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scottyv81 03-26-2011 07:39 PM

Replacing putty in shower drain, question about drain construction
I've got a leak in the drain in my shower stall. I did some experimenting and determined that it was due to the dried up plumbers putty between the drain flange and the PVC drain pipe. I started removing the old putty expecting to find a sort of "cup" that I could fit the new putty into. As I broke out the putty around the PVC pipe I noticed that the PVC pipe moves up and down and laterally, independent of the flange. Is this normal? There is more putty in between the flange and the pipe, but I'm hesitant to remove more because I don't want to damage anything. There is another bathroom directly below this shower, so I would need to tear out the ceiling to be able to see this drain from below. I can post a picture if this description doesn't make sense. Any thoughts? Thanks for any advice you can offer.

TheEplumber 03-26-2011 08:25 PM

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Please post a picture. Sounds like your pipe is sealed to the drain assembly by a gasket and it has failed, along with the putty. But your description is a little confusing.

scottyv81 03-26-2011 09:27 PM

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Thanks for the reply, here's a picture. I chipped away the putty that filled the gap between the PVC and brass(?) flange. I chipped down about 3/4" at the back of the pipe ("top" in the picture) and that's when I noticed it was moving. I didn't see any gasket material in the putty that I removed.

scottyv81 03-28-2011 07:06 PM

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OK, that last pic wasn't the greatest. I kept chipping out the putty and got to a shoulder in the brass drain piece. The shoulder is about 1.5" down from the top of the drain. Looks like there is some sort of flat that I could turn the brass piece with (directly at the bottom of the pictures), but there really isn't room between it and the PVC to fit a tool. I haven't come across any rubber gasket whatsoever. Do I keep going and remove all the cement and try to fit something in to spin the brass piece out? Might there be a seal under that? Any thoughts?

TheEplumber 03-28-2011 07:43 PM

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I'm not familiar with that particular drain assembly (the sealing method). All the ones I've installed have a rubber gasket around the pipe (called no-caulk) or the drain is made out of pvc and the pipe is glued in.
I suggest you open the ceiling below and rebuild the drain using a glue type drain assembly. Its really not that hard except for the hole in the ceiling and it won't leak again

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