s promised, the plumber came back this morning and replaced the newly-leaking pipe. He showed me the pipe he removed, and I’m surprised it hadn’t leaked a lot sooner – it looked like there was only a thin coating of rust holding it together. He said when he cut one end of the pipe to remove it, the other end basically just came away in his hand. I got him to have a look around the other pipes while he was up in the ceiling, and he found another one that was looking near failure, so I got him to replace that too, just in case. I’d rather pay now and get all the possible problems fixed than wait until they actually fail and have a much bigger problem. The total bill for all three repairs was just over $600, which wasn’t quite as horrific as I’d feared it might be, and totally worth it to know that no more pipes are likely to suddenly spring a leak (touch wood!)
The good news is that my insurance is going to cover the damage to the ceiling (well mostly cover, less the excess and a further reduction of my no-claims bonus – in other words I’m going to end up paying for almost all of it). I don’t quite understand the logic of why when a pipe bursts insurance won’t pay to repair the pipe, but they will pay to repair the damage the water does, but as I hadn’t even thought of it as being an insurance claim until the plumber mentioned it, I’m not arguing.
The dramas of the day continued this afternoon when we felt a decent-sized earthquake. The earthquake (which was a 6.2), was centred up near Kaikoura, so it didn’t feel all that strong down here in Christchurch (it felt like about a 4) but it went on for a really long time. Our office was a good illustration of the Cantabrian attitude to earthquakes these days – while Alex (who only moved to Christchurch a year or so ago) was looking quite nervous, Lucy-Jane and I were just making guesses at the magnitude and distance even while our building was still swaying back and forth. Our estimates were pretty close too – I’d guessed it was Seddon again, and that it was about a 6 (just from the length of time the shaking went on for – bigger quakes shake for longer).
From the sounds of it there was no serious damage or injuries, but my sympathies are still with everyone up in the top part of the South Island who’ll be having a sleepless night from aftershocks tonight.