Most people agree that plumbing in our homes isn’t something we consciously think about until something goes wrong. So, there it is, running in the background, making our everyday lives easier. But when something does go wrong, it can become a real-life horror story. Here are a few of our favorite nightmare plumbing stories. Continue to read along to discover Halloween’s plumbing nightmares and how you can avoid them entirely.
Contact Flow Pros Plumbing to keep up with plumbing maintenance and keep the nightmares away.
Nine Plumbing Nightmares You’ll Want to Read
1| Exploding Toilet Trick
Mr. R stated that his toilet would not stop running because the fill valve wouldn’t completely shut the water off. In his previous home, he would fix his old toilet by bending the arm of the float down a little to increase the pressure on the shutoff valve. But his new toilet has a plastic arm. Being the creative thinker he was, he decided to apply some heat and soften the handle to make it bend.
Mr. R first sprayed silicone lube on everything in the tank to help everything move better. He leaned over the tank with his lighter, lit it– and a big bang! You see, the can of silicon was aerosol and it shot into the tank and exploded. Luckily this man got away with fringed hair only, but this could have been a much worse situation.
Pro Tip– Bending the arm of a float on a fill valve is an old-school trick that is not useful anymore due to new technology– especially not a plastic arm.
2| Water Heater Overflow
A plumbing technician went to Mrs. Tuck’s house to replace the heating elements. As he was working, she observed him, knowing sooner or later that the other element would eventually go out. As she figured, the element went out about a year later. She checked with the ohmmeter and headed to the supply store. When she got home, she turned the power off at the breaker.
She felt proud getting this chore done on her own. Next, Mrs. Tuck brought over her water hose and attached it to her water heater, and ran it along the floor to empty the heater, just like she saw the plumber do the previous year.
Then, she sat and waited for the water to stop flowing. But hours went by, and it finally occurred to her that she didn’t shut off the water– only the power! Now, hundreds of gallons of water were gone.
As you can guess, that’s going to be one scary electric bill!
3| Two Toilet Seats Unfortunate Scare
Tom’s dad waited for him to come home from college to ask him to install a soft cushioned toilet seat he had just purchased. So, the son diligently sprayed the old rusty toilet seat bolts with a heavy-duty penetrating lubricant, found a wrench, and returned to work on it.
Scary enough, the wrench slipped out of his hand because of the lubricated bolts. Yes, the wrench handle busted a big hole in the toilet, sending water all over the bathroom floor. With his tail tucked between his legs, he had to tell his dad that he needed a new toilet to go with his new seat.
Now, this is one of those plumbing nightmares the family will talk about for years!
4| Plumbing Nightmares of a Soapy Flood
This customer couldn’t get the valves that fed their washer machine to stop leaking. In typical DIY fashion, he replaced them and the entire faucet assembly. In addition, he reconnected the hoses, checked for leaks, and washed the first set of clothes. Fortunately, the installation process went fine.
The client was satisfied with his work and those connections. In the mood to get things off his to-do list, he left his laundry room to go do some other chores, only to come back to find himself standing in a pool of soapy water.
Unfortunately, he forgot to put the drain line back into the laundry drain. An entire washer full of dirty, soapy water had poured onto his floor.
5| Learned the Slimy Way
Steve’s wife complained to him about their slow, draining sink, so he got to work. In an effort to relieve the clog, the husband grabbed his shop vacuum and used the blow feature to push the clog through the drain.
He inserted the hose– and although his wife told him he should cover the drain first– he didn’t. Dreadfully, the husband had already turned on the vacuum and caused stinky, slimy water to shoot out of the sink’s other drain, covering them both in a disgusting unknown slim.
6| Balance is Key
A few roommates in North Florida had one of the most bizarre home plumbing nightmares we have heard of. They had lived in a fully furnished apartment for months now. And although their washing machine was a little old, it always cleaned their clothes. Until, one day, it developed a mind of its own.
Somehow the cylinder in the washer shifted in its socket due to a load of clothes that made the drum unbalanced. The washing machine started to wobble across the floor, falling over because of the oscillations. Eventually, the door opened, dumping all their clothes onto the carpet including the water in the machine..
7| Plumbing Nightmares That are Twice the Damage
As reported, a toilet in the upstairs bathroom of a client’s home had been leaking for a while now. In fact, it had rotted the floor. This customer removed the toilet and vanity to replace the wood flooring.
Once they installed the new vanity and flooring, he left off the sink to make installing the new shutoff valves easier. And yes, the main water supply to the house was turned off.
He installed the valves and went downstairs to check the water supply for any leaks. Returning, he walked back into his house feeling accomplished, only to hear a gush of water. He forgot to turn off the shutoff valves.
So once again, his bathroom was flooded, and the ceiling below had water damage. What a clean-up and repair nightmare.
8| The Horror of Rusty Pipes
One Sunday morning, little Belle woke up just in time to watch morning cartoons. But as soon as she stepped foot onto the floor out of her bed, the carpet below her was squishy with water coming up between her toes.
Like a good girl, Belle walked out of her room and into the hallway to find that no one was out there mopping or doing anything to cause the floors to be wet. So, she woke up her dad so he could get out of bed to investigate. Sadly, he found that their pipes had rusted all the way through and sprung a leak.
A leaky pipe usually has one of these common causes:
- Incorrect pipe laying
- Corrosion to pipe
- Pipes that are cracked
- Joint damage to the pipe
- Too much water pressure
9| Be Ware of the Hot and Cold Switch
In this story, Mr. Turner’s washing machine was heavily stacked on top of a dryer tucked into a tight corner, making it tough to maneuver around. Therefore, it took him 45 minutes of pulling and tugging until he got it out from the wall.
Right away, he spotted a problem– a broken clutch. But it was too late in the day to go get a part for it. He left it out in the hallway for the night, intending to make the purchase and repair the next day.
In the morning, he finally got his hands on a part, reattached the supply hoses, and pushed the unit back in place for the last time– or so, he thought. Ready to test it out, he started the washer, and everything worked great-no leaks!
While he was out at work, his wife was doing laundry and called him frantically to let him know hot water was coming out during the cold wash cycle. What happened then was a nightmare. You see, water was pouring out all over the floor. Clearly, Mr. Turner switched the hot and cold hoses when he reattached them.
Stop Halloween’s Plumbing Nightmares Before They Happen
We hope you enjoyed reading these Halloween horror stories from Flow Pros. The best way to avoid these nightmares is to call on professionals for all your plumbing repairs and maintenance.
Flow Pros Plumbing is a licensed and bonded team of highly equipped plumbers for all your home and business needs. We offer professional residential and commercial plumbing services to Bartow, Brandon, Lithia, Land O’ Lakes, and the greater Tampa Bay area. Reach out to Flow Pros Plumbing today to stop those Halloween plumbing nightmares!