Mar 17, 2009

There's a hole in my ceiling, dear Liza, dear Liza

We had new toilets installed last summer, and shortly thereafter, we started noticing a brown stain on the den ceiling -- which lies directly underneath our master bathroom. The plumber came back to check it out, but he was confident that the toilet installation wasn't the problem.

I called our roofer, but he was sure the roof wasn't the problem. (I LOVE men who are good at problem-solving, don't you? Especially sight-unseen problem-solving ... that's VERY impressive.)

So last week when the stain started growing at an alarming pace, I called the plumber back. Tuesday he arrived and took a look, but still said he was pretty sure it wasn't the toilet. Then he made a hole in the ceiling, and water came pouring out.

It kept coming, and coming, and coming. Then he went up and flushed the toilet, and it poured again. SO CLEARLY, IT'S THE TOILET.

Now we have a lovely hole in the den ceiling, complete with a white plastic trashcan to catch "whatever comes out," while we wait for it to dry out. Once it's completely dry, he'll come back and reset the toilet. Then we'll test it again and hope it doesn't leak.

Next, we'll make the ceiling hole much bigger and have a drywall repair company come patch it up. Don't you just love unexpected out-of-pocket expenses?


Rachel said...

We had the EXACT same thing happen at our house. Our toilet had been professionally set, too. Only instead of the den underneath it was our kitchen, right in front of the fridge. I had a waterfall coming out of the ceiling light fixture. We had to replace the ceiling but I did get recessed lighting out of it. As well as some massive disinfecting going on. We discovered that the new tile under the front edge of the toilet was slightly (we're talking millimeters)uneven. We used a plastic shim that you can get at W*lM*rt or any local hardware store and put it under the front edge of the toilet when it was set and WA LA! No problems anymore. Seriously, why couldn't the plumber have done that the first time around. :) Good luck.

Katherine @ Grass Stains said...

Rachel, This is the second time this has happened to us, but the first time was much worse. :) I'm glad to know we're not the only ones! We had fewer actual "issues" in our first house, which was decades older than this one ... but the old house was OLD and we lucked out by selling it before all the Real Work had to be done. I guess this is payback. :)

Sarah T. said...

One of my friends had a leaky toilet last week that was leaking through her ceiling. She called the plumber, and he came over, looked at it, and said, "Yeah, that's from the toilet, but don't worry, it's not sh*twater."

Heh. How he would know that for sure: unknown.

Chris D. Hilton said...

Oh my! I noticed when I as there however your brother-in-law HOME INSPECTOR didn't want to stick his nose in your business. I thought maybe it was something you had repaired but not patched the ceiling. Any fool would know it was the toilet. You need to check the qualifications of your repair people. Might be a good idea to make use of your own personal HOME INSPECTOR next time he visits. I work cheap as long as I don't get my tools out. Lets see, you had two men together with 85 plus years of construction and building maintenance experience sitting on your sofa and couldn't say "Hey got any idea what is going on with my ceiling?". You got to ASK!!!

Tell Sarah all water is sh*twater don't you know they dump the stuff in the rivers. Where do you think it goes? Intake down stream. I pee in my toilet up north and you drink it down south. Need to move to Canada.

Chris D. Hilton said...

I put a link to your blog on the thank you page that comes up when anyone adds their e-mail address to Jonah's page on my site. You can see it at

Send cash!!!

Katherine @ Grass Stains said...

Chris, Anytime you're here, you have my distinct permission to ask me questions about brown stains on my ceilings!

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