How to Install Drain Pipes

So I am so so so very happy to hear that we are not the only couple on this earth that has some ... uh ... differences when working together.  After our shower showdown, I realized I'm doing you a great disservice.

I'm not letting the Ram's voice be heard.  And he might just know a whole lot more about things like plumbing, framing and building Momplexes than I do.  To me, I just want the toilet in the right spot.  The the Ram, he wants to make sure it doesn't get clogged.

When we were on our book tour, the Ram had his own thing going on at the back of the signings.  And no, he wasn't signing books or taking pictures.

He was answering real questions from from folks who have real problems at home.  Someone wanted to know about installing drywall, another person about framing walls.  And he was helping these people find the answers they needed to go home and improve their homes.

So we promised at book signings that the Ram would start writing some of the more technical Momplex posts to answer some of these questions.  So here you go - the other side of the story!


Hi guys, I'm Jacob, Ana's husband.

I knew when she said let's haul the shower around the side of the Momplex, over the ramp, and up the split level entry that I'd be paying dearly for it.  Asking your wife to lift her end of an object twice her size never ends good. Guys, you know exactly what I'm talking about.

Another thing we differ on?  Shopping trips.  When I go shopping with her, every pair of shoes looks exactly the same.  Just pick one and go.

This is what my shopping trips look like.

She says every pipe looks the same.  Just grab them and go.  

Step 1 Diagram
Step 1

Once the layout of the bathroom is finally committed too - does your wife change things on you on a daily basis too? - its time to start marking up the floor and gathering the drains needed.

Step 2 Diagram
Step 2 Instructions

Here I have a shower drain. It's a complete set to seal the drain and give you something to hook you drain pipe up to.

Step 3 Diagram
Step 3 Instructions

As you mark up the floor, make sure to double check all of the measurements for accuracy. It would be a pain to have the hole off by just a little bit.

Step 4 Diagram
Step 4 Instructions

Then time for the fun stuff - power tools. Here we have a hole saw.

Step 5 Diagram
Step 5 Instructions

Cutting with these bits is a breeze.

Ask anyone who has drilled a 6" hole with a standard hole saw kit. No fun or easy task. We invested in this hole saw kit because we have all the other utility holes to drill as well.

Step 6 Diagram
Step 6 Instructions

About 5 seconds and it does this.

It's a wood eating machine.

Step 7 Diagram
Step 7 Instructions

A perfect hole for the job.

Now the showers are in, time for the toilets.

Step 8 Diagram
Step 8 Instructions

Most standard toilets are 12 1/2" from a framed wall.

Once marked I notice that we landed right on a floor joist. Right smack in the middle of the floor joist.

What to do about this problem????

Step 9 Diagram
Step 9 Instructions

Drilled the hole out. Super easy and fun.

Step 10 Diagram
Step 10 Instructions

Problem solver.

Step 11 Diagram
Step 11

Put a 90 in and go about installing the pipe.

Step 12 Diagram
Step 12

Attach the flange to the floor. Keeping in mind to the mark that you have put down.

Step 13

<img src="…;
<p>Looks good.&nbsp;</p><p></p><p></p><p>Now for the other one.</p><p></p><p></p><p>Thats right, everything is X2 in the Momplex.</p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /></p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p>Now time for the connection of all the pipes to the main drain. A plummer once told me @*@* runs downhill.</p><br /><p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /></p><p></p><p>Cutting and&nbsp;gluing&nbsp;pipes is really easy. Just have to keep in mind that most utilities need a P-Trap.</p><p></p><p>Excluding a toilet it already comes with one</p><p></p><p>A P-Trap&nbsp;is a trap that holds water that blocks off the pipes and keeps smelly sewer gasses from coming back into your home.</p><p></p><p></p><p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /></p><p></p><p>Another thing to consider is keeping your slope right on your pipes, you want to run your pipe 1/4" per foot of horizontal run. this keeps the water going down hill. The problem with not enough slope would be getting plugged up, and too much slope means that the water will beat the solids to the septic tank leaving the solids behind.&nbsp;</p><p></p><p></p><p>Bad slope = Toilet doesn't work = Mom calling.</p><p></p><p></p><p>Slope is good.</p><p></p><p></p><p></p><p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /></p><p></p><p></p><p>This ties it all in and goes down below to meet the main drain pipe.</p><p></p><p></p>

Step 14 Diagram
Step 14

<p>We also went ahead and brought the kitchen drains over through the wall, keeping the slope in the wall.<br /></p><p><br /></p><p><br /></p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /><p>Down stairs is the P-traps for the showers and other drains<br /><p></p><p><img src="…; style="width: 470px; " alt="" /></p><p></p><p>And everything gets tied into the main drain that runs under the slab and out to the septic we put in &nbsp;a couple of summers ago.</p><p></p></p>

Step 15 Diagram
Step 15

Here's Mom's Christmas present.  Laundry on the main level.  We added this at the last minute.  It gets drained down too.

With the washing machine utility box in the wall attaching the pipes is easy.

Your probably going to ask.  Why it the pipe going up?

That is a vent pipe essential to a good working drain system. 

Vents work as a breather for the system, without it would suck the P Traps dry bringing in sewer gases into the house. Not something to look forward to.

The vent or vents, some house have more than one vent, go up through the ceiling and out the roof.

Looking like this.

And then sealed the a roof jack to keep the water out.

Thanks guys!  I hope I answered some of your questions and made this plumbing process easy to understand.  If you want me to answer any other questions or write about any of the other steps, I'd be happy to.   Just let me know in the comments.

PS - Have a safe trip to the polls today.


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