Leaking from bathroom, to ceiling below

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    • #279249
      MasterPlumbers
      Keymaster

      We’re in a house new to us. When the toilet was first flushed, the water leaked to the room below. When the water was cut off and the toilet pulled, we found that the top of the flange (assuming there was one) was flush with the tile floor, which one plumber thought was the reason the toilet had leaked. (Apparently, a new tile floor was at some point in time installed over an old one, and the new one came up to the level of the top of the flange. Or so we assume.)

      Nonetheless, the plumber replaced the wax ring, reset the toilet, and the leak continued. Any suggestions about where we go from here? We have nightmares about tearing up the bathroom floor . . . or the ceiling below it. Could a pipe (probably cast-iron since the house was built in the 1960s) have developed a leak? Could that be the problem? (The toilet, we suspect, had not been used in some time.) Or is the problem simply the absence of a flange and a good seal?

      Maybe most important: who do we trust to diagnose and correct the problem? Thanks!

    • #300365
      mikeinpa

      You probably have copper dwv system if built in 60 s which most likely the copper has failed from the acids in urine ,common with copper waste lines.

    • #300366
      nicktheplumber

      I assume that the leak occurs only during the flushing of the toilet. If so, it means that there is a leak at the flange or in the drainpipe below that. I also assume that your bowl is not cracked somewhere after the bowl trap.

      A flange that is installed flush or below the floor level is a problem. Flanges must sit ON the floor to mate properly with the toilet outflow spigot. If you can’t raise the flange, you could try installing a wax seal with an integral rubber/plastic sleeve. Mikeinpa raises other potential problems, namely a leak in the waste pipe itself. Properly installed CI, Cu, or plastic drain pipe ought not to leak. CI pipe, in particular, should last longer than you or I can reasonable expect to live…I’ve never seen any properly installed CU waste lines that have failed because of urine corrosion. Cu DWV pipe is perfectly fine, in my opinion. I rarely use the stuff myself, but that is because it is so damned expensive, and plastic DWV is cheaper and easier to install.

      NtP

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