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Old 09-26-2011, 12:33 PM   #1
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Water Softener Drainage Problem

I'm in need of some help & advice. I recently purchased a house and have since discovered a problem with the water softener drainage.

Basically the water softener has a drain tube running through the floor into the crawlspace. The tube is inserted loosely into a copper drain pipe, which has an elbow joint shortly after the drain tube enters. Water backs up and spills out of the copper drain pipe when the softener drains. I think it is because of the elbow joint and the volume of water being too great to freely pass through it. The pipe is not clogged. This drain pipe runs through the foundation wall, and I believe it is connected to the outside drain tile that my downspouts connect to. It discharges into the creek behind my house.

My question is, to prevent the spillage would I be ok to duct tape the tube to the copper pipe? This would eliminate the air gap, but does it matter since it is connected to the perimeter drain tile and not my wastewater? Could it still get negative pressure and suck in some of the water from the exterior drain tile?

If I don't use the duct tape method is there any other suggestions on how I can prevent the water from spilling out of copper drain pipe?

I attached a picture to help illustrate what's going on. Thanks!
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Water Softener Drainage Problem-water-softener-2.jpg  


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Old 09-26-2011, 12:44 PM   #2
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Consult your Building Inspection Deparment for local code regarding softener discharge. It may be OK to discharge is like storm water or it may be considered "gray water" in your jurisdiction, and you will have to pipe it into the sewer or septic system.
My homes have been on softeners for more than 35 years, and I've always discharged them into the septic systems through the washing machine gray water discharge drain system with no problems.
Good Luck!


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Old 09-26-2011, 01:12 PM   #3
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I know it's ok for me to drain it with the rest of my storm water. My question is more concerned with what can I do to eliminate the spillage that is occuring where the drain tube from the softener enters the copper drain pipe. Thanks for the response though.
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Old 09-26-2011, 04:40 PM   #4
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I'm not so sure the local Greene's would be happy with you discharging salt/brine water in to a creek.
If it was me I would drill a hole in your laundry room floor and run the drain to the laundry drain.
You can hook up to the softener drain with a barbed fitting and a couple of hose clamps, then convert to pex.
If you don't have a pex crimping tool, you can use shark bites.
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