• Last Updated:
  • May 12th, 2019 11:36 pm
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[OP]
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Jun 23, 2014
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Vancouver, BC

Flooded Ceiling

I woke up this morning to find a 1m x 0.5m patch of my living room ceiling soaked and dripping. The drip rate was approx. a drip every 3-5 seconds. The room directly above the patch is a bathroom.
The cupboard under the bathroom sink was wet (not flooded) and one of the valves was leaking slightly. The leak from the valve seemed sufficient to wet the cupboard floor but didn't seem enough to cause such a wet patch on the ceiling of the floor below (unless it's been dripping like that for weeks/months). The patch on the ceiling wasn't steadily growing over time. Last night it wasn't there, and this morning it was dripping through.
I shut of the valve to the bathroom sink and then the main valve. The dripping stopped a short while later.
Any advice on how I should proceed?
How can I identify if the leaky valve (or something else) was the cause?
Do I need to cut a hole in the living room ceiling so I can stick my head through and look around? Does the entire board that makes up that section of the ceiling need to be removed? Does the entire ceiling need to be replaced?
How do I assess this?
Thanks.

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10 replies
Deal Addict
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Aug 29, 2001
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Water loo
drill a small hole to allow the water to escape.
if you don't care about the ceiling some specialized ceiling touch up paint can hide the stains after it dries out.
if you care, well... you probably have to rip out the entire ceiling to replace the damaged part to make it all look the same.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 5, 2009
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I would cut open the ceiling first. You need to replace that section anyways and it will give you a view to what’s going on
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Oct 9, 2010
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The slow-drip from that faucet likely did not cause this issue because, as you said, it didn't slowly grow. I would expect that you have a larger leak in something like a drain: no water coming out until you take a shower or something, then lots of water. Then no water again.

Another option is that the sink drip was filling a vapour-barrier somewhere under that sink. After 3 months, it rips and dumps a large payload of water all at once.

In any case, just cut out the square and see what's up. Repairing the drywall is relatively simple, and you'll have an easy view of the offending area.
One who is offended by truth, has no place among those who seek wisdom.
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Apr 6, 2008
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To make it perfect, you need to remove the damaged drywall, and scrape and respray the whole room. Once you cut out the drywall, you'll have a better idea of what's going on. Water, like electricity, always finds the path of least resistance, which isn't always the same as gravity. So it may have traveled a little bit from where it started. After opening up the damaged drywall, run the shower, tap, etc to see if you can recreate the water falling down.
Deal Addict
Jan 28, 2007
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SW Ontario
And let it dry out before installing the drywall back on the ceiling.

Check all the crimp rings on the Pex lines as well as the valves in the cabinet.
That shutoff valve looks to me like it has a froze drain on the side, so make sure it is done up tight as it could be the source of the drip.

This is one if the reasons I bought Smartthings Hub, sensors, and Dome Main Shut off Controller ... every sink, toilet, and tub drain has a leak monitor sensor that not only notifies me, but also shuts off the water. It's cheap insurance.
[OP]
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Jun 23, 2014
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Vancouver, BC
Jojo_Madman wrote:
May 11th, 2019 8:31 pm
That shutoff valve looks to me like it has a froze drain on the side, so make sure it is done up tight as it could be the source of the drip.
What is a froze drain?
This is one if the reasons I bought Smartthings Hub, sensors, and Dome Main Shut off Controller ... every sink, toilet, and tub drain has a leak monitor sensor that not only notifies me, but also shuts off the water. It's cheap insurance.
Can you teach me how you did that? I'm running homeassistant but I have no idea how I would install sensors on every sink/toilet/tub drain.
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Jan 28, 2007
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Sievert wrote:
May 11th, 2019 9:55 pm
What is a froze drain?


Can you teach me how you did that? I'm running homeassistant but I have no idea how I would install sensors on every sink/toilet/tub drain.
Should have been freeze drain port ... let's you drain water out if used in a location subjected to unheated areas when installed.
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Nov 9, 2008
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Replace those shutoff valves with mini-ball valves or you'll risk having this happen again.

Those turn gate valves are notorious for slow leaks.
[OP]
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Jun 23, 2014
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jacquesstrap wrote:
May 12th, 2019 8:00 am
Replace those shutoff valves with mini-ball valves or you'll risk having this happen again.

Those turn gate valves are notorious for slow leaks.
That valve is crimped to the pipes. Do I need to replace the pipe sections?
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Feb 4, 2010
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jacquesstrap wrote:
May 12th, 2019 8:00 am
Replace those shutoff valves with mini-ball valves or you'll risk having this happen again.

Those turn gate valves are notorious for slow leaks.
What about these kind of shut-off valves for the sink/toilet Image

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