Watts Floodsafe? Not Very! part 1

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by Redwood, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    For some time I have been posting telling people to avoid Watts Floodsafe supplies for Toilets, Faucets, Icemakers, Dishwashers, and Washing Machines.

    I have been posting telling of how I had a customer have one break at the compression connector to the Floodsafe Valve connection point causing a lot of water damage to his home.

    [​IMG]

    The day I did that job I did not have a camera with me to get a picture of the evidence. The Floodsafe Supply was not installed by me as I was already avoiding them because of the nuisance trips that are fairly well known to happen with them. The supply was retained by the customer as evidence.

    Recently a person seeing one of my posts on this connection failure E-Mailed me photo's of the same thing happening at his house. A Watts Floodsafe Dishwasher Supply failed at the same connection that I was talking about. The connector was not over tightened, 1/3 of a turn with the wrench and the compression connector was turning by hand, pressure was 70 PSI. the valve just blew apart on it's own flooding the house and causing about $25K in damage maybe higher if the entire wood floor has to come up or, just the kitchen portion.

    In his own words, "I think the valve was poorly manufactured or damaged during manufacture. Like I said before, no freeze, no physical damage I could see. Just blew all by itself. Bury Watts all you want, this product is crap."

    Here is a picture of the failed connector under the sink.
    [​IMG]

    Here is a picture of the failed connector. Note how the connection between the compression fitting and the safety valve is where the failure occurred. This left the compression fitting on the stop valve spraying water while the safety valve blew off.
    [​IMG]

    Here is a picture of the label on the failed Watts Floodsafe Dishwasher Supply.
    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 4, 2011
  2. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Watts Floodsafe? Not Very! part2

    This is a picture of the flooded kitchen hardwood floor.
    [​IMG]

    This is a picture of the ceiling below the kitchen prior to demo.
    [​IMG]

    And this is the picture of the same area after demo.
    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 4, 2011
  3. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    25 K ...even if the insurance company covered it I would go after them for the deductible just because...
  4. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I never liked the braided supply lines period, and around here the local inspectors do not like them as well.Its just one of the many things they come out with trying to "improve" on things but in reality makes things worse. like Orangeburg pipe.
  5. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    POS invention


    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 21, 2011
  6. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

    Messages:
    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    I considered one of these, glad I opted not to install it
  7. Who paid for the damage???

    who got stuck with the bill for damages???

    the insurance company or the home-owner
    or the plumber du-jour????


    certainly gives me the shivers just thinking about
    having to pay for all that mess...


    the hardwood floor looks like it was worth about at least 20k alone
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2009
  8. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    At this point I don't beleive the cards have all been dealt.
    I will try posting the information when it becomes available.
  9. dimprov

    dimprov New Member

    Messages:
    38
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    How ironic! Thanks for the warning. It's hard to see what was holding that connector together in the first place.

    I saw FloodSafe demoed on "Cool Tools" about a year ago. It did seem kinda cool.... Glad I didn't buy one.

    SewerRatz: what do you prefer over braided connections?

    I heard you're supposed to replace your braided connections about once every 5 years, but I never really understood why. Does the chlorine oxidize the tubing inside or something? When I replaced mine, the only thing that looked worn out were the washers that make the seal on either end. Replacing the whole thing seemed like overkill.

    David
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2009
  10. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Thats just it Dimprov,
    There is just about nothing holding it together.
    On the compression fitting there is a thin lip that breaks and on the Floodsafe valve there is a small round wire clip.
    Maybe this blow up will let you see it...

    [​IMG]
  11. vtomecek

    vtomecek New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    Agree Wholeheartedly these are Rubbish

    Sure enough, after replacing the sink connections throughout my house, I had a majority of these "floodsafe" hoses start drip leaking from the compression fitting pointed out above. Ended up having to go back to normal steel braided without the floodsafe "protection." Thanks for this information before they started busting.
  12. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Messages:
    810
    Location:
    Penticton, BC
    Wow.

    I'll make sure not to ever install one of these lines, or recommend them.
  13. DIYourselfer

    DIYourselfer New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Location:
    New York
    If I said "Made in China" would I be correct?
  14. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,798
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    I don't know if they are, but that's not really the problem.

    1) They need resetting too much

    2) They have a fragile connection that can break.


  15. HoracioO

    HoracioO New Member

    Messages:
    26
    Location:
    NV
    What is it with this obsession?

    The company that is selling it to you is responsible for the design specs, QA and most of the profits, yet you get obsessed about where it is made. Wake up and start asking the company whose label is on it why the quality sucks! Be it Watts selling poorly designed fittings or Mattel selling lead laced toys the responsibility rest squarely in the board room of these large corporations, US or other wise.
  16. burleymike

    burleymike New Member

    Messages:
    118
    Location:
    Idaho
    I used all pex risers for my sinks and toilets. For the dishwasher I used 3/8 crimped 3/8 pex. I hope this will last as long as copper would have. I gave up on the braided hoses after having one that was less than a year old leak.

    I will not even bother looking at these for the washing machine. What a POS
  17. Maindish

    Maindish New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    Looks like my house!

    Deja Vu!
    I could've taken pictures just like that one month ago. It wasn't a Floodsafe (although I've been using 3 without incident for a couple years). I had installed a drinking water filter below the sink. It had integral push-in style tube o-ring fittings. I've used these for pneumatics for years. I even threw out the cheap tubing the kit supplied and used the nice 1/8" PEX hose made for refridgerators with the preformed compression end. Anyways, the collar in the fitting that holds the tube blew out. That little line sprayed all day to the tune of almost $30K.

    Now that my joists are all open beneath I'm trying to think of the most reliable way to re-plumb. I'm leaning towards running 3/8" PEX (crimp-ring style) to a wall box with the angle valve behind the fridge. The other end will come all the up under the floor to the exposed plumbing under the sink. This way I have no buried connections. I really had gotten used to the big filter and want to do something like it again, preferably with threaded fittings; the outlet would tee off to the icemaker line and to a filtered water spout on the sink. I was looking to see if FloodSafe came as a threaded valve w/o the hose when I found this thread.

    Any recommendations on my install? I am nervous as heck about ever having a line break again. What a miserable process.

    Ultimately, I think it'd be wise for the insurance companies to fund the development of an affordable automatic shutoff. I envision a system of distributed water sensors in each bathroom, kitchen, utility room, etc, as well as a freeze sensor. Any sensor could trip a 1" shutoff valve on the supply line to the house. One valve for the house - no hose gimmicks. The valve would fail closed, which is to say that it must have power to be open. This could save SO much money. Does anything like this exist? Does it violate code in any way to install an automated valve on the supply line?
  18. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I believe this might be a system similar to what you are talking about...
    http://www.watercop.com/overview.aspx
  19. mmbodyshop

    mmbodyshop New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    illinois
    Watts Floodsafe Supply Line Failure

    I have not been able to find any information on whether anyone else has experienced a total failure with the Watts Floodsafe supply lines? This product was installed on my dishwasher in my newly built home, which has turned out to be a very bad idea. After a month of use the supply line broke between the compression fitting and the "floodsafe" shutoff valve. The compression fitting had been installed per the manufacturers instructions (hand tighten and 1/4 turn with wrench); which was confirmed when I removed it with a 1/4 turn and hand loosened. The insurance ajuster agreed it appeared to be a defect in the hose/construction.

    As a result of the failure water filled the kitchen, master bedroom, dining room, living room, and unfinished basement. So far to date we are looking at approximately $15,000-$20,000 damage, more if we end up having to replace the custom cabinets.
  20. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,308
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    If you had been a regular on this forum, you would have learned that this is all too common with the Watts Floodsafe lines. The problem is the entire product is worthless. Sad to say that this is just another lesson learned too late. I hope your insurance will come through for you.
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