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Thread: Adding a wye in basement cast iron stack

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member
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    Default Adding a wye in basement cast iron stack

    I've used this site often in the past to figure out how to fix stuff in my old 1920s house, and now I'd like some advice on my own project.
    I have a couple of questions concerning tapping into an old 4 inch galvanized pipe. The 1st, What is the best tool for cutting out a section of pipe? I was going to use my sawzall. The 2nd, I am going to use 4 inch rubber sleeves with clamps to attach to the old galvanized pipe sections and attach a wye (or two) to hook up two new toilets, one upstairs and one in the basement (I'm actually putting a full bath in the basement, using the Bur-Cam easy flush system). My question is, can I put a wye in the stack, and then another wye in the piece of pipe going from the new upstairs toilet to the stack to use as the drain the the basement bath?
    I am sending along a photo so you can see the vertical section I am going to cut out, It is just above the elbow above the clean out plug. The area framed on the ceiling is where the new upstairs toilet will be.
    I'm pretty sure this will work, but my wife wanted me to check first, we've never cut into the cast iron stack before.

    Thanks for your help.
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  2. #2
    Journeyman Plumber jdgoodman's Avatar
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    You will need a chain cutter for the cast iron pipe. If you arnt hurting for space near that stack and you plan on doing this yourself you might consider this next option. Get a syteline torch and melt the lead out around the clean out. Once that hub is cleared use a tye seal gasket and install a plastic 4 x (whatever size branch you need) wye. The 4" end of you wye would become your new clean out and you are free to do what you want with the branch. If that will not work for space needs then you will have to cut. A few things to remember while cutting, the pipe does not always cut cleanly so have a back up plan just in case that pipe breaks in a bad way, and support that stack very well. If you cut and dont support it, it can shift or drop and can cause leaks all over the place. Hope this helps.


    Is that an ABS pipe someone has tapped into the existing cast iron wye????

    Last edited by Terry; 09-25-2009 at 09:43 AM.

  3. #3
    DIY Member Marty53's Avatar
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    I just used a metal cutting carbide blade on my regular circular saw. It cut through like butter, much more even cut than you'd get with a sawzall as well.

    Also, use the metal banded rubber couplings, and reinforce the stack with clamps before you make the cut.

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member
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    Smile Good idea...

    Thanks guys, I do have lots of space, so I'll try getting that cleanout cap off and add my lines there....thanks for the idea!
    And yes, that is a piece of ABS stuck into the main stack, someone put it there to drain the washing machine. We're planning on draining the machine into the pump for the new bath, so that will go away.
    Love old houses, but the things that get done to them

  5. #5
    Senior Robin Hood Guy Ian Gills's Avatar
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    1920s? Old?

    That's a new-build by English standards.

    The difference being American 1920s houses often appear to be ill-maintained. Must be cultural.

    I was shocked at the state my 1950s house was in when I bought it here. But left (largely) untouched is sometimes better than (greatly) touched by someone who did not know what they were doing. So count your blessings!
    Last edited by Ian Gills; 09-25-2009 at 06:37 PM.

  6. #6
    Plumber Winslow's Avatar
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    If you have a grinder put on a metal cutting wheel to cut the pipe. Wrap a piece of sandcloth around the pipe and trace the edge with a marker to give you a guide line for a straight cut.

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