all the notifications, just for specific threads. Oh well.
    Yea, you should be able to stop getting notifications on specific threads such as this one only.

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  56. #186
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    WESTMINSTER CO
    Posts
    1,090

    Default Re: Leaking bathtub

    agree darell

    this ones is endless

    chas


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