Building a standpipe for a washer

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by LeBlanc, Nov 11, 2007.

  1. LeBlanc

    LeBlanc New Member

    Messages:
    23
    We purchased a vacation home on Houghton Lake, Michigan, and we're planning substantial renovations next spring. The house is on a crawl space, the garage is on a slab, and two rooms that connect the house with the garage are also on a slab.

    Amongst the many items that we'll be tacking is moving a bathroom, moving a laundry room and moving the entire water service and heat system.

    As configured today, the hot water boiler/furnace, the hot water heater, the water softener and the well water holding tank are all positioned in a small room inside the garage. All of these items are within two years old, but having them in the garage presents several heating difficulties and other logistical problems.

    I'll save several questions for several separate forums, but today I'd like to know how difficult it is to build a standpipe for the washer in the new location (on an outer wall)? I'd like to eliminate the need for a laundry tub.

    I've also asked within a different forum whether we can convert the hot water heat system to a closed-loop, non-freezing system?

    Thanks for your help.

    Richard

    Arcadenut@aol.com
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,917
    Location:
    New England
    The boiler can probably be fitted with an antifreeze solution, but it isn't as efficient in heat transfer as plain water...you'll loose 20% of the heat output, but if you do that, you shouldn't have to worry about it freezing if you shut it off. You'd have to drain the potable water piping, though and put antifreeze (RV stuff) in the traps of the sinks and toilets. You'd have to be careful if it had a water makup system, as if there was a leak, and you refill with plain water, you'd be diluting it and it would raise the freezing point. Course, you shouldn't have any leaks, but it is something to consider.

    I don't see any problem with a washer standpipe as long as it is trapped, vented, and long enough per the standards.
  3. LeBlanc

    LeBlanc New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Building a Standpipe

    Thank you for your reply, jadnashua. I'd like to clarify, just to make certain my request is clear. I have two questions.

    The first item involves the hot water heat. The system is, indeed, a closed system, but it uses water and as needed it gets it from the well (on-demand). S suspect the small tank next to the furnace (about two gallons) is the "water make-up" system you've mentioned.

    If the efficiency is decreased, that's fine. Again, we'll probably only be there a few days during each winter and can use the natural gas fireplace for cool spring or fall days.

    What I am hoping might be an option is this:

    To ELIMINATE the water source, so that the system is filled with a fluid, is completely sealed and closed, and that it never needs additional fluid (water or anti-freeze).

    Is this realistic? Does the heat come from steam? I have never had this type of heat.

    If these systems are capable of using an anti-freeze, does it ever need a recharge or additional fluid if there are no leaks?

    The second item involves the standpipe. While I have basic mechanical skills, I've never seen or used a standpipe. It sounds as though it's only a pipe with a trap that connects to a drain. Have I simplified it too much or is it a really simple item to create and install?

    Thanks again.

    Richard
  4. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,917
    Location:
    New England
    The expansion tank hooked into the boiler circuit is not for makeup water (although you may have that, it would be separate and have a backflow preventer on it to protect the potable water), it is just what the name implies, as the water is heated it expands, it provides a place for it to go since the system is closed. If you didn't have one (or one that is working), the pressure would go too high and normally shut the boiler down.

    If you have an auto-fill valve, you could shut it off. The danger is that if the pressure gets too low from some slow leak, the boiler (should) turn off, and not operate. If for some reason it didn't, you could destroy the thing since if the heat exchanger is run when it is not full of water, it will likely warp or burn through. You could also be producing steam, and that could generate all sorts of problems, such as melting things, or blowing up.

    I assume if you were going to shut the system down, that you'd turn the pump off as well, so it doesn't matter. You'd need to drain all untreated water from the system to be safe.
  5. Herk

    Herk Plumber

    Messages:
    547
    Location:
    S.E. Idaho
    When I was a young fella in Alpena, MI, we had a hot water system that was installed by my dad. IIRC, he used an antifreeze in the lines. There is very little water loss over time. It does not use steam - just hot water at low pressure circulated through the system. It was great heat, but slow when you came home to a cold house and turned it on.

    So far as I know (though I don't know everything) there is no system that does not require water. Just as a car uses 50% water and 50% antifreeze you don't need one hundred percent antifreeze, nor do you need to shut off the incoming water.

    The worst part about these hi-tech systems is that there is always something that can go wrong if they are unoccupied for a long time. My folks' house had an oil burner chamber burn out and filled the house with black smoke.

    Keep in mind this was all about 45+ years ago . . .

    If you do winterize the heating system, use propylene glycol, not ethelyne glycol. If you get it from a heating supplier you'll be sure to have the right stuff, and they can recommend the percentage of mix. Run the pumps to make sure it's well-circulated through the system.
  6. LeBlanc

    LeBlanc New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Thanks to everyone for the suggestions regarding the hot water heat. To ensure the proper handling on my goal, I will consult a professional during my next visit there.

    Regards,
    Richard
Similar Threads: Building standpipe
Forum Title Date
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & snaking kitchen drains of apartment building Mar 31, 2014
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Building drain to sewer: ABS vs cast iron? Feb 27, 2014
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Building House--Basement Ground Work Wrong--Help!! Nov 24, 2013
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & What size tap do I need? 3,500 feet from tap to building? Aug 20, 2013
Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Plumbing new building, questions on PEX May 23, 2013

Share This Page