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Old 05-06-2008, 09:31 PM   #1
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floor flange nightmare


I'm gutting my bathroom, and need to replace the floor sheathing. It currently has 1/2" plywood, and there was 1/2" wonderboard over that. The bottom of the flange rested neatly on the top of the wonderboard.

Since 1/2" plywood is no good for a decent tile job, I'm sheathing the floor with 3/4" and will install 1/2" wonderboard over that.

Where I am running into problems is that I am used to PVC installations, and my old house has cast iron. So, I need some professional guidance. The brass floor flange has a lead sleeve that makes the transition to the cast iron. It is mashed down around the inner edge of the flange where the wax ring makes contact.

I really would like to be able to remove the flange before I re-sheet the floor. Otherwise it will look like some hack did it. I'm afraid that I'll damage that lead, and don't quite know the best course of action. I'm also worried that the additional 1/4" of floor sheathing will keep the lead from being able to wrap over the top of the flange. The only solution I can think of for that is to use a wax ring that has a black rubber extension on it to get down past the lead.

Here's the current condition...The 1/2" plywood is still intact for now.
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Old 05-06-2008, 09:55 PM   #2
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floor flange nightmare


You have access to the pipes below right?

Where it makes the transition to the cast is where you will find the ferrell which is brass, cut it 2" or 3" from the cast hub and transition it to PVC with a 4 x 3 fernco then new el and new flange.

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Last edited by Ron The Plumber; 05-06-2008 at 09:59 PM.
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Old 05-06-2008, 10:47 PM   #3
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floor flange nightmare


Thanks for replying Ron. I was really hoping there was a way to use the current plumbing without cutting it out. I know a furnco would work but I really would rather have a more professional-looking installation...No one will care but me, but I hate using Furnco's unless I don't have options!

Here's a pic of what's beneath the floor. If I end up using a Furnco, I'd have to cut just above the cast hub.
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Old 05-06-2008, 10:56 PM   #4
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floor flange nightmare


You see where the lead bead is at, that is where you cut it, I just don't like lead wiped joints, I fear they will leak and seen them leak and destroy a sub floor, IMO get rid of it, fernco is the best way to go, no-hub banded coupling will not fit right so that's out of the question, the other other is a tight-seal, but no real room to work below the floor line. I can't see below the hub to say you could snap the cast and then use a no-hub banded coupling with a no-hub to pvc adapter.

So you have three options, only you can decide what way to go.
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:28 AM   #5
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floor flange nightmare


Thanks Ron. I'm really tossing around the idea of snapping a big section of that cast iron and replacing with 3" PVC.

I need to figure out what Furnco to get I guess.

So, I'm assuming that I can get a Furnco that will allow me to slip the PVC into the cut end of the cast pipe? It'll receive the PVC at the top end and will slip over the cast pipe at the other end? My concern is having the cut edge of the cast pipe exposed to the flow, since it is considerably bigger than 3" PVC and could catch solids.

I feel like a moron asking these questions, but I'm from the plastic pipe generation I guess!!!
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:37 AM   #6
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floor flange nightmare


You will get a 4 x 3 fernco, 4" side of fernco slips over the snapped cast and then 3" pvc slips into the other side, solids won't catch, you going from the smaller size to the larger pipe, like a upside down funnel.
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:25 AM   #7
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floor flange nightmare


Check with a Plumbing Supply place. They used to make a "donut" that was installed into the hub and allowed PVC from there. Going to be a pain getting the lead seal out of the hub though.
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:35 AM   #8
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floor flange nightmare


Quote:
Originally Posted by majakdragon View Post
Check with a Plumbing Supply place. They used to make a "donut" that was installed into the hub and allowed PVC from there. Going to be a pain getting the lead seal out of the hub though.
I'm all for breaking out that cast pipe the more I think about it. The 3x4 Fernco will be a pretty slick deal! Thanks
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Old 05-07-2008, 04:13 PM   #9
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floor flange nightmare


How good are you with a torch?
There is a brass pipe comming out of that cast iron. It transitions to lead under that big buldge of lead. You can cut the lead right above the brass then use a torch to melt the lead off the brass. Now use a 4" no hub clamp. Everything will look nice and neat and never leak.

Or cut/snap the cast iron below the hub and work from there up with a no hub clamp. It's going to look a little strange though as the cast is bigger than the PVC. The no hub clamp will have a slight bulge on the cast side but it will hold.

Last edited by Marlin; 05-07-2008 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:19 PM   #10
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floor flange nightmare


Good call Marlin. I took the above pictures to the local plumbing supply house and that was their suggestion as well. I tried it tonight and it worked great. I used a grinder with a metal cutoff wheel, which helped me create a nice cloud of airborne lead and brass.

There is about 1/8" of lead on the outside of the brass. I like the idea of melting it off with a torch, and I can wield one with a vengeance. I'm thinking mapp gas might get it done better than propane since it runs a little hotter.

I'm going to transition from the brass with the Fernco to PVC. Done for tonight though.
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:42 PM   #11
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floor flange nightmare


I always try and leave the entire brass ferrel on there and just cut the lead. It gives you more to work with and is easy to cut with a sawzall or hacksaw without making a mess. It looks like you still have just enough room for a no hub clamp though so no worries. For mapp vs. propane propane should be fine as lead has a very low melting point.
Just try not to melt the lead joint. Or burn the house down.
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:43 PM   #12
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floor flange nightmare


I cut about 1/4" off of the brass sleeve, leaving a good 1-1/4" or more to attach the Fernco.

Curiosity got the best of me, so I took the torch to the lead, which melted right off.


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