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Thread: Convert Toilet to Cleanout?

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Merovex's Avatar
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    Default Convert Toilet to Cleanout?

    I'm a slightly handy homeowner. We're doing some remodeling, which will include removing the toilet in the basement. That's the access point we use to clean the sewer line (nearly an annual event), so I'd like to convert it to a cleanout.

    FWIW, the house was built in '52, and is all cast-iron sewer. When we did the bathroom upstairs, I vaguely remember the toilet flange being welded on with lead (does that sound right). So, I'd rather not go the route of removing the flange, but capping it somehow.

    Thoughts (besides I'm crazy for deducting a toilet)? Suggestions?

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Unless it is a very unusual toilet connection, I would NEVER consider it for use as a cleanout.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member Merovex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    Unless it is a very unusual toilet connection, I would NEVER consider it for use as a cleanout.
    So, no way to convert it? Apart from being cast iron, likely with lead welding, this connection is about as stock as you'd find in an early 1950s home in this region. I would have expected something that would create a solid connection that caps the hole at the toilet connection.

    The other question is, how to decommission it if it cannot be converted?

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    I would have to see it before I can give a determination about what to do with it. The joints are "poured melted" lead, NOT welded.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member Merovex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    ...The joints are "poured melted" lead, NOT welded...
    Which is why I'm a mere DYI'er... can't tell the difference.

  6. #6
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    In days past, cast iron was connected using Oakum and molten lead. Cast iron does not weld using ordinary methods. Newer cast iron connects differently. One thing not really part of the original question, but you mentioned having to have the line cleaned almost annually. This raises a question in my mind as to why? Certainly any sewer line can clog occasionally, but it should not be a regular event. This might be a good time to address that issue.

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