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Thread: Is my backwash Drain from Softener OK? -Pic included...

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlarrivee View Post
    The pipe insulation everywhere.

    Is that magical insulation that also creates heat?
    I'm no plumber and my plumber installed that, but isn't that what pipe insulation is supposed to do? prevent from freezing? of course it doesn't creat heat, but would it not protect against freezing to a certain degree? If not, what is pipe insulation invented for?

    Maybe in Canada you guys don't use pipe insulation because it gets too cold for too long? In Texas it is used a lot for PVC.

  2. #32
    DIY Senior Member dlarrivee's Avatar
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    I don't feel like explaining such simple things, but since you're in Texas I doubt it would be a problem.

    In Canada, we don't run water or drains in the attic.

    Insulation just slows things down, it doesn't prevent cold temperatures from freezing water.

    We also don't run water lines in exterior walls...

    But for the record this isn't a Canada vs. S. US thing, it's a common sense thing.

  3. #33
    DIY Senior Member dlarrivee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hobiecatter View Post
    If not, what is pipe insulation invented for?
    Preventing heat loss on steam lines, protecting personnel from burns on steam lines, trapping heat from electric or glycol heat tracing, preventing sweating or condensation in humid areas w/ cold lines...

    If a trap is full of water, and the ambient air is below freezing, the air inside the pipe is below freezing and 6" of the pipe has some foam on it, what exactly is keeping the water from freezing?

  4. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlarrivee View Post
    Preventing heat loss on steam lines, protecting personnel from burns on steam lines, trapping heat from electric or glycol heat tracing, preventing sweating or condensation in humid areas w/ cold lines...

    If a trap is full of water, and the ambient air is below freezing, the air inside the pipe is below freezing and 6" of the pipe has some foam on it, what exactly is keeping the water from freezing?
    oh I see. Yeah on the p-trap I agree with you. That was just the plumbers work. I did ask him what happens when that p-trap freezes and he wrapped it up.

    Like I said, I am not a plumber and have learned quite a lot about it in the last few months. Thanks for exlpaining. It is rare that it stays below freezing here for more than 48 hours consecutively. Especially in the attic. But we do hit the 20's for a couple of days a year. Even though it's usually tried to be avoided, down here it is fairly common to run water lines in exerior walls (if insulated).

  5. #35
    DIY Senior Member dlarrivee's Avatar
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    You might be surprised at how different our attitude is towards things like that here vs. Texas where like you said, it would be strange to have below freezing for more than a couple days.

  6. #36
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Assuming you have a slab foundation and there isn't another place to put the drain lines... If you sell the house someday and someone complains the drain stuff is not code and wants you to 'fix' it, tell them what experience you have had with its operation and assuming there were no problems, then tell them that you will remove the offending drain lines and the softener and they can buy their own and install it however they like; or not buy the house. And if they insist, then remove the unit and drain lines and find another buyer.

    BTW, I thught there was a hole drilled in the pipe under the softener drain line connection and now with saving teh picture and lightening it so I could see better, I don't see one. If yu drilled a few 1/2" holes, like for of them in the pipe under the reducing fittings, you'd have an air gap or that part but, backup water is never going to get up that pipe to overflow and gases can go out the standpipe as they have been doing since the original construction if there are any. And with the drilled holes, there is no way that a vacuum can be created to suck water out of your trap. There isn't any way now either with the stand pipe being straight and uncapped.

    Also, I don't know about calling your drain lines a fixture; a softener is usually called an appliance. Plus your flow is only 1/2" at a time as long as the filter and softener don't run at the same time; the vent pipe is 1.5" or 2". And when is the last time y'all did laundry at 2-3AM?
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 01-08-2012 at 04:36 PM.
    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.

  7. #37
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    That is a VENT with a direct connection the sewer! If there were any holes in it, the attic would fill with sewer gas.
    If this idea appeals to you, then go right ahead.

  8. #38
    DIY Senior Member mialynette2003's Avatar
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    Gary, I think the concern is having the water in the washer pee trap being sucked out. Not the one in the attic. I asked my brother-in-law about that and he said it could happen. I wouldn't think so with such a big pipe and not that much water flow.

  9. #39
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    I can't believe this thread is still going.... the internet is full of people giving bad advice.

    The plumbing code is the minimum requirement for any plumbing installation.

    If you want to discuss all the ways something might or might not work and ignore the standards of good plumbing, you would be better off on the handyman forums.

  10. #40
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    This is in an existing house where a filter and softener have been installed sometime after construction. If there was a problem with sewer gas, I think it would have shown up by now and there has not been any mention of it so I think we are safe to assume there is no sewer gas problem going to be created by the drain line installation.

    The 1/2" flow from this equipment is not going to block a 2" washer drain or create a vacuum to suck out water from the washer trap because the top of the 2" line is wide open up there in the attic. I'm not a fan of vents terminating in the attic but I've had a house or two that had them and didn't have any odor problems. I've also had a washer drain without any other vent and there was no problem with draining etc.. And I've seen many houses with this type non code drain lines and they were decades old and had no problems.

    Also, we don't know if the vent is on the sewer line or a separate line for the washer into a separate drain 'field' for only the washer.
    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.

  11. #41
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    When I was in my early teens I drove around in an El Camino that had no front brakes at all, and I had "no problems"

    This has deteriorated into another "you have to be kidding me" thread but is fairly typical of the nonsense that not only goes on in peoples homes but on the internet as well. Bottom line. The installation meets NOBODY's code, is potentially hazardous to the potable water system and the air quality in the home...
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 01-09-2012 at 05:39 PM.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  12. #42
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
    When I was in my early teens I drove around in an El Camino that had no front brakes at all, and I had "no problems"
    I was a bit older but drove all but a million miles in my 4 18 wheelers that had no front brakes. Neither did the probably 100+/- I drove as a teamster for a national trucking company.

    Back in the day before anti skid brake systems it was a bad idea to have front brakes on truck tractors but... I'm sure even back then there were some calling for front brakes regardless of the fact that they were the cause of many loss of control type accidents.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
    This has deteriorated into another "you have to be kidding me" thread but is fairly typical of the nonsense that not only goes on in peoples homes but on the internet as well. Bottom line. The installation.... is potentially hazardous to the potable water system and the air quality in the home...
    I will take care of the nonsense replies but...

    Your claim of potential contamination of the potable water due to this drain set up is impossible. It can't physically happen.

    I suspect this house was inspected when built and the attic vent was approved by either a building or plumbing inspector or both.
    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.

  13. #43
    In the Trades Tom Sawyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Slusser View Post
    I was a bit older but drove all but a million miles in my 4 18 wheelers that had no front brakes. Neither did the probably 100+/- I drove as a teamster for a national trucking company.

    Back in the day before anti skid brake systems it was a bad idea to have front brakes on truck tractors but... I'm sure even back then there were some calling for front brakes regardless of the fact that they were the cause of many loss of control type accidents.


    I will take care of the nonsense replies but...

    Your claim of potential contamination of the potable water due to this drain set up is impossible. It can't physically happen.

    I suspect this house was inspected when built and the attic vent was approved by either a building or plumbing inspector or both.
    Ahhhhh El Camino ............Tractor trailer..............not zactly the same thing. Try driving your pick up without front brakes sometime.


    Ok, I see your point so I suppose all those indirect waste dishwashers and restaurant prep sinks might as well dump the air gap altogether. Because YOU claim that it can't physically happen then I guess it can't.
    Last edited by Gary Slusser; 01-11-2012 at 12:18 AM.
    [B]No, plumbing ain't rocket science. Unlike rocket science, plumbing requires a license[B]

  14. #44
    That's all folks! Gary Slusser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
    Ahhhhh El Camino ............Tractor trailer..............not zactly the same thing. Try driving your pick up without front brakes sometime.


    Ok, I see your point so I suppose all those indirect waste dishwashers and restaurant prep sinks might as well dump the air gap altogether. Because YOU claim that it can't physically happen then I guess it can't.
    We aren't talking about dishwashers or prep sinks.
    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.

  15. #45
    DIY Junior Member Baill's Avatar
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    All you may need to do, hobie, is to tee in a mechanical vent (sometimes called a cheater vent) after the trap but before the stack on the drain from the washer but making sure it rises completely above the fixture itself, this will provide separate venting for the washer so as not to siphon out the trap in the attic. The other way would be to run another vent from after the washer trap but before the stack to a point on the stack above your attic trap, and thus it would be an acceptable wet vent, of course this may not be feasible depending on construction of the home. But definitely check with an inspector to see if this is acceptable. Some places mechanical vents are ok so long as they are not behind a wall, some require quick access if they are behind a wall, some do not allow at all. All any of us can tell you is what the code says for our areas, your best bet is to call a city inspector and just ask, you will be sure to get the correct information that way. And never be afraid to go beyond code requirements if you can.

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