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Thread: Sink Trap Leak

  1. #1

    Default Sink Trap Leak


    I just replaced our bathroom sink fixture. In so doing, I had to remove the trap to get the new drain tube in. When I reinstalled the trap, it now leaks on the wall side where it connects to the J-tube. It connects to the J-tube with a big plastic nut on the J-tube side. I have tightened to no end and tried putting teflon around the threads of the trap...but water still seeps around that plastic nut. What to do??



  2. #2


    Get rid of the teflon tape and use a new plastic ferrule and a new nut. Either the plastic ferrule is bad or missing, or you have cracked the plastic nut from cranking on it.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Yakima WA


    Drain traps do not use tape or pipe dope, and they should just be hand tight (sometimes an extra 1/4 turn with a wrench, but no more.)

  4. #4

    Default Plastic Ferrule for Trap??


    Thanks for the responses. I didn't know there is a plastic ferrule that
    goes with a trap? When you buy a trap, I thought the 'business'
    end that attaches to the wall side is simply a pressure fit with
    threads. Is there a ferrule that is wedged into the wall side
    fitting? Also, to replace the nut...I would have to cut the
    wall side 90 off...which I would rather not do...not alot of room
    to do that.



  5. #5
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005


    can you post a clear pic?

  6. #6
    Plumbing Instructor Plumb or Die's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Southern BC Canada


    If you didnt glue the "wall-side" 90 part absolutely straight it will leak no matter how hard you tighten it. When you glued it on, did you use a level, or just eyeball it? Check it for level across the 90. If it's out of whack, you might have to cut 1/8" to 1/4" out of the pipe coming out of the wall, between the 90 and the wall. Then you'll be able to glue a coupling onto the pipe and re-glue the 90 on straight.

    That's my take, not having seen pics or anything. Good luck!
    I like plumbing. Plumbing's my favorite.

  7. #7
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    The joints from most trap pieces slide into one another. There is a beveled rubber or plastic washer that goes around the pipe and then gets compressed by the nut to wedge the pieces together and create the seal. It also keeps them from moving around (at least easily) once connected. On those slip joints, it is that gasket or washer that actually completes the seal - aided by the compression from the threaded joint and nut.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #8

    Default Good thoughts

    You guys are good. One of you mentioned the idea that the 90 degree piece had to be absolutely plumb. When I originally removed the trap...the 90 degree piece came off. In other words, it was either not glued or glued poorly. I then proceeded to glue it via eyeball. Although the trap and 90 do go together quite easily, it did occur to me (as one of you noted) that there may be a slight twist...hence the leak. Makes me wonder how the hell a real plumber both gets these 'one shot' glued parts to go together straight, of the correct length, with no leaks. So...my question now is how to fix. Here are the options as I understand them.

    Option 1. Cut 90 off and replace with a slip-fit-trap combo.
    Option 2. Cut 90 off and glue new 90 on (with extra pipe) and make sure is plumb.
    Option 3. Somehow make existing fittings stop leaking at the 90 nut.

    Thanks for your comments,


  9. #9

    Default Option 4

    I forgot to mention option 4, which is probably the way to go as a previous author noted.

    Option 4 - cut pipe going into 90 and then use coupling to bring it back together...only this time 90 must be perfectly plumb so it will screw together with the trap so no leaks occur.


  10. #10
    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    200 miles south of Little Rock


    Quote Originally Posted by sbailey64
    Makes me wonder how the hell a real plumber both gets these 'one shot' glued parts to go together straight, of the correct length, with no leaks.
    Probably about the same way the rest of us do it: Cut to fit - glue it - make it happen!


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