Seller didn't disclose water penetration.

We recently bought a house (~4 months ago).  The sellers checked "no" previous water penetration.  A few days ago, our upstairs bathroom sinks started filling up (from the pipes below).  We do not use the upstairs bathroom sinks. My husband suspected that the a/c drain was clogged.  

Tonight we came home and the sinks were full and overflowing onto the floor. My husband came downstairs to check the living room ceiling for water.  He noticed that the downstair's living room ceiling was wet from the water leaking out of the overflowing sinks.  In the same area, we can tell that the ceiling sheetrock has previously been repaired.  We can see where the sheetrock is different and has been retextured.

Do we have any recourse?
  • August 19 2013 - US
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Answers (2)

Profile picture for blue screen exile
"water penetration" on the disclosure form means "from the outside", such as a leaky roof, bad flashing at gutters walls vent pipes and chimneys, bad caulking on windows or window trim or door trim, or water seepage through walls at building foundations.  It does not mean "clogged sewer drains" nor other clogged drain lines.

It is your responsibility to regularly periodically clear drain lines.  The seller is only required to disclose what they "know" to the best of their ability.

Having water back up on upstairs sinks when the sinks aren't even being used is a bit unusual.  Your husband may be right that it is how the condensate drain is tied into your plumbing, and that it is "clogged".  But more than a full sink of condensate drain water from only one day of use?  Very humid hot day?  It still sounds unusual.  Why would the downstairs drains work "just fine", but the upstairs drains be "clogged"?  The drain water will not go from downstairs to upstairs.  Is there a drain screen on the drain line for the condensing unit or air conditioner condensate drain?  If not, that may be what is missing and may be what caused the clog.  What is the roofing type?  Is there a lot of lose aggregate that may have found its way into the drain?  Or are birds and squirrels hiding nuts there?

You not only need to have the drain line cleared, but need to find out what caused any clog.
  • August 19 2013
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Sounds like routine home maintenance.  An over flowing sink due to a clogged drain is not "water penetration" but more "ooops, I forgot to do routine maintenance".      Apparently A/C overflow pipe is clearing something that should go on your home maintenance schedule.    I find with each new-to-me house that I have to be very careful to get everything on the list.  

Enjoy your new home. 

  • August 20 2013
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