Drain problem

Today, I inspection a whirlpool tub. Nothing wrong. I open the drain. Twenty minutes later, I found the whirlpool tub had not drained. The sound of draining water could be heard. The tub was not draining. Do you think this a venting problem or drainage problem, or both. What would cause this? The tub did drain some, but stopped.


Does it matter from an inspection perspective? Just state that the tub is not draining properly. Leave the specific diagnosis and repair to the plumber.

BTW: Bad vent will often result in very noisy drain and may cause siphoning from adjacent fixtures, but then so can a partially clogged waste line. Why guess at the cause?

Was it new construction?

I’m with Chuck. There are many variables that could cause the tub not to drain or drain properly that, often, won’t be known until it is repaired.

These guys are exactly right! STOP trying to troubleshoot problems! This is how HI get their behinds in a vice, overstating what the cause is. If something does not work properly and using normal operating controls, you have identified an issue that requires the services of another profession.

In some cases and areas of the country you can get hung out to dry for going beyond what your license allows and step over into another profession’s area of license. If it is working normally, move on, if it not, identify the problem, then move on. We need to keep hammering this home until everyone gets it. We are inspectors, not troubleshooters or servicemen. This is why so much of the public has misconceptions about what a home inspection is and what it entails. I am trained and certified in HVAC but I do not even carry a set of gauges on my truck. If it does not work using the normal controls at the thermostat, I call for service by a licensed HVAC contractor. If the customer asks me what is wrong, I tell them it is not responding to normal operating controls and that it could be a myriad of reasons why it isn’t working and that they will need the services of a licensed HVAC contractor. NOT their cousin Willard who is “in construction” or their nephew who is a duct monkey working a summer job for a local HVAC dealer.

In this case, call a plumber, slow drain, not draining properly, take your pick.

Thanks! Gosh! I just wanted to know for myself. I had already done all the other. Sometimes it good to learn something new.

Buck -

If a home inspector is CURIOUS, he should ask to be there when the repair guru is called out. But there could be multiple problems and what made this happen this time will likely not be the reason next time.

Therefore as the others have already tactlessly and thoughtlessly said:

“Who Gives A *****”.

Describe your observations and the condition; make a recommendation to …, then move on and get done sooner.

You’ll have less wrinkles, less stress, and get to happy hour at Bazooka’s Exotic Showgirls Lounge earlier in the afternoon.

The drain cap/top may have a loose washer/seal. The cap/top may also be mal-adjusted. I would have spent up to 5 minutes to see if it might be something very simple, instead of having a plumber come out to make a simple adjustment.

Although the report should only state the problem, it is beneficial for the inspector to at least have an idea if the client is present and asks. In this case, there are several conditions that would cause this problem and that is what should be states, problems such as “a clog, inadequate/improper venting, undersized pipe, etc”. This will give the client some confidence in your ability.

We should not be diagnosing problems but should be familiar with them so asking a question on a forum should not be scrutinized.