Leaking or Sweating PVC below Shower?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by LD, Jul 14, 2009.

  1. LD

    LD New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    My kitchen ceiling started getting soggy in one spot below the shower. It is clear that this spot was patched before but we have had no problems with it for 7 years until AFTER the house was frozen for a week during the ice storm.

    It wasn't gushing water but one day I stuck my finger in the center of the patch area and my finger went right through. Above the damp wall board was a thin layer of pink insulation and then the PVC pipe is RIGHT there. I have run the shower but can't get it to leak. It looks like it may have a slight crack on the surface but it's not clear to me if this is the case.
    I assume it is not an issue of 'pipe sweating' and touching the wallboard or we would have had problems with it much earlier or can this occur as well?

    Initially I was going to get out my fein multimaster and cut a big square out of the ceiling but I have no idea where pipe is!!
    Please advice and thank you so much.
    :eek:
     
  2. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2004
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    The pink indicated the drywall has been soaked. It has to be replaced no matter what is leaking, so open the wall. I would use a box opener rather than a saw. That will avoid the possibility of damage to pipes or wires that can't be seen. If the damage was caused by freezing, it is unlikely that it is the PVC since that has to be a drain and would have no water in it to freeze, but the wall has to be opened anyway, so do that rather than you or us guessing.
     
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  4. LD

    LD New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Part II

    It is the pvc pipe coming directly out of the bottom of the shower. Looks like rusty water is leaking out from the metal fittings that come up into the bottom of the shower and running on the outside of the pvc drainage pipe. Is there some kind of sealant I can put around the top of everything from the shower side?
    (and thanks for the boxcutter idea)
     
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2004
    Occupation:
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    Location:
    New England
    How is the shower built? Is is tiled, a one-piece, or what? The answer may differ. There are lots of ways to make a bad shower, and only a few acceptable ways to do it right.
     
  6. LD

    LD New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Fiberglass Shower

    Looks like this is a standard drain leak under a fiberglass shower. I found this 'great' wingtite replacement drain and i followed their video to see if I could get the old one out but it looks like a solid piece and I can't do step 2: "remove compression nut". somewhere this thing is leaking up top between the metal pieces or where the metal meets the pvc....
    by the way, are fiberglass showers supposed to be hanging in midair with the bottom through a cutout in the subfloor? No wonder the thing moves so much when my hubby steps on it.....
     
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