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Craif
06-11-2006, 11:04 AM
I have removed my toilet to install tile flooring. During the removal of the old tile, I damaged the cast iron flange and figured, no problem, I'll just replace it. Upon closer inspection, I realized that the flange is practically integral to the cast iron elbow drain pipe. So, now I have a damaged flange and I'm not sure which direction to go next.

The flange appears to be about 4" I.D. and the drain pipe measures about 3" I.D. Between the flange inner circumfrence and the outer circumfrence of the drain pipe, appears to be about a 1/2" filler of a very semi-hard, maleable, metallic substance (lead?).

Should I continue breaking off the flange and leave the rings and then install a flange fixer over top? Or, should I try to bang the whole flange assembly off so that I can install a new one? :confused:

See attached photo.

plumber1
06-11-2006, 03:41 PM
Break the flange off completely and lead on a new flange...........

Craif
06-11-2006, 03:51 PM
I suppose breaking off the flange means good old hammering at it. How deep down is the collar of the flange? How does the lead come off, or doesn't it? Is there a more convenient way to getting a new flange? Is there a non-lead option?

brownizs
06-11-2006, 05:00 PM
To get the lead out, break out your trusty drill and start drilling holes into the lead packing.

jadnashua
06-11-2006, 06:56 PM
If it is a 4" pipe, you can get a flange that fits inside. If it is 3", you must go outside. Either way, the best is to lead a new one on. Failing that, they make cast iron ones with neoprene gaskets and expanding clamps to hold it onto or into the pipe. It should fit on TOP of the finished floor and be anchored to it. If you are tiling, you can notch the tile before laying them around the hole, and then avoid having to try to drill through a hard porcelain tile.

plumber1
06-12-2006, 06:30 AM
Forget the drill business and just take a 3/4" cold chisel and whack the flange from inside to out, right at the outside of the lead but from the inside of the joint.

Then pry the broken flange off and cut the lead into with a wood chisel and pull it out with your channel locks. Should take less than 60 seconds normally.

Craif
06-12-2006, 06:31 AM
jadnashua-

Thanks for the info. I understand that you're recommending to use the same "leading" method to install a new flange. But, once I get the old flange off, are you also saying it's okay to use any of the other available flanges that have the 2" pipe extension?

I did purchase a cast iron "collar" one that is a 2-piece tightening model that appears to fit around the outer side of the pipe, and it has a rubber type gasket on the lower portion.

Why is the lead method the best? It seems complicated.

plumber1
06-12-2006, 06:43 AM
In my book, it's the only way. It's probably the easiest way and the most permanent way.

You can use a flange that's 2" to 3" deep.

See if you can just buy a couple strands of "oakum" and a "pound of lead" to add to what you have left from taking off your old flange.

Pack it tight with oakum and melt your lead and pour it back in the joint.

Then when cool, pack the new lead joint with a blunt tool because you probably won't fond corking irons.

You can do it.

tbplumbloco
06-14-2006, 07:31 PM
It is the best method as Plumber1 states because it is permanent,once leaded at the proper heighth it will not move and it will not be as critical to fasten the flange to the floor,with the compression type repair flange that i think you purchased it is very important that the flange be set properly and fastened to the finished floor so there is no movement.

Craif
06-14-2006, 08:35 PM
Thanks for the added suggestion. However, after talking with the parts counter guys, I'm going with the 4" PVC 2-finger flange that sits tightly inside the pipe and easily fastens to the floor with no chance of rot or rust. And, no muss no fuss! Actually it was work to get it in. I have to say that "leading" in a flange is not something that most handy homeowners are set up to do, and I put myself in the upper 90 percentile of very handy homeowners. (think about it - get a small amount of oakum and lead, melt the lead down in some crucible, set the flange depth, pour the lead, smooth the lead) In all of my research, I could not find an overwhelming reason to do it the "lead way", except that a few of you purists said it's the best way. Besides, in all reasonableness, I think both ways will outlive me! :)

freeonthree@snowcrest.net
04-20-2009, 04:35 PM
I need one of these expanding seal plastic toilet flanges or equivilent for a 4 inch cast iron pipe drain pipe. Its the plastic flange he shows in this video. Dennis
http://www.ehow.com/video_2329602_replace-flange-under-toilet.html

greenpoint
01-12-2010, 11:29 AM
I just removed the old collar (it was well below the finished floor, and tilted), cleaned it up, and I would like to have it leaded back in place. Will it be a problem if the pipe is below the top of the collar, by a half inch or so? The photo doesn't show the difference in height, to well.

Any help would be appreciated :)


http://img46.imageshack.us/img46/2806/p1080536.jpg (http://img46.imageshack.us/i/p1080536.jpg/)

http://img686.imageshack.us/img686/1348/p1080537.jpg (http://img686.imageshack.us/i/p1080537.jpg/)

krow
01-12-2010, 07:58 PM
That looks like a cast iron flange. If it is, you will not be able to "lead it" the way you are thinking. You would need to have a HUB to insert it into or use a hubless coupling.

In your case you will need a brass repair flange so that you can lead from the old lead to the new flange.

I'm not sure about the US, but in Canada the leading is now discontinued and not allowed any more. We CANNOT purchase any lead bars, lead solder sticks or anything related to lead soldering. The only thing available is 50/50 solder and we are very limited as to where we can use it,

greenpoint
01-13-2010, 05:53 AM
Yes, it is cast iron. I drilled the lead out and saved all of it (some of the lead is clean, and some is contaminated with dirt and wax), not sure if I can recycle all of it, or not? I did find a supplier for plain lead, it is still available, and they have 3/8" oakum also.

Is plain lead correct or was babbit lead used?

krow
01-13-2010, 06:06 AM
To start , you need to have the existing lead surfaces clean of any dirt/wax and shiny before it will accept any type of soldering/leading. Then I would highly recommend a brass repair flange that has a collor approx. 2" long. Get some lead bars that is suitable for your project. At that point you can start to build up your existing lead bend to the new flange.


CAUTION: you need to be very careful when heating the existing lead. You could potentially melt the lead to the point of no return.

In most cases, its just simpler to replace the lead with PVC or ABS (depending what is mostly available in your area). It would last you as long as you own the house

EDIT: I just want to clarify the material that is below that flange. I'm under the impression that it is a lead bend. Or am I mistaken?

greenpoint
01-13-2010, 06:09 AM
Not sure I follow...the closet collar and the pipe are cast iron.

Krow, I noticed your EDIT...I was in reply while you were in EDIT :)

I can see the confusion (in the photo the bend looks like it may be lead (jagged edges, not a clean cut), the original plumber must have adjusted the length via hammer.

The bend is cast iron.

krow
01-13-2010, 06:14 AM
My Bad. I was under the impression that it was a lead bend.


In that case, you would need to extend the lower hub to accept the new cast iron flange to the proper height. Or place a spacer for any missing pipe. You would not be able to make a water tight seal on 1/2" space and the oakum would get pushed out or the lead would flow out of the joint

greenpoint
01-13-2010, 06:28 AM
So I should not re-use the existing closet collar?

When you say "lower hub", are you referring to the bend/pipe? There is only two pieces/parts in total, the closet collar and the bend/pipe that runs to the stack.

I am not a plumber so please feel free to correct my terms.

jadnashua
01-13-2010, 07:33 AM
If the existing pipe is now only about 1/2" short, you still have plenty of length to get a good leaded joint. You should still have nearly a couple of inches of overlap between the flange and the pipe. Now, having the tools to do it may be expensive, so having a plumber do it for you may end up cheaper.

Depending on where you live, there is an elastomeric product that can be used to make that joint. You still use oakum, but then you use the sealant. If I remember, you need three layers of oakum/sealant. This may be cheaper. the last (and only) time I tried this, it was both hard to find, and the tube I did find was really old, and it wouldn't flow out the caulking gun. I ended up returning it and cutting the CI out and switching to pvc. A pro may have been able to do it, but it was Christmas time, I was remodeling my mother's bath (400miles from home), and I couldn't wait (nor did I want to pay the OT for the task). If I'd had more room, I might have been able to make it work. Didn't want to crack out the plaster, and it was close to the ceiling and a joist, so access was severely restricted. You don't have that problem.

greenpoint
01-13-2010, 09:33 AM
Yep, I'd say it is about a half inch below (jagged edged as it may be) the top of the closet collar.

I do have full access (ranch style house), so that is a plus.

I just got back from the big orange box store, and all they have to offer is a Sioux brand, white PVC push in retrofit ($15.71). I have also looked at the Oatey PVC closet collar retrofit (less than $3.00).

The Sioux brand would go into the existing pipe a good 4 inches, and I would make sure that it has a solid and level connection to the floor. Are these retrofits really a bad idea? The master plumber at the big box said the seal on the retrofit is only to block sewer gases and there should be no leakage problems if installed correctly.

I am not afraid to pay a plumber to lead the existing closet collar back in place, however the master plumber at the big box said I wouldn't find anybody in my area that would even do that type of repair.

The (baby blue cast iron retrofit looks like a nice unit), but where can I buy one, and is it worth the extra cost, whatever that amount may be?

jadnashua
01-13-2010, 09:43 AM
A leaded connection is the strongest. And, you'll notice it doesn't even have holes to screw it down to the subfloor, as the metal to metal solid connection should be adequate (but doesn't hurt, and is important if things can move, which shouldnt' happen with CI). The sealing surface must be clean and smooth to install the 'clamping' type flanges. Those require the thing to be anchored to the subflooring (ideally, through the finished floor into the subflooring). It's better to have a full-bore opening if you ever need to use that as a cleanout rather than choking it off, but on a 4" pipe, at the toilet, it shouldn't be an impact as the outlet of a toilet is rarely over 3" (the largest one I know of), and most are closer to 2-1/8" or so.

greenpoint
01-13-2010, 09:48 AM
A leaded connection is the strongest. And, you'll notice it doesn't even have holes to screw it down to the subfloor, as the metal to metal solid connection should be adequate (but doesn't hurt, and is important if things can move, which shouldnt' happen with CI). The sealing surface must be clean and smooth to install the 'clamping' type flanges. Those require the thing to be anchored to the subflooring (ideally, through the finished floor into the subflooring). It's better to have a full-bore opening if you ever need to use that as a cleanout rather than choking it off, but on a 4" pipe, at the toilet, it shouldn't be an impact as the outlet of a toilet is rarely over 3" (the largest one I know of), and most are closer to 2-1/8" or so.

The OD of the pipe is in very good condition...When you say clean and smooth for a 'clamping' type flange, what is clean and smooth for cast iron? The majority of the original tar is still on the OD of the pipe.

jadnashua
01-13-2010, 11:23 AM
If you are going to use a flange that clamps on or in a pipe, the surface you clamp it to must be clean and smooth or the seal will be at risk. It needs to be fairly clean to do a leaded joint as well.

greenpoint
01-30-2010, 09:20 AM
If you are going to use a flange that clamps on or in a pipe, the surface you clamp it to must be clean and smooth or the seal will be at risk. It needs to be fairly clean to do a leaded joint as well.

I came to the conclusion that I had two choices, (1) find a plumber that would reset the cast iron closet collar, or (2) use a retrofit...

I considered all the options...a retrofit seemed to be the most logical for my situation. In the end, I chose the Sioux brand to complete the job.



I did have to trim the pipe (that part really sucked), but everything worked out great in the end.

http://img229.imageshack.us/img229/1641/p1080541s.jpg (http://img229.imageshack.us/i/p1080541s.jpg/)
http://img692.imageshack.us/img692/6140/p1080542f.jpg (http://img692.imageshack.us/i/p1080542f.jpg/)
http://img21.imageshack.us/img21/6993/p1080543e.jpg (http://img21.imageshack.us/i/p1080543e.jpg/)

krustybaguette
11-01-2010, 06:47 PM
Forget the drill business and just take a 3/4" cold chisel and whack the flange from inside to out, right at the outside of the lead but from the inside of the joint.

Then pry the broken flange off and cut the lead into with a wood chisel and pull it out with your channel locks. Should take less than 60 seconds normally.

I see this is a pretty old thread, but not nearly as old as the broken flange in my daughters "new" house. I've removed the broken flange with a couple of whacks on a cold chisel with 2# sledge. It went surprisingly easily. The lead came out in one complete ring, the flange in three pieces. The Big Box Depot says they have no cast iron stuff and didn't seem to have any clue as to "oakum and lead".

The toilet drain pipe goes down into a mostly solid concrete section of the foundation, but around the pipe are large voids and there is no place to mount anykind of expansion insert to secure the flange as you would with wood flooring.

If I can find the correct flange, oakum, and lead I'm not shy about performing the repair, but have a couple of questions not addressed in the early parts of this thread.

1. Will a new cast iron flange with lead seal adequately secure the toilet without being otherwise fixed to the surrounding floor? I wonder if the broken flange was partially due to no other mechanical connection to the floor.

2. How do you secure the flange at the proper level while doing the insertion of oakum and pouring of lead? I saw some pics with thin wood strips supporting a flange. If I use that method I assume I would want to strip the linoleum, press and stick tiles and luan plywood layers that are presently on the concrete. Then once flooring re-done the top surface of the flange would be properly aligned. (level with finished floor surface?)

3. Would it perhaps be wise to fill in the gaps around the drain pipe with stones and concrete and bring the level up to floor level and use the flange I already purchased. I would then use masonry drill to put expansion inserts in the floor to mount the flange securely to prevent movement. The flange I already have reduces the drain to 3" and has a rubber gasket and a ridged pipe the pushes down into the drain pipe to create a seal.

http://i1198.photobucket.com/albums/aa442/krustybaguette/IMAG0035.jpg

Photo illustrates gap in concrete around flange. Flange pictured is the one mentioned in #3.

jadnashua
11-01-2010, 07:07 PM
If the flange is leaded onto a drain embedded in a concrete slab, it should be strong enough to stand on its own. If you end up using a plastic or compression type flange, it should be anchored to the floor. The proper place for the flange is on Top of the finished floor, not level with it.

I've never done a leaded joint. But, I think you'll find that once you have the oakum packed in, the flange will stay where you want it while the lead is poured in. Most people don't have the proper tools, so it may be just cheaper to have a plumber do it for you since most people won't be using them again for a long time, if ever.