old galv drain in concrete bathroom floor

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by ilya, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. ilya

    ilya In the Trades

    Messages:
    105
    Location:
    Akron Ohio
    Hi, everyone! I've been lurking about for awhile and learned a few things. Thanks for being here! I need help... My hometown, Akron Ohio, has a huge number of homes built in the 20's and 30's for the tire plant workers. Some of the higher end homes have small square and octagonal tile floors laid over 2-3 inches of concrete or mortar.Anyone successfully replaced leaking drainpipe that is half encased in the 'crete? The owners invariably want to keep the floor intact, so the work must be done from below. My idea is to replace it at both ends, run PVC paralell to the old, and leave it in there.I have a right angle grinder w/ a diamond cutting wheel that eats up concrete. Anybody?
  2. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Messages:
    810
    Location:
    Penticton, BC
    Pictures?

    If you're gonna replace and remove the old piping you're gonna have to do damage to the floor to a certain extent.

    I like the idea of abandoning the old pipe and running new pipe.
  3. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,641
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    drain

    There are too many unknowns. IS the pipe running parallel to the joists? Can a new connection be made into the riser at a lower point? WHY is the pipe in the concrete in the first place?
  4. ilya

    ilya In the Trades

    Messages:
    105
    Location:
    Akron Ohio
    HJ-I have no idea why the pipe is partialy in the concrete, but it is common around here, in homes built circa 1920-1940. They laid the pipes in notches in the tops of the joists, which were slightly lower than the rest of the house. Sometimes the fixture end was above the top of the joists, or even above the subfloor.The subfloor is sometimes gapped where the pipe lies, or even carved out on the underside. When the 'crete was poured , the pipes were partialy buried. I have seen and heard of this many times, but I don't know if it was common in other parts of the country. Clearly, if I abandon the existing pipe, I must put my Holehawg to work thru the joists, and then sister them w/ 2 x 6's on both sides 'cause of the 'crete's weight. These sisters I would fasten with bolts and liquid nails. I have always repaced the whole run to the closet el, chased the threads w/ a tap, and screwed in a new PVC male adaptor. (This policy has caused many a headache.) I can't count on being able to tie in at any lower point; I doubt the stack has a plugged tee or wye anywhere. I have also seen supply lines this way and they tend to be totally encased because they're smaller. Not a fun time! Comments from anyone are appreciated.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2009
  5. ilya

    ilya In the Trades

    Messages:
    105
    Location:
    Akron Ohio
    Doherty-I don't have pics of one o' these really fun jobs, but one's coming up. The reason the clients want to save the floors is they've usually kept the entire home original except for adding ceiling fans or suchlike. Often the original wallhung toilets have been kept in good repair, and Vitrolite or Subway tile is nearly perfect, as are the leaded windows. These folks like their radiator heat, and often do w/out Central Air to avoid too many changes to the house,even tho most have the money. I'm not a restoration expert, but clients see my appreciation of their desires and so I usually get the job, if I think I can handle it. I do plenty of work in modest homes too.You are right about SOME damage to the floors though. I've never gotten new pipe thru the floor w/out cracks or minor breakage. This is where forewarnings w/ a big smile, and big escutchions have saved my booty. I'll try to post pics of this next one. Any further comments from anyone are appreciated.
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