I was inspecting a home. The owner was following. We finished the master bathroom and went to the media room. The wife screamed. The bathroom was flooded. The toilet water supply line spontaneously broke where it attached to the tank. One hour of clean up with the seller.
In this particular situation I chose to flush the toilet and go about my way. I did not hug it or take off the tank lid. The seller told his wife “I saw him flush it. That’s all he did”.
I found information on the internet that older plastic connectors were spontaneously failing. The plastic was thinner and stressed the threads. Other factors such as repeated use and over tightening come into play.
I went home thinking “I would have been screwed if the seller was not with me”. Guess that’s what insurance is for but makes me wonder if I need a body cam. :roll: Now I recommend WIFI water detection sensors that shut off the main water valve. To insanity and beyond.
Just like garage doors… you should be checking all fitting and hardware prior to testing. Had you done so, the fitting would have broke in your hand, and you could have turned off the supply with minimal leakage/damage… assuming you tested the shutoff first to be sure it wasn’t frozen.
Good points but I respectfully disagree with “you should”. InterNACHI Standards (and all other I know of) state “The inspector is not required to operate any shut-off valves or manual stop valves.”
Operating a stop or shut off valve may not result in a leak at the time of inspection but could leak later that night. If you exceed the Standard and operate the valve then you may be held liable for subsequent damages. Darned if you do or don’t but following the Standard is worth considering.
Per this link the problem with the connector cannot usually be visually ascertained. InterNACHI Standards do require checking the toilet for attachment to the floor and that could wriggle the connector however they do not require anything other then flushing the toilet and visually inspecting it. Tweaking the connector fastener technically exceeds visual inspection and might pose a greater risk to the inspector than visually inspecting it.
There are web sites that provide insurance companies with advise regarding how to subrogate claims (sometimes your insurance). One offered interesting advice. Recommend your client verify shut off and stop valve operation.
I respect anyone’s choice to exceed the Standards but they were carefully written. It’s a professional choice.
Perhaps not a big deal. Its the first incident I have witnessed in 30 years.
INterNACHI Standard The inspector shall report as in need of correction toilets that were damaged, had loose connections to the floor, were leaking, or had tank components that did not operate. Specific limitations also reiterate shut off valves do not have to be operated.