One that wasn't a surprise was the fact that when you ran the tub or sink in the 2nd upstairs bathroom, water was gushing down the wall by the front entry. So we knew that was going to priority number one after moving in, as the bathroom was off limits until we had it fixed. All of sharing the other bathroom upstairs was like old times on Mehari, so no big deal.
I tore into the wall one Friday morning, tracing back where the leak was coming from, and removing all the old lath and plaster wall that was all the rage last century. It must have been a lot more time consuming building this way "in the old days" but it sure makes for a LOT stronger wall! I mead this thing was solid! And almost 3/4" thick. A lot different than the 1/2" flimsy drywall you find in most places today.
I also had a plumber friend I'd met on a house inspection scheduled to come over and give me a hand when I got stuck (notice I said when, not if) And when he saw the old pipes and connections in the ceiling, he pulled out his phone and started taking pictures saying "this was back when men were men!" I'm not entirely sure if that's really what you want to hear from your plumber whose on the clock and being paid by the hour.....
It took no time at all for us to find the problem, the huge 4" cast iron drainpipe running down the inside of the wall, was totally split and water had been just pouring straight through it and into the crawlspace below. I mean pouring. So, problem located. He ran to get parts and I got the rest of the section of wall torn out, and when he got back we started cutting.
We ended up cutting out a 7 foot section of cast iron, carried it out and threw it in the front yard. As soon as it landed it broke into three pieces and desenigrated.
So, new pipe installed, dry, and ready to go. All that's left now is a small repair to the wall by the owner :(