By Rick Sallinger

LITTLETON, Colo. (CBS4)– One homeowner thought it would cost a few hundred dollars to repair a clogged sewer line under her Littleton home. Instead, it would cost tens of thousands of dollars.

(credit: CBS)

“It cost me $26,000 to have this done,” said Aileen Gaumond.

(credit: CBS)

Roto-Rooter handled the call through a contractor. The company’s general manager, John Williams, brought out a video to show CBS4 what the clogged sewer line looked like before the work was done.

(credit: CBS)

“We can clear it with a cable and stop the blockage but what if it backs up in two days later and floods their house again,” he said.

(credit: CBS)

So, Williams said they offered Aileen a permanent fix. The proposal clearly states new pipe. The video taken after the work was done shows Gaumond mainly got a liner for the old pipe.

(credit: CBS)

“A liner is actually a more sought after option because we don’t have to dig up the yard,” said Williams.

He said a liner is in effect a new pipe and the homeowner has fully functioning sewer line.

(credit: CBS)

Gaumond’s nephew Michael Sullivan who also lives at the home isn’t pleased.

(credit: CBS)

“The only work they have done since they have been here is 15 feet of pipe. She paid for 75 feet of pipe,” Sullivan said.

Roto-Rooter spokesperson Paul Abrams says that is, “inaccurate and misleading.”

In an email to CBS4, Abrams stated, “The entire length of the interior pipe was excavated and replaced with new PVC pipe (approximately 20 feet).” He added, “The plan laid out in the contract was to use trenchless pipe replacement technology (pipe relining/pipe bursting) to replace the exterior underground length of pipe.”

The Roto-Rooter email statement goes on to state, “A trench would have destroyed their lawn and everything in the path of the pipe including trees, sidewalks etc.” And adds the new liner will became a brand new, full strength pipe within the shell of the old pipe and will last 50-70 years.

Sullivan responded, claiming Roto-Rooter should have told his aunt the prices and differences between the liner and new PVC pipe.

(credit: CBS)

And the kitchen sink wasn’t attached to the sewer line, leaving water possibly compromising foundation.

(credit: CBS)

Roto-Rooter is not sure that was a result of its work. The company does acknowledge it failed to get a permit from the City of Littleton for the original work.

(credit: CBS)

Sullivan is not letting the matter of his aunt’s house rest, “They intended on charging her all this money and stealing it from her. It’s ridiculous.”

(credit: CBS)

Roto-Rooter disputes that and has turned the issue over to its insurance company which will have experts decide if it was at fault.

Rick Sallinger

Comments