Pex leak or frig water valve???

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Old 12-26-17, 11:03 AM
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Unhappy Pex leak or frig water valve???

I had a leak identified by a plumber as a pin hole in the pex line behind my refrigerator. The valve at the refrigerator water line was also leaking, along with the minirester. A slow leak came forward onto my kitchen floor. After removing the swollen baseboards in a closet behind the refrigerator, mold was found. The carpet in that closet and into a bedroom was saturated. My builder is refusing to honor repairs under a new home warranty as he states that the box where the valve was, filled with water and backed up into the walls and there was no pex leak. Does this sound possible or is he just not wanting to claim responsibility?
 
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Old 12-26-17, 11:13 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

We don't know exactly where the leak is so it's hard to point a finger. If the leak is in the wall where the valve connects to the main water line..... it's the plumbers fault. If it's between the valve and the fridge.... that would be whoever installed the fridge.
 
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Old 12-26-17, 11:36 AM
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A (repairman) plumber said the pex line behind the refrigerator wall was leaking because it was not strapped, so it rubbed against a wood beam forming a pin hole, so he replaced a section. He said he cut the pex at the hole. He also replaced the (exterior) valve to the frig water line. I asked why that was also leaking, and he said because of the surge in the pex line coming into it.

My 3 year-old home has a 10-year warranty, but the builder said we cannot prove the pex line pin hole leak and "tested" the valve, saying that was the problem. My main questions are 1. Can the (exterior) box where the valve was located possibly fill up and drain back into the wall or does it more likely sound like a pinhole leak in the pex, leaking down into the floor (and baseboards, carpet, etc)? 2. Shouldn't the valve and MiniRester (if that is truly the problem) that was installed by the builder be covered under their warranty if it was defective?
 
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Old 12-26-17, 11:51 AM
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This is complicated if you ask me. The #1 cause of leaks behind a fridge that I see is over tightening of compression fittings.
IF the supply hose to the fridge was over tight at install it could very well leak. Appliance installers for the most part are not plumbers, they are only authorized to connect a hose to an existing (and working) valve.

To me this sounds like a homeowners insurance issue and I would contact them as soon as possible. Leaks and water damage generally need to be reported right after discovery, and may or may not be covered. If you know who installed the fridge you might be able to go after them.

When I install a fridge during a remodel I am responsible for any leaks outside of the walls.
 
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Old 12-26-17, 12:06 PM
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If the supply box filled up with water it could be from a loose fitting from the valve to the refrigerator. (appliance installers fault)

It could also be a leaking valve where it attached to the PEX. (plumbers fault)

A leaking valve would be a more likely problem rather than a hole rubbed thru the PEX inside the wall.
 
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Old 12-26-17, 01:12 PM
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Thank you for your answers...I know nothing about plumbing, and just hope I had an honest plumber and wih my builder would accept responsibility.
 
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Old 12-26-17, 02:50 PM
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There trying to pass the buck, for a hole to form from surging would have taken many years.
 
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Old 12-30-17, 06:59 AM
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Did you get the house with the fridge installed? If so, I would say it's the builder's problem and not yours. He can argue with the plumber where the leak was, but in the end, you expected a house without any leaks. I would say it's ultimately the builder's responsibility to handle any issues, whether they were with a subcontractor or not.

Did you read the warranty details? What does it say about leaks?

Document your conversations with the builder and plumber. Many builders do the minimum post-sale and try to weasel out of any issues. In a 3-year old house, the builder really should have responsibility for pretty much anything that goes wrong unless it's something he can say you broke. But that's just my opinion
 
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