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Old 06-03-2012, 01:36 PM   #1
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


Ok. We built this house 4 years ago and it is still unfinished, but we're living in finished rooms. When our plumber laid out our plumbing system he failed to extend the PVC pipes for our drier vent and island cooktop vent outside of the batter boards. Therefore resulting in concrete being poured ontop of the pvc and sealed them off from the outside. We have no idea where the PVC ends up outside. So what we need to do is be able to send into the PVC some type of concrete drill attached to a long hose to get to the concrete and drill to the outside of our house. Is that possible? I seem to think it is, my husband does not. The vent draft PVC is approx 5 ft or less to outside of house, but the drier vent is approx 15ft or more. Thank you!

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Old 06-03-2012, 01:43 PM   #2
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


Something is odd about your situation. I have never heard of PVC being used for dryer vent, it is almost always either flexible corrugated metal pipe, or better solid galvanized metal pipe. Ditto for stove vent. This is to prevent dangerous fumes from developing in the event of a lint fire or grease fire.

So I have to wonder if the PVC was ever intended to be used as exhaust conduit. In any case, assuming you have conventional wood stud walls, why don't you run conventional dryer and stove hood venting through the walls? Much easier than attempting to drill through a solid concrete wall, which can certainly be done, but is a lot of work for a large diameter pipe.

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Old 06-03-2012, 04:30 PM   #3
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


Also a batter board is a set of 2 X 4's used to lay out a foundation, not sure how that has anything to do with vents and how there run.
The only "vents" that would have been run in PVC would be sewer gas vents.
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:39 PM   #4
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


Well, the pvc pipe that is in the utility room is in between the studs right under the washer and dryer water hook ups. Its a 4 inch pipe leading from that room to outside the house (at least it's supposed to be going outside). We are currently using a flexible dryer vent to vent into the house...which is a mess and smells up the house when drying clothes. We are trying to get this problem fixed so we can vent out, add insulation, dry it in, build a pedestal for both washer and dryer and complete the room once and for all. The problem with venting thru the walls is that the other side if the utility room is our hall way, then a bedroom. There is actually no where to go.

The kitchen has 2 PVC pipes coming out of the concrete. One is for water drain as the water pipes are next to it (for a small sink) and the other is a stand alone for venting a down draft cooktop that will rest upon an island. Since it is in the middle of the kitchen to be eventually hidden under the island we cannot vent that one out either.
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:30 PM   #5
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
Also a batter board is a set of 2 X 4's used to lay out a foundation, not sure how that has anything to do with vents and how there run.
The only "vents" that would have been run in PVC would be sewer gas vents.

Our plumbing was all done using PVC pipe...this included dryer vents and a stovetop vent(since it will be on an island it had to be vented out). Because these things vent out they have to extend past the concrete slab, thus past the 2x4 batter boards as well(since the concrete is poured up against the batter boards). Since they weren't extended, when the concrete was poured, it covered the PVC pipe completely and now we have no idea where they are located.

Now, if the case is that in construction they aren't supposed to extend past the boards that's fine(maybe the boards butt up to the PVC pipes and the concrete pours around it), but that doesn't fix the fact that concrete has covered them up completely and we need to locate them.
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:05 PM   #6
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


As Dan pointed out,you can not use PVC for this purpose as it is dangerous and I am certain it is not legal.
Did you ever get a rough inspection done?
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:09 PM   #7
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


Is there a possibility that you could post pictures from inside the house and out?

Your set up is unusual and hard for me to picture.

Another thought---a plumber could locate those missing pipes easily enough with a good in pipe camera-
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Old 06-03-2012, 07:14 PM   #8
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


You keep saying batter boards, sure you do not mean form boards? The board used to form the foundation so it could be pored.
If so they should have been removed once it set up. You may see the pipes once the boards come off.
Also 4 inch PVC would be to big for a dryer vent, it would need to be 3".
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:02 PM   #9
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


In your first post, you said that the pipes extend outside of the house, but in your second post you said "(at least it's supposed to be going outside)"; can you see these pipes on the outside of the house? If not, I would first expose them, because the uncertainty of whether they are actuall there, or not, and the fact that they do not sound like the right material or size, causes me to think that they may simply be chases, in which you should be able to knock the concrete out of them with relative ease, then route the proper ducts through them. Not sure why or how the concrete got in them, so I may not be right, but it seems worth investigating.
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:23 PM   #10
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


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Originally Posted by oh'mike View Post
Is there a possibility that you could post pictures from inside the house and out?

Your set up is unusual and hard for me to picture.

Another thought---a plumber could locate those missing pipes easily enough with a good in pipe camera-

We used an in pipe camera earlier today. The kitchen pipe had water in it, so i think it made it hard to see. But with water being in there we kinda know it's probably not completely sealed off. We will probably need to dig the dirt up around that side to see what we find. Then go from there. The second pipe we could not see very well to tell what was at the end. I said concrete, hubby says it looks like something else.

Last edited by Okstout4; 06-03-2012 at 08:30 PM.
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:33 PM   #11
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
You keep saying batter boards, sure you do not mean form boards? The board used to form the foundation so it could be pored.
If so they should have been removed once it set up. You may see the pipes once the boards come off.
Also 4 inch PVC would be to big for a dryer vent, it would need to be 3".
Yes, that is what I mean and they were removed... At least most were removed once it set others were removed later. There is a 4" pipe and a smaller one in the utility room.
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:49 PM   #12
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


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Originally Posted by DexterII View Post
In your first post, you said that the pipes extend outside of the house, but in your second post you said "(at least it's supposed to be going outside)"; can you see these pipes on the outside of the house? If not, I would first expose them, because the uncertainty of whether they are actuall there, or not, and the fact that they do not sound like the right material or size, causes me to think that they may simply be chases, in which you should be able to knock the concrete out of them with relative ease, then route the proper ducts through them. Not sure why or how the concrete got in them, so I may not be right, but it seems worth investigating.
No, we cannot see these pipes on the outside of the house. We're trying to expose them, that's why I posted this thread. As far as we can see they cannot be seen outside the house. Since we cannot see them on the outside we don't know where to begin to knock the concrete out of them. They are actually there as I took pictures of them before,concrete was poured.. The idea about running proper ducts through them may be the case and I didn't think about that, but that may be the end result. I would have to ask hubby about that.
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:12 PM   #13
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


How do u post pictures? The pict function ask for URL but its on my iPad.
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:41 PM   #14
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


How to attach a photo to a post
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:47 PM   #15
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Going into a PVC pipe to dig out concrete


wow sorry to be so blunt..this sounds like a mess....need a picture for this one...

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