How to replace sewage pump copper pipes???

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by jevonmckinzie, Feb 8, 2009.

  1. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I am remodeling my basement. I have a Rigid 1/2 HP sewage pump that is being used for the basement bathroom. Every time it operates, sewer gas comes through and since the furnace is right by it, it fills the entire house with the odor and dissipates in about 5 minutes.

    I just want to know whats the best way to replace the lid on this thing. If you look at the pics, there is foam around it because the lid doesnt fully cover the hole. Also, if you notice there are a lot of block dots around the unit. Well, those are all of the flies that come from it every summer (my assumption).

    The bolts around the unit are rusted, but the lid isnt attached so it comes off pretty easily. My problem is that I want to know exactly what to do, before I mess around and dislodge the lid because I dont want sewer gas to fill the house, while I try to figure it out.

    What I dont understand is how to get the 2" copper pipes off without cutting them off. In order to replace the lid I am going to fabricate a custom metal cover and secure it to the concrete floor with tapcons. Any advice on getting these pipes off are appreciated!!

    Attached Files:

  2. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    More Pics

    Just more pictures.

    Attached Files:

  3. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Well the check valve part is easy you can remove the hose clamps on the lower rubber coupling and remove the rubber. The vent pipe usually only goes down in the pit a few inches so you should be able to tilt the lid downward and slip it out from under the vent pipe. If not you can always cut the vent pipe and reattach it with a new fernco made for copper pipes. Also I replace the couplings you have on the check valve to ones that fit the copper pipe on one end and plastic on the other.

    Here is a link of the type of couplings you need. http://www.fernco.com/plumbing/shielded-couplings/proflex-couplings If you need help finding them feel free to click on the link in my signature and give me a call, my name is Ron.
  4. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks for the reply. I think I got it, seems pretty straight forward. Just wondering, why replace the one end of the couplings as PVC??
  5. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Well the check valve is PVC and the rubber couplings that they are using are for the outside diamator of PVC, CI to PVC, CI. The ones I am recomending are Copper to PVC, CI.

    So what I am saying is get the right type of couplings for both sides of the check valve. The pair you need are 3001-22 2” CI, PL. or ST. to 2” Copper , and the one for the vent is 3003-22 2” Copper to 2” Copper.
  6. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    What you should also be doing is installing some kind of a alarm system that will tell you when the pump fails so the pit doesn't fill with sewage to the point that it floods everything when you remove the sealed top to fix or repair the problem...
  7. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks. I'm definitely going to tackle this, this weekend. One more thing, I was looking online to get those Fernco couplings, and only a couple of places have them. Does anyone know any hardware stores in Chicago or online I can get them??

    I'll look into that alarm, but one thing at a time.
  8. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    A plumbing supply is your best bet. I do not know what part of Chicago you are in so I would not know who would be close to you. Best to look in the yellow pages under plumbing suppl. The part numbers I gave you are for the Fernco proflex couplings. You can also ask them if they carry Mission couplings here are the part numbers need by that brand. two of these for the check valve CK-22 - 2†CI, PL. or ST. to 2†Copper and one of these for the vent pipe K-200 - 2†Copper to 2†Copper
  9. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,239
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    I think it's more important to consider how you are going to fix the leak. Sewer gas can be highly poisonous and any leakage might be putting your family at risk.

    The basin should have studs and a rubber or cork gasket with nuts on top or recessed bolts going into the cover. Don't bother trying to fix this with tubes of caulk or anything, you will only be wasting your time. The best fix might be to pull the basin out and put in a new one. If you try to patch this up you will likely be starting over again in a couple of months or sooner.

    Maybe you can fix it, but consider that a new basin with a matched lid, a new high liquid level alarm, and a good brand name pump will probably serve you for 10 years or more before you even have to look at it again.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2009
  10. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I measured the copper pipes going into the pump and the outside diameter is 7". Does this mean that I need a 3-3.5" PVC pipe to replace the current pipe?

    Catcher_chick, I pulled up the cover plate, and there is not a basin installed in there, the pump was just placed in the well by itself. Luckily, the pump only comes on when it has rained alot or when someone uses the bathroom downstairs. The main bathroom upstairs is connected directly to the soil stack, and doesnt go through the pump.

    The size of opening is roughly 22-24" in diameter. I think I'm just going to suck it up and completely replace everything.

    I havent really looked into it in depth, but I was thinking about going with a Zoeller or Little Giant pump. Any other recommendations??

    SewerRatz, I might take you up on that call after all. Im on the south west side of Chicago, around the Oak Lawn-Ashburn area.
  11. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,239
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    It sounds like you have a couple of problems. Foundation drains should not be hooked to the sanitary system. If the rainwater can get in, then the sewage can get out. If the systems are hooked together it can allow sewage to go into the foundation drains and then into the ground around your home.

    You need to find out what the code is in your location. You will most likely need to install a sump basin for foundation drainage and a separate sewage basin for the sanitary system.
  12. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    From what I can tell, the bathroom downstairs uses the pump. The rainwater pipes are hidden, and more than likely drain directly into the sewer, but then again I could be wrong.

    As far as pumps go, I was going to get a Zoeller pump, but none of the big chain stores around here have them, and online they charge just as much for shipping as the actual unit. I think Im going to go with this one by Liberty. http://www.accentshopping.com/product.asp/P_ID/148966.

    This pump is 20" wide, but the hole is about 22" wide. SO in order to make things work out, I need to backfill the pit with about an 1" of crushed rock on each side, and then fill with concrete to make it flush with the surface? Is that correct, anything else that needs to be done other than a new check valve, alarm,, etc...???
  13. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Chicago has combnation storm and sanitary sewers. So storm water and drain tiles already enter the sewer system.

    Just proplery sealing your pit, you can call the local plumbing supply they will have Zoeller ejector pumps. I am not a big fan of the Liberty pumps, I use Zoeller or Hydromatic. The Hydromatic model is SKV 50 Zoeller model is 267
  14. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,239
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    So you are saying it is ok that sewage from his septic basin can back up into his foundation drains and thus into the ground?
  15. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I am saying his home does not have drain tiles like you think. All the drain tiles and downspouts tie into the sewer system heading to the street. The ejector pit he has was added for a bathroom that was put into the basement and more than likely he has overhead sewers.

    Now if he was in some newer area of Chicago, or out in the suburbs, where they have storm sewers separate from the sanitary sewers, he would be required to have a sump pump pit for the rain water and an ejector pit for the sewerage.
  16. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I called around for the Zoeller Simplex M267, and so far the range is between $500 - $650, and it costs the same to just get someone to install it so I'm not even going to bother with it, and leave it to the pros. Besides, I have enough projects to tackle with plumbing two new bathrooms, taking out an old one that is the size of a closet, additional water heater in series, etc... I never get why people install bathrooms in a tiny area.

    Ron, I tried calling you to get an estimate. I left a message, call me back because Im trying to get this done ASAP.

    Thanks for the help guys.
  17. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,706
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I am sorry, been swamped today with tons of flooded basments. If you found a pro willing to sell you a M267 for around 500 to 650 go for it, thats a very good price. We are about a 100 more + labor.
  18. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I knew just going with a pro wouldnt make my life any easier. So, I had a plumber come out today and I got the, "I need to figure out a price on this and I'll get back to you", so I know its going to be expensive. No pun intended, but I think I am going to have to do this myself as I originally planned.

    Basically, the hole is only 16" deep, which is too shallow for a sealed unit to go in there, so I need to take out the other pump, get all the water and crap out, break up the concrete that is lining the bottom of the pit (hopefully there isnt any concrete, and since everything else with this basement wasnt done properly, it wouldnt surprise me), and install the new unit.

    Going to tackle this tomorrow!!
  19. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,239
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    Don't mean to be a PITA, but I am trying to better understand how the system works. He said that the pump ran when it rained a lot. I take this to mean that groundwater is getting into the pit and thus sewage could possibly get into the ground.

    BTW, Grainger sells the M267 for about $400, cash & carry. Letting a pro fix things does sound like a good plan though.
  20. jevonmckinzie

    jevonmckinzie New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I guess I wasnt looking hard enough, but I finally found a plumbing supply store that sells the M267 for $310.
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