Bathroom sink drain, not enough clearance from wall

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum' started by DaringDamsel, Jun 27, 2009.

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  1. Jun 27, 2009 #1

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    When I bought this house, The original drain was not screwed together. Instead, it was held in place by massive amounts of caulking. (And I don't remember, but likely duct tapa also!) I never was able to get the drain properly hooked up. I just let it drain into a bucket.

    I had purchased a pedestal sink awhile back, and I am now installing it. The same problem exists. I cannot return the sink and faucets, because it was purchased too long ago.

    The drain pipe coming from the wall ends in a 90 degree bend downward. (I don't know if this is always true.) The wall itself is plaster, and I had thought it was the original plaster. I did not see evidence of a patch.

    Are there different dimensions for the distance from the wall to the drain on different sinks? I did not see this information, so I had thought this must be standard. I would hate to need to buy another sink (and possibly faucets.) But I don't know how else to solve this problem properly.

    How do I extend this drain pipe further out from the wall?

    Also, the plaster was bad. A friend repaired the hole with a patch of drywall (the green kind.) But now this problem exists, so the wall may need to be opened up again.

    The house was built in 1942.

    Thanks,
    DD
     
  2. Jun 27, 2009 #2

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    A Pic would help to get a really fast answer.
    Sounds like you just need to get a piece of waste line at the plumbing supply store to extend to your tailpiece. For this you need to make what is called a trap.
    plumbing.jpg
     
  3. Jun 27, 2009 #3

    majakdragon

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    I would remove the elbow and replace it with a Desanco fitting. This will thread onto the existing pipe and has a slip-joint connection. Then you can buy a longer pipe that will slide into the Desanco and uses the slip-joint nut to hold it in place and make a wtertight seal (with the gasket).
     
  4. Jun 28, 2009 #4

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    Sorry,
    I don't have a camera.

    InspectorD, Extending the tailpiece would help adjust for a problem in sink height (which I also have, in this case!) My problem is the distance from the wall to the sink drain. I need about an inch more room. The pipe from the wall does not stick out far enough.

    My friend (a man with good arm strength) tried to remove the stub out with a pipe wrench, but he couldn't budge it. But he didn't grasp it at the flats, but around the pipe itself. The flat part where the wrench would properly fit is inside the lathe. Even if we open up the wall again, we would need an awfully big hole to get the wrench on the flats (I am not sure if this is a proper term for this, if there is a proper term.)

    I might just bring a tape measure to the store, and look for a smaller sink, one with less distance from the back to the drain. I was stupid to buy a fixture without reading up on installation first, but I don't own a car, and the opportunity to bring it home was there. (And I was a bit bullied, by my ex-BF who I was with.)
     
  5. Jun 28, 2009 #5

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    Sorry,
    I don't have a camera.

    InspectorD, Extending the tailpiece would help adjust for a problem in sink height (which I also have, in this case!) My problem is the distance from the wall to the sink drain. I need about an inch more room. The pipe from the wall does not stick out far enough.

    My friend (a man with good arm strength) tried to remove the stub out with a pipe wrench, but he couldn't budge it. But he didn't grasp it at the flats, but around the pipe itself. The flat part where the wrench would properly fit is inside the lathe. Even if we open up the wall again, we would need an awfully big hole to get the wrench on the flats (I am not sure if this is a proper term for this, if there is a proper term.)

    I might just bring a tape measure to the store, and look for a smaller sink, one with less distance from the back to the drain. I was stupid to buy a fixture without reading up on installation first, but I don't own a car, and the opportunity to bring it home was there. (And I was a bit bullied, by my ex-BF who I was with.)
     
  6. Jun 28, 2009 #6

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    your correct, your tailpiece is the one that comes down from the basin, your trap is next, then your trap arm is the piece you are refering to.
    This can be extended with a coupler, or a connector pipe that fits over the old pipe, and the new pipe. It is all plastic , so you may need some glue to attach the two. Certain glue for curtain pipes. Measure the diameter, and how far you need to come off the wall. Then take this info to the plumbing dept to look at your options. Plastic waste line can be cut with a handsaw.
    You can do it.
    Getting a book on plumbing at the library is also an option.:)
     
  7. Jun 28, 2009 #7

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    The trap arm is metal. I spoke to my son today. He recommended that I cut the elbow from the trap arm, and extend it he said that I can get a sleeve that has hose clamps, or some kind of extender.

    You are right, about the plumbing book. I was in a state of panic on Friday. and I was afraid my friend might continue to work on it, and do something irreversable, make a larger problem out of it. I wanted some reassurance that the problem was fixable, and not unique!

    Honestly, I think I was being too "feminine" on Friday with my friend. I wish I would have told him that I would test or measure the assembly of the sink drain first,. And THEN fix the wall. Instead, I just kept reminding (nagging?) him, by saying, "Remember there was a problem with the old drain, are you SURE this will work?" And I expected him to figure out himself what he was doing wrong. I did go into the kitchen and wash dishes, while he fixated himself on repairing the wall.

    Honestly, I am thinking that I should just rip out EVERYTHING, except perhaps the tub. The tub surround is cracking, there is a wooden frame window on the tub wall. I love the natural light, but there has to be a better way! The only light fixture is a single bulb, and it isn't even centered over the medicine cabinet. (Which is not centered over the sink.)

    If I choose to do a new floor later, it will likely change the sink height. (Or I guess I could install the flooring it with the sink in place and work around it.)

    DD
     
  8. Jun 29, 2009 #8

    inspectorD

    inspectorD

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    That is how a bath remodel starts.;)

    You can use what is called a hub connector, some are made by fernco.
     
  9. Jun 29, 2009 #9

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    HaHa!

    I spent all of Sunday afternoon looking at bathtubs, including ofuro tubs, and steam showers. As well as looking up info on refinishing my tub. or lining it.

    I have come to the conclusion that if I need to wax a refinishing job, I may as well just try to remove the stains, and wax the tub as it is, and see it makes things a little better, and easier to clean.

    DD
     
  10. Jun 30, 2009 #10

    glennjanie

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    Hello DD:
    Inspector D has included a real nice picture of what you want to end up with. Majakdragon has mentioned a noteable part that will help a lot. When you want to take the elbow off the pipe, screw a piece of pipe into it, as long as possible and do the tugging on it. The threads may loosen at the elbow or in the wall at (what should be) a tee: if the elbow unscrews, ask for a threaded trap adapter and if the whole trap arm unscrews back in there you will need a threaded connector (plastic) which you can use to continue to the sink with plastic. Either way, the trap arm should end with a trap adapter which will accomodate the trap tubing which you can buy at the home store. The trap on a pedistal sink is normally hidden in the back of the pedistal. When you are finished, you should see nothing but the trap adapter and the final piece of the trap assembly.
    Glenn
     
  11. Jun 30, 2009 #11

    glennjanie

    glennjanie

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    Different subject DD:
    I recently saw Dolly Parton in concert right after she had received an honarrary Doctorate from University of Tennessee. "So now, I'm Doctor Dolly and I know what you mean when you call me DD."
    Glenn
     
  12. Jul 1, 2009 #12

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    OOPS! I did not think of that when I chose the name! [BLUSHING].
     
  13. Jul 1, 2009 #13

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    My friend took his patch off of the wall. And bought something that looks like it will work. I guess we should test it, because it might be too long. I see from the photo that the trap can be installed at an angle to adjust for distance, but my pedestal might be in the way. Also, I do not like that that the pedestal is only held to the wall by two bolts or screws. And the instructions say that it is okay to just bolt it through the drywall. Is this good enough? I suppose that the pedestal is what is supporting the weight, and the wall bolts are just to keep the sink from moving?

    So far, we have gotten the trap arm off. My friend stuck his finger in the tee, and it was pretty nasty with crud. Looks like mostly rust and hair. So I found my snake, and have been trying to clear it, since it is easier to do it now, with the pipe open. I figure that I will be done when the snake hits water. (This drain hasn't been connected in a long time.) OOPS, I just realized, I had been flushing the toilet occasionally, thinking this would clear anything knocked down the drain pipe. But I never checked whether the toilet is "upstream" of the sink.

    He talked about plugging the drain, and sticking a hose down it from the roof. But I can see that what I think is the vent sticking out from the roof has a huge hole. I suppose I should replace that also before I fix the wall? He said to just cut off the part above the roof, but I don't see why the damage would only be on the exposed part. Anyway, I do not want to find out if there are any other holes in the vent pipe with this experiment.

    DD
     
  14. Jul 1, 2009 #14

    Redwood

    Redwood

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    Yes you should replace any sections of the drain and vent pipe that have holes in them.

    I would also not recommend attaching the sink through just drywall. It will tear of the wall in no time at all. You should have a 2X8 in the wall behind the sink for it to attach to with lag screws.

    This is sounding like the project is growing much bigger than originally anticipated.:eek:
     
  15. Jul 2, 2009 #15

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    The sink does not have a bracket to install it with, and it said that it is okay to do this. But since the wall has a 2 x 3 foot hole in it, putting in a board to brace it won't be a big deal! But since the force isn't really distributed over the back of the sink by a bracket, I am thinking that the bolt holes on the sink may not last too long, anyway. Well, when I bought this sink, I figured that all vitreous sinks were the same, except for perhaps finish details.

    I FINALLY went to the library today, and grabbed a pile of plumbing and bathroom remodel books, and one of them said not to buy a sink like mine, where the pedestal supports the weight of the basin, because they are impossible to fix later. (And I am not sure that I will be able to reach in and unscrew the trap, without disassembling the sink!

    So actually, that makes my project a bit easier, since I have no motivation to redo the entire wall, if the sink and /or wall may not last for awhile.

    Although it is surprising how long I will live with a 'temporary' fix at times!

    I did buy a low- end Moen faucet, mostly because my father bought Moen faucets, and he was a plumber. But I really did think that all sinks of a given material were of the same quality for longevity.

    I think I will post another thread on the topic of my vent pipe, for the benefit of other newbies.
     
  16. Jul 2, 2009 #16

    DaringDamsel

    DaringDamsel

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    I read my city code, posted below, I am not allowed to even unscrew the trap of my sink without obtaining a permit. Am I reading this correctly? I have marked the phrases I think apply.

    Also, my friend said that the part he bought is ABS (It is black) One book said that few jurisdictions allow this anymore. Wow do I find the appropriate section of my local code?

    DD

    25.05.010 Required.
    (Amended by Ordinance Nos. 170576, 170811 and 178578, effective September 1, 2004.) Excepting fire systems provided for in Title 31, Fire Regulations, a permit, or minor label as outlined in Section 25.04.040, shall be obtained for the installation, construction, alteration, or repair of any plumbing or sewage system, fire hose valve, water supply system, water supply well, rainwater harvesting system, sewage holding tank, fire hose cabinet, or the installing of any device if the device requires either water supply, or waste connection to drainage system or both; of plugging of sewer where a building has been wrecked or moved; for removing plumbing fixtures and sealing openings; all of the above coming under the regulations of this Title and the Oregon Plumbing Specialty Code. As used in this Section, the word "repair" does not apply to ordinary repairs to faucets or valves, or to the clearing of obstructions from a fixture, sewer, or waste pipe, if there be no disconnecting of the fixture or device, or if there be no opening of, or cutting into, the sewer or waste pipe or fittings.
     
  17. Jul 2, 2009 #17

    glennjanie

    glennjanie

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    Hello DD:
    Don't be embarrased about the initials; Dolly sure isn't and she has a lot of fun with it.

    Yes, the code says what you think it says. At least you didn't change the meter base and have to have the power company to come out and re-connect you only after you have an inspection.

    Does the Portland building authority normally make surprise inspections of plumbing? Make sure there are no boxes laying out in the yard to draw attention and don't change the vent on the roof. To cover the hole around the vent you need a plastic flashing that can be obtained at the nearby Lowe's or Home Depot or wherever you bought the sink.

    As far as the sink holding up with the two bolts; just remember it is not for sitting on, jumping on or other extremes. It is for holding a basin of water only and that doesn't take so much.

    Glenn
     
  18. Jul 2, 2009 #18

    Redwood

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    It is relatively painless to pull a permit, have the work inspected and be Completely Legit...

    It sure would be better than having a butchered up hack job come back to bite you when you sell the house years down the road.

    But Either way is okay with me...
    I have made plenty of money fixing hacked up DIYer plumbing that got gigged on a home inspection....
    Imagine doing a job that never quite works right from day one...
    Putting up with it for years...
    Then one day as you sell the house paying big $$$ to have it done right for someone else...

    For some reason the logic fails me... :rolleyes:
     

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