Plumber won't admit fault in sewer backup

Plumber won't admit fault in sewer backup

Sewer snag

COMPLAINT: Anita G. George, Baltimore

"After receiving a $370 water bill and checking with the home warranty company, I used Stillwell Plumbing to repair my water main. The home warranty company sent them out to investigate my problem but determined it wasn't covered by my warranty.

"They did this work on a Friday. On Sunday morning, I had muddy water/sewage backing up into my basement bathtub. A Stillwell worker snaked the line and said it could be a coincidence that we had sewage problems but it wasn't likely because of how close the sewer line was to the line they repaired with a backhoe.

"He couldn't really say that Stillwell did it. I called the city because Stillwell insisted this was a separate problem they didn't cause. They said if we thought we had a [sewer] cleanout on the lawn, to dig it up and find it. I did and found the cleanout without a cap on it and called them back.

"I spoke to the owner, who told me that his 'guy' said the cleanout was open when they started the job. He said the caps get knocked in all the time - kids jump on them and lawn mowers sometimes do it. My kid is 2 years old, and I don't mow the lawn in February."

DESIRED RESOLUTION: "I'd like Stillwell to refund the money I spent having the line snaked twice for a total of $175 and the backhoe fee for having the lawn dug up to repair the pipe they broke."

STATUS: Penalty Box


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