Water, water, almost everywhere
Made our way north after lunch today. As we settled down to enjoy a relaxing (still to be made) mug of coffee, I noted that the internet was not connected. We often find that on arrival at the beach house. All that is needed (usually) is to to turn the router off and after 20-30 secs restart it.
I went downstairs to the study. Where I was greeted with water falling from the ceiling onto a collection of items in a corner made by a couple of bookcases at 90 degrees to each other.. The rugs on the floor were sodden, and it had clearly been happening for a while.
I got a large pan to catch the water (a bit of a case of the stable door being closed rather late), and then thought (when prompted by S) to go outside and turn off the water at the mains.The flow of water slowed (and eventually stopped). And we called a plumber.
Given the age of the house, his first diagnosis was that it was the old black plastic pipes. Known to burst, so replaced during the renovations. So maybe somebody had put a screw through a pipe, and it has taken more than eight years to show up. Not very convincing.
By this time the water had stopped, so he cut a hole in the ceiling, and it took only one look to find the right diagnosis. The pipe had been chewed by some four legged furry creatures, that are unwelcome in our house. So he had a big look around and found a number of other smaller leaks. Which confirmed his assessment.
The badly chewed metre above the study was replaced, and we are advised to only have the water on when we are using it. We will need to get all the pipes replaced (for safety), and get the pest control people in.All the rugs that have been soaked will need to be dried and cleaned. A miraculously small number of books need drying. A few boxes of paper have been damaged. But the most precious things were not in the places where the water was most.
Fortunate that we came up this weekend. It is likely that the leak had been this bad for a shortish time.