Part of My Ceiling Just Fell Down

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afk780

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Hey all, so this forum has served me well in the past. Wanted to run something by ya'll to see how concerned I should be about this new development.

So for background info, I live in a multi-story pre-war apartment building. My apartment has been dealing with a slow leak from upstairs for the past year. The super has said that he hasn't been able to find the source of the leak and his usual go-to plan is to just patch/seal it up and then repair again when it inevitably leaks again.

However, last night a part of my ceiling collapsed and this was after me notifying him yet again of the slow leak (there was even a bit of water collecting in the trash can the day before). I've contacted building management to see what they plan on doing about the leak/damage and they just keep looping back to the super no matter what I say.

So, all that to just ask ya'll to kindly take a look at a couple of photos I'll be including of the new hole in my bathroom ceiling. I see some water stains in the wood. How concerned should we be about structural integrity? What do ya'll think?
 

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JG plumbing

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You can't tell much about the structural integrity in those pictures. I'm not sure and it probably depends where you live but you may have some legal rights here. "the super" doesn't sound like much, is be more worried about mold.
 

Jeff Handy

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Be aware, the leak might be from right above you, or even higher floors, or the roof, water can creep pretty far on its way down.

If from the bath right above you, the list of suspects is very long.

Leaking tub/shower valve behind the wall.
Shower valve trim loose or not caulked.
Likewise for the tub spout.
Caulking failure around the tub.
Loose tiles on tub wall or bathroom floor.
An old floor cleanout with a missing or unsealed trim cover.
Failed shower door seal leaking water outside and onto the floor.
The tenants upstairs might be placing their shower doors in reverse order, letting water shoot right past the gap in the middle.
Leaking vanity drain, trap, rusted piping in the wall.
Leaking shutoffs or faucet or supplies.
Leaking toilet tank or wax seal, yes the water can sometimes run that far sideways.
Leaking air vent or bathroom vent on the roof.
Leaking window caulking, bad flashing letting in rain.
Corroded cast iron or copper drain lines.
Corroded galvanized water lines.
Toilet is running by itself continuously, causing condensation on the drain pipe.
Probably a few sources I missed.

The new inspection hole will be helpful!

Before you finally seal it up after repairing the mystery leak, you could bleach everything up there, or spray the heck out of it with Concrobium.
 

Old Man James

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Yeah, in the lower right area where that patch of white is; that looks like some kind of pipe and it doesn't look quite straight and what is that white?.
What Jeff said -
 

Duckbutter

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This is your opportunity to locate the leak, get a step ladder & flashlight, trace any dampness to it's highest point.

Have the upstairs Tennent run & fill the bath/run shower, run the lav, fill the basin & drain, flush the toilet repeatedly. Ask him if he see's any signs of moisture perhaps coming from above.

Chances are, the leak is the floor above you, damage would be greater there than yours if it were above.

You may also want to ask the super if there were any bath remodels or fixture replacements done a year ago above you.

If the super just closes the ceiling without locating the leak, you'll be back to this point again.
 

Old Man James

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Since I had never heard of it, I 'Googled' Concrobium. Then I took the option to see it on Amazon; checked the single 'stars' - very interesting read.
I was wondering if those here concurred (?)
 

Jeff Handy

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Home Depot and Amazon and other stores sell it.
In a spray bottle and also gallon size, to be used in a fogger for an attic or large room with a mold problem.

You can rent the fogger.

Nice thing is it has no bleach smell, and is non toxic to people or pets.

Sprays clear like water.
 
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