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Spending Thousands to Save $150: A Costly Mistake

Nick B


Ever try to cut a corner to try to save some time and money but have it blow up in your face?  Ever realize that you messed up after it is too late and all you can do is watch as it gets worse and worse?  If not, pat yourself on the back because you are thorough, hard working, and a little bit lucky.  The plumber in the video below was not so fortunate. Trying to save some money, he attempted a small repair without shutting off the water.  The end result was a soaked plumber, several flooded apartments, and an angry renter.  But at least the leak was fixed!  I think…


So what happened here?  It all began with the renter of this unit noticing a small leak beneath his bathroom sink.  Naturally he called his landlord to get it fixed.  Looking to save a dollar where they can, the landlord got someone equally cheap to do the job.  Was this person just a general handyman or a fully fledged plumber?  I’m leaning towards the former, but regardless of how qualified he was he screwed up big time.

In some apartment complexes the water cut off is split by floor.  To try to cut down on unnecessary water shut offs there is a fine attached to getting one turned off.  Not wanting to pay the $150 fee, this plumber elected to take on the water.  He also chose not to, or couldn’t shut off the water at any other junction in the system.  He felt as though he could get in and get out without much water getting anywhere and well, you can see how that worked out.

$150 saved and thousands lost.  Take a look at the chaos for yourself in the video below.  There is some explicit language from the homeowner, but given the circumstances I think we can all understand.


So what do you think?  Is this guy a real plumber who took a chance and lost, or is he a handyman who is literally in over his head?  Have you ever screwed up this badly before?  Let me know in the comments below.

Want to do the job right?  First thing you should do is shut off the water.  Next you need to be sure you have the right parts.  Find what you need at

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10 Responses to Spending Thousands to Save $150: A Costly Mistake

  1. Joe Hughes says:

    Anyone who has experienced a flood in their house because of a leaking or broken pipe knows how important it is to hire a professional or at least know enough to turn off the water. Multiple floored apartments multiply the damage as all floors below get affected. Indoor plumbing is one of the best innovations of the modern age but when there’s a leak it ruins everything, carpet, floors, furniture. I am pretty sure this guy is not a professional because he was unaware of the pressure of the supply line he was dealing with. Many apartment complexes hire under qualified personnel who are willing to work cheap and who often lie about their experience to get hired. Most of the time you get what you pay for.

    • Nick B says:

      Exactly. I can’t imagine how much was ruined because of this. I get being frugal but some things, like plumbing, need to be done right. As we can see, this was not done right.

  2. m owen says:

    Everyone in this video is brain dead.
    -The guy trying to do the repair needs to be jailed and kept as far away from a tool box as possible. There are no words to describe his complete lack of common sense.
    -The residents should have been moving their stuff to try and prevent some damage instead of worrying about taping the incident.
    – “Call the Police”? Really? What are they going to do? How about you call the water company and have them shut off service at the street if the landlord/repairman/friend trying to help out cant shut it off.
    This thing is like a bad car wreck… Terrible to look at but I just can’t stop watching.

    • John says:

      And don’t forget about the old lady running the vacuum trying to suck the water up. I like what you said about everything except for the jail part.

  3. brian mack says:

    I am a 57 year old plumber, with just about 40 years experience, I have always been careful and cannot stress enough about
    how proper training is so important.
    I hope I live long enough to train my own 20 yr old, contrary to most belief our country still needs experienced, ethical
    plumbers even for small jobs, hope this guy had liability insurance I always renew it every year just in case and have
    had to use it.
    call a professional .
    now i will pay higher insurance because of very often unnecessary accidents only experience can mostly prevent

  4. John says:

    I have studied the video carefully and I’m not so sure he tried to do a life angle stop swap. What I think happened is he went to tighten it being that was old it came part causing flooding List to stay he should’ve known where the shut off was prior to doing any work on the second floor. I also agree that you must be experienced educated plumber if you’re going to handle any type of portable water system.

  5. Kip says:

    I agree with John

    I’m betting it was a compression fitting shut off that was leaking and he tried tightening it and kaboom. Why in the world anyone would work on this without shutting off the water is beyond me.

  6. G. Chow says:

    This what happen when the building supper, and plumber can not work together. Asking for $150.00 is outraged just to shut off a valve, before causing all that damage. The Plumber did tried to get the main shut off, but was refused since he have to pay out of pocket money . now both the building owner and the plumber going to experience a law suit.

  7. cpelz says:

    Why all the fuss about needing a professional plumber? If professional plumbers had installed a shutoff valve for the apartment in the first place, then this could have been avoided, or at least the damage could have been mitigated by shutting off the water once the fitting gave out. I agree with “G. Chow”, what offends me here, is the $150 to shut off the water supply.

  8. In your blog awesome content was written and it is full of knowledge, It’s a request to you to post some more blogs regarding plumbing.

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