under slab drain repairs

Old 08-04-01, 10:57 AM
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We are in the process of trying to finish up the replacement of the laundry room drain line. We hired a large reputable company to do this repair. The insurance company is paying for all but the actual drain line replacement. The plumbers proposal was to back fill with a sandy concrete mud, which could be shoveled in the future if problems again arose and access to the pipe was needed. To start, this hole is 5 1/2' deep, 4' wide, for roughly 20' under the slab. Originally this was to be just a crawl space. They ended up removing about 9 yards of dirt. With the new line in, the first cement truck to arrive had a driver that slept. The mud turned hard before the pour was even half finished, and ruined some of the plumbers equipment. The secound pour went quick, but heres the problem. This is supposed to be workable but isnt. It seems they may have poured Portland cement instead of mud, as it is hard as stone. You would have to jack hammer it out. This pour is about 3' thick up too the slab bottom. Our drain line is now encased in this. Is this proper? I thought not. If this long 3x20x4 slab was to ever crack, wouldnt it crack the PVC along with it? Do I have just cause to ask for some rebate? Just cause to ask them to come jackhammer it back out and fill with the right stuff? Not only that, this job was to take a week. We are now going into week 5. Are we making a mountain out of a mole hill? Or are we just, in our anger. Remeber that in central Texas the ground is quite adverse. From saturated to large gaping dry cracks in the summer.
Old 08-04-01, 02:24 PM
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It's difficult to predict what might happen in the future with all of that concrete, but I would document what is there, and consult an attorney.
If you ever have a problem, who would be liable? The concrete company? The plumber who ordered the delivery? Did he supervise the pour? Why didn't he stop it?
You might want to get the opinion of a local engineer (or another plumber) familiar with the Central TX soil conditions, and go from there.
Good Luck!

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