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Thread: slip joint reliability and ferncos

  1. #31
    DIY Member adrianmariano's Avatar
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    Actually my reaction to seeing the Cauldwell drain was that it seemed like a lot more trouble to install than the conventional drain. Furthermore, he doesn't show how to do it with a disposal (and I do have one). So I'd have to make some changes. (Now I wonder about having vertical room. Elsewhere in the book he has disposal installation instructions and he shows a conventional drain setup.) On the other hand, his justification for his setup sounded reasonable, and if it really is better then I figured maybe it's worth doing. As I noted above, my goal in starting this thread iwas basically to get criticisms of the Cauldwell drain so I could understand why it would NOT be something I should implement. (I figure Cauldwell already listed all the good points.)

    I have observed a rather strong reaction to his setup, and it evidently gave everyone a good laugh. So far I've seen the following specific criticisms of the system. Is there anything else wrong with it?

    1) ferncos are not to code, and won't make a good seal on the threaded pipe coming down from the sink

    2) the piping will acumulate crud and create a bad odor

    3) it requires too much vertical space

    4) not vented

    5) the problems it aims to solve don't exist

    It's unclear to me why (2) doesn't apply just as well to the conventional drain. Is it simply that there is more piping before the trap?

    At the moment my tentative plan is to install a normal drain with slip joints using the light weight drain tubing (does this stuff have a standard name?). The last slip joint will connect to a sch 40 sanitary T to go down the vertical drain pipe and there will be an AAV at the top of that T to correct my venting problem. But my plans are not set in stone. I still might consider switching to sch 40 for the trap.

  2. #32
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Unless the trap gets sucked dry because it isn't vented properly or evaporates from disuse, yes, the smells would be because there is a lot of piping open to the air before the trap. You can't typically smell anything beyond the trap from your drains, but anything up to that point is open to your house.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  3. #33

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    take the clean out off and repalce it with a AAV and it "would" work...even if that sink line is vented within the proper distance downstream you have an "S" trap in that picture and it will siphon itself dry without a source of air above it

    but is the extra "engineering" worth while?...I don't think so....in fact, my opinion is that it creates more problems than it solves....a sched 40 male or female adapter on a brass tailpiece is pretty secure...can it leak?...certainly....no installation is bulletproof...but it will likely not

    by using fernco's you are simply trading one mechanical connection for another....a fernco can leak also

    also have what appear to be short sweep elbows in the horizontal.....if this guy is a master(whatever that is) plumber he should know that is wrong

    you are going to have to use an AAV in this installation and that is the mother of all mechanical fittings that will fail at some point...not to mention the fact that they are inherently inferior to a good old fashioned "standard practice" vent that exhausts to the open air..

    not to mention the fact that you are just making it even more difficult to clean the trap by using a glue type..

    sometimes the "better" way isnt better just different and the tried and true methods stick around for a reason....problems usually are a result of poor workmanship, not the method..

    sure, plumbing evolves like everything else and new ideas come around all the time that actually make an improvement over the old way

    this just isnt one of them


    and as Forrest Gump would say...."thats all I got to say about that"

    Good Luck
    Just because you aren't paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you...

  4. #34
    Plumber solsacre's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianmariano
    I'm afraid that in general I would expect cost to win out over quality in the world of "normal practice". Everyone wants things cheap, cheap cheap!

    I worked for a shop for 4 years that had a two year warranty. Cost was always an issue with our work and materials.... We didn't waist money on materials we didn't need... but we didn't waist time on Cheap, cheap, cheap parts... if the parts where of poor quality than we would be back repairing them within two years on our dime. It doesn't pay to skimp on parts.... the conventional ways always worked for us... Solid piping doesn't come apart and works great too.... just hard to repair when the FIP at the bottom of the sink splits.



    OH.... and I looked up old Rex's books, and he has Electrical how-to books also. "Safe electrical Practices"..... Is he a master Electrician also?????

    and I still want a picture of your finished project.

    good luck

    Dances-with-pumps
    Last edited by Terry; 04-27-2010 at 01:42 AM.

  5. #35
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    The trap should be vented.

    When slip joint fittings are used, it's easy to take them apart and run a hose through them, or knock out the crud into the garbage can.

    Nobody plumbs the waste line from the bottom of the cabinet if they could put it in a wall.
    The best plumbing, involves a vent through the roof.

  6. #36
    DIY Member adrianmariano's Avatar
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    People who want to see Rex Cauldwell's bio can go here: http://ltmtnele.tripod.com/mybio/

    When you say don't use cheap parts does that mean don't use the cheap, lightweigh drain lines that connect together with slip joints? I was inspecting the drain I put together with slip joints for my utility sink and there are 7 slip joints plus the two connections at the sink drain. That's a lot of failure points... Should I be worried? Is it better to put the T between the sink drains or at the end?

    Well, somebody did plumb my waste line through the bottom of the cabinet when it must have been possible to put it through the wall. Unless that vent pipe does something REALLY weird in the wall.

    As I see it I have two ways to avoid an AAV. One is to rip out my kitchen cabinets so I can find the vent pipe that is in the wall to connect to it horizontally. I'm not doing that. The other one is to put in a loop setup to vent. Right now I'm definitely leaning towards using an AAV. (The venting problem can be fixed properly next time the kitchen cabinets are replaced.)

  7. #37
    In the Trades kordts's Avatar
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    How could you have 9 slip joints at a slop sink? You should have one for the flanged tailpiece to the drain. One for the return bend to the bottom of the tailpiece. One for the wall tube to the return bend and one for the marvel adapter to the wall tube. That's 4.

  8. #38
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Certainly one answer is "that method is inferior". But another one is "that method, though superior, is more expensive". Both of these answers presuppose that the "alternate" way is better, it is just stated differently. I do not care about the cost of the drain, or the labor to install it, because it is a time and material job. My concern is for the customer's future ease of service, which is why I use the tubular materials. I do not know of any schedule 40 slip joint connections. Many new construction plumbers do use sch. 40 sink drains, but it it more for "job security", because the system often has to be cut apart and redone when something has to be repaired.

  9. #39

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    I've only seen one sched 40 sink drain that had to be cut out and replaced in the last three years and that was because the original plumber tightened the trap nut too tight in lieu of using teflon paste

    in that same period of time I have replaced countless tubular traps
    I use sched 40 because I think it's a better job. period. It takes much more labor and cost to install it vs tubular.

    to say that anyone who uses sched 40 is doing it for job security is like saying that anyone who uses tubular is fat and lazy.....

    it's not true
    Just because you aren't paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you...

  10. #40
    DIY Senior Member harleysilo's Avatar
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    Sorry nothing to add but...."Hey, isn't that image from a book in the TimeLife series called "Crackhouses, Shanties and Lean-tos"?

    Seriously, my friend, that's just not right."

    LOL

  11. #41
    DIY Senior Member SteveW's Avatar
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    Interesting discussion.

    To expose my ignorance, what exactly is the difference between a schedule 40 trap and a tubular trap?

  12. #42
    In the Trades kordts's Avatar
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    About 3 times the volume of water it will drain. One's glued, the other isn't.

  13. #43
    Plumber plumber1's Avatar
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    I would go with HJ's experience and know how. I think along the same line and I'll bet HJ is using 17 gauge and not 20 gauge p-traps.
    Last edited by plumber1; 02-06-2007 at 10:54 AM.

  14. #44

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    I disagree with HJ all the time
    but he sounds like a very knowledgeable plumber



    on most things
    Just because you aren't paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you...

  15. #45
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    If you plumbing comes up from the bottom of the cabinet, then you will want either an "island vent" some call it a loop vent, or at least an AAV.

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