Backed up Situation...need help...photo attached.

Discussion in 'Drain and Sewer Cleaning' started by FoxRocks, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. Dec 31, 2011 #1

    FoxRocks

    FoxRocks

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    Hello,

    I've got a problem with my laundry machine causing a backup when it drains. I've snapped a photo of the drain pipe and attached it, so please refer to it to make sense of what I'm saying.
    When the washing machine drains, the water comes out the top from where the spout enters the drain pipe, as well as causes an backflow in my furnace drain.
    Not cool.
    All other drains work very well, with the exception of one other...the kitchen sink directly above the laundry room. It doesn't drain that well at all. So I located the junction and ran a snake down and I managed to plunge through what appears to be "black gunk". The snaking did not improve the situation, even though it stabbed some black gunk of death.
    I did see this rental unit from Home Depot that has a claw looking thing on the end of it meant for branches. I was thinking of getting that in there to talk some business with the black gunk.
    So regardless of the slow drain, check out the "draintree" I've got going on (...and don't judge!...it was like that when I got here!) and tell me if you think it looks wrong too.
    Here's how it goes: The top is the washing machine drain, the green one on the left is the water softener drain and the one below that is the furnace drain...the one that gets back drained.

    Thanks in advance for your time.
    ~FOX~

    drainsituation.jpg
     
  2. Dec 31, 2011 #2

    FoxRocks

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    oh, and I do know it's crazy how close that elec. outlet is to the drain...it's going to be moved :)
     
  3. Dec 31, 2011 #3

    havasu

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    Looks to me like there is no vent on that drain line anywhere. I'd at least install a check valve on the washer line to allow an air gap.
     
  4. Dec 31, 2011 #4

    Plumber903

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    Clearing drains is not worth the savings of renting equipment, call a plumber\drain cleaner.
     
  5. Dec 31, 2011 #5

    havasu

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    I do agree hiring someone to clear the drains would be your best advice.
     
  6. Dec 31, 2011 #6

    johnjh2o

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    There are many things that are wrong with the setup you have. First of there is no trap or vent. There can be a trap below the floor but that is not allowed by code for obvious reasons. The clothes washer can not have a solid connection to the drain it must be indirect. What is that green hose? I hope it's not the back wash from the water softener? That must also be a indirect waste. Is what you call the furnace drain connected to the relief valve? If so that should never be connected to a waste line. If you ever get a main line stoppage the raw sewerage will back up into your clothes washer and worst of all into your water softener. As far as the line from the relief valve you will have no way of knowing there is a problem with the boiler causing the relief to open. The relief should terminate 6" above the floor. The reason the clothes washer is backing up is because the line has a particle stoppage and needs to be snaked with the proper sized snake. I would suggest you call a licensed plumber to look into the setup you have. Some are a real health hazzard others are just dangerous.

    John
     
  7. Dec 31, 2011 #7

    phishfood

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    I gotta agree with John on this one. 3 different backflow potentials there.
     
  8. Jan 6, 2012 #8

    FoxRocks

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    Hi guys, sorry for the super delayed response, I appreciate all of the replies!

    I wondered about the P Trap, but I thought maybe it was under the ground? but that wouldn't make sense...how would you clean it out? Hmm..
    To answer someone's question about the green hose, yes it is the water softener drain, but it goes through a long series of pipes before it gets there so I was hoping it wasn't too bad.
    What I'm doing right now is just pinching off the furnace drain (the clear one at the bottom) and turning the furnace off whenever I do laundry so it doesn't back-wash through.
    I'll be calling in a plumber I think on this one, thanks for the advice :)


    ~FOX~
     
  9. Jan 7, 2012 #9

    LiQuId

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    john has said all that could be said really, Im posting here only to support his advice and re-itterate the seriousness of this setup.
     
  10. Jan 7, 2012 #10

    Caduceus

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    Ditto.....
     
  11. Jan 9, 2012 #11

    LiQuId

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    Shameless.... they appear to be a decent outfit though. If you go with them DO follow up on the results and your opinions.
     
  12. Jan 11, 2012 #12

    FoxRocks

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    Alright, well I called someone in and they have started on the repair. I've attached a photo of the current state so you can see the direction we're going.

    Thanks everyone for the advice!

    plumbing_fixed.jpg
     
  13. Jan 11, 2012 #13

    LiQuId

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    this is Wrong for so many reasons, are you sure they're plumbers and not....

    y's on vertical exceeding hydraulic gradient drop of trap. These are S traps.

    you cant vent traps like that, now considered a wet vent. they must be vented seperately.

    no backflow on water softener discharge.

    and Furnace was the last?? I assume you have a high efficiant furnace ? it has to be in directlly connected.
     
  14. Jan 12, 2012 #14

    phishfood

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    Once again, I am left agreeing with the previous poster. What your plumber has started is not to code. You need to get another plumber, and make sure that he is properly licensed. If your current plumber is licensed, I don't know what to say.
     
  15. Jan 12, 2012 #15

    FoxRocks

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    Oh No!! What have I done! I went with this guy on a referral, I think he's a general contractor, but he was recommended for the plumbing...damn it. So what should it look like? I want to be able to tell this guy why he's wrong.

    I can't wait to talk to him...
     
  16. Jan 12, 2012 #16

    phishfood

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    First of all, the fittings used to connect the trap arms to the riser need to be sanitary tees, not combination wye and 1/8 bends. The section of pipe from the 1/8th bend (45 fitting) to the wye can completely fill with water, blocking the trap from getting air back from the vent. In fact, with the washing machine, I can almost guarantee that it will.

    The water softener should not be tied directly into the drainage system. If the sewer were to back up, sewer water would back uip into your water softener. You DON"T want that to happen. There should be an open space between the drain from the softener and the trap, so that the backwash will fall into the trap, but that sewage waste cannot backflow into the softener.

    As far as the wet vent goes, some codes allow them, and some don't. Even if code in your area allows wet vents, I would want the softener/furnace drain above the washer drain.

    I don't know anything about furnaces, but Liquid does, so if he says that it needs to drain indirectly (same thing as the softener), then it probably does.
     
  17. Jan 12, 2012 #17

    FoxRocks

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    So the wye gets replaced with a sanitary tee, and my water softener and furnace (high eff.) should drain where? There is no floor drain that I know of.

    Thanks for the help and information LiQuid and phishfood, I really appreciate it.

    ~FOX~
     
  18. Jan 12, 2012 #18

    LiQuId

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    in-directlly, this means that there is a physical air gap ( minimum 1" or 2 pipe diameters ) between the drainage piping and the discharge of the fixture/applaince

    Imagine it like this.. your furnace and water softener are represented by 2 buckets. the, sewer is a sepeate and larger bucket.

    whay you have currentlly.

    Hose running from the Furnace or water softener to the sewer "bucket" is submerged in the liquid of both the discharge "bucket" of the water softener AND the Sewer. when something backs up the water ( or sewage or whatever ) can migrate back into your potablle system, through syphonage or a blockage downstream ( the water level in the "sewer" becomes higher or grater than that of the furnace or softener.... you are now drinking poo and smelling it as your furnace heats it up.... not to mention the sewer gasses can migrate dangerouslly close to a combustion chamber .... these gasses ARE flammablle.


    what you NEED.

    In directlly connected.... imagine the same as above but instead of being submerged in both the discharge "bucket" ( furnace or softener ) AND the Recieving "bucket", the Discharge bucket IS directlly connected and submerged but the place where it connects to the Recieving "bucket" ( the drainage piping connected to the sewer ) has an air break, meaning that if there is a blockage in the DWV line the sewage backs up and overflows its bucket, thus spilling onto the floor where it is easilly recognized that a blockage has occured and, more importantlly has NOT made its way back into your furnace or drinking water.

    you need an air break on both these fixtures, there are fittings made to connect to drainage if there is no floor drain readilly availablle.
     
  19. Jan 13, 2012 #19

    johnjh2o

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    That is a very good analogy Liquid.

    John
     
  20. Jan 13, 2012 #20

    FoxRocks

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    Thanks LiQuid, that makes it easy to understand...and I can definitely see why you would want that air gap! poo water doesn't sound thirst quenching at all!

    Oh, btw, I confronted my so called plumber about this abortion of a project. He said he wasn't going to install it like that, he was just "getting it all figured out". I looked closer and nothing was glued, so I guess that's cool it's not beyond the point of no return...but I still fired him.

    So now I'm looking for someone else to do it...at the last minute...hoping they have time in the next YEAR to come by for this small of a job. I got the impression they weren't interested in this small of a job.
    Is it a small job? Is it something I could do? I know how to glue and assemble, no problem, I would just need help with what to put where.

    Anyways, thanks again guys, I really appreciate the help. I can only imagine where I'd be if I didn't post that photo!!

    ~FOX~
     

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