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Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

Does what it says on the tin
GoSeigen
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Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#442963

Postby GoSeigen » September 17th, 2021, 11:42 am

Weird question here, so please bear with me.

A long time ago couple of standard 40mm waste pipes were teed together and then the entire tee and pipes bricked and plastered in to an existing wall. So there are two pipes entering the (thick) wall a tee inside and one pipe exiting. Not surprisingly the tee has developed a leak within the wall which now needs to be repaired.

There are various approaches, but the essence of what I want to do is eliminate the tee and put a pipe straight through the wall. Three approaches to the problem are:

1. Break through the wall around the fitting, remove and replace waste pipework and re-brick, plaster and decorate. For several reasons, I really don't want to do this.
2. Drill a new hole through the wall with a diamond core drill. Feasible but its a thick wall and if working from the outside will be up a long ladder, probably will need a professional to do it.
3. Remove the old piping and pass the new pipe through its hole in the wall. If there weren't a tee in there this would be easy of course, just loosen the pipe and yank it out. But how to do it with the tee in there? Of course I don't mind destroying the pipe and tee, but I can't think of a good way to do so other than trying to hammer a crowbar down the side of the pipe or some similar brute force methods.

Any bright ideas how to achieve method 3 or is there an even better way I haven't considered?


GS

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#442978

Postby MyNameIsUrl » September 17th, 2021, 12:18 pm

I'm struggling to visualise exactly what the arrangement is, but one of your options is to drill a new hole and, I think, leave the existing pipework in situ but redundant.
Would it be feasible to cut off the existing pipework flush with the wall - obviously leaving the plastered-in section as a hole through the wall - and put a slightly smaller diameter pipe through the old pipe?

GoSeigen
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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#442990

Postby GoSeigen » September 17th, 2021, 12:51 pm

MyNameIsUrl wrote:I'm struggling to visualise exactly what the arrangement is, but one of your options is to drill a new hole and, I think, leave the existing pipework in situ but redundant.

Yes, that's what I meant by option 2, but seems this needs a hefty drill with a clutch and expensive core bit and working on a ladder, which I thought I could avoid by removing the old pipework.

Would it be feasible to cut off the existing pipework flush with the wall - obviously leaving the plastered-in section as a hole through the wall - and put a slightly smaller diameter pipe through the old pipe?


Yes I did think of that, is it kosher for waste pipes? Might be a good option if there are no strong practical objections. The pipe services a couple of baths on the next floor up which theoretically could be emptied simultaneously...

GS

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#442995

Postby bungeejumper » September 17th, 2021, 12:56 pm

So the plastic tee is completely encased within the wall, and you just want it destroyed and gone so that you can run a straight pipe through the hole?

Not one of my prettier thoughts, but I reckon ten minutes with a mallet and a sharp chisel ought to chop up the plastic sufficiently. Or two minutes with a reasonably large bit on an electric drill. Just don't use your best bit. ;)

BJ

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443103

Postby GoSeigen » September 17th, 2021, 5:34 pm

bungeejumper wrote:So the plastic tee is completely encased within the wall, and you just want it destroyed and gone so that you can run a straight pipe through the hole?

Exactly.

Not one of my prettier thoughts, but I reckon ten minutes with a mallet and a sharp chisel ought to chop up the plastic sufficiently. Or two minutes with a reasonably large bit on an electric drill. Just don't use your best bit. ;)


That's looking like a decent option, worth a try anyway, if it fails then drilling a new hole through is a fallback. Once done the new pipework is actually very simple.

GS

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443221

Postby servodude » September 18th, 2021, 2:35 am

GoSeigen wrote:
bungeejumper wrote:So the plastic tee is completely encased within the wall, and you just want it destroyed and gone so that you can run a straight pipe through the hole?

Exactly.

Not one of my prettier thoughts, but I reckon ten minutes with a mallet and a sharp chisel ought to chop up the plastic sufficiently. Or two minutes with a reasonably large bit on an electric drill. Just don't use your best bit. ;)


That's looking like a decent option, worth a try anyway, if it fails then drilling a new hole through is a fallback. Once done the new pipework is actually very simple.

GS


Can you get a wire saw to it?

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443238

Postby jfgw » September 18th, 2021, 9:26 am

How deep is it? Can you cut around it with a 52mm core drill? If you cut the branch off, it might knock through from the other side.

What sort of tee is it? Solvent weld is the most common but they don't normally leak. If it is push-fit, you might be able to pull the existing pipe out (I'm not saying it will be easy) and then use the 52mm core drill to cut around the fitting.


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443255

Postby sg31 » September 18th, 2021, 10:30 am

Reciprogating saw, maybe. It would need a thickish blade and a bit of care to get the blade started but if you start at an angle you should be able to do it.

If you are only able to work from one side t make 2 cuts, lever up the plastic between the cuts and try to get the balde between the plastic and the wall. Cut round until you are through the T then drift the pipe out of the wall.

https://www.screwfix.com/p/erbauer-ers1 ... lsrc=aw.ds

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443283

Postby redsturgeon » September 18th, 2021, 12:04 pm

Its only plastic so a hacksaw blade or keyhole saw by hand would probably be sufficient and not take very long.

John

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443366

Postby GoSeigen » September 18th, 2021, 6:04 pm

jfgw wrote:How deep is it? Can you cut around it with a 52mm core drill? If you cut the branch off, it might knock through from the other side.

What sort of tee is it? Solvent weld is the most common but they don't normally leak. If it is push-fit, you might be able to pull the existing pipe out (I'm not saying it will be easy) and then use the 52mm core drill to cut around the fitting.



Because it's buried I'm not sure what sort of fitting it is. I'd assumed solvent weld but now you mention it it might not be. Will have a tug and see if the pipe comes out!

As you're suggesting using a drill to remove it I'm guessing you don't think that will ruin the drill bit? It's a thick wall some 18in at its thickest but where I'm working inside a bit has been removed by the previous installer from the inside wall so it's not that deep. I think I'll try to drill out the plastic and reuse the hole per suggestions here; using a drill is going to be less trouble than a saw if I can reach the junction then pull out the rest of the pipe.

GS

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443373

Postby 88V8 » September 18th, 2021, 6:20 pm

So you're back to the two-bath problem.... a hole saw as used for wood/metalwork would destroy plastic without blinking.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/224614444827?hash=item344c106f1b:g:NYgAAOSwcJFhReZp

You just need an extension to hold it
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/234193332768?hash=item368702aa20:g:EM0AAOSw7PxhRZ7w
Check that the female end is big enough for the hex on the hole saw.

V8

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#443381

Postby jfgw » September 18th, 2021, 7:03 pm

GoSeigen wrote:Because it's buried I'm not sure what sort of fitting it is. I'd assumed solvent weld but now you mention it it might not be. Will have a tug and see if the pipe comes out!


You should be able to tell by the pipe and (unless they are compression) the fittings as they are not interchangeable. Solvent weld is slightly bigger and duller looking.

GoSeigen wrote:As you're suggesting using a drill to remove it I'm guessing you don't think that will ruin the drill bit? It's a thick wall some 18in at its thickest but where I'm working inside a bit has been removed by the previous installer from the inside wall so it's not that deep. I think I'll try to drill out the plastic and reuse the hole per suggestions here; using a drill is going to be less trouble than a saw if I can reach the junction then pull out the rest of the pipe.


Diamond core drills are designed for hard stuff. They do wear out though. A good quality core drill (such as a Marchrist one) cuts quicker than a cheap one.

If you use an unslotted core drill, one of these attached to a Henry will minimise the amount of dust flying about: https://www.screwfix.com/p/marcrist-dust-extraction-unit-150mm-3-pcs/4441f (If the arbour has a hole for a drift for removing the pilot drill, tape over it). Never use a Dyson or other cyclone vaccuum cleaner for brick or similar dust. Even with a Henry or one of his friends, you may need to change the bag before it is anywhere near full as brick dust clogs them quickly.


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#444530

Postby GoSeigen » September 22nd, 2021, 6:14 pm

Turns out the pipes were push fit. I managed to pull the pipe out of the wall on the inside really easily, called missus to insert her slender hand up the now gaping orifice (ooer) and try to remove the junction inside but it was stuck fast. The rubber seal came out however and was completely shot so probably causing the leaking inside the wall which prompted me to start this job.

Having removed the pipe I've now discovered that it was embedded fairly deeply into the wall so drilling through from outside is going to be fairly easy and I should be able to get through the plastic fitting no problem with the core drill bit I bought for the job. A bit late to head up the ladder today so that's a task for the morning.

Thanks for the input everyone, it's made the job less daunting to tackle. Now I just have to decide whether to replace with push fit or solvent weld but for simplicity and flexibility will probably go with the former.


GS

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#444543

Postby jfgw » September 22nd, 2021, 7:09 pm

GoSeigen wrote:Now I just have to decide whether to replace with push fit or solvent weld


It's push-fit wot leaked! Push-fit can leak from new if a pipe is pulled at an angle from a fitting. Solvent-weld does not normally leak.

Another advantage of solvent-weld is that it is a lot more UV stable. Push-fit will go weak and brittle over time in the sun.

If you are joining onto existing plumbing, you may need to convert from one to the other. Adapters are available but I don't know how readily available. A compression coupling can be used to join the two systems in the absence of an adapter.


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#444566

Postby GoSeigen » September 22nd, 2021, 9:28 pm

jfgw wrote:
GoSeigen wrote:Now I just have to decide whether to replace with push fit or solvent weld


It's push-fit wot leaked! Push-fit can leak from new if a pipe is pulled at an angle from a fitting. Solvent-weld does not normally leak.

Another advantage of solvent-weld is that it is a lot more UV stable. Push-fit will go weak and brittle over time in the sun.

If you are joining onto existing plumbing, you may need to convert from one to the other. Adapters are available but I don't know how readily available. A compression coupling can be used to join the two systems in the absence of an adapter.



I hear you, but it leaked from a fitting embedded in a wall which is just perverse! -- the new connections will at least be accessible. Also the existing fittings were installed some 50-60 years ago, so they've really not done too badly! Finally, this is an urgent repair: the entire section is due to be torn out and redone in the not-too-distant future. The existing plumbing that I need to connect to is all push-fit so no adaptors will be needed.

The sun is a bit of an issue because the approx half metre of pipe outside will be exposed to direct morning sunlight, but as said before, I think it will not survive the later refit anyway...

GS
P.S. jfgw are you a plumber yourself or just an experienced DIYer, you always seem to have useful things to say about plumbing (not that I'm watching carefully).

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#445144

Postby jfgw » September 24th, 2021, 8:24 pm

GoSeigen wrote:P.S. jfgw are you a plumber yourself or just an experienced DIYer, you always seem to have useful things to say about plumbing (not that I'm watching carefully).


C&G level 2 plumbing, plus unvented, and water regs (a few years ago now). I have had quite a bit of real-world experience but not as much as someone who has spent his or her working life as a plumber.

The City and Guilds included guttering and lead work—we had to make a lead slate and some chimney flashings (how many plumbers do that now?)—but did not require on-site experience. I believe that these have all changed.


Julian F. G. W.

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Re: Remove plumbing fittings from inside wall

#445203

Postby GoSeigen » September 25th, 2021, 9:46 am

jfgw wrote:
GoSeigen wrote:P.S. jfgw are you a plumber yourself or just an experienced DIYer, you always seem to have useful things to say about plumbing (not that I'm watching carefully).


C&G level 2 plumbing, plus unvented, and water regs (a few years ago now). I have had quite a bit of real-world experience but not as much as someone who has spent his or her working life as a plumber.

The City and Guilds included guttering and lead work—we had to make a lead slate and some chimney flashings (how many plumbers do that now?)—but did not require on-site experience. I believe that these have all changed.


Julian F. G. W.


Ah, that explains. One of the first DIY jobs I did on the first home we bought as a twenty-somethingd was the lead flashing for the chimney (IIRC) and bay windows. Very satisfying when those jobs and a bit of pointing done by a pro released another 10% of our mortgage from the bank.

GS
P.S. All good on the buried pipes, now pipework is done and just needs welding -- decided to go with the pvc weld in the end, push fittings being hard to find round here.


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