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Thread: Will a seldom used trap dry up?

  1. #1
    DIY Member MushCreek's Avatar
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    Apr 2013
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    Default Will a seldom used trap dry up?

    In our new house, I am building a basement bathroom which will only see light use. I'm putting in a bath tub because I feel there should be one in the house. The master bath only has a shower. The tub may NEVER get used. At the least, it could go a year or better without use. Can the trap dry out from sitting that long? How would you prevent this? Would a plug work, or will it eventually dry out from the other side? Or should I schedule running water in it periodically, like changing smoke detector batteries?

  2. #2
    DIY Senior Member DougB's Avatar
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    Minneapolis - Land of 10,000 taxes
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    Default

    The water in the trap will eventually evaporate. After the trap is filled with water, add some mineral oil. It will float on top of the water and will not evaporate.
    If a hammer won't fix it, it's an electrical problem.

  3. #3
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default

    The trap is exposed to air on BOTH sides of the "J" bend, so mineral oil on the "inlet" will not prevent evaporation on the outlet side. Pour recreational vehicle antifreeze into the drain, and replace it anytime you flush water into the tub. A trap will go dry in a matter of weeks, not months or years, if not used.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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