Pardon the vernacular – but does shit actually run downhill??

14 Nov Pardon the vernacular – but does shit actually run downhill??

Any blog post in the Metropolis Solutions Blog Archive that includes any direct or indirect reference to insurance claims handling of any nature whatsoever, including any reference to existing and/or potential claims, was posted prior to 01.07.21, is for general information only and may also no longer be applicable due to recent changes in Federal Financial Services laws concerning claims handling. Please note that Metropolis does not hold an Australian Financial Services (AFS) Licence for claims handling and therefore qualified expert assistance on any insurance related matter, including Victorian Plumbers Warranty, should now be sought from a suitable lawyer or other expert holding an AFS claims handling licence. Metropolis Solutions can still consult on insurance claims handling matters, but only in the instance where we are directly engaged to do so by your authorised legal representative.

“Shit runs downhill and pay day is Thursday” or “What lies beneath”

Surely this is a simple as it gets for a plumber?  The trouble is that it would seem some plumbers just don’t compute the first part of this saying (although they rarely miss the second part!).

Metropolis Solutions investigates an awful lot of belowground sewer and stormwater piping systems, many of which have been installed with adverse gradient (i.e. they have sections of pipework which run the wrong way) or otherwise have subsided due to not being correctly supported and back-filled.  The Property Owner is usually none the wiser as this aspect of the plumbing is happily buried where nobody can ever see it – and often beneath expensive aspects of the property (such as driveways, concrete slabs, pathways and landscaping).  Some say that plumbers, like doctors, simply bury their mistakes.

The first warning that the Property Owner usually gets is when they start experiencing blockages in their sewer or stormwater system.  This costs money to have unblocked and in fact there are well-known plumbing companies which have made fortunes out of doing exactly this!

Correctly installed belowground drainage should not block.  Blockages indicate potentially big problems and major defects.

The belowground sewer and stormwater drainage configuration and installation methods are clearly laid out by Australian Standards; the pipes themselves must be laid at a minimum grade of 1:60 for sewer or 1:100 for stormwater.  If an inspection shows that the drainage pipes are holding significant amounts of water, then they are usually nowhere near these minimum gradients.  This makes the drainage system unable to do its job.  That means it will be a source of trouble for the whole lifespan of the building which it services.

If you are experiencing any recurrent blockage issues in buildings which have been constructed within the last 6 years, you should get the underlying cause of this symptom properly investigated without delay.  If investigation confirms that the belowground drainage pipework has been installed in a non-compliant manner then a claim can and should be made against the responsible Licenced Plumber and/or their Insurer to have this fixed whilst the works remain under the mandatory 6 year workmanship warranty.

You paid a lot for your house and it was hard earned money.  Metropolis Solutions have the skills, equipment and expertise to facilitate the necessary investigations and take the situation forward to ensure you get the fully compliant plumbing that you paid for in the first place.

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