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Calling Pigletjohn (or similar!) HELP!

(5 Posts)
herethereandeverywhere Wed 10-Oct-12 11:30:24

Urgently need plumbing advice re: boiling water tap.

Ours is an all-in-one but has always struggled to make the cold water cold hmm but otherwise ok for several months. Plumber came yesterday as part of snaglist and "fixed" this (no idea what he actually did). Last night whilst running the cold tap the whole unit blew spectacularly (huge bang which woke dd 3 flights up, blue flashes, all electrics tripped, water pouring out of unit). I'm very angry and sad at having to deal with this - took hours to mop up to avoid ruining the wooden floor. He's acting as though it's nothing to do with his actions and I should just make a warranty claim.

I'm confused and <stressed out!> Any ideas what can have happened here?

thanks

skandi1 Wed 10-Oct-12 18:18:07

It's difficult to say exactly what happened without looking at the unit.

It sounds like a major electrical problem. This could be the result of incorrect installation.

If you say it essentially exploded then I would wonder whether the thermostat was set too high and it boiled excessively.

Could electrical parts have been in contact with water?

Perhaps your plumber meant to turn the thermostat down (you mentioned no cold water being an issue?) and turned it up instead.

It could be a faulty unit but it sounds odd that plumber had just worked on it and it then exploded.

I would contact the manufacturer and explain. Undoubtedly they will say its a result of faulty installation to which your plumber will say its a faulty product. I would angrily apply pressure to both of them and tell them both they are liable for damage caused to your floor.

My money is on the plumber having wrecked it.

I assume you also had an electrician to install the electrical parts of this device?

Which brand is it?

PigletJohn Wed 10-Oct-12 18:31:55

I don't know about these devices. I'd expect any unvented water heater (which I presume this is) to be festooned with safety features to prevent it bursting.

Try the manufacturer first. I expect they will (1) deny liability unless they happen to know there has been a spate of faulty products (2) ask you to send it back, whereupon they will say no fault found and/or it has unaccountably gone missing so nobody else can inspect it. Avoid sending it back and say it is your property and you wish it to be inspected by an independent engineer to ascertain liability, but in the absence of evidence to the contrary you hold them responsible.

Say the same to the plumber and say that you expect whoever is found to be responsible to pay for the damage and for the independent inspection. Don't let him take away the evidence.

In the meantime take lots of photos of the appliance and the damage and consult your home insurance policy. It will be particularly interesting to see if the pressure vessel burst, or if a plumbing pipe connection came apart.

It might end up being less trouble to make an insurance claim.

herethereandeverywhere Wed 10-Oct-12 18:38:46

Thank you SOOO much! V.sound advice as always. I'm still recovering from the shock of it all I think. Will update when I have more.

BerylStreep Wed 10-Oct-12 21:24:07

My word!

We have one of these taps - the Franke Minerva, and it sounds like it hasn't been installed properly in the first place. Our cold water is very clearly mains water, direct from the mains - it would never be hot unless we were using the boiling water lever, or normal hot tap setting.

Must have been very frightening.

Where are the electrical connections? Ours were on the floor, behind the kick boards, and I was worried about what would happen if there was a leak, so we got them moved up on to the wall.

If the plumber hadn't fixed it properly, and there was a leak that got into the electrics, then this is maybe why you had the huge bang.

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