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ratkindler
Broken p-trap

I had a very slow draining vanity sink and after drain cleaner and plunging didn't fix it I decided to check the p-trap. The pipes are chrome and when I tried to remove the p-trap nuts they basically shattered. All I've got now is the long chrome pipe connected to the waste pipe in the wall. I'm not sure how it's connected (i.e. soldered) and can't really see any kind of nut back there holding it on.

I'm wondering what my options are now. I'd like to replace everything with a plastic p-trap but I don't know how to remove the chrome pipe or even if I need to. Can I cut it off and use some kind of adapter fitting to connect the remaining chrome to the plastic p-trap? Do I have to remove the chrome piece entirely? Should I give up and call a plumber?

I tried to upload a pic but it won't accept any image formats.

johnjh2o
Re: Broken p-trap

Many of the older chrome P-traps were soldered. Can you see any of the pipe other then the chrome? I would advise against making a connection to what remains of the old trap. It's in as bad a shape as the trap. You need to get to the pipe the trap was connected to. There are fernco couplings that will fit over the copper and onto a new plastic P-trap.

67drake
Re: Broken p-trap

You should be able to adapt pvc to the existing chrome pipe.
Go to the local hardware store and tell them what you are doing. It never hurts to bring your old trap with so they know what you are dealing with. You could go to a big box store,but if you have not done this before you would be better off spending a few bucks more to deal with somebody at a hardware store who knows what he is doing,as opposed to some pimple faced college kid at the BB store who does not know what a p-trap is.

johnjh2o
Re: Broken p-trap
67drake wrote:

You should be able to adapt pvc to the existing chrome pipe.
Go to the local hardware store and tell them what you are doing. It never hurts to bring your old trap with so they know what you are dealing with. You could go to a big box store,but if you have not done this before you would be better off spending a few bucks more to deal with somebody at a hardware store who knows what he is doing,as opposed to some pimple faced college kid at the BB store who does not know what a p-trap is.

Why would you connect to a decaying section of pipe?

67drake
Re: Broken p-trap
johnjh2o wrote:

Why would you connect to a decaying section of pipe?

I wouldn't. How do you know it is?

A. Spruce
Re: Broken p-trap
67drake wrote:

I wouldn't. How do you know it is?

ratkindler wrote:

The pipes are chrome and when I tried to remove the p-trap nuts they basically shattered.

Drake, that right there is a pretty good clue that there is a problem with what remains of the tailpiece.

I've never seen a soldered tailpiece, but concur with John that you don't want to attach to it. If there is no obvious means of removal, then call a plumber to take care of the problem properly. Doing the job right may cost a little more now, but it will save you a great deal of money by avoiding leaks and failures down the road that not only have to be redone properly, you then have collateral damage that must be repaired as well. Doing things right the first time is ALWAYS the cheapest way to go.:cool:

dj1
Re: Broken p-trap

My 2 cents:

With such old plumbing, you need to replace the whole thing: drain set at the sink, p trap and waste arm to the wall drain. Like John and Spruce say, we've seen these pipes fail again and again.

The plastic parts are really inexpensive and any trained handymen can do it. Avoid future leaks, do it right the first time.

ratkindler
Re: Broken p-trap

There's about 1-2 inches of waste pipe coming out of the wall. There's green corrosion on it. Does this mean it's copper? My guess is that the chrome pipe is soldered in. What's the best way to cut the chrome pipe? There's not much space to work under there. I was thinking of using some sort of coupling between the metal waste pipe and the new plastic p-trap before I give up and call a plumber.

[my post count is too low to post images or links to images]

dj1
Re: Broken p-trap

Copper was seldom used in residential drains in the past.

You can cut the drywall around the waste arm and see how it's connected to the wall drain. Take a picture at this moment and upload it here. When you finish the job, you can re-seal it.

If you can't remove it from the wall drain, then cut it with a recipro saw or a hacksaw. To connect a new plastic waste arm, use a flexible coupling with clamps. HD and Lowe's have them.

(To send a pic: upload it to a host site, like photobucket.com, then post the link here).

johnjh2o
Re: Broken p-trap
dj1 wrote:

Copper was seldom used in residential drains in the past.

You can cut the drywall around the waste arm and see how it's connected to the wall drain. Take a picture at this moment and upload it here. When you finish the job, you can re-seal it.

If you can't remove it from the wall drain, then cut it with a recipro saw or a hacksaw. To connect a new plastic waste arm, use a flexible coupling with clamps. HD and Lowe's have them.

(To send a pic: upload it to a host site, like photobucket.com, then post the link here).

For the first 20+ years I was in the plumbing business copper was all that we used in residential homes. Before that it was cast iron and steel pipe.

function
Re: Broken p-trap

The green corrosion is copper. The chrome pipe was probably chrome over brass if it was once a decent gauge of metal. Either way, chrome sticks to copper very well, so the pipe was at least dipped in copper to get the chrome plating to adhere.

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