Upstairs laundry

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by carotene, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    Hello All,

    Just joined the forum here and have a few questions about an upstairs laundry we're putting in. This is a 1960's split. We're converting a closet into a small laundry. Directly below this closet (with the same footprint) is a powder room on an at-grade slab. Sink and toilet only. The closet and powder are located at the front of the house. The main plumbing stack is in the center of the house and would be a pain to reach. I've demo'd the walls out of the upstairs closet thus far and can see the vent from the sink which goes straight out the roof above.

    Now to my questions:

    1) Can I tie the washer drain into either the toilet or sink drain below?
    2) Is it ok to tie the washer drain vent into the vent pipe right there in the closet?

    I would put the washer drain trap above the closet floor with a standpipe that' s 32" above the trap.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    thanks
  2. asktom

    asktom Member

    Messages:
    531
    Location:
    Victor, MT
    1) Yes, but exactly how depends on how the downstairs drains are run. Almost certainly the connection would need to be under the slab.

    2) No.
  3. Reach4

    Reach4 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,164
    Location:
    IL
    "2) Is it ok to tie the washer drain vent into the vent pipe right there in the closet?"

    I don't understand why this would be a problem, except that the washer vent should be 2 inch I think. Not a pro.


    I hope the closet is on an outside wall to make dryer vent short. Expect to need to clean that line of lint clogs.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2014
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,540
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; I don't understand why this would be a problem, except that the washer vent should be 2 inch I think.

    Well, for starters,
    1. a "vent" is NOT a drain.
    2. IF the existing "vent" IS 2", then it makes it worse, since the falling water will create a "suction" at the toilet's connection and could "suck' the water out of its trap.
    3. the toilet will need a vent before it connects to the main riser. unless
    4. If the lavatory connects to this same vertical pipe, then #3 does not apply and the washer connection MUST be below the toilet's connection,
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,950
    Location:
    New England
    Yes, you can use the vent in the closet as a vent for your WM (assuming it is large enough)...the connection must be 6" above the flood plane or 42" above the floor, whichever is higher. You cannot use it as a drain, though. Once a vent, always a vent.

    So, for the vent, you'd have to come off of the trap arm before you run the waste down, and go up to above 42", then connect into the existing vent, or, if you had access, you could run it up in the wall to the attic, and make the connection there.

    Since the WM outlet is pumped, and can be quite a strong flow, that dictates where you can safely make a connection into your drainage system. Without knowing how the toilet and sink are plumbed, can't say where it would be safe to connect the drain, and it may not be easy...it may need to be done under ground (below the slab). Keep in mind that once the WM is properly vented, you can run the outlet a fair distance, as long as you maintain proper slope. Code calls for cleanouts after a certain angular change of direction, and that might be a pain, but it's doable. And, a WM drain needs to be 2", and a main rule in plumbing is you can't go from a larger pipe to a smaller one - the sink plumbing may not be big enough, so you'd need to access the larger pipe below the slab.
  6. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    thanks for the replies folks!

    For question 2, I wasn't proposing "wet venting" / using that vent as a drain. I would tie the washer drain vent into it. Per Jim, i'd tie in above the flood plain (i'll check code locally on this), but it would make sense to tie in well above.

    Asktom: "1) Yes, but exactly how depends on how the downstairs drains are run. Almost certainly the connection would need to be under the slab." - This is what I was afraid of! no chance I can tie in to the sink drain below the T for the sink?

    Reach4: Yep, this is on an outside wall (the front of the house), and I plan to run the dryer vent straight out. Probably 10" long max. Paint the vent hood black so it's inconspicuous on the front of the house. No biggie. There's no way i'm snaking that vent up and over to the side of the house.
  7. asktom

    asktom Member

    Messages:
    531
    Location:
    Victor, MT
    Not knowing how the downstairs drains are run (and I don't know MD codes, some have special rules for WMs) I can't say. Given that the lav vent is 2" it is most probable that it is also the toilet vent, in which case the answer is no.
  8. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    well, i'm going to open the floor in the closet this weekend and peak between the floor joists. the way the joists are run I may be able to shoot over to the main stack. I hope I can get the drop I need. I'll keep you all posted.

    thanks!
  9. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    I opened up the wall in the powder bath below the closet. Here's a pic.
    2014-04-06 13.09.12.jpg

    It looks like the galvanized pipe that goes straight up vents the toilet. But the lav tees in to this as well so isn't that wet venting the toilet?

    What would you guys recommend here? We plan to be here a long time and I want to do this right while I have everything open.

    Would you replace the galvanized pipe?
    Can I tie in the washer drain with this arrangement?

    thank you
  10. asktom

    asktom Member

    Messages:
    531
    Location:
    Victor, MT
    There is no place to tie in there. Sorry. The wet vent is OK (same floor, sizing OK), although the lav ties into the vent wirh an incorrect fitting. You are hooked up with a LTTY (combination) rather than a STTY (san tee). If it hasn't been a problem you may want to pretend you didn't hear that part.
  11. Gib

    Gib New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    IL
    Combination fitting incorrect in this application. I would like to know why.

    DIYer, I agree, there is nothing to tie into in your powder room. You need a separate 2" drain from below your powder room. If you want it done right.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  12. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    Thanks asktom. If this were your place would you pull the galvanized vent and sink drain and replace with PVC? Maybe because it's only a vent it shouldn't cause any troubles for the next 50 years?
  13. carotene

    carotene New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    MD
    The house was built in 1961. I'm guessing this is original but who knows... We just moved in a few months ago. Opening the walls upstairs i've found other "interesting" things.
  14. Gib

    Gib New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    IL
    Because the house is from 61 and piping looks original doesn't mean things are wrong. So far I see that piping in powder room is ok. I can not wet vent where I from, your lav tie together the way it is, I would not suggest but in this case its not hurting. Some codes allow wet venting with restrictions.
  15. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,950
    Location:
    New England
    Galvanized for vents can last a very long time...it isn't as long-lived when used as drain lines (or water supply) where it is constantly being wetted. So, it's not always needed to replace.

    FWIW, you will be required to update parts you touch to current codes, but older stuff, if it originally met code, and you are not making changes (and it's not giving you issues), can generally be left alone.
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