Sewer Backup into Condo

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    • #278637
      Avatar photoManpreet Singh Bedi

        Recently purchased a ground-floor condominium in a building built in 1961 as apartments and converted to condos in 1983. While not home the sewer backed up, the toilet overflowed, and sewer water flooded the bathroom, hallway and one bedroom. Carpet ruined. I called the property management company. People put stuff down the sink, etc. that they shouldn’t…therefore I (and other ground-floor condos) have this problem. The plumber told me there is NOTHING I can do to avoid a repeat of this. Is he correct?

      • #298954
        Avatar photohj

          Yes. If a building is designed as separate dwellings, then the plumbing for each is isolated so that each unit creates its own problems. An apartment complex does not do this since the management company is responsible for the entire complex. But when an apartment is converted to condos, then you have an owner responible for the plumbing in his unit and the management company responsible for the common piping in the walls and outside. Since this common piping will be connected to several apartment/condo units, any one of them can cause a blockage and since water always chooses the lowest point to overflow, that will be the first floor units.

        • #298955
          Avatar photoSylvanLMP

            Hi Tony HJ is WRONG AGAIN as usual

            Yes, there can be something done.

            There is something called a check valve Or Back water valve that keeps waste from flowing in reverse into your apartment.

            They make a check valve that fits under the toilet and one for your basin waste (normally 11/2″).

            You can use a regular disk type of check permanently installed

            If you have a shower stall you can use a 2″ test plug when your away on vacation.(remove the screen)

            The key is knowing water seeks its own level and takes the path of least resistance.

            Knowing this by limiting where the waste can go in your apartment your forcing it to go into some other location. Not your problem.

            Many times there are water conditions that do require the use of check valves and this sounds like one of them.

            You could also use a “rubber test ball” that you pump up with a bicycle pump before you leave on vacation then when you come back just let the air out of this ball to be reused at a later date.

            They come in all sizes and pump up like tire.

            Using this ball should cause enough of a restriction to force the water to take another path.

            What I am suggesting doesn’t require any breaking of walls or floors and can possibly save you the aggravation of a repeat performance.

            This is America We CAN DO almost anything. Just takes a little time to find the right mechanic for the job.

            Have a great week end

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