Rusted Steel Pipe - Leaking

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Old 11-12-08, 01:30 AM
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Question Rusted Steel Pipe - Leaking

Hoping someone here has dealt with this before and can offer suggestions on how to fix the problem...

How is 100 years old on two levels. The downstairs is a suite. Thankfully, many of the pipes between the downstairs and upstairs are exposed... You can actually see the problem pipe if you are standing in the downstairs kitchen looking upward.

I believe the pipe is from the upstairs kitchen sink/dishwasher area and goes down across the ceiling of the downstairs kitchen, then hooks up with another pipe, and then goes outside somewhere...

The pipe appears to be really old and is very thick and heavy, like cement... Not sure exactly what it is made of though, but from reading on a couple sites, I am thinking it must be galvanized steel or gray cast iron...

There must be a build-up of some sort in the pipe causing water to sit in there, rather than quickly draining outwards... There is an area that is a couple inches long that is visibly rusty/corroded where the water is dripping out. The rest of the pipe looks very solid.......it is just this small area that is rusted. I am surprised that such a thick heavy pipe would ever rust through! I would think water would have to be draining from there extremely slowly and for many many years to actually cause this to happen.

I am hoping to not replace the pipes, as they are huge, and where they join into other pipes ------ the 'y' junctions are just so big and well sealed. I can't imagine ever getting them apart. They look like they've been there forever (and probably have been)!

Any ideas on how to repair this section of pipe? Is there some kind of paste or? that I could use, and then some type of metal clamps? or plumbing tape? that I could then just wrap the area with?

Once the area is repaired, then I will use a snake to attempt to clear out any debris/buildup that is causing the problem. However, I am not going to attempt to snake it before it is fixed, because the metal snake could end up causing more damage to the rusted area and then I could have a bigger mess on my hands.

Any suggestions?

Thanks.
Marie
 
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Old 11-12-08, 05:27 PM
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Is thsi 1 1/2 inch, 2 inch or 4 inch pipe?

I'm not sure the room you might have to wrap say tape around it. You'd be surprised what several tight winds of electrical tape can do.

They sell a product in a squeeze tube called Goop (not Goop hand cleaner). This is an adhesive that seems like a cross between clear silicone caulk and epoxy. I have repaired drain pipe leaks with it and it lasts. You just need to clean up and rough up the spot and make sure it is dry. Apply several thincoat applications, over the course of hours apart. You do not want to apply it thick, as even though it looks like it will work when you first apply it, it will continue to slowly run, and it will hang down like a stalagtite. Just apply several coats. Expand out to beyond the visible rust area.

You could also apply one layer of Goop, let it set. Then apply some figberglass sheetrock mesh tape around the repair area. Then Goop coat THAT, and do as many alternating applications as you want, over time.

Goop is sold in my home center in 3 or 4 departments as Household Goop, Automotive Goop, Plumbing Goop and Marine Goop. 3 of the 4 have the same formula, but Plumber's Goop is hanging in the plumbing dept., and costs a dollar less!
 
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Old 11-13-08, 10:51 AM
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I believe it is a 4 inch pipe. (Can't check right now though, as the person who lives downstairs is not home.)

There is a small amount of space between the pipe and her ceiling (my floor) and we were able to wrap it slightly using duct tape, so yes, there is space for us to do what you are suggesting.

I will try the several thin layers of Goop (not sure if they sell it in Canada, but I'm sure they'll have an equivalent) with alternating layers of fiberglass sheetrock mesh tape (never heard of that before).

I will be soooo happy if that works! I'd hate to have to figure out how to actually take out the whole pipe and replace it. I think that'd be really difficult to do, considering the size and weight of the pipe, and the huge fittings where it connects to other pipes.

I'm wondering what companies do when they run across big old rusty pipes that are leaking......Surely they don't replace each and every pipe. And I'm sure there must be millions of them out there...

Thanks for your advice, ecman! It's gotta work. I've got my fingers crossed...

Marie
 
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Old 11-13-08, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Marie12345 View Post
I believe it is a 4 inch pipe.
My suggested mend will work. It's only a drain. Not under pressure.

I'm wondering what companies do when they run across big old rusty pipes that are leaking......Surely they don't replace each and every pipe. And I'm sure there must be millions of them out there...
You can pretty much bet they WOULD replace them. There are different methods as to how. But they would at least section out a bad run and replace it. Likely with PVC. Companies have reputations to maintain. Cobble work is not usually in their repertoire.

Thanks for your advice, ecman! It's gotta work. I've got my fingers crossed...

Marie
Let me know how you make out. And as I said, be sure to go well beyond what you visibly see as the bad spot. You can bet the under belly of that run is either rotted, or worse -split.
 
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