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Thread: Help with Water Softener Discharge Point

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    DIY Junior Member qpm's Avatar
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    Default Help with Water Softener Discharge Point

    I am in the process of installing a water softener and trying to figure out a good discharge point for the waste water. I am installing the softener in my crawl space. My laundry area is on the second floor so routing the discharge line there is not an option, or at least not one I want to attempt. There is no reasonable place to install a new stand pipe in the living area on the first floor besides maybe a closet, but Id rather not do that. It is my understanding to be code compliant I cannot have a standpipe drain in the crawl space. I have considered maybe installing a dual air gap at my kitchen sink and routing the discharge line there. Not sure if this would be to code or if there would be problems with a softener and dishwasher hooked to the same air gap with standard sink plumbing. Any suggestions? Thanks.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Challenges,, challenges....

    First floor height?
    laundry box height off the floor?
    Discharge point off the softener from under the floor?

    In or out of the city limits?

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    With Autotrol, Clack and Fleck control valves you can go up 6-7' above the drain line connection on the control valve and then sideways up to 20-30'. If farther sideways then you might want to use 3/4" ID.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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    DIY Junior Member qpm's Avatar
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    First floor about 4 -5 feet above base of crawl space. Laundary box on second floor, would be about 17 feet from base of crawl or about 13 feet from first floor. The discharge point off softner is about 1 foot below the first floor; the softner is partially buried in the crawl. Located in city limits. Any way I could hook up to my kitchen sink air gap using a twin air gap? That would be the easiest solution. Not sure if that is to code.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qpm View Post
    First floor about 4 -5 feet above base of crawl space. Laundary box on second floor, would be about 17 feet from base of crawl or about 13 feet from first floor. The discharge point off softner is about 1 foot below the first floor; the softner is partially buried in the crawl. Located in city limits. Any way I could hook up to my kitchen sink air gap using a twin air gap? That would be the easiest solution. Not sure if that is to code.
    The one that would know about the code would be the city inspector.. Anchorage, Fairbanks.... They should be able to answer the question.

    The 17' is double the height that one could do if that 17' is from the discharge point.
    Last edited by Akpsdvan; 02-17-2010 at 04:45 PM.

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    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    The kitchen sink DVW is not likely large enough to support the discharge of a softener. Common installations here are 2" to the main.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Where is the Pressure Tank?

    If the Pressure tank is in the crawl space, then maybe run a supply and return line up to the laundry room..

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    DIY Senior Member Bob999's Avatar
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    How large is the softener? A one cubic foot model (32,000 grains) typically discharges about 2 gal per minute max flow. I don't think 2 gpm would be a problem for a kitchen sink if the code allows it.

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    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    All softeners have a drain line flow control and usually a 1 cuft (32k) softener has a 1.5 gpm flow and... most residential softeners use a 5/8" OD roughly 1/2" ID polyethylene drain line.
    Gary Slusser Retired (= out of business)
    Click Here to learn how to correctly size or program a water softener.
    CAUTION, as of Nov 12 2013 all YouTube videos showing how to rebuild a Clack valve have an error in them that can cause damage.

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    DIY Junior Member qpm's Avatar
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    The softner is 1.5 cuft. I decided not to go to the kitchen sink air gap because it goes to a garbage disposal and worried the salty discharge water will end up rusting the disposal. The kitchen or bathroom sink are the nearest plumbing fixtures above the water softner in the crawl space that is why I was interested in hooking up to the kitchen.

    I'm interested in AKPSVAN's idea about running a supply an and return line to the laundry room but that sounds like a lot of trouble and I don't understand how that would work. I don't want to have to tear up any dry wall. It sounds like my best bet would be to just install a new standpipe dedicated for the softener. Could I have a stand pipe in my in my crawl space plumbed into my main drain line as long as U-trap and air gap are installed? If it has to be out of the crawl I'd have to put it in an under sink cabinet or in a closet. Not sure where else to put it??? Seems silly to have to route the discharge line out of the crawl space just to have it drain back in there to the rest of the drain lines but I'm not sure if drains are allowed (or safe) to be in the crawl space.

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Softener on first floor and run the drain to the Second floor?
    Then the lines to and from the softener are only going through the floor and do not have to go to the next floor..
    Drain in the crawl space becomes the lowest point.. and if the septic backs up.... it is out of sight and out of mind.

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    DIY Junior Member qpm's Avatar
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    I already plumbed the softener supply lines down in the crawl space and I really don’t have room for it elsewhere anyway. I’m in a somewhat small cabin and want to utilize all the livable space I can. Akpsdvan, your point about a drain in the crawl space being the lowest point is well taken. Would hate to find a flooded crawl next time I needed to pour salt in my tank. Thinking my best option now will be to put a stand pipe inside the wall of a first floor closet I use to access the crawl space. Finish it with a laundry box so it can be viewed and accessed, install an air gap and call it good. I guess there is no easy solution here (i.e. no current drain to hook into).

    Has anyone ran across this scenario before? i.e. have no current drain to hook into so a stand pipe must be installed??? Where are some peoples favorite places to install new standpipes? Does it make sense to put it in a closet? I guess I want to make sure I’m not making a bone head move here.

    Thanks

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    In the Trades Akpsdvan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qpm View Post
    I already plumbed the softener supply lines down in the crawl space and I really don’t have room for it elsewhere anyway. I’m in a somewhat small cabin and want to utilize all the livable space I can. Akpsdvan, your point about a drain in the crawl space being the lowest point is well taken. Would hate to find a flooded crawl next time I needed to pour salt in my tank. Thinking my best option now will be to put a stand pipe inside the wall of a first floor closet I use to access the crawl space. Finish it with a laundry box so it can be viewed and accessed, install an air gap and call it good. I guess there is no easy solution here (i.e. no current drain to hook into).

    Has anyone ran across this scenario before? i.e. have no current drain to hook into so a stand pipe must be installed??? Where are some peoples favorite places to install new standpipes? Does it make sense to put it in a closet? I guess I want to make sure I’m not making a bone head move here.

    Thanks
    Now that is an idea. Some place close to that closet on the main line put a Y in and then bring a 1 1/2 line over, PeeTrap then the stand pipe into the closet in the corner.

    One trick that I and my boss from years ago came up with to do the air gap is 2" below the end of the stand pipe use a 1 1/2 hole saw to put in a hole on one side and then on the other side put in 4 holes to use zip ties to hold tubing from the drain.. the 1 1/2 is the air gap and if the end of he stand pipe is 4' above the floor,,, then the tub or toilet remain as the low points.

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