Basement bath rough-in gone wrong?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by n2learning, Mar 30, 2009.

  1. n2learning

    n2learning New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Missouri
    I hired a guy with "30 years of construction experience" to help me add a basement bath. He made the plumbing seem really simple...too simple. I began doing research after we closed it up (still kicking myself for this), but something just doesn't seem right.

    Anyway, what I really need is your help.

    I posted a video on photobucket showing what was done:

    http://s629.photobucket.com/albums/uu17/n2learning/?action=view&current=basementrough-in.flv

    Please watch the video (90 seconds maybe) and help answer these questions:

    1) Was the new piping, that runs to what was the basement drain, done wrong or right? If wrong, explain how it needs to be done.

    2) I'm sure a p-trap needs to be added for the shower drain. After I add a 2" p-trap can I connect 2" pvc to the existing 4" pvc? (I know I am going to have to break up the floor again, but I would like to break up as little as possible.)

    3) As you can see I haven't put up the frame yet. Am I on the right track with venting? I don't know how I would vent the toilet given where the rough in is at. Suggestions?


    I would be more than happy to record more or clarify a point If I didn't explain things well.

    Thanks!
  2. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    You guys tied into a floor drain. The reason why there is standing water in their is that it is a p-trap. You need to find out if no one here knows what plumbing code you are under. Toilet might not need a vent. (If IPC) Shower will need a 2 inch p-trap and be vented. Again need clarification as to what plumbing code you are under to determine distances for vent.
  3. cwhyu2

    cwhyu2 Consultant

    Messages:
    1,347
    Location:
    Cincinnati OH
    Get your jack hammer out!

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2009
  4. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    The first thing you need to know is if the floor drain is tied to a sanitary sewer...
  5. C NUMB

    C NUMB Plumbing Contractor

    Messages:
    135
    Location:
    NPR, FL
    Maybe he had 30yrs "construction experience" but he has no plumbing experience, you are going to have to break up the floor again and as Redwood said "The first thing you need to know is if the floor drain is tied to a sanitary sewer..." Also will need to know your bathroom layout along with the wall layout.
  6. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    You can not have your new basement drains tied into a P-trap (your old floor drain) that is against code. Venting is needed you can use the sink line vent. You shower will need a p-trap. To make your drain hook up legal into the existing plumbing you need to remove that floor drain p-trap.

    This is why cities and villages want plumbing permits for jobs to prevent things like this from happening. The plumbing inspector would of wanted to see some sort of plans, then once the rough in was in place before the cement was poured he do an inspection. It would of never gotten this far.
  7. n2learning

    n2learning New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Missouri
    I appreciate everyone's help. Please bear with me on a few follow-up points:

    Sanitary/Storm sewer line:
    I believe the floor drain empties to a sanitary drain.
    A couple years ago when we had to get our sewer line snaked due to a tree root, there was a pool
    of standing water (and some fecal waste) at the basement floor where the floor drain was.

    Furthermore, when we've had days and days of hard rain there has never been any back-up from this drain,
    which might suggest that this drain does not tie into a storm sewer. There is another floor drain outside
    our basement walk-out that I think would be the storm drain.

    SewerRatz said:
    "To make your drain hook up legal into the existing plumbing you need to remove that floor drain p-trap."

    Remove the p-trap and tie into the existing sewer line then? I'll find a plumber to help me with this.

    Is everyone in agreement with SewerRatz or does anyone have other opinions?

    Venting and framing
    We ran chaulk lines but they are faded, otherwise I would record the layout.
    Is 2" pvc recommended for venting or will 1 1/2" do?

    Thanks again
  8. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I would stick with 2" piping for the vent.

    About your new drainage piping tieing into a floor drains p-trap. Think of it this way, what if a stoppage happens just after that p-trap. You would pull the water closet and stick a rodder down the closet ell, and when it comes onto that p-trap you are going to have one heck of a time making them turns from that distance. Some floor drain traps when you have direct access over them its a bear to make the rodder make them turns.

    OK that all to the side, lets look at the real problem. First you are double trapping your water closet. You shower drain ties into the drainage pipe your water closet is draining down, which means since your shower has no trap as it sits you will be smelling sewerage. If you just add a trap to the shower line and not remove the floor drain p-trap, you are now double trapping your shower. I hope this clears things up a little.
  9. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    Find a cleanout outside that can be determined leads to sanitary sewer. (Flush toilet while someone observes cleanout.) Once done now pour water down floor drain and see if same result occurs.
  10. n2learning

    n2learning New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Missouri
    SewerRatz,
    Your explanation about double trapping makes perfect sense. Needless to say, I won't be having the contractor finish the rest of this job.

    Even if someone is not a plumber, but has been working in the home building construction trade for 30 years, they should know this.

    Kingsotall,
    Yep, that's what I was going to do next. I check my outside cleanout about once a month anyway.

    Back to square 1.

    Thanks!
  11. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    dwv

    Your video cuts off just as you get to the 90 at the shower so I cannot tell what else is wrong with it. But from what I can see, you have absolutely no venting, no trap at the shower, and may have a problem where he connected. He may have been a plumber like the city inspector who worked with the company when I was an apprentice. I had to fire him because of work about the same quality.
  12. Frog1

    Frog1 New Member

    Messages:
    5
    I'm not sure if it was me or??? Is that pipe the pipe being used sched 40? looked like downspout drain to me?
  13. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    The fittings did look very thin.
  14. n2learning

    n2learning New Member

    Messages:
    21
    Location:
    Missouri
    Here is a follow-up video where I would like your opinion on a few things.

    http://s629.photobucket.com/albums/uu17/n2learning/?action=view&current=basementrough-in_II.flv

    1) How far does the toilet have to be from the sewer line?

    2) Anyone familiar with Missouri codes about venting? I spoke with one guy who said venting is not required as long as the shower and toilet is within 5 - 8 feet from the main stack.

    3) Can I drain the shower into the secondary stack or does it have to run directly to the main sewer line like I have it now?

    I appreciate everyone's feedback. Thanks
  15. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    dwv

    1) How far does the toilet have to be from the sewer line?

    That is not the question, nor is it relevent. The question should be "how far from the vent?" and that stack is NOT a vent.

    2) Anyone familiar with Missouri codes about venting? I spoke with one guy who said venting is not required as long as the shower and toilet is within 5 - 8 feet from the main stack.

    The main stack is NEVER a vent, nor is any other stack which has fixtures connected to it above the point of connection. AND EVERY fixture, which has a trap, MUST be vented somehow.

    3) Can I drain the shower into the secondary stack or does it have to run directly to the main sewer line like I have it now?

    Yes, IF you install a vent for it.

    Additional points.

    5. The washer drain does not appear to have a trap

    6. The sink trap SHOULD be above the floor under the sink. About the only place I have heard of your installation being approved has been some apochryphal anecdotes from Wisconsin.

    7. You cannot connect a vent to the sink drain where you talk about doing it. It would have to be at a point 6" ABOVE the sink countertop level. In fact, if you connect it to ANY existing piping it MUST be at least 6" above the overflow level of ALL fixtures connected to the pipe, and ideally, at least 42" above the floor.

    Neither you, nor your "plumber", seem to have an idea what you are doing and should either get some good local advice or have a "real" plumber install it. Your existing plumbing, at least the revisions seem to have been done by your plumber friend who has been in the business for 30 years. Too bad he did not learn anything during that time. His job must be to just follow the orders someone else gives him, and install things their way.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  16. GabeS

    GabeS Remodel Contractor

    Messages:
    294
    Location:
    Brooklyn NY
    I never heard of a 4" drain for a shower. What's the story behind that?

    Plumbing is serious business. It's not something you should just wing it with, like sheetrock or painting. You could seriously jeapordize your health. There are many hazards that you don't know about if done improperly such as gas entering house if not properly vented, or cross connections in water supply lines that could contaminate the entire neighborhood's drinking water to say the least. Get a licensed plumber in there who's knows the local code.
  17. C NUMB

    C NUMB Plumbing Contractor

    Messages:
    135
    Location:
    NPR, FL
    After looking at that last video you have some major issues with about every plumbing waste line I see.
  18. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    pipe

    He did use S&D sized pipe and I am surprised he could even find fittings for it. Here, the only fittings for it are gasketed push together ones. It was NEVER intended to be used indoors. It is for storm drains and sanitary systems outside going to the main sewer.
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