Bathroom leak caught in the nick of time

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Q: We are remodeling our kitchen. When we opened one of the walls that adjoins a bathroom, we found water damage. It seems that every time the bathroom sink was used, water would leak inside the wall. The drywall and studs have mold on them. I know we need to get rid of the mold. However, do I need to tear out my bathroom wall as well as the mold? The mold is visible only on the gutted portions; it has not penetrated into the bathroom itself. A: We hate surprises, but tearing out a wall often means you'll be confronted with the unexpected. The older the home, the more likely something strange is going on behind the walls. You're lucky you caught the leak before any further damage was done. A little mold and mildew are easy to deal with. If the leak had been allowed to linger longer, it's likely that the framing and flooring would have developed dry rot. That would mean replacement with new material, which could be a big job. Tearing out the bathroom wall won't be necessary. But some...