Hitting Too Close to Home

When you discover 1″ of standing water in much of your basement (as I did this morning), your first impulse — after uttering the obligatory “#$!%@!” — is to shut off the water to the house, then look for whatever pipe burst overnight.


I then checked the main sewer drain, to make sure that hadn’t backed up (if that ever happens, trust me, you’ll know before you get to the source).

Again, not the culprit.

Ditto for the water heater (working, no leaks); bathtubs, dishwasher, washing machine, and toilets (nothing overflowing or backed up); and snowmelt/puddles alongside the house (the Twin Cities has been enjoying a 3-day thaw).

Telltale Clue

So, what on earth happened?

Clue #1 — spotted by buddy and ace contractor Phil Raskin, who rushed over — was the mud on the floor in our Utility Room.

Sure enough, Phil noted vertical water stains on the wall directly below the window well, which prompted us to look outside.

Voila!  The north side of my home, the south side of my neighbor’s, and virtually everything in between was covered in a sheet of ice.

According to Phil, my neighbor’s sprinkler head blew out overnight, spraying an ocean of water in all directions (but especially, into my basement window well).

I can think of better Christmas presents . . . 🙁

P.S.: Jennifer Cutter, Edina Realty – City Lakes Office Manager, confirmed that sprinkler lines are an especially wide 1″ diameter . . . compounding the damage when there’s a leak or blowout.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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