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Rick
Rick, Construction Supervisor
Category: Plumbing
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Experience:  Licensed Master plumber with 40+ yrs. experience.
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Rick: The same old house has two plumbing leaks in the bathroom.

Resolved Question:

Rick: The same old house has two plumbing leaks in the bathroom. The leaks are inside the walls and the piping is very old. I have one estimat that is as follows:



Replace bath tub - Replace exiting tub with fiberglass and replace three faucet set up with single no scold per
Code - $2,569.00
Find and repair water leak - find leak in water line or drain and repair (copper) - $725.00
Finish and paint sheetrock - remove damaged sheetrock and replace it finish and paint - $625.00
Replace support beams under tub - Replace support beams cause of rot from water - $1,275.00
Removal and Disposal - Remove and dispose of T12 lamp bulbs and ballast - $125.00
Replace flooring - $875.00
Total : $6,194

What I really want done is to replace the damaged pipe or repair the leak and I don't have $6194 to spend. What are your recommendations.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Plumbing
Expert:  Gina-Mod replied 1 year ago.

Hello,


I'm Gina, and I’m a moderator for this topic. I sent your requested professional, Rick, a message to follow up with you here, when they are back online.

If I can help further, please let me know. Thank you for your continued patience.


Best,

Gina-Moderator
Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
Welcome, my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will do my best to help with your issue

I would get another estimate from a different contractor, 2 or 3 more would be even better. Make it clear what you want done. It's obvious from the above that this contractors is probably padding the project with unnecessary work. The only reason all this work might be justified is if the leak(s) was left unattended for a very long time causing structural damage. Once you get a couple more bids you'll have a better idea just what must be done.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Rick:


What does a typical water leak repair cost? I know where the leaks are located and I believe approximately 15 feet of piping needs to be replaced and walls repaired and painted. Pipes are threaded black steel.


 


 

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.

There is no such thing as a "typical leak repair". Every one is different and cost depends on what's leaking and how accessible it is. The line item above for repair of the leak allows for a lot of leeway. It could cost as little as a couple hundred

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
Also, your piping (water or drain) can't be "threaded black steel". This type of piping was never used for water or drains. The associated repairs (patching walls or ceiling) could add a couple hundred more. So the $750 could cover the whole thing. There is no way I can give you an accurate assessment without seeing it. That's why I suggested you get more quotes
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Rick - Thank you for the very good and sound advice. I am in Afghanistan so I recall there was cast iron for the drain lines and some type of black pipe for water (it was not copper, it was not galvanized, and it was not plastic/PVC). What else could it be?


 


Anyway - I have one last question. Is there an approved interior water piping material that is flexible like a hose? This way I could have this problem repaired without doing major damage to the walls. What's your recommendation?

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
The drain lines could be cast iron but they would not be threaded. The only black threaded pipe is steel pipe and it was never approved for water lines and would likely rust out in short order. One possibiltiy might be old brass pipe which can get almost black over the years. PEX is a flexible plastic tubing that is now in wide usage for water piping and it's particularly well suited for replacement water piping.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I am going to look at installing PEX plastic tubing. Just give me the brand names and specifications (wall thickness) and I will close this file. I appreciate your help and I will make sure to leave a nice tip and a great review.

Expert:  Rick replied 1 year ago.
There are many PEX options. The specs for all of them are standard. It's as generic as copper tubing and fittings. The only thing I would suggest is that you find a system that uses the same crimping tool for every size like Watts. Some manufacturer's systems use a different crimper for every size and this could get costly as crimpers typically cost ~$100 each. Of course you'll probably only be using 1/2" tubing for your purposes. If you only need a few fittings you can use push lock fittings (Sharkbite is one brand). These fittings are much more expensive (~$5 each) but they require no tools. You just push the tubing into the fitting and it locks in place.
Rick, Construction Supervisor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 14511
Experience: Licensed Master plumber with 40+ yrs. experience.
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