Monday, June 6, 2011

Home | Bye Bye Bathroom

On our first real weekend working at the house, we had two goals:

1) Paint as many rooms as possible before we start moving in furniture.
2) Get the water turned on.

Our house has not been lived in for 2.5 years, meaning the water has not been turned on for 2.5 years, and the house has been through TWO winters with cold, empty pipes. The house was winterized by the bank at some point, but we weren't able to turn on the water for our inspection so this was our biggest uncertainty left.

The weekend rolled around and it was time to test it out. My parents were here helping for the weekend, which was such a blessing. Had my Dad not been here when all hell the pipes broke, Aaron and I wouldn't have known what to do - we would have either had to hire a plumber (and probably would have funded his child's college education) OR we probably would have just given up/laid on the floor and cried.

When we first went to turn on the water, we were stupidly optimistic: "It looks like the previous owners really took care of this place, and the bank did have it winterized so we should be OK". I'm realizing that saying or even thinking something like that is just asking for trouble. We had a few people scattered throughout the house to listen and watch for rushing water. Almost immediately after the valve was first turned on, several of us were shouting "STOP! TURN IT OFF" from our various lookout spots.

The most horrifying moment was when I stood in the doorway of our guest bedroom on the first floor and watched copious amounts of water rushing through fresh cracks in the ceiling. (OK, this might be a tad dramatic for how much water was actually coming through, but ANY amount of water coming through the ceiling is quite alarming!) I kind of wish I had a picture of this, but again, it was horrifying. My first thought was definitely not "I should be documenting this".

We would later find out that there were SIX burst pipes scattered amongst the plumbing in the upstairs bathroom. As the day progressed, we (Dad & Aaron) found & fixed said broken pipes by tearing out sections of the bathroom. And the optimism faded. Every time a pipe was fixed, we would anxiously turn the water on again. And every time, our hopefulness was crushed by a newly-discovered leak that was just a little further down the pipe.

The offending pipes

Demolition, no more tub

There is a bathtub in our bedroom!

So that's the story of our unplanned bathroom demolition. It took a full day of pipe-fixin', water-testin', and installin' things (can you tell that I didn't do any of the work?), but we eventually had working, not-leaking pipes. And a brand-spankin' new water heater + kitchen sink installed. And one less bathroom. But it's alright because we had planned to re-do that bathroom at some point since it was pretty outdated and lacked a shower. Now, we are just bumping up the timeline on that renovation by a few years! The good news is that we will get to make our bathroom exactly how we want it :) yay for the silver-lining.

BTW - Our theory is that all of this happened because the plumbers who winterized the pipes way back when didn't put enough anti-freeze in the pipes to last TWO winters. In their defense, it's probably not that common for a foreclosure to sit on the market for quite that long.

1 comment:

  1. Check out your dad!!!! He's an ANIMAL!!!! :D


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