Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Out with the old....

We built this house in 2003.  Our builder was a great guy and overall we are pleased with the house.  Eleven years later though, we are running into problems we never imagined.  Expensive problems.

One, the sewerage treatment plant drain line wasn't done correctly.  We aren't sure WHO chose to the pipes that were put in.  Perhaps it was the norm because the parish has changed the regulations since then.... we don't know.  Basically, the drain collapsed and the sewerage treatment plant wasn't draining.  Instead it was bubbling up all around the tank.  Yuck.  So that resulted in this mess along with a big plumbing bill:

Then, there's the shower.  The original plans called for a shower kit and an oval tub.  Marble was crazy expensive, and we were already 10k over budget, and I didn't want to get in over our heads with an outrageous house note.  I had no idea then we would have paid off the house in 8 years.   Neither of us was crazy about the pre-made shower, so I searched online for an alternative and found a design we loved.  It was a huge corner tub with a tile shower.  The same tile was the floor, the tub surround, and on the shower walls and it just looked so nice.  Clint did the measuring and with the space we had, it was very do-able.  Rather than spend $5000 on marble, we decided to go with the tile.  Our builder had never made this type of tile shower, but we had the faith that he was capable of figuring it out.

It was lovely at first.  But.... over the years the grout cracked.  The shower began to leak... badly.  Then the smell.  To me it smelled like yucky mud.   A small corner of our vanity started to wear away.  We weren't sure if the ants that had invaded our bathroom had done that or if it was water.  We knew it had to be fixed. After we finished the work at my Dad's house, we got a quote to renovate and were hit with sticker shock.  Then our contractor took on a house and was unavailable.   A couple of months ago, I noticed that after the girls showered, the bathmat would be soaked.  It was like someone dumped a bucket of water on it.   I did a test one afternoon... I ran the shower and watched as water leaked out from under the adjacent bathtub.  Not good.  Not at all.

Clint called our contractor once again and yesterday was GO day.  I'm not even sure where to begin to describe how bad it is.  The smell.... was rotting wood.  The frame of the tub surround was black and they also found termites under the tub.  Thankfully, they hadn't gotten to the walls.  My vanity was actually sitting in standing water.  It was so wet under there that a frog was living under it.

Basically the shower was built completely wrong.  The only right thing they did was put a copper pan at the bottom, but no other water proofing was done. The good news is that the majority of the water seems to have come forward into the room, instead of actually damaging the walls.  One wall stud needs to be replaced.  The corner beams were slightly affected, but they seem to be ok... and that isn't something you want to mess with unless absolutely necessary.  In trying to ignore the dust, the noise, the smell, the hammering and sawing, and the expense....   Focusing on the good news, it is fixable.  The termites have been handled.  The room is gutted and if all goes well, I will have new sheet rock and floor by the end of the week. I get a new fancy bathroom with a custom marble shower and new fixtures.

Ready for a new coat of everything!

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