Plumbing company leaves metro Detroit family in unlivable conditions

Posted at 3:02 PM, Aug 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-24 15:13:05-04
Heather Diedrich says regular dish-washing isn’t an option at her home right now. The Dearborn Heights resident said it’s part of the fallout of a nightmare plumbing project.
"They came in and they did the vacuum truck to suck out some of the sewage and said that used up the majority of their funds. And they never came back."
Diedrich says she paid out over $5,300 to Edwards Plumbing and Heating. The funds were disbursed by a judge through an irrevocable trust fund set up to address the family’s needs as they care for their autistic son.  
But she said the workers failed to finish, ultimately leaving the most vital part of the house in chaos.
"We have one bathroom, and they left us with a hole in the ground where the toilet was," she said. 
A few days later, she said she got a call from her son’s trustee that the company was requesting $6,000 more to complete the job. 
To fix the situation in the meantime, Edwards Plumbing sent the family a Porta Potty and set it up in their driveway. However, they could have never imagined they would be using it for three months. 
Diedrich said it was especially taxing on her special needs son.
"He has a sensory processing disorder...he has anxiety disorders, so this really stressed him out."
Our Taking Action team went looking for answers from the company themselves.
Simply put, they said there were some unforeseen complications on the job. 
“We discovered while doing a locator and a snake...found in the middle of the yard, the sewage actually broken,” said Tom Caulfield, manager for Edwards Plumbing. 
In the meantime, the family hired another plumbing contractor, Martin's Excavating, to do the job. 
And they have graciously decided to do it for free, given the family's tight finances and special circumstances. 
"We try to look out to help people...especially children with special needs," said Martin. 
Meanwhile, Edwards Plumbing offered to return and complete the job for the originally estimated price.
"We want to make sure that everybody we do business with is happy. We don't like anybody to leave with the wrong impression from us," said Caulfield. 
Diedrich says she will now use the new company to do the work. So, Edwards Plumbing has offered to return a portion of the amount paid back to the trust of the special needs child. 
Diedrich said she's nearly in tears hearing she will get some resolve.