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Thread: Access panels and wet walls.

  1. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    quote; you won't recognize the White House. lol.

    Of course we will. It will be the big white building with all the access panels.
    correction: big pink building with all the access panels!

    Thought I would share this with you, it is odd... and, true! I am showing a newly constructed home in a short while, it has 4 full baths, 4... access panels, (lol) one for each, it has a 4 car garage, sits on 4 acres, the woman who constructed it, was married 4 times, lol, and, the man I am showing it to, his name is Forthsite... The house numbers are composed of 4's. I am not sure I can show this with a straight face.
    Last edited by Cookie; 05-19-2012 at 01:57 PM.

  2. #17
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    When things are built...to pass the plumbing test(s), the connections must be leak free. Then, the walls/ceilings are closed in. Things don't magically leak in the wall/ceiling after time. Cartridges, seals, etc. can and do leak. Most can be fixed from the finished side. A toilet won't magically start leaking if it is installed properly.

    Having an access panel to fix something that shouldn't need fixing, if it works for you, fine, but is not that useful. IF there's an adacent wall where you can actually put an access panel, then, there's no reason to put one there until, and if, you need to do maintenance there that can't be done from the finished side.

    Now, certain things really should have an access panel...these include things that are known to wear out and not commonly triggering a major remodel. For example, the motor of a whirlpool tub. While it should and does generally last a long time, it may need maintenance before the tub wears out too, so would qualify for a good reason to have an access panel.

    Sprinkling them around the house, especially if they end up in visible areas, is not very common or useful.

    Go for it if it makes you feel comfortable, but it is generally a waste of time and money and asthetics.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #18

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    Hm, so what you are saying Jd, is that there is no need for repairmen because everything is done perfect, the first time around. I got to think on this, because, I must just have very bad luck, lol. Along with a whole lot of other people.

    Now, this house tonite. Amazingly, without me saying a word about the plumbing or access panels, he started to peek around and looked into them. Yes, there was another one on the hot tub, so, it made 5, and he looked into each & every one. What do you think, he found? You betcha. A leak. In the masterbath. This house was just completed and yes, passed all the tests, but, the one would not stand the test of time. It leaks. Now, it didn't turn him off as to not buy it, but, he wanted it addressed. The electrical components on one of the garage doors was not up to snuff. Along with, one of the circuit breakers. When I turned it on, it felt squishy and was bouncing backward when pushed forward. A wire I would assume is not exactly right. Other than that all seemed well. I called the inspector to let him know of what he signed off on, and stated he might want to take another look see, I wanted to ask him, " where are your glasses?" So, nothing is ever perfect, no matter how good you might be. Sprinkling the access panels in the plumbing areas just might be a good thing. This homeowner, he is buying, will have them from the start, and the cost in putting them in was really moot, but, the pay off was great. This buyer really liked that idea, it was really, one of the selling points. Not in totality, but, it was a definite asset. I wish it was a perfect world we live in. I wish nothing ever breaks, nothing ever malfunctions, no recalls, no bad products or parts, or bad contractors, but, eventually, our feet has to hit the ground and accept the realities of things. This house is marketed for 440,000, and, it came fresh off the line with failures. The contractor has a great name in this neck of the woods. So, shit happens.
    Last edited by Cookie; 05-19-2012 at 07:16 PM.

  4. #19
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cookie View Post
    Hm, so what you are saying Jd, is that there is no need for repairmen because everything is done perfect, the first time around. I got to think on this, because, I must just have very bad luck, lol. Along with a whole lot of other people.
    Not what I'm saying at all! What I'm saying is that most valves are designed to be REPAIRED from the front, and thus, no rear access is required. Now, replacement is sometimes a different story. But, how often do you do a remodel where you need to replace the valve? At that point in time, you often don't care about the finished side as you're replacing it anyway. 20-30 years down the road when you decide you want to upgrade the valve, then, if there's room for an access panel, or a hole to gain access, IF needed, then, you can add one. in the meantime, it doesn't do anything for you except look potentially ugly, cost more during the build, and is primarly useless.

    As I said, if it makes you feel better, go for it.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  5. #20

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    It's not me going for it. lol. It is the builders. They know a good thing. There is nothing ugly about the panels I looked at tonite. They blended in, or tucked away into a closet. You never would had known if not paying attention. Ugly to me, is water damage, and mold. I have seen them both. Tonite? The water was running down the inside of the wall. Nice. Without the access panel, this new homeowner would have had a problem on his hands, he eventually, would had noticed it, eventually.
    Last edited by Cookie; 05-19-2012 at 07:25 PM.

  6. #21
    DIY Member tom12's Avatar
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    Back in the day, i worked as an operative for Termite companies and, i'd say, on 60% of positive inspections, water damage from plumbing was called. One morning i pulled and re-set six different, leaking WC's in six different houses. Upper floor WC leaks were the homeowner's nightmare.

    One expensive, Berkeley hills house had to be pulled apart by others, and by ourselves, searching for a significant leak - everybody who showed up had a different bright idea. Inspection panels in a few strategic places might have eliminated much of the tear-out. ( It was a redundant shower valve, left in a double-walled position between two re-model's and the original house.)

    My two cents experience of construction and the building trades is that a certain amount of careless, irresponsible and lazy work is a sad, but realistic given.

  7. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by tom12 View Post
    Back in the day, i worked as an operative for Termite companies and, i'd say, on 60% of positive inspections, water damage from plumbing was called. One morning i pulled and re-set six different, leaking WC's in six different houses. Upper floor WC leaks were the homeowner's nightmare.

    One expensive, Berkeley hills house had to be pulled apart by others, and by ourselves, searching for a significant leak - everybody who showed up had a different bright idea. Inspection panels in a few strategic places might have eliminated much of the tear-out. ( It was a redundant shower valve, left in a double-walled position between two re-model's and the original house.

    My two cents experience of construction and the building trades is that a certain amount of careless, irresponsible and lazy work is a sad, but realistic given.
    Thank you!

  8. #23

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    I have developed through the years more than an interest in this stuff. I am qualified to do appraisals, and have been doing home inspections, still under the guidance of a company. I work hard.

    Like my sig line, I was given a bag of hammers and, I decided to build something.
    Last edited by Cookie; 05-20-2012 at 10:26 AM.

  9. #24
    DIY Senior Member chefwong's Avatar
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    I have not read every response but I think access panels are a great thing - well to a degree on the location and how it fits A-e-S-thetically.


    I used them in my current remodel.

    I'm thinking about incorporating it into my upcoming bathroom remodel with a plate and some ball catches.

    Wind Lock makes some of the best eye pleasing access panels out there.......

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