Rookie Mistake

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Ninn, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    Ok, here comes another opportunity for me to learn a skill. When we bought this place, we had all the plumbing run inside the house, shutoffs installed at every major spot and a brand new hot water heater put it. We hired a man who had worked for us before and had always been reliable. This, unfortunately, is no longer the case. Our plumber has been paid only 3/4 of his fee because he still had work to do. It remains un-done, and is now a major issue.

    Because I have a major fear of small spaces, I never went underneath the house to see exactly what had or had not been done. BIG MISTAKE!! The water pipes underneath the house have not been rerouted along the heat ducts, they have not been anchored, and they have not been insulated or wrapped in heat tape. The hot water heater access hatch has not been insulated at the bottom-there is a gaping hole there. The hatch door has not been insulated or replaced. The pipes in that hatch have not been insulated either. :flame:

    Guess what happened this morning? YUP! The pipe froze overnight and cracked. Right between 2 very tight connections. There is a swimming pool under my home, water damage to the flooring in the bathroom (mostly under the tub) :Bawling: The only way to fix it? Cut the whole mess out and run new pipes. I'm out several hundred dollars for work that, at best, is worth about 50 bucks over and above all the materials we bought.

    So, today, I will overcome my fear of crawling around under the trailer and I will go under there with the new repair man, be sure what needs to be done gets done, and learn how to fix it myself the next time something breaks. I am scared to death to crawl around under a trailer-that's alot of weight up there if something goes wrong. But ultimately, the responsibility to be able to care for my home is mine, and I have to learn how to fix things. (I will be purchasing a diy plumbing book next week-any suggestions? :help: )

    I am hoping to have this completely repaired before DH gets home from work, so I can show him what I did instead of what broke for a change. Keep your fingers crossed, all. This is gonna get ugly.
     
  2. fantasymaker

    fantasymaker Well-Known Member

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    Could you run the pipes inside the house??
     

  3. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    We did. The break we are dealing with is right at the hot water heater, where it runs 6 inches into the tub and where all the lines exit into the house. The only part still under the house is the length of pipe from where it comes out of the ground to where it meets the hot water heater. It's just not properly cared for or anchored. It's a mess. The park manager is under there right now fixing everything for me, and will let me know how much after he pays for all the parts and stuff. He is wonderful about stuff like this. He will just buy the parts, do the work and show me how much he spent.
     
  4. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    As an added bonus, he's used to trailers and knows their foibles. Don't forget him for Christmas.
     
  5. michiganfarmer

    michiganfarmer Max Supporter

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    is this a trailor, or a house> you talk about the water pipes going under the house. The only water pipes I have ever seen under a house were under a trailor. In ahouse I thought all the water pipes went through the walls. If the pipes are in the walls, the walls are insulated, and the house is heated I dont understand how they ipes can freeze
     
  6. MICHAEL B OHIO

    MICHAEL B OHIO Well-Known Member

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    I have a house and mine run under in crawl space uninsulated. Mike
     
  7. januaries

    januaries Well-Known Member

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    My pipes run under the house, but the pipes are wrapped/insulated.

    Hugs to you: (((Ninn))) . I rode the butt of my plumber/electrician, but he managed to slip some shoddy work by me anyway. Never again. Next time I will be everyone's nightmare: a nosey and demanding woman.
     
  8. Ninn

    Ninn Custom Crochet Queen

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    We live in a trailer home. All the pipes except for where the water comes out of the ground and goes to the hot water heater are in the house. The part that froze and broke is about 3 inches away from the hot water heater, where it feeds into the bathtub faucet. It froze because it was not insulated and because the door assembly and insulation have not been put in and the temp here was below 30 last nite. For some reason that I fail to understand, the only door for the hot water heater hatch is a sheet of thin aluminum siding. We have been trying to get the man who was paid to do the work to come back and finish up. However, we just found out that he has left the state. We will be doing the work ourselves this weekend and will never hire him for anything again.

    The park manager showed me how to fix it myself. He also showed me that NONE of the new pipe that we purchased was put in, and that the new drain pipe assembly for under the kitchen was never installed. I am now wondering where all my brand new materials went. I was smart enough to go out and buy them myself instead of sending the plumber, so I know they were purchased. I have to locate where the leak in the kitchen drain is so the manager can fix it. He is doing all this work in exchange for 2 loaves of homemade bread. Can't beat that, can I?

    And you can bet I will remember him and his family at Christmas. He has even offerred to teach me to hunt!!
     
  9. hoofinitnorth

    hoofinitnorth Well-Known Member

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    michiganfarmer - we have a crawlspace here, under our house (not a trailer). Our hotwater heater and many of the water pipes are here, including the pressure tank and the input from the well. Very common here and REALLY nice for maintenance - you don't have to open a wall to find and fix a problem.
     
  10. haypoint

    haypoint Unpaid, Volunteer Devil's Advocate Supporter

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    Once you get this taken care of, be sure to add some insulation to your skirting. You do have skirting? Properly sealed skirting can go a long way to prevent burst plumbing. Went your heat tape around the main water inlet stops working, the extra insulation might prevent a total freeze-up. The heat tape will eventually stop working, generally at the worst time. Keeping the crawl space under the trailer warmer will cut the costs of heating the inside of your trailer.
     
  11. michiganfarmer

    michiganfarmer Max Supporter

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    thats interesting.