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 Post subject: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 1:03 am 
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Location: Chicago IL
Hi,

I know there are some great plumbers on this forum, just as there's great everything on this forum.

I need advice on this pluming issue I'm having at the house. I have a leaky pipe coming from a bathtub, it goes into this very old T which in turn goes into a pipe going to the floor. The thread on the bottom side of this old pipe seems to have rusted out and is now leaking. It looks like a nasty situation since if I have to replace the pipe all together, I'm gonna have to dig up the concrete floor. I was wondering if there may be a way to instead cut off the old pipe and adapt some pvc or re-thread it to renew the connection. There are some close by radiator heating pipes that I would imagine is gonna make this twice as difficult. Alternatively there is a near by 6 inch drain pipe with a port that could be possibly repurposed for this, though perhaps this is a service port that should be kept in place. The house is over a hundred years old which I'm sure is gonna make it a breeze to get these connections off.

See the pictures below.
Image

6 inch with an access port.

Image

Not looking forward to doing this.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 2:28 am 
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Location: Ohio 45177
Well I guess it is a drain. Thus no water pressure to speak of. Frankly if you want to do a....I hate to use the word makeshift...how about improvised, repair on an accessible drain line, I would think that there may be many approaches to the issue. Using modern materials and adhesives or improvisations, in that it apparently only needs to contain draining water. So you can order a plumber in and have him do whatever the code requires and look sharp and last 50 years, or if it were me, I might weigh the cost of that versus my current budget. I don't know what your budget is. If there is an issue of a threat of sewer gas I would think that it might need to be gas tight, not just water tight. IF that is a different method. That probably leaves out duct tape, even the miracle duct tape, as seen on TV. But modern PVC and adhesives and sealants seem to leave open a few possible approaches, to me. Just not anything I can specify without being right there to look at it all.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 2:38 am 
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Location: Detroit, MI USA
Chicago and the surrounding little towns have some really strict building codes so you should check first before doing anything drastic.

If it were me I'd keep my mouth shut and use a Sawzall to cut the pipe coming out of the floor just below where the threads end going into that tee. Then I'd get rid of that iron tee and pick up a flexible rubber coupling with worm screw hose clamps and put it back together using plastic. Might need to support those plastic pipes up off the floor to keep strain off your repair but it ought to work. I see them using flex couplings all the time in new construction around here, so they ought to meet code in some communities for repair on old work as well. Chicago may not be one of those places though.

These come in a wide range of sizes including some which are different on opposite ends.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/The-Plumber ... lsrc=aw.ds

You can also buy a tee which is all flexible rubber and uses hose clamps to install. Easier yet.

https://www.lowes.com/pd/fernco-1-1-2-i ... gJBV_D_BwE

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 2:44 am 
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Right, you are not the first owner of an old house with leaky cast iron pipes. The fittings made for those pipes called Fernco connectors. You cut the bad section out and join new PVC or ABS pipe to the cast iron stub with a Fernco adapter. It is a rubber fitting with clamps, simple.

Yes you could screw a reducer into that cleanout, installing a new cleanout on the new drain pipe, either a Tee or a Y, close to the junction so a snake can still be used there.

I've read about the Chicago Plumber's Union. They have a tight grip on that city, but in this case, you are performing a repair, not a renovation, watch how you describe the work.

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Last edited by westcoastjohn on Jun Sun 23, 2019 2:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 2:47 am 
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Location: Mountains of Mourne. Ireland.
The pipe going into the floor has reached the end of its life.
Dig it out and replace it.

As I'm sure you already know, old cast iron bathtubs are very heavy. They can be broken up with a sledgehammer. Cover it with an old blanket and wear eye protection.

Plastic tubs are not expensive. Or install a shower.
Greg.


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 4:20 am 
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Location: Chicago IL
I think I'm gonna be going with the Fernco adapter. Really glad those exist! I will have to add some support for the connecting pipe lines. All is drainage for a washing machine, a sink, and a bathtub. Demand is not too crazy.

I saw a video where they say you should use a sealer along with the flexible coupling. Any recommendations on what to use there?

Thanks guys.

I realize the pipe underneath the floor may also be in bad shape but no way I'm gonna be tearing that out at this point.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 12:30 pm 
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Joined: Nov Wed 30, 2016 7:35 pm
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Location: Sunbury, Ohio 43074
I've never had to use sealer with a rubber coupling that uses steel hose clamps. Looking at the photo, you might have to clean up the stub in the floor a bit after using your sawzall. Use a fine file, or sandpaper, to smooth off the surface of the pipe and allow the rubber to seal. Get rid of any old paint, rust, scuff marks, pipe wrench digs, etc.

I don't see why you couldn't use a silicon/rubber sealer however; it would just make it difficult or impossible to remove later should you ever need to. No biggie.. just get another coupling if this happens.

Might want to try it dry first... you can always remove it and use sealer if it leaks.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Mar Wed 16, 2011 10:44 pm
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Location: Peekskill, NY
1) I would leave the cleanout alone, don't use that.

2) be aware the pipe you are working on is galvanized steel, which
does tend to rust on the inside. The vertical section emerging from
the concrete floor may be quite thinned out inside (possibly the
origin of the leak you see) so I suggest being pretty careful as you
start to cut. I might avoid a lot of vibration from a sawzall which
does tend to jar things around a bit. I might even explore using
a coarse bladed hacksaw blade to start, to see how things go.

If it seems solid then gentle work with a sawsall, with the shoe
of the saw in contact with the pipe at all times, would avoid the
jarring and vibration from the saw.

Goal is to leave a nice clean stub that you can connect to, and avoid
having the vertical pipe crush as you are cutting it off. It may be
more fragile than it appears from the outside.


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 5:42 pm 
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Location: Missoula mt
Keep in mind I am a machinist not a plumber, everything looks rotten, I would cut the pipe off flush with the cement (WHAT!!!) The hole thru the cement will be solid and so will be the remains of the pipe. I would then file down a pvc pipe to fit into the hole 2 inchs or so tight. Use a lot of silicon sealer around the pipe and then redo everything in pvc. It will outlast you and it will give the building inspector something to justify :D :D his job 20 years from now,hi hi....WA7OPY


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 5:51 pm 
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Joined: Nov Wed 30, 2016 7:35 pm
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Location: Sunbury, Ohio 43074
File down a pipe???? MACHINE one. I’d use 4140


Seriously the rubber sleeve splice will be fine. There’s no water pressure involved. Plumbers use them all the time. Best invention since decaf f?

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 7:20 pm 
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Location: Missoula mt
I said file, he probably does not have a lathe, pvc is soft no big deal to reshape........WA7OPY :D :D


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 8:02 pm 
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Location: Weymouth,Massachusetts
While you are considering all the ideas you have been given get a quote from a reputable plumber . Sometimes it's money well spent. If you go forward on you own look at the pipes coming through above the ceiling/ floor and see if they are well supported because when you cut the pipe at the floor things above may want to drop a bit. It cost me $1200.00 for a real plumber and 4 hours later I was good to go. I had some issues addressed in the kitchen above as well.
GL
Henry


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 10:39 pm 
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Location: Chicago IL
I like the idea behiind cutting the pipe flush to the floor, may do that if the pipe is really very bad. However I felt around and the rest though looks rotten SEEMS to be solid but the flaking paint makes it look awful.

I need to find my cutoff wheel to avoid vibrations.

The other question im having is how I will refit the piping that goes up from the T. There is a pvc pipe going to a bathtub. Will have to cut this off as I plan on making a new connection for a standpipe. What I wanna know is how I will fit it all together in the end. I'm guessing some kind of screw on PVC fitting? Once the new T is installed there will not be enough of a gap to move the pipes around for re-installation. Does that make sense? If I cut all the pipes to the right length to fit back together, and they have to go into one another but all have been cut to the right length, how do I make them fit together if I can't move them up or down for fitting?

I hope I explained that....

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 10:43 pm 
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Location: Detroit, MI USA
Simple, you make a second joint somewhere a few feet above the tee using this sort of clamp to splice, and slide it completely onto one of the pipes first, then bring the cut ends together and slide it halfway up onto the other pipe before tightening either clamp.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/The-Plumber ... lsrc=aw.ds

If both the top and bottom openings of the rubber tee are exactly the same size, you might be able to slide it completely onto one pipe then align them and move it halfway down onto the other one. That depends upon being able to get enough range of movement in the third pipe coming off the side of the tee to accomplish that.

But yes, they do sell unions for PVC that you can simply glue onto the ends of the pipe then mate together if you wanted to go that direction.

https://www.lowes.com/pd/homewerks-worl ... gKpdPD_BwE

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2019 10:49 pm 
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Location: Sunbury, Ohio 43074
Just because you're using one rubber splice, doesn't mean you cannot use another. :). They're pretty handy at making a difficult job easy.

You've already got PVC running from the iron stuff the rest of the way to the fixtures, so you can probably keep that.

They make those rubber couplings with different sizes on each end, btw.... for example a 1-1/2" x 2", and any others you can imagine.

Don't worry about the paint flakes.... you can use some sandpaper and get that stuff off, or even scrape it off and THEN use the sandpaper to smooth out the outside of the pipe for the rubber to seal against. If you want to get really fancy, you can get plumbers sandpaper which is a 1" wide roll of basically emery cloth, for just such purposes. Home Depot can show you how it's used... makes short work of cleaning the outside of a pipe.

Basically you tear off maybe 2' of the stuff, wrap it halfway around the pipe, and pull back and forth on both ends. Work it all the way around the pipe.

Your cutoff wheel is a good idea btw, although I highly doubt a sawzall would hurt that pipe. If it were cast iron, I'd be more concerned, but it looks like steel and should be fine.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2019 4:05 am 
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tube42 wrote:
The other question im having is how I will refit the piping that goes up from the T. There is a pvc pipe going to a bathtub. Will have to cut this off as I plan on making a new connection for a standpipe. What I wanna know is how I will fit it all together in the end. I'm guessing some kind of screw on PVC fitting? Once the new T is installed there will not be enough of a gap to move the pipes around for re-installation. Does that make sense? If I cut all the pipes to the right length to fit back together, and they have to go into one another but all have been cut to the right length, how do I make them fit together if I can't move them up or down for fitting? I hope I explained that....


Photo below shows two kinds of slip unions. The symmetrical one on the bottom line lets PVC pipe slip in and out of each end, so you can slide it down completely over one pipe before you install the pipe you are joining to, then install the pipe you are joining to, then slide it back up to meet the pipe you are joining. Home Depot and Lowes have these.

The non-symmetrical pipe on the top line has the slip section built in, so it telescopes out about 4 inches or so. I didn't see these at Home Depot so I got it at Lowes. It was a piece of cake to install, just understand it first and measure carefully.

BTW, these were for water lines under pressure. They both have O-rings inside that get tightened by the big caps. I guess they make them for drain lines, too, and I KNOW they don't leak.


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2019 5:52 pm 
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Location: Beautiful Downtown Burbank CA
We use "No Hub" couplings for waste line repairs.

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2019 8:27 pm 
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Location: Monroe, NC 28112 USA
Just this past year I had a 2" tub drain rust out just before going into a 4" cast iron Y sitting right at ground surface under my house. It is in a "you-have-to-be-kidding" space that no plumber would want to get into. (An old house where central heat ducts have been added, closing off access...) I had to dig out a 'slither space' for my body. I'm guessing if I had to call 911 for being stuck, they would saw a hole in the bathroom floor...

No room to operate a hacksaw.... Found a no name Sawzall at Harbor Freight for $29.... It's special feature was that the saw can be rotated with respect to the trigger handle. This turned out to be PERFECT for the job and worth every penny even if it is never used again. I replaced the drain line with PVC and the rubber couplings. It will definitely outlast me...

Robert


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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Tue 25, 2019 1:08 am 
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Robert, that sounds impressive, and claustrophobic like the tunnel in The Great Escape. 8)
Did you turn around to come out?

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 Post subject: Re: Need some plumbing advice
PostPosted: Jun Tue 25, 2019 3:21 am 
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Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Mike Toon hit it on the head.
NoHub

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