The plumbingpocalypse of 2022

Okay, so, we moved into this house in June of 2021. It’s a nice double-wide trailer with plenty of floor space for kids to run around. Well, as soon as we moved in, we discovered that we had plumbing leaks under the eastern corner of the house.

Being new home owners after 15 years in apartments, we didn’t really know what to do. We tried calling out the home warranty folks to fix it, because that’s why we pay them, right? Turns out, the contractors who worked with the home warranty people are all experts at milking the system. We had three major plumbing leaks. The plumbers would only fix one at a time, forcing us to pay the fee multiple times to get each one fixed. It took so long to do this that the third leak had time to create a massive black mold pool under the house. The plumbers absolutely refused to get under there and fix the mold until we had restoration people come fix the mold. Whereas if they fixed the leak, there wouldn’t have been any mold … so yeah.

Yeah, it was bad

So, we spent most of the year going back and forth with various people who took one look at the problem and ghosted us. Meanwhile, I dug a drainage trench to control the water pouring out from under our house, and would bail it into a random sewer hookup that some previous inhabitant of the house had set up for a trailer.

Round about February, I was so miserable and sick of putting my hands in waste water that I begged my husband to just call a plumber and fix the leak. And this is where it gets weird.

So the plumber came out and crawled under the house and fixed the leak in about ten minutes. No problems with black mold, it was no big deal. So we ran water to make sure it was holding, and instantly all the sinks and showers backed up. So the plumber went around, trying to figure out where the blockage was. In the process, he discovered that our entire plumbing system had been ‘fixed’ by the people who flipped our house … ‘fixed’ to go into a complete circle without draining. Yes, our plumbing was an ouroboros, a snake eating its own tail.

The plumber, by this time, was furious. He referred us to some friends of his who would rip out all the plumbing and redo it for a reasonable price. The quote we got was 14k. We had to wait for our tax return, which wound up not being quite enough, not if we had to stay in an Airbnb for a week while our pipes got redone. So we renegotiated down to about 8k, which was much more reasonable.

So they came to rip out our pipes, and we relocated to an Airbnb in town. It was very small, but it was cheap. I entertained the kids with videogames and everything from the junk food section of the grocery store. They went from groaning about the tiny space to proclaiming it our best vacation ever.

It only took the plumbers about 5 days to redo all the water and drains, instead of the 2 weeks they had initially thought. They were able to get parts, and everything went smoothly. When we came back, we had water hooked up to our fridge at last, meaning the fridge with a water dispenser and ice maker that we hadn’t been able to use for a year suddenly works. Nothing drains into the yard. The washing machine doesn’t drain into the kitchen sink. The showers actually have water pressure. I can’t begin to express how wonderful it is to not have to put my hands into wastewater multiple times a day.

So that’s the tale of the plumbingpocalypse. We’re slated to have an electropocalypse next, and then a structural damagepocalypse. Word to the wise: never buy a flipped house. While I’ve heard that some house flippers do a nice job, the ones who did this house did not. They didn’t update the wiring to support an AC unit, they ouroboros’d the plumbing, and instead of redoing the ancient bathroom, they painted over the bad spots. The paint is now flaking away, revealing how gross it is. You know that movie Matilda, where the dad is the used car salesman who has all these tricks to make a car run just until he can sell it to some chump? Yeah, that’s what these house flippers did. They made the house look just good enough to pass inspection. I hope they go to jail someday.