Posted on Friday, June 7th, 2002 at 12:00am CDT by b0a63af7

Company: AMERICAN HOME SHIELD HOME WARRANTY - plumbing complaint

Category: Other received the following consumer message on June 5, 2002:



COMPLAINT: AMERICAN HOME SHIELD HOME WARRANTY Date: June 5, 2002 Problem: Leaking pipes and sewage stoppage, including sewage leaking underneath the house and sewage going into my backyard and out into the street. Bought my house and moved into it on May 19th. My home inspector cleared my home and made no note of pipe problems in his report. After 5 days of living there, the main sewer line between (and under) the house and the main clean-out stopped up. I could not use anything in the house without sewage overflowing into the bathtub. I called American Home Shield on Sunday, May 26, at about 4:30 in the afternoon. They agreed that this was an "emergency" situation and said they'ed send someone out as soon as possible. That was when my real troubles began. They gave me the number of the plumber that would be coming out, so, after not hearing anything from him by 7 p.m., I called. He said he'd be out as soon as he could. By the time he got there, it was 11:30 at night. By the time he left, at 1:30 a.m., he had used an rueter that was too large and caused a leak in the pipe that runs under the kitchen. Sewage was spilling out of the kitchen clean-out by then, so I had to dig a trench around my house to feed the sewage into the street. This plumber said it would cost me $5,000. to repipe my entire house and replace the main line. He never did fix the stoppage problem. The next day was Memorial Day. I called AHS and they said they'd look for another plumber. I waited all day but after calling to see what was going on, they said they needed get back to me. I heard from them at 5 p.m. No plumbers available. They scheduled another plumber to come out the next day, Tuesday. This plumber is actually OWNED by the same company that owns AHS! No wonder they determined that the "leak" in the pipe was caused by incorrrect materials and said the pipe connection was not "up to code." AHS would not pay to have a pipe repaired for those reasons. The plumbing company, Dobkin Company, gave me a quote of $250. to fix the connection . They said the house did not need to be repiped. One company says $5,000., the next $250.! They did, however, clear the stoppage problem by using a smaller rueter through the kitchen clean-out. I still could not use my washer or my bathroom sink because of further stoppage in those areas. The next day I heard from another company that said AHS would no longer cover anymore stoppage problems at my residence because there were roots in the main line. I asked AHS for a 3rd opinion. They said they had a policy that did not include a 2nd opinion on a 2nd opinion. On June 4th, I took the morning off from work to wait for another plumbing company to come out (sent by AHS) to give a 2nd opinion on the leak under the house. At this point, I might add, not one of these plumbers has actually crawled under the house to look up-close at what is causing these problems. They used their flashlights from the crawlspace. This plumbing company, Pragle Plumbing, called in to get an authorization from AHS to see if they could actually fix the leak. The answer from AHS: No. We need a 3rd opinion. This plumber said he had a business on the side and wrote down a quote for $5,000. to repipe the house. Friday morning we now have a 3rd company scheduled to come out to my house. As of yet, no actual work has been done on the leak. It has been 12 days of sewage leaking under my house. (right under my bedroom!) I had my home inspector come out today and he crawled under the house and determined that the leak was caused by the use of an incorrect rueter ---damage from the inside out. From what I can tell, everyone involved in this so far has simply passed the buck to the next guy. My attorney will see that this doesn't continue. Perhaps the seller knew there were existing sewage problems...I will also persue that route. I will be contacting the prior residents to find out if they had reported any problems to the sellers when they were renting from them.


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