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Thread: Re-modeling 1970's house in Toronto

  1. #1

    Default Re-modeling 1970's house in Toronto

    Hi,
    My dad, the carpenter, is re-modeling my 1970's basement apartment.
    We would like to add a bathroom in the basement. My dad is retired but has been a carpenter since he was in his teens so he knows what he is doing and when he isn't sure, he doesn't fool around.
    This is where we are stuck now.

    Please see the pictures.
    The picture with the water tank is on the other side of the room.
    The other pictures show the clean out on the left of the picture with the right showing the check valve(I think...plumbing newbie here).
    I don't think we can move the check valve but it will be in what will be an office/temp bedroom. On the left where the clean out is, we want to put a bathroom so we need to cut the concrete and lay pipes for a toilet and a shower. My dad is not sure where the piping is going underground. He's done his own in the past but had it mapped out by the builder and he's done my brother in law's but apparantly it was straight forward.

    Questions:
    1 : How do we tell where the pipes underground are going. I take it the vent (shown in the picture with the water tank) pipe goes to the check valve which then goes to the street.
    2 : If we decide to get a plumber to do this, what would be the rought cost in the GTA to add a pipe for a toilet and shower? Anyone on this forum a plumber?

    Please note that obviously I am not the expert doing any of the re-modeling. However, I'm the computer expert that knows how to search for great sites like this and post whereas my dad has much more useful talents (like doing the re-modeling!). Therefore, my questions are not coming from the brains behind the project....haha

    Thanks in advance,

    LIP
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    Last edited by lip; 02-24-2008 at 10:42 AM.

  2. #2
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
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    I'm not sure what you mean by check valve. Do you have some sort of backflow prevention device to keep sanitary/storm water out of your house from the city pipes? If something is in the way it can be relocated or boxed in, perhaps in a fake closet. As for where they go under the slab, a camera can be inserted and then a special device used to locate it under the slab. Any company that does sewer repairs or replacement should be able to help you out.

    You should be using pressure treated lumber when the wood (eg bottom plates) comes in contact with concrete.

    Jason

  3. #3

    Default

    Hi,
    Thanks for the reply.

    All we have is what's in the pictures. I thought the thing on the right was a check valve but I guess that's not the right term. That part opens up and the water goes to the city sewer from there.

    That piece of wood was just temporarily placed on the ground to show where the room is going to end. We are using tar paper or something like that where it comes in contact with the concrete.

    I thought that a camera might be needed but that sounds expensive so it might be just easier to get an expert to do the whole job(moving the pipes/adding pipes).

    Anyone know someone in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area)?

    Regards,

    LIP

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default pipes

    The square head plug in the first picture is either a cleanout or a future opening of some kind. The second picture has what could be a backwater valve in the riser pipe next to the hot water heater, but if so it is completely useless in that location.

  5. #5

    Default

    Hi,

    Thanks for the reply.

    I have shown the pipe beside the water tank just to illustrate that this pipe exits to the cleanout or whatever that square thing is going to the street.
    My question really revolves around how to find out where the pipe is going on under the ground so I don't cut the pipes.
    My dad wants to cut the concrete and then jackhammer it out which if we did it in the wrong area, obviously damage might result.
    Someone mentioned getting someone to bring some sort of camera out...

    That's why perhaps it might be better to just get a professional to do the whole thing unless the camera is something you can rent and sees through concrete!...which I doubt.

    Thanks guys.

    LIP

  6. #6
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Searching by trial and error by breaking out concrete is not the way to go for sure. Some plumbers, especially those who specialize in drain cleaning and repair, have a video camera that can be inserted in a drain and run through the entire length to find damage and roots. It will also determine the location of the drain. Yes, it is fairly costly, but it saves guesswork. I think you are headed in the right direction to hire a professional plumber to work this whole problem out. It's obvious you are totally inexperienced and you father wisely does not want to tackle a job he is unsure about. A plumber may or may not need to use the camera.

  7. #7
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    there's one place in my small city that says they'll use their camera for $99. From what I hear, that's on the low end, but could save huge amount of time.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #8

    Default

    Thanks.

    Are most plumbers able to handle jobs like this?
    Any idea of the rough cost so I don't get hosed? I'll try and get a few quotes but we've got a lot of cowboys in this town!

    Again, if anyone on this site has any contacts in the GTA, let me know.

    Regards and thanks so much,

    LIP

  9. #9
    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lip View Post
    Hi,
    Anyone know someone in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area)?

    Regards,

    LIP
    I'm in the GTA. If you still need a plumber , PM me. I have camera equipment if needed.

    Usually the pipes will run from your main stack to your clean out at front of the house in a semi straight line (within 2ft). In some cases (usually on corner lots),, it may run out the side of the house.

    all the photos that you show are all clean outs.

    The 4" that comes out of the floor probably has the laundry sink running to it and or the kitchen sink drain. The in line clean out is showing a main stack . and the floor mount cap is the main cleanout exiting the house.

  10. #10
    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
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    That main cleanout leaving the house could be left where it is and have one of these installed around/over it covering it up and flush to the floor.http://www.watts.com/pro/_products_s...=67&parCat=377



    The rest of the pipes are probably best evaluated on-site by a plumber.

  11. #11

    Default

    Hi,

    Thanks! Great stuff.
    Thanks for the tip about cleanout option.

    Krow: Check your PM!

    LIP

  12. #12
    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lip View Post
    Krow: Check your PM!

    LIP
    I got it,

    what area do you live in?

  13. #13
    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
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    The other thing is someday you may need to use that cleanout... Hope you don't have to but you may need it. The machine that would be brought in there looks like this so it should be kept accessible.http://www.ridgid.com/Tools/K7500-Dr...e/EN/index.htm

  14. #14

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    Hi guys,

    I'm in Brampton. I'll try to call you tomorrow...just depends on my day but we need it doing within the next couple of weeks so we can finish a wall off.

    Yeah, I know there is a chance that we would need to have something like that to fix a backup come in my house. My brother in law works for the city (not my city) and used to do this (cleaning back ups) for the city.

    My dad is going to make a "box" around it that will open up to allow access.
    I think he would do this himself if he knew where the pipes were in the floor but now he doesn't want to bother in case he screws up, which I understand. He's a carpenter, not a plumber.

    Thanks so much to everyone for their insight!

    LIP

  15. #15
    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lip View Post
    I'm in Brampton. I'll try to call you tomorrow...just depends on my day but we need it doing within the next couple of weeks so we can finish a wall off.
    No problem,. They say one pic is better than 1000 words. Below are your pics to show you what we are talking about. I assume that the 1st pic, you would be facing towards the front of the house


    BTW, Off topic, what's your cats name??
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by krow; 02-24-2008 at 08:59 PM.

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