Diy Trap Plumbing
DIY trap plumbing involves working with traps, which are pipe fittings or part of a sanitary fixture, with a water seal, that is designed to stop water or the foul air in the drainage system from escaping into the building. So you will see that DIY trap plumbing is quite a serious business. But what do you need to know to be able to tackle your own DIY trap plumbing projects?
First and foremost you need to understand what a plumbing trap is and how it works. Basically traps are pipe fittings or part of a sanitary fixture, with a water seal, that is designed to keep water in it. We get different shaped traps that are suitable for different places including basins, baths, showers, sinks and toilets.
The Types of Traps for your DIY Trap Plumbing Project
There are three basic types of traps: bottle traps and resealing traps, and various tubular traps, which include S-traps, U-traps and P-traps. Bottle traps are designed so that part of the trap can be unscrewed, like a bottle top, to clear the trap. They are often used in hospitals so that items like needles, that might otherwise go down the drain, can be removed without anybody getting hurt. Resealing rubber traps are designed for unventilated, small-size discharge pipes that are fitted to fixtures where siphonage (which is when water is sucked out of the pipe) might occur. Tubular traps are the ones that you will usually see under your sinks and basins in your kitchens and bathrooms.
When you fit a trap you will need to connect a trap vent to it. This is a ventilation pipe that allows air to escape outside or into another ventilation pipe. The water seal in the trap ensures that the appliance or fixture is kept separate from the discharge pipework system. We fit one-way vent valves to protect the water seal of the trap from too much negative air pressure that might come from the fixture discharge pipe. Negative air pressure causes suction or a vacuum, and the valve lets air into the pipeline and stops siphonage from happening.
When it comes to DIY trap plumbing, remember that the foul air in the drainage pipework is not only unpleasant to smell, but it can also spread illnesses. For example, the terrible Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) virus that killed so many people in Hong Kong in 2003 was the result of bad plumbing in a high-rise apartment building. The outbreak affected 329 people and killed 42 of them after a man with the virus visited his brother in the building. The man, who was a doctor, had diarrohea and he used his brother's toilet. Investigations later showed that tiny drops from his faeces, that were infected with the virus, were blown from the toilet into the bathroom by an extractor fan that was too big for the room. There was a faulty floor drain in the bathroom that didn't have a trap seal and so the faecal droplets disappeared down the open drain and into the ventilation space that was shared by all the people in the apartment. Air currents outside spread the infected drops through open windows in the apartment block and that's why so many people got sick and died.
So if traps are broken fix or replace them, and when you tackle your next DIY plumbing job make sure you have the right DIY plumbing traps.