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WingNut 02-21-2012 04:54 PM

utility room - cement flooring
2 Attachment(s)

This is my utility room.

I'm wondering how I can fix this? After removing the water heater the HVAC contractor discovered there were holes in the plastic pan, and the cement floor had all but disintegrated. You can barely notice the plywood below? It's ready to give way.

One suggestion was to refill with cement and put a new piece of plywood, then put the new water heater on top. The only catch is, that this utility room sits over top another utility room…My neighbors.

I don't know if any of you live in a condo, but this is something I have to consider before trying anything. I'm trying to get the condo association to cover this since there was no leak in the water heater.

If I end up having to fix this, I want to do it right.

Can anyone help?

Thanks kindly.

aureliconstruction 02-22-2012 06:58 AM

The proper way of doing a utility floor from the get go is to put in a floor drain. Thee floor drain is extra water prevention. The floor drain can go in the basement and drain in a sink, depending on your local codes or state codes. Usually they do not want it to drain into a sewer. If installing a floor drain is not possible, have a sheet metal company fabricate a copper pan that is a few inches high. Do a mud job and tile it. Then, just for ****s and giggles, install a pump that pumps any eventual leak into a drain, washer discharge or wherever possible. The pan and pump would be the cheaper route, but both would work great.

WingNut 02-22-2012 07:09 AM

utility room - cement flooring 2
Now I can present this to my property manager with confidence. I am going to wait for 2 more responses so I'm loaded with ammo. If all responses agree, then I'll be good to go.

If the condo assoc. won't do it and I have to, then so be it. Don't mind learning something new.

Thank you very much Aureliconstruction.


BridgeMan 02-23-2012 12:37 AM

The concrete (not cement--cement is a grey, fluffy powder) floor in the photos is showing both surface scaling and delamination, in addition to the broken-out area adjacent to the plumbing drain line. Not sure a floor drain is the way to go, and I've never seen one in the dozen houses I've owned and lived in since 1969. A much more appropriate correction involves repairing the floor surface by removing and replacing all deteriorated concrete, plugging the open area at the pipe, then installing an off-the-shelf galvanized steel drain pan under the water heater. Since the floor is a structural component of your condo, but not an exterior element, your condo association is not likely to be responsible for the repairs. Depends on the fine-print wording of your condo agreement.

While you're at it, you need to do something about all of the electrical wiring code violations visible in the pix.

inspectorD 02-23-2012 05:15 AM


Originally Posted by BridgeMan (Post 68453)
While you're at it, you need to do something about all of the electrical wiring code violations visible in the pix.

The wiring exposed is for the electric water heater. Other than that I see no violations with the low voltage wires.
You also have a plumbing connection for the pan already at the floor level, I would continue with this setup, If you change it and there is a problem, you may be responsible for the whole thing if anything does happen in the future to the unit below. Also I would make sure your insurance company covers any of this in the future.
As far as the condo association? Is it written in your contract with the fees you pay for?
Good luck.

WingNut 02-23-2012 02:08 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Aureli Construction, BridgeMan, and InspectorD,

Thank you for all your responses. Very quick!

As it turns out, the condo association did the repair and cover the cost. Kid gloves with the property manager, who turned out to be a swell guy.

The white pvc pipe at the top left of the crater, continues from my utility room on through the two utility rooms below me, then drains out at the bottom.

The crater was cleaned out and refilled with a quick drying cement. I'm letting it dry through Sunday. The test will be putting the water heater on top of this Monday morn. Cross my fingers.

Contractors and property manager are still scratching their heads as to why the cement deteriorated so badly. Seems like my neighbor below may be having the same problem.

Thanks again to you all!


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