Plumber installed double sanitary tee in back to back install of eco drakes

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by natalie559, Apr 12, 2014.

  1. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    Carry over question from this thread: http://www.terrylove.com/forums/sho...eplace-wall-hung-or-go-floor-mounted-pictures

    The plumber installed what looks to me to be a double sanitary tee between the walls, I just was looking through the manual and noticed that is not recommended. Why would they have done this then? Will we have problems? We want to finish the bathroom, get the floor down etc and now it's a Saturday and we cannot ask the plumber. Maybe space was a reason they chose that fixture? It looks to me that we have a large vent pipe if that makes a difference. You can see where their connection sits at a joint or whatever its called in the lower fixture, they didn't want to connect lower due to height of toilet plumbing then would also have created a need to re route some tub drain pipes. Toilet installed on other side looks and works great!

    photo.jpg
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
  2. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    Actually got through to plumber on text, he said they used a 4" cross, it meets code and that they use it all the time without problems, said I could call for a more detailed explanation, I said no need if you say it will work good. . .so hopefully crisis averted, fingers crossed!
  3. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Get it in writing from him that if the cross doesn't work, he will open the wall and replace it at no charge. This configuration raises the significant possibility of siphoning the other bowl. The Toto instructions are crystal-clear:

    "IMPORTANT!
    Due to the powerful performance of our Cyclone, G-Max, E-Max and Power Gravity
    flushing systems, they are not specified for back-to-back installations. The only
    means of installing these toilets in a back-to-back situation is when the toilet drain
    connections incorporate a WYE fitting. Please contact your builder or contractor prior
    to this installation.
    Double Combination WYE / 1/8 Bend
    YES
    Double Sanitary Tee / Sanitary Cross
    NO"

    He can say "they use it all the time without problems", but we SEE all the time how this installation causes problems with modern toilets. Most likely, his customers who are experiencing siphoning of the bowl don't know to blame him for using a cross.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
  4. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    Thanks for the reply.

    We took the cap off the tube and flushed the other side and water came up the tube to about where the upper part of the elbow meets the straight vertical tube, so there is definitely cross over. . . whether this will cause siphoning of the other bowl we do not know, so hoping to get a hold of plumber for more detailed explanation. Very frustrating as we want to continue fixing the bathroom with this weekend being an opportune time. :(
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    Location:
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    Reference how high it comes up with where the floor will be...it looks like that riser will be a bit (bunch) shorter once the toilet gets installed. Any time you 'rock' the boat (or in this case, the water spot in the bowl), stuff will slosh and when it rocks above the weir (the outlet of a toilet), some will drain out. When a toilet starts out with less water in the bowl than what it is designed for, it frequently does NOT flush well, if at all, on the first flush. That just ends up refilling the bowl, and the next one does its job. Doesn't do much for convenience or for water savings when you have to do it twice.

    Keep in mind if someone happens to be sitting on that toilet when the other is flushed, they may be in for a surprise!

    When any fixture is installed, part of the installation is that it be installed per the manufacturer's instructions. This applies to many things. What worked on older toilets, doesn't always work on the newer ones...in order to flush with less water...the water they do use must move faster, and it's that sudden spurt the 'old' ways can't handle.
  6. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    photo.jpg

    The floor will be aprox where the red line is and the water came up to aprox where the blue line is. So are you saying with my lines in mind that you think it will slosh the water but not drain any out? (since the water to me appears to be below the outlet of the toilet)
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,324
    Location:
    New England
    Air is like a spring, the trapway of the toilet is dry. Water compressing the air will rebound into the bowl. When the water rocks, since it is like a pot with a spout, as it rocks, some will drain out the spout. If it's strong enough, it may create some splashing.
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    IF the horizontal pipe is full of water, which it would be if it reaches the blue line, it will create a suction when it drains out. IF that suction is enough to START a siphon the design of the bowl will complete it and drain the water out of the toilet. In this area, if the job is inspected, the plumbers CANNOT use that sanitary cross for back to back toilets, (but they cannot use them for back to back ANYTHING else, either).
  9. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    This makes me wonder why he stated it was to code so I looked up and found that I think that florida uses international building code which states

    "Exception: Back-to-back water closet connections to dou-
    ble sanitary tees shall be permitted where the horizontal
    developed length between the outlet of the water closet
    and the connection to the double sanitary tee pattern is 18
    inches (457 mm) or greater.

    In my picture the 2 green lines measure aprox 17 inches, this is from aprox center of waste pipe to center of toilet outlet. Should my measurement actually be from the green dotted line where the actual connection to the tee is? If so that measures aprox 14 inches from green dotted line right to solid green line.

    photo.jpg

    2010 Fla building code states "706.3 Installation of fittings.
    Fittings shall be installed to
    guide sewage and waste in the direction of flow. Change in
    direction shall be made by fittings installed in accordance with
    Table 706.3. Change in direction by combination fittings, side
    inlets or increasers shall be installed in accordance with Table
    706.3 based on the pattern of flow created by the fitting. Double
    sanitary tee patterns shall not receive the discharge of
    back-to-back water closets and fixtures or appliances with
    pumping action discharge.

    Exception:
    Back-to-back water closet connections to double sanitary
    tees shall be permitted where the horizontal
    developed length between the outlet of the water closet and
    the connection to the double sanitary tee pattern is 18 inches
    (457 mm) or greater"

    What would developed length mean?
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
  10. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    You have a challenge in that it might be code legal, but it does not comply with the toilet manufacturer's instructions.
    There are a lot of plumbers who do not install a Toto toilet compliant rough-in on any regular basis, and probably have never needed to. This is something you will need to discuss with your plumber and hope he will understand the situation.

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2014
  11. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Location:
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    Unlike most other items, the developed length of a water closet trap arm is measured from the floor flange to the inner edge of its vent. Like sticking a tape measure into the pipe. So basically it's from your red line to to the near-inside wall of the vertical pipe (i.e. where the horizontal section meets the vertical vent). On your diagram, this would be to the left of the dotted green and to the right of the solid green...roughly but not exactly half way between the two, a bit more than halfway from the solid to the dotted.

    Echoing Cacher Chick, it's actually a little bizarre in your situation since your guy installs lots of Totos. Maybe he just doesn't do them back to back a lot.

    PS Toto isn't the only one that says this, although they have revised their language to make it absolute, as I quoted it above. American Standard says this in the Champion 4 install instructions:

    "Depending upon your plumbing and venting conditions, the flow
    from the Champion in a back-to-back installation may create a
    vacuum on the system and draw water from the opposing bowl. The
    National Standards Plumbing Code prohibits the use of a cross
    fitting for drainage as throw over is possible. The code does approve
    a directional "Y" style fitting with proper venting to direct the water
    downward and away from the other toilet."

    Kohler just says, "Use a 45 degree double Y fitting. Do not use a double sanitary tee."
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
  12. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    Thanks for the info!

    So are you saying to measure the dotted orange line or the solid orange line in my picture? If the solid then that is likely pretty darn close to 18 inches, the dotted would not be.

    photo.jpg

    My husband asked me this am since one toilet crosses over into the other drain line what would happen if both toilets were flushed at the same time?

    We're thinking this tee should be replaced. I will not be happy to go through all this and then get siphoning and or bubbling of the opposite toilet and even if that does not offer it doesn't seem right for the other toilets waste to cross the drain and travel 14 inches into the other side- dont you agree?

    Are the y type fitting typically taller than the regular double tees? If so there may be an issue connecting into the drain pipe as pretty close to their pvc connection are joints in the cast iron. I feel like my original estimate should have included a y type fitting so that I could accurately budget this project. Now if I insist they change it I am not sure how that will increase my costs. I certainly don't think I should have to pay for the double work, but as you all stated he might be defensive towards that it was done to code, but the manufacturers specs on the product should def be taken into account, esp when all the manufacturers recommend a y fitting and they recommended the toto toilet to me in the first place.
  13. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    1,982
    Location:
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    Solid.

    It is likely to code or close to code.
  14. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,263
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Did he know what brand toilets you would be installing before he started? But, looking at the photo closely. it appears that he connected to the riser using a "Fernco" coupling OVER the hub of the cross. Neither of these are permitted in most jurisdictions. IF it is a "street cross" which I do not thing anyone makes, then the Fernco is still no the proper connector.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2014
  15. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    The day he gave me the estimate he suggested the eco drakes. In conversation with his office that week I was debating between eco drakes and drake IIs. The day before install it was verified that I wanted the eco drake for the master, hall bath to be installed once we finished the bathroom, so I would say yes he knew. Seems though that like wjcandee said, 3 of the top toilet manufacturers say to use a y not a t, not just toto.
  16. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Location:
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    He knew from the beginning that he was installing Totos, because he RECOMMENDED and quoted them as part of the job of removing the wall flange and installing floor flanges.
  17. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    This is florida plumbing building codes, http://ecodes.biz/ecodes_support/free_resources/2010Florida/Plumbing/10FL_Plumbing.html

    These are the chapters- what chapter would I look at to find more info on what you stated?

    Chapter 1 - Scope and Administration
    Chapter 2 - Definitions
    Chapter 3 - General Regulations
    Chapter 4 - Fixtures, Faucets and Fixture Fittings
    Chapter 5 - Water Heaters
    Chapter 6 - Water Supply and Distribution
    Chapter 7 - Sanitary Drainage
    Chapter 8 - Indirect/Special Waste
    Chapter 9 - Vents
    Chapter 10 - Traps, Interceptors and Separators
    Chapter 11 - Storm Drainage
    Chapter 12 - Special Piping and Storage Systems
    Chapter 13 - Referenced Standards
    Appendix A - Plumbing Permit Fee Schedule
    Appendix B - Rates of Rainfall for Various Cities
    Appendix C - Gray Water Recycling Systems
    Appendix D - Degree Day and Design Temperatures
    Appendix E - Sizing of Water Piping System
    Appendix F - Proposed Construction Building Codes for Turf and Landscape Irrigation Systems
    Appendix G - Vacuum Drainage System
    Index
    Florida Building Code 2010 Building Chapter 1
  18. natalie559

    natalie559 New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    FL
    Another issue we had was that after they did the work my husband noticed that they cut into the support beam. He asked the workers about this and they said it was fine, that if they didn't cut more than 50% they didn't need to brace it. My husband was upset saying that it wasn't right so I called the owner and he said the cost benefit analysis of cutting in there vs lower had them cut there. I said well they cut almost 50% of the beam he said well they should have called me if it was that much, send me some pictures, which I sent the ones below, didn't hear back from him. My husband and I discussed it and knew he could brace it to carry the load so we decided to just do that and not push the issue. What do yall think of this:

    image (2).jpg image (3).jpg
  19. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    3,281
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    This is a case where the work you are having done legally requires a permit and inspection from your municipality. The building/plumbing inspector should be the one that is enforcing the code requirements. I applaud you and your husband for doing the research, but now that the installation is to the point that it is, it is not going to be fun for you or the plumbing company to make this right.
  20. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,324
    Location:
    New England
    Technically, you cannot notch either the top or the bottom of a joist and have it retain its full strength...and, where and how big a hole you put through it is limited as well (such as how far from the end and the max diameter and quantity of holes). Plumber's are probably the worst offenders of improper cutting of structure and can sometimes get away with it because the structural permit and inspection has already been done. HVAC installers, probably the second worst. IOW, the plumbing inspector may not flag it since it's not his area, only looking at the plumbing itself.

    Functionally, the entire run of that joist is now the equivalent of the remaining thickness after the notch is cut. The vast majority of the strength of any joist or beam is in the top and bottom edges...what's in the middle must hold them in place (think of a truss or I-beam - the middle may be empty for the most part), and that is what provides the strength - one edge in compression, the other in tension. Now, those sides are MUCH closer together, and much weaker.

    You may also find that there's some wording in the codes that says: do it this way, or as defined in the manufacturer's instructions.

    In the FL code, I think I'd start in chapter 4. But, that's only a guess.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2014
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