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Blocked toilet - who is responsible?

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by Danieljk101, 17th Jul, 2016.

  1. Danieljk101

    Danieljk101 Active Member

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    Hello all.

    I just received a $400 bill for a blocked toilet in my Chermside West investment property.

    The plumber attended at 11am on a Saturday morning and this is what is included on his report.

    "Gained access to property after hours and found that the stack and toilet waste where blocked at the back of The building. Entered the jet rodder down the line from the toilet waste and cleared blockage on the junction of both fixtures.
    Entered the camera down line. Inspected and found the drain to be in good condition and unknown reason for blockage was found. Flushed through drain with water. Tested and commissioned."

    Apart from what feels like daylight robbery ($400 for 10 minutes work) am i as the landlord responsible to pay this when the toilet / plumbing is in good condition? It feels like the tenants should be responsible..?

    Thanks again. Daniel.
     
  2. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

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    Short answer - your responsibility. Unless obvious misuse by tenant i think
     
  3. VeronicaR

    VeronicaR Well-Known Member

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    Agree with EN710 - definitely landlords responsibility. Do you have some reason to think the tenants maliciously or neglectfully blocked the plumbing system?
     
  4. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Hand soap works well to lubricate when you've punished the thunder box
     
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  5. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like more than ten minutes work. And there's the callout fee.

    And the 'ick' factor!
     
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  6. Marg4000

    Marg4000 Well-Known Member

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    You are responsible.
    Marg
     
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  7. jim1964

    jim1964 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I always ask in the report the cause, unknown reason could have been avoided if he used the camera 1st, not after, that seems a bit strange actually.
     
  8. Terry_w

    Terry_w Solicitor, Finance Broker, CTA Business Member

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    Yep
     
  9. Danieljk101

    Danieljk101 Active Member

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    Thanks again everyone.

    What's another $400 when there has been over 7k worth of repairs over last 6 months. :/

    Daniel.
     
  10. Terry_w

    Terry_w Solicitor, Finance Broker, CTA Business Member

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    These expenses come with property investing.
     
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  11. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Frustrating when sounds like it was likely a barbie doll down there. A mop works better than a plunger and worth telling the tenants to give that a go first.
     
  12. DaveM

    DaveM Adelaide Buyers Agent & KFC Strategist Business Member

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    I had an unexplained toilet blockage a few weeks (and no I didnt have KFC night before). Rather than call a plumber and incur a cost for the owner, I put the hose down the inspection cap and BAM it was cleared. Sometimes you just get a snag down there and it blocks for no reason.
     
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  13. datto

    datto Well-Known Member

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    Could a high fibre diet be the root of the blockage problem? Look for tell ale signs on the porcelain.
     
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  14. teetotal

    teetotal Well-Known Member

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    Whoever went to the toilet last is responsible :D
     
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  15. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    We've had plumbers put the eel down first and then the camera. Eel brings up the remnants of the blockage and it is usually easy to diagnose what the cause is (at least in my experience with several blockages - IPs and here at home - I've watched it being done).

    With our last blockage, the eel brought up roots that were cut up with the teeth attachment. Camera went down after it was clear enough to get it through to see where the roots had found their way through cracked pipes.

    In my experience they don't need the camera to see what is blocked up, but to see where the pipes are breached.
     
  16. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    It's always good to get a before and after shot so you know what's happening. You could go in full steam ahead and blast the **** out of pipes that's are already cracked and cause more problems. Plus you'll know how to attack it

    But in most cases for private plumbing jetting first will do the job cause 90% of the time it's probably minor.
     
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  17. Big Will

    Big Will Well-Known Member

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    I know of a story where the tenant told the PM that there was a blockage in the toilet and with the kitchen sink. The PM told the LL who said get someone to fix is (LL cost). The plumber came out with the instructions from the online portal disclosing a blockage for the kitchen sink and toilet.

    Plumber then got the plunger out and started working on the kitchen sink, meanwhile in the toilet **** was literally hitting the fan (and walls). Plumber fixed the problem in the kitchen but made it worse in the bathroom.

    Who had to pay for the Hazmat cleaning?

    1. Tenant
    2. PM
    3. LL
    4. Plumber

    If you answered 4 due to the plumbers negligence you are incorrect, it was the LL as the plumber was not going to pay it (cannot force someone to pay something/not worth going to court). So the LL is even more out of pocket and requested him never to be used as their plumber. Couple of weeks later in the newsletter a new plumber was listed, so I guess the plumber lost overall.

    But yes you are responsible for the toilet unless you can prove malicious use/damage.
     
  18. Elives

    Elives Well-Known Member

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    they normally charge 100-180 for blockage. camera is more (100-250), no the plumber should not have used the camera he has done so to make extra $$ the plumber having to wait around i'm unsure how that gets charged.
     
  19. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Haha the plumber blew up the dunny! Probably from the jetter and jetting the wrong way.
    It's ugly and people don't like it for some reason! Best to put a phone book on the lid just in case :D
     
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  20. No Probs

    No Probs Well-Known Member

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    You won't see anything if you use the camera first because the pipes are full of crap, the blockage needs to be cleared before using a camera. Although most of the time a camera is not required. I only recommend clients have a camera inspection if a blockage returns shortly after having it cleared.
     
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