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Apartment building pipe burst.

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by FingerDub, Dec 13, 2017.

  1. FingerDub

    FingerDub Banned

    Jan 8, 2016
    A pipe burst inside of the apartment building, and affected our entire unit. It's inside the walls adjacent to our living room and small bar and bathroom. They have drilled about six or seven holes in the bathroom and hooked up an industrial fan with hoses all throughout the bathroom to blow air into the wall which I assume is soaked with sewage. The hallway smells disgusting and you could see how far the water damage is. There is another fan not pictured in the living room underneath the new carpet we just got blowing air under the carpet to dry that area also.

    They have offered zero financial compensation. They are using our power to run these fans, for 48 hours for each fan and they are big fans. Also aren't we allowed some sort of clear enjoyment of the unit? It seems unfair that two large fans are blowing for two days straight and that we can't use the bathroom or want to be in the living room because it's too loud.



  2. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
    Do you have renters insurance to cover your belongings and other expenses?
  3. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Supporting Member

    As an owner of some rental units I can say $**t happens. That said, they should offer you a hotel while work and repairs are being done on your unit. Also, if it is a raw sewage pipe and not a fresh water pipe, then you do not want to be living there as it is not fit cause of the bacteria.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
  4. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Song Surgeon slow downer. https://tinyurl.com/y5dcuqjg
    I used to manage/own apartments. If it's sewage, call the health department.

    Call your city hall and ask for code enforcement. Get them to come out and assess the damage and air quality.

    If there's a housing authority in your area, call them too.

    The carpet and the drywall needs to be replaced. It won't dry out properly and/or it is contaminated.

    Your power should not be used or you should be compensated.

    I would have put you up in a motel until all is taken care of.

    You can't live in a place where the fans are going 24/7 with sewage fumes being exhausted.

    This is one of the reasons that all renters should have renter's insurance.

    Read your rental agreement to see if it says anything about these type of situations.

    Start a journal and describe everything happening day by day.

    File a small claims case after all is repaired.

    Possible Look for a new place to live.

    Keep taking pics.

    Good luck.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
  5. FingerDub

    FingerDub Banned

    Jan 8, 2016
  6. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
    Sorry to hear. I sell renters and other insurance and encounter these types of situations. I hope you don't have much damage or inconvenience until it's fixed.
    FingerDub likes this.
  7. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    @Stumbo makes some great points.
    Your physical health is the #1 concern here. You need assurances, from a third party, that it is safe to be in that building.

    Tbone76, GregC and FingerDub like this.
  8. That is sewage, you are not living in that place until the carpeting, walls and what is inside them have been replaced.
    Good luck.
    blastoff99, Tbone76 and FingerDub like this.
  9. Fans are not the solution to the serious health hazard that is most likely developing in your apartment. The fans could take weeks to dry the walls, and there is no way to tell when all the moisture is gone. It does not take long for mold to grow, and the fans are likely to disperse mold spores. All of the wet drywall should be removed, and the situation should be assessed by someone qualified to do so, and proper remediation steps need to be be taken.

    Here is a publication from FEMA with an brief overview of what is likely to be required to make the living space safe.


    This publication is addressing mold. The presence of sewage makes it even more of a health hazard.

    There are businesses who are experienced and qualified in dealing with this type of disaster. Based on the photographs I don't think whoever is doing the work is doing it properly.

    I would remove my belongings, discarding anything that is contaminated, and move to a different location.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
    MJ5150 and FingerDub like this.
  10. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2012
    Seattle WA
    Holy sh!t :wideyed: subbed
    Fat Freddy, FingerDub and S-Bigbottom like this.
  11. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    Start researching the term 'Habitability' and the legal implications in relation to renting a unit with problems in your state.

    EDIT: Also check your state's rental laws, as well as contact a lawyer who handles Tenant / Landlord law. Frequently you can receive an initial free consultation.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
    Tbone76 and FingerDub like this.
  12. OldDog52

    OldDog52 Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
    Tbone76 and FingerDub like this.
  13. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Consider it. You can get it for less than $20 a month.

    On another note, don't expect them to just do things for you. DEMAND it. Respectfully of course, but this reminds me of Joe's Kia thread. Never expect a business to act ethically on your behalf if it'll cost them money. Politely, but firmly, demand that they take care of you. If you don't, they'll walk over you and take you as a pushover.
    GregC, catcauphonic and FingerDub like this.
  14. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
    I just went to a local ServPro training class yesterday titled "Restorative Drying for Water Damage".
    OldDog52 likes this.
  15. OldDog52

    OldDog52 Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2011
    A local burger joint was smoke and water damaged from a fire at the business next door. The smell from a fire extinguished with water is very hard to get rid of. Servpro worked on that place and you cannot tell there was ever a problem.

    Sewage might be harder to mitigate. I dunno.
  16. Ben B

    Ben B

    Jul 13, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    OP, sorry you are going through this. As others have said, your landlord should be putting you up in a motel during the cleanup. I would contact your landlord and seek code enforcement if he give you any pushback. And you, as well as all renters, should get renters insurance, even a minimal policy. It can save you a lot of grief.
    Tbone76 likes this.
  17. It looks like they might be using this system or something like it to dry the cavities behind the drywall.

    Injectidry HP-PLUS Wall and Ceiling Package | Jon-Don

    Here is a water damage remediation standard referenced in the manual for the Injectidry system:

    ANSI/IICRC S500 Water Damage Restoration - IICRC It all seems fishy to me.

    I don't trust it. Every cavity would have to be ventilated, but you will never know when the materials are dry. If any of the affected cavities are part of exterior walls, there will be saturated insulation that the blower system will never be able to dry out.

    Drywall is cheap to replace. I would remove it.

    I see in the photo that they have installed a blower hose part of the way up in the wall, and there is an outlet hole three feet below the hose. The openings should be at the very top, and bottom of the cavity to cause air to flow through the entire cavity be effective as possible. The wettest part will be at the bottom wall plate. I don't see how the method being used will have any affect down there. Why are only some of the cavities being aired out?

    Plumbing drain systems are not under pressure, so I don't think a drain pipe "burst". The best case would be a fixture overflow due to an obstruction. Hopefully it is only "gray water", and not "black water" (as what would come from a drain after the trap). A fixture at a higher level can flush black water (sewage) out of the drain of a fixture at a lower level when the drain is obstructed farther down the line below the trap of the lower fixture.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
    maxmaroon and FingerDub like this.
  18. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    As said before. .....

    Keep records.

    Immediately talk to others who are affected. Get on the same page. Have THEM document everything so that if you are told different stories yoou can sort that out.

    Get the heck out of there and keep receipts for any expenses caused by getting the heck out of there.

    You have a phone cam? Take a zillion pics with date stamps.
    FingerDub likes this.
  19. FingerDub

    FingerDub Banned

    Jan 8, 2016
    It came from the 3rd floor. It affected the unit directly above us also who we are friends with.
  20. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    And remember regardless of the good intentions of all of the posters, the only things that matter are the laws in your state regarding tenants and landlords responsibilities and dispute resolution.

    This will end up costing someone a load of cash.

    You can be certain that the landlord has his insurance company's lawyers and his own lawyer handling this. Neither of those two is looking out for your welfare.

    If you don't have legal guidance, more likely than not you will end up getting short changed.

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