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Thread: Plumbing archaeology question

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member Taylor's Avatar
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    Default Plumbing archaeology question

    Today I am digging up old dinosaur bones, except instead of Outer Mongolia it's my baseent floor and instead of bones it's old (75 yo) waste lines.....Tracing a waste line that I'll need to move to make room for new footings, I'm seeing some kind of material that's black on the outside and red inside....chips easily when I tap it with a chisel....Is this something they put over Ci waste lines, or did they run terra cotta waste lines underground? My waste stack is Ci and I am gingerly trying to uncover where the pipe I need to move goes into it.....

  2. #2
    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    That is ,what we consider, terra cotta or clay pipe

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    DIY Senior Member Taylor's Avatar
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    Default Thanks for the confirmation

    I assume that if this was a pro's house, they'd dig up the rest of the clay pipe and replace it all?

    There's a stretch of pipe going to kitchen waste pipe....in other direction, 20' to the city drain with asbestos tiles over concrete.....

    Or I could just splice in a plastic wye footing, declare victory and leave...

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    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    If you feel gun-ho about digging, then I personally would replace it as far as I could go, The hubs on that pipe tend to break and start growing small root veins, which in turn, makes the crack bigger.
    It doesn't happen all the time, but it does happen often


    Splicing this pipe is an option if you do not want to dig up your lawn or concrete floor

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    DIY Senior Member Taylor's Avatar
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    Default thanks again

    I am considering replacing back to the kitchen waste pipe, it's only a few feet.... the rest, maybe later.....

    The clay pipe is much rougher on its external surface than I expected from terra cotta.....there's the cute fact that the pipe in question comes into the base of the CI waste stack, so I should support the waste stack if I work under it, but....the only place to support it with pipe clamp is on 2x6 attic joists.....and the reason I'm working on footings in the first place is that there's insufficient support beneath those joists anyway.....

    These old houses.....

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    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    This thread is very ironic for me.

    Today I replaced a section if terra cotta pipe (clay pipe) underneath a porch with PVC....................... and get this, ...............My client and his wife are archealogists

    lol

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member Taylor's Avatar
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    Having a hard time getting hold of plumbing inspector, would appreciate a reality check on SOP here:

    I plan to dig up asbestos tiles (HEPA mask, negative air pressure etc) and dig a channel through concrete 20' to where waste line comes into the house....cut the line with an angle grinder....have a demo crew smash up and remove the clay pipe.....put down PVC and connect with no-hub fitting just inside the wall.

    Is this what you would do on such a job? I just don't want to ever have to dig up this floor again, since I'm planning to tile eventually. There's no room to manouvre around where the various waste lines connect into the main waste line, taking out the whole line in a perverse way seems the most straightforward approach. Though there is a scary spot where I'll be working close to one of 2 4x4s (no footings!) supporting the kitchen. I will do what I can to spread the load there.

    Is there any point in bringing in a back-hoe and digging up the waste line in the front garden? That'll mean digging up the drain lines I had put in only a year ago, and have to dodge the gas line....

    If I replace clay pipe with PVC, the weight of the CI waste stack will now presumably all rest, permanently, on the framing via stack clamps. Is this SOP? One clamp sufficient or struggle to get a second in? The framing will have to be shored up until more permanent reinforcement is installed, which ironically is how this whole project started....

    Thanks for any advice.

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    Plumber krow's Avatar
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    I would probably do similiar. If you don't ever want to dig inside again, you may want to connect the new pipe to the exterior of the wall. Then the remainder on the exterior can be done at a later date or anytime that you feel comfortable without distubing the household.

    Is it worth hiring a backhoe? well, that would all depend on how deep your drains are and how far (in linear feet) you want to go.

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member Taylor's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advice, am taking up asbestos tiles now, one [expletive] chip at a time....

    Quote Originally Posted by krow View Post
    Is it worth hiring a backhoe? well, that would all depend on how deep your drains are and how far (in linear feet) you want to go.
    I was more thinking about the necessity of clearing up the waste line outside, I cannot imagine digging it out by hand.

    Thanks again.

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