The Leak

Colin and I were lazing about watching a movie after a long Saturday when I heard a drip coming from the kitchen. It was about 10PM and the last thing I wanted to do was deal with a leaky anything. I wondered if it was left over water from the rains we’d had. Pausing the movie, we looked in the kitchen and found a small drip coming from the ceiling. We had about 30 minutes left on our movie and I really wanted to see how it ended. I put a pot under the drip and we finished our flick.

In that 30 minute time we came into the kitchen and found this:


Only it was much worse because it was growing. The drip was turning into a gush. It was already spreading to the carpet!

I wish that I could tell you how prepared we were for emergencies and knew exactly where to go to turn off our water. No. We weren’t. Colin and I went to the location we thought was the water shut-off only to discover it was, in fact, the gas. Not helpful.

Meanwhile, the water was pooling like, well, a pool. While I tried to find the correct valve, Colin headed up to the attic to see if he could see the source. He did the hunchback crawl over to the two holes in the ceiling where the water was dripping.


Turns out it was a plastic tube that had been jimmy rigged connected to the main water pipe to the refrigerator’s water dispenser/ice maker. FYI, plastic tubing is not the kind of material you want to be using up in your attic. Too many ways it can split. One of them being when a rat chews on it.

And that’s exactly what we found to be the cause this time.

As I was in the garage, helping Colin determine which pipe went where, I saw the furry little creature shimmy up to the large hole in the wall and crawl along those very water pipes into our attic. Houston, we have a problem.

Meanwhile, the water was still gushing and we were running out of options. We decided to call our friend and former apartment manager guru to get ideas about where the water shut-off could be. He ended up coming over (bless his heart!) and at 11PM we were fiddling with the main shut-off valve at the street level.

After many attempts at turning an ancient key that probably hasn’t seen the light of day since the Reagan Era, we were able to stop the water flow.

And then we had no water.

The next day being Sunday, we had a plumber come out to assess the situation at the emergency rate of $198/hour, subsequent hours $90. Did I mention there are benefits to renting?

But it meant we couldn’t go to church. The kids made the most of the adventure. Warren wanted to climb up there but probably wouldn’t have gone through with it had we actually let him.


Colin acted as plumber’s assistant and watched as the guy soldered a metal sleeve over the problem area. Two hours later, it was back to normal. Except that we’d have to wait until normal business hours to get him to re-connect to the refrigerator with a copper tube. An amenity that I greatly appreciate but could survive without for a few days. For the most part.


We spent the rest of the day with the carpet pulled back and the fans blowing full blast. It worked. The carpet is just fine.


This was one adventure that we would have gladly skipped. Thank goodness it’s over. Now all we need to do is get rid of the rats. The kids really want pets, but this seems a bit much, don’t you think…

5 thoughts on “The Leak”

  1. Ugh. I’m sorry. There is just no bright side to that one. You seem to be handling it remarkably well. (I dissolve when rodents are involved). Good luck!

  2. What a story! I’m trying to figure out what’s worse – Discovering that a rat chewed your pipes, or having to tell management that you caused the leak by trying to install a bidet.

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