What would you suppose is one of a homeowner’s worst nightmare? For me,it was coming home after a three day weekend in Boston, and upon opening my garage door I sense moisture in the air. Not just damp, I mean wet. I hear nothing, or smell nothing, but I know that water is running somewhere. I virtually run upstairs, and enter the two bathrooms, and all is dry. I run back downstairs, and once again all is dry in the kitchen and the powder room. I hold my breath and make a beeline to the lower level, and before I get to the bottom of the stairs, it’s water water water, everywhere. I take off my shoes and head for the guest bathroom, and instantly know that the source is from the toilet area. It seems that a stainless steel line, a virtually unbreakable component, that supplies my new toto toilet, has ruptured. This can’t happen, it is not possible. Braided stainless can’t go down,—-but it did. I have expensive plumbing fixtures throughout the house, mostly from Dornbracht of Germany, and I have never had an issue with any of the stuff. The Toto toilet worked flawlessly, but just how a simple $20.00 piece of stainless can cause such an issue is almost a mystery to me. The thing is just this. It’s a half inch line, which is the same as most garden hoses, and left unchecked for a few days, well you do the math!
Fifteen hundred square feet of damp carpet, and ruined padding. Sheetrock that will have to be removed. Some wood furniture is in doubt,and an area of wooden flooring has been ruined. The first estimate is over 35,000 dollars, and fortunately, I have a great insurance policy, but who pays for the supreme aggravation? I never asked the plumber what he was using 7 years ago when my wife and I decided to renovate our home, but he suggested various lines, one of them being the aforementioned Dornbracht, and the other being Rohl. I have never experienced the slightest problem with any of the stuff. The thermostatic shower valves are great, and the shower heads never clog. The faucets are wonderfully designed, and I had the sense to use top of the line supply valves, also made by Dornbracht, under the sink. Why, oh why, did I care less about the toilet supply line. I figured stainless is stainless, but this stainless came from China, and seven years ago their quality might not have been what it is today.
The point of this whole blog, is to suggest strongly to the reader to check on just what you are having installed in your home, and spend the extra dollar to prevent what I had to go through. A good lesson learned for me.