(206) 949-5683, Top Rated Plumber, Seattle
Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Basement Toilet / Sewer Connection Thoughts?

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member magikmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    3

    Default Basement Toilet / Sewer Connection Thoughts?

    Hi All,

    I wanted to post out there to get some of your thoughts and ideas on something peculiar that I haven't figure out. Last year I purchased a 1950's colonial house, with public water and sewer. The 4" sewer main is in the basement and runs about at eye level (~5 ft off the the floor) when you're in the basement, and then shoots out through the basement wall toward the street.

    The odd thing is that there's a basement toilet, a utility sink and washer drain - all 3 drain directly into individual drain lines that pop up out of the basement floor. (The toilet just sits directly on the concrete slab). There is no macerator, pump, etc., so this obviously drains via gravity to SOMEWHERE.... It drains pretty well and I haven't had any issues. From the looks of the toilet, it appears this has been here at least since the 1970's.

    Obviously, there is a drain line under the basement floor. My question is - Where does it drain to? That utility drain line sits at least 4' under the main sewer drain, so it doesn't make any direct connections in the basement. The house inspector hinted that the house just might have dual sewer connections, but I've never heard of that. My father-in-law suggested that perhaps there's a separate septic tank just for that drain line, but I see no evidence of it in the yard.

    Either way, I haven't gotten a clear cut answer and thought I'd put it out there to see if anyone else has ideas. Any questions, please let me know...

    Thanks!
    - Drew

  2. #2
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Land of Cheese
    Posts
    3,147

    Default

    I'm not clear from what you have said, but in many places the municipal sewer line can be quite deep. Your lines could be connected together between the house and the street connection.

    Normally when I see a building sewer well above the basement floor, it is because the home has or had a septic tank. I know of many neighborhoods where each home had a private septic system, until the municipal sewer was brought in years later.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member magikmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cacher_chick View Post
    I'm not clear from what you have said, but in many places the municipal sewer line can be quite deep. Your lines could be connected together between the house and the street connection.

    Normally when I see a building sewer well above the basement floor, it is because the home has or had a septic tank. I know of many neighborhoods where each home had a private septic system, until the municipal sewer was brought in years later.
    Thanks Cacher...

    I didn't describe the situation all that well, but you got the gist. I believe municipal sewer was here from the beginning, but I'll check with some of the neighbors who have been here since the 50's. If - and it's a big IF - it was septic at one point, would it be possible for the upper levels of the house to be on municipal sewer and the basement to still be on septic? I'm just curious if that ever happens.

    Thanks again!

  4. #4
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Posts
    25,638

    Default

    That would normally indicate that it is a "hybrid" system. The upstairs goes out "overhead" so it will operate during times of "backflow" and your basement connects to the same system, but it has a "backwater valve" to minimize backflow, but would NOT allow the bathroom to be used during a "backed up" situation.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    21,401

    Default

    To determine if gravity is a possibility, how high is the house from the street? HJ probably nailed it, but if the lot is flat with no elevation change to the street, depending on how deep the sewer line is there, something may not compute.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

Similar Threads

  1. Water backing up into basement toilet sewer line.
    By jdg2411 in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-27-2012, 10:59 AM
  2. Sewer connection questions?
    By chrisf8657 in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-28-2011, 05:54 AM
  3. New Connection to Sewer
    By 1890farmhouse in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-06-2008, 09:22 AM
  4. New Sewer Connection
    By 1890farmhouse in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-14-2008, 08:47 PM
  5. sewer connection
    By chichi3969 in forum Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & Tricks
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-01-2006, 03:34 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •