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 Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: PrettyHandy (OK)

I first noticed that my bathtub was slow draining on a wednesday by sunday the bathtub wasn't draining at all and that evening the dishwasher drain was backed up too so i put in my first maintenance request on Oct. 8th, on the 13th or 14th I noticed a foul smell coming from the outside. In the back right under my bedroom window is a overflow or vent pipe coming out of the ground. all around it is raw sewage and what appear to be paper towels and toilet paper and whole pieces of feces just free floating in the vast river of murky brown water that is bubbling up from this 2"-3" white pipe in the ground. So i called the emergency maint.number. Just 3 days ago I discovered that the bathtub was indeed draining now, right onto my closet floor. I contacted the main office once again. It is currently NOV 5th. after 6 maint. requests and at least as many phone calls and reassurances that they were calling the plumber immediately and would get back to me to let me know when i could expect someone to come fix it... i'm pretty sure y'all are smart enough to guess i wouldn't be making this post if mngmnt had actually had done this; or anything else they should of or said they would have done. but they didn't, so please don't suggest that i call the apartment management first or second or at all in anyway because I'm done trying to talk to them and on monday i will be calling a lawyer. but in the meantime i need to be able to shower and use my water in general without causing more damage to the property and myself as well. so How do I go about clearing this blockage so that it will drain? I'm pretty sure it is either that the vent on the roof is blocked or there is a collapsed or blocked drain pipe somewhere between the city's main drain line at the street or wherever it is and the overflow under my window. where do I snake from and what do i do about the leaking into my closet? will that stop when the water has somewhere else to go?

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: packy (MA)

you have a main line stoppage. clearing the bathtub drain will do nothing to help your problem.
i'm guessing that someone needs to stick a deain cleaning cable down the pipe that is overflowing.

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: sum (FL)

You have only few choices.

(1) continue to nudge the management company to get a professional to come fix it. Is there a way to escalate this to the owner level if management is not responsive. Sometimes a call to the health department (or a threat to call) can light a fire under their butts. Yes, a sewage blockage is a health hazard and an emergency.

(2) Fix it yourself by hiring a professional drain cleaner, then have the property management pay you back for the bill. Of course they will not, they will say the pipe was clean when you moved in, and if it suddenly stop flowing, then it must be something you caused, so they will not pay. Getting a lawyer involved may not help you get reimbursed.

I say tell them if the issue is not resolved immediately (say within 24 hours), you will call the health department. I mean resolved, not responded, or investigated, or call someone else who calls someone else. If they do that, fine. If they do not, you have to move into a hotel and look for a new place. Send them the hotel bill.

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: bernabeu (SC)

ALSO send written notice via USPS return receipt requested KEEPING A COPY.

(balance of 'legal' advice deleted)

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"



Edited 1 times.

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: packy (MA)

from plbg website..
" Please refrain from asking or discussing legal questions,"..

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: bernabeu (SC)

... darn it - you are correct - again

tongue sticking out smiley

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

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 Re: Stopped up bathtub now slow leaking into bedroom closet in downstairs apt.
Author: DaveMill (CA)

This is not legal advice:

Fecal matter on the surface of the ground is a serious health hazard to everyone in the building and the neighborhood. Depending on the severity and the jurisdiction, penalties may include rent refunds for each day the problem persists and reimbursement of cleanup costs. If sewage is leaking onto carpets, the building may have to be sanitized and (rarely) evacuated. In all cases, it is the building owner's responsibility to maintain safe and sanitary living conditions; they are now in violation.

It sounds like more than 24 hours has gone by. It's your choice when to call 911. Waiting does not help anyone.

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