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gunzour 11-30-2009 01:40 PM

Slow leak under sink after fixing clog
2 Attachment(s)
Hi, new poster and beginner DIY-er here, hopefully someone can help me.

I unscrewed the p-trap under the kitchen sink a few days ago to fix a clog. The clog is gone and I put everything back together but now there are two slow leaks where I had unscrewed the nuts to try to get to the clog.

I've tried researching online but can't find a similar example of how these connections work. I have PVC drain pipes with threads on the outside, and a metal nut that tightens on the threads. I tried putting teflon on the threads but that didn't seem to help any. Thinking about it, I'm not sure that it would since it seems to be on the exterior of the pipe anyway. There are no threads inside so I guess it is a slip joint? I'm not sure how to seal this properly to stop the leaks. Any suggestions?

Both of the connections that I unscrewed have slow leaks. In the first pic, it is the one at the top left and the one at the p-trap that are leaking.

iowa70 11-30-2009 02:56 PM

Did you take the old teflon tape off the threads and put new teflon tape on? Also there's usually plastic seals that are tapered that fit over the plastic tube pipe. Were those damaged when taking all these apart?

Thurman 11-30-2009 03:22 PM

Speaking from experience: First- I would go away with the metal nuts, I have not had much luck with the metal nuts on PVC drains. Second-There is supposed to be a plastic sealing washer that goes on the straight run of PVC (without any threads), with the tapered side down, and after the nut is placed on. I'm betting you lost them when you did the work--not hard to do, and I've done it myself. When you connect the two pieces of PVC drains and align them correctly, pull the sealing washer into place, then the plastic nut and start the nut onto the threads. Once the nut has started, make sure you're connections are still aligned and continue tightening the nut by hand. Most of these PVC nuts have two "wings" on them for hand tightening. Usually that is all they will need, maybe a little "snug" from a pair of channel-locks. The sealing washer actually does the sealing, not the nut, or any tape or gooky stuff. Good Luck, David

JDC 11-30-2009 08:17 PM

You're right. Those are slip joint connections and the threads do not do the sealing. There are slip joint washers as described previously that need to be there for any seal to take place. If the washers are missing or deteriorated then you're going to have a leak. I'd do exactly as Thurman described and it should take care of your problem. I have had to put some pipe dope on the washers themselves to get them to seal but that isnt the norm.

Good luck

mikey48 11-30-2009 09:27 PM

The p trap fitting may be a tappered fit seal, no gasket. If it is stressed or not aligned it will not seal. I usualy make it the first to tighten up and then the others that are gasketed. Use new gaskets where they are required.

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