Remodeling Duplex

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by bob_cville, Apr 17, 2013.

  1. bob_cville

    bob_cville New Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    We recently purchased an older duplex that has been rented out for some time. The resident of one half moved out and we were starting the process of fixing it up to rent again, and decided to remove the ugly sheet flooring and replace it with something new.

    Upon pulling it up we discovered massive water damage to the floor and sub-floor and consequently we needed to remove the cabinets to be able to access all of the damaged sub-floor, and the leaking drain pipe in the wall.

    We also then found the tub had been leaking damaging the drywall, the floor and sub-floor, and many of the wall studs. Yay.

    I've removed the sink and the tub and (soon) the toilet as well as most of the drywall, floor and sub-floor, and now need to decide the design for putting it all back.

    However in looking at what is there, its not clear that what is there is up to code, or done right in the first place.

    This is a picture of the 4" cast iron main drain immediately beneath the toilet:

    The line leaving the drain at an angle is a 2" PVC pipe that heads towards the kitchen where there is a 1 1/2" washing machine drain (that might not be vented) which then continues on to the front of the building where it turns up next to a window near the kitchen sink, where there was a san-tee with a 1 1/2" fixture arm for the kitchen sink (that was massively leaking). and continues on up through the roof as a 1 1/2" galvanized steel vent pipe.

    The end of the line in the kitchen:

    and here is the proposed solution for the kitchen:

    The other pipe coming off of the main drain:

    travels about 6 feet to this:

    Where the tub fixture arm can be seen in the background, and the pipe continued up from there past a tee for the bathroom sink and continues up through the roof as a 2" vent.

    Is anything right about this?

    As the very least it seems the bottom tee should be a Wye and 45 and the pipe heading toward the main drain should slope down rather than slightly up as it did.

    But it also seems that the toilet might not be vented or might be wet vented or something.
  2. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Sep 1, 2004
    Yakima WA
    You've got enough problems to keep you busy for a month! It looks like this plumbing was done in stages by hacks. Lack of venting, wrong pipe sizes, likely incorrect fittings, and Lord knows what else. "Is anything right about this?" I think that about sums up where you are. Considering the scope of work that needs to be done, and the many things that could be done wrong, it might be wise to hire a plumbing contractor rather than trying to DIY. I realize of course that money is likely a concern, but DIY could result in not passing inspection which would require tearing out and redoing, or having a drain system that is no better than what you currently have.
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  4. bob_cville

    bob_cville New Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    It seems at least that the line going to the kitchen should be correct (once the unvented washing machine drain is capped) and that the main drain after the long bend elbow at the bottom of the first picture should be correct. It just seems that the vertical stack to the toilet and the drain line toward the shower are wrong.
    Given that this was the original layout of the bathroom:


    Is there a way that the drains could be made to work with this layout:


    with the toilet wet vented to the 2" vent pipe
  5. bob_cville

    bob_cville New Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    Please, does anyone have any input on this? I've since talked with a local plumber, who looked at the existing plumbing and said that the existing work was up to code, and that in any case since it was existing, it would be grandfathered in. He said that he would run a new two inch line for the new washer drain, and (somehow) connect it into the existing drain, and put a "cheater valve" near the washing machine for venting. Having read this forum on-and-off for years I knew that air admittance valves are not the preferred solution, and that in some jurisdictions they are strictly prohibited.
    So I asked the electrical/plumbing inspector for the county, about this solution and his response was "Any existing elect. Or plumb. Not to code is grandfathered not saying safe air admittens vaulves are ok most can not be used on ejected sewer" but that doesn't make it any clearer to me. Does a washing machine count as "ejected sewer" ?

    Can someone here please weigh in with some advice? I really don't believe what the local plumber told me, and I'm not sure how to interpret what the inspector has told me.
  6. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Jan 5, 2008
    Test, Don't Guess!
    Land of Cheese
    With the exception of the sanitary tee on it's back, I don't see anything in your pictures that would not have met code when the house was built. We cannot see everything from your pictures, including the closet bend or how the toilet is vented.

    What the plumber is saying is correct, but there is always more than one one way to do something.
  7. bob_cville

    bob_cville New Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    Thanks for weighing in. I thought I had more pictures, but they must be at home. There is no closet bend in this set-up. Immediately atop the stack in the first picture, there is a toilet flange and the toilet. The vent for the toilet, as the plumber explained it, is the horizontal pipe across fourth and fifth pictures, which is wet-vented by the tub and the lav.

    My plan as of now is to leave everything in the same place, and to just install a new washer drain, which I will tie into the diagonal 2 inch drain coming from the kitchen, and vent it either with an AAV in the laundry room, or tie it into the vent line in the attic (somehow) depending on what the inspector says.

    I try to figure out how to make a diagram that will show what is going on, or at least will post better pictures.

    Thanks again

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