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 02-18-2005, 07:37 Post: 106347
Iowafun

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 Drain Vent Stack problem

My house is a modular unit (not mobile, but built in 4 sections and brough together). There are 2 different drain stack vent sections that rise verticlaly into the attic. In the attic, they tied the two stacks together with PVC pipe and a joint. That way there is only one roof opening. Last year, the joint leaked and caused a ceiling problem. I fixed the joint and had the drywall repaired.

Now, we are having the same problem at the new joint. So I have damaged drywall ceiling their. In addition, something has gone wrong at one connection to the vertical stack as that bathroom is getting fumes from the stack pumped into it somehow. I've closed the drains on the tub and sink. But with the p-traps, I doubt that's the cause.

I'll go up and look at it tonight. But is it common to link two vertical drain stacks together like that? I think as the house shifts (I don't know if the foundation is substandard or not) during the winter freeze/thaw routine, the connection sections are getting pulled apart and the joints are failing.

Is it common to link them together like this? If it is getting pulled apart, is the best solution to separate them and put a new opening in the roof?






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 02-18-2005, 08:16 Post: 106349
Murf



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

First of all, either I am missing something, or you are not explaining the situation clearly.

The vent stack is just that, a vent, that pipe does not contain any liquid (other than a couple drops of rain maybe) and so cannot leak.

Generally speaking, if done properly horizontal runs in the vent are no problem at all.

I suspect the problem you are having is condensation, not 'leaking'. The warm air in the sewer pipe is causing condensation in the cold attic.

If that is the case merely insulating the pipe will help a bunch, so will adjusting the horizontal sections of the vent so that any condensation that does form will run down the drain rather than building up in the vent.

As for shifting, if the house sections were moving by more than most minute distance you would see huge cracks in the walls and ceilings and windows & doors wouldn't open or close properly.

Best of luck.






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 02-18-2005, 08:33 Post: 106352
Chief



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

Have you checked the seal around the pvc pipe where it come through the roof? Those seals can get dry rotted due to exposure to the sun and weather and leak. A few of mine were leaking too so I just sealed them up with a bead of cauking around the pvc pipe where it meets the seal.






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 02-18-2005, 08:45 Post: 106355
Murf



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

Your comment about fumes in the bathroom in the snake thread, leads me to believe your problem is condensation.

When the warm moist air rises, cools, and condenses, it can actually accumulate to the point where ice starts to build up in the vent, eventually it build up to the point where it completely blocks the vent.

The simple, although not convenient way to diagnose it is to either put your ear to the pipe and have someone flush, you should hear gurgling and runningwater. Another way is to put a shop-vac set to blowing instead of vacuum in the pipe opening, there should be absolutely not backpressure against the blower. If you do not hear anything, or there is pressure, you have a blockage in the pipe.

Best of luck.






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 02-18-2005, 09:08 Post: 106360
harvey



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

You have a couple of good starting spots from Murf and Randy. I'd also look for a low spot in the vent. The other posibility could be a bad joint in the wall, not glued and pulled apart.

Is the water damage 1st floor or 2nd?

Good Luck Harvey






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 02-18-2005, 12:19 Post: 106390
Iowafun

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 Drain Vent Stack problem

Well, first off, the horizontal run is buried under the insulation in the attic so there should be no ice. There is condensation/water in the pipes because that is what is leaking out and wrecking the ceiling drywall.

As for house movement, some sections have cracks in the walls and in winter, the bathroom counter top pulls away from wall at least 1/16" to 1/8". I had caulked it in fall when we repainted the bathroom. It has pulled the caulk off the wall.

The flange around the pipe in the roof is not a problem as there is no water evidence of it getting in there.

Finally, ice is not going to be the problem as the air temp has been consistently above freezing the last couple of weeks. I wish you guys could see some of the cheap-ass problems I have found since I bought the place. Frustrating, really.

I think I'm going to split the connection and run the other one up through the roof on it's own. But I'll check it out first to see where th fumes are coming in at. I'll let you know what I find. My wife has the camera for a baby shower so no photos.






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 02-18-2005, 21:27 Post: 106425
MIFarmin



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

I had a modular put in last year. A plumber did all the drain work in the basement. He did not hook up to all the pipe that was in the house when it was built at the factory. He capped two pipes in the basement that were connected to the vent. I don't think he knew where they went and he really didn't care. They eventually filled up with water from rain or condensation and started leaking through the joints on to the wall and floor. I had him come back and we figured out we didn't need those two pipes and cut them off from the vent, which solved the leaking problem. My point is, find out where the pipes go and if they are being used properly. Sometimes the factory and the plumber have different ways to do things.






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 02-22-2005, 12:05 Post: 106612
Iowafun

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 Drain Vent Stack problem

Well, I'm not sure what is going on with that drain stack now. The one bathroom is still getting fumed bad. But the kicker is the toilet won't flush properly now. It fills up and then drains down. You can hear the water draining out. So something is clearly messed up. I hope something didn't crawl in there and die.






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 02-22-2005, 13:42 Post: 106619
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 Drain Vent Stack problem

If the toilet won't flush, the vent must be plugged. An alternative connection that will allow some movement would be a Fernco coupling. It is a flexible rubber tube with a hose clamp on each end made for plumbing joints. Not sure what codes might dictate.






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 03-10-2005, 07:59 Post: 107716
Xpress



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 Drain Vent Stack problem

I have a modular home that had similarly odd venting connections. A three inch vent ran from the crawl space to the second story. We ran our own venting but when we smoke tested, found other connections. I recall the plumber saying we could not just seal the ends but had to cut all connections to prevent accumulating condensation. I will call him to get my story straight and maybe then I will be able to offer something useful.






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