My daughter left the faucet in the bathroom sink running for some time (my guess is under 5-10 minutes but unsure). There was some water on the tiled floor, that I dried up with some towels and thought that was the end of it. A few minutes later the manager of the building knocked on my door and said the ceiling was leaking in the apartment below.
He told me to wait for a letter from the strata, which I never got, so I thought that was it and there had been no damage.
Now I have found out that there was some small damage to the paint around an opening but the owner downstairs is wondering if there is damage to the inside of the ceiling (I guess that means the drywall or some wood) and wants to get a contractor to decide what needs to be replaced.
What I'm wondering is whether it is possible to check the inside of the ceiling without it being costly to fix again (possibly damaging something that is not damaged, to begin with) and also how much it could cost me, worst case scenario.
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First, I would like to point out that only a certified water technician can offer you a definitive opinion on a question like this that can stand the legal road.
Secondly to your question, yes its possible for a certified water technician working for a Restoration Provider using scanning tools and moisture reading tools.
However, being that we resolve these problems on a daily basis for our client here are my thoughts-
1- Did the ceiling swell as a result of the leak? (on your photo it does not appear so)
2- Are tape joints dislodge or popped? (on your photo it does not appear so)
3- The residual stain is coming from behind the drywall and most probably can be cleaned off without too much difficulty- However if it continues to be present- a stain bloc and repaint to your ceiling continuous maybe the solution.
Finally, as I explained we are not qualified to offer a definite advice on the presence of water however logic dictates that the water is gone and the ceiling dried due to the evidence presented on your photo- Ultimately it was not grey water- where mold/bacteria's maybe an additional issue...
The idea maybe to re-assure your neighbor that you have taken all the steps to mitigate the problem...
I agree 100% with Michael from paint Etc. He explained it very well and very thorough. My own personal opinion for over 30 years in the business is if it only lead for 10-15 minutes I think it would be fine especially since it looks like the water leaked onto his ceiling and exited the sprinkler head which means most of the water got out. You can spray all the area that got wet with mold resistant product and then TriMet completely with Kilz primer or equivalent stain primer. Then paint it two coats. There's lots of companies like mold Pro that you can call or look up on trusted Pros they are not too expensive and can usually let you know within 10 minutes or so. Good luck
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