Following completion of the sawcutting and floor slab bloc removal on March 4, rough plumbing began on March 10. They started digging and then stopped. We later found out on March 16 that they have to change the drain system to comply with Cedar Park code. The original drains were not deep enough before they began their run to the sewer line. (That’s why the toilets have always had such a slow flush). We will have to purchase new toilets as well since the current ones have tanks which do not meet the lower “liters per flush” requirement of current regulations. This will mean more sawcutting into the Nursery room to get the new drain routing out of the building. By March 18, the new drain line path and any interfering utilities were marked on the front lawn. We sent the plumber some photos of locations of intervening irrigation lines and irrigation control wiring. We hope this helps with the drain excavation challenge.
Additional sawcutting was performed on March 22. The plumbers returned on March 24 with a digging machine which they used inside the building to dig out the drain trenches down to the required depth. They were back again 5 days later on March 29 to begin digging the inside trenches deeper, apparently to meet the new city requirements. During this effort they found many rocks which are indigenous to our property! On March 31st the plumbers and sawcutters returned again to dig some more and to bore a path (marked with the big red X) under the wall for the drain pipe.
On Thursday, April 1, the plumbers actually began installing the drain lines inside the building in the areas of the restroom renovation. It is a very complex arrangement. The vent line can be seen in the last photo from 1Apr21.
Digging outside the building began on Tuesday, April 6. The process was slow as the plumbers had to wait for the sawcutters to come again to bore a hole through the outside of the slab into the interior of the nursery. On April 7th, the sawcutters came again. They bored the hole through the outside of the building through the slab into the nursery. The plumbers could then finish routing the drain/sewer line inside the building. This was completed on April 7th. On April 9th the inside rough plumbing was inspected and backfilled. It is now ready for repour. The rough plumbing work remaining is outside: connect the drain/sewer to the city sewer at the cleanout near the sidewalk. More digging out to the street.
On April 20, 2021 the plumbers were back for a little interior cleanup. A new dumpster had arrived, so they took out the demolished plastic pipes, most of the dirt and rocks and the toilets which we will be replacing to meet the new code for tank size (liters per flush). They left some small piles of debris apparently for a future visit. On May 7, 2021 rough plumbing progress continued to lurch along slowly with the delivery of some drain pipe. Baby steps!
After almost a two-month hiatus, the plumbers/trench diggers were back on June 14 for another run at the outside trench connecting the sewer drain from the building to the city sewer. This time they brought a digger with a hydraulic drill to break up the limestone blocking the trench. They worked all day on it. During their work, they found some more pipes including a mysterious copper pipe which was apparently connected, because it started gushing when they broke it. They turned off the water at the meter and worked on. This is one tough job! It was 103F today. On June 15th, the trenching crew was back to completed the trench. Now the plumbers can finish connecting the sewer line and we can turn on the water again for the first time since February. On June 16, the rough plumbing phase continued its inexorable march to completion with installation of caution tape around the trenched area and sand in the bottom of the trench. The plumbers will be out again “in a day or two” to connect the sewer line to the city sewer according to the fellow installing the caution tape. On 17Jun21 Joey rigged a “temporary drain” out the Men’s Room window to handle the A/C condensate, keeping it out of The Trench which needs to be inspected.
On June 22, the plumbers, Eric and Aaron, returned to set the new sewer line in the trench. It is a complex piece of plumbing with bends, valves and cleanouts galore. They erected a proper fence around the trench since it is so close to the sidewalk. Now for the inspection. Then the repairs of all the irrigation lines mangled during the trenching. Then the backfill. This sewer line installation is a milestone in the longest-running phase of our project. On June 23rd, the rough plumbing phase continued to march toward completion as the plumbers were onsite to prepare a leak test for the section of sewer line they installed yesterday. The section was valved off at both ends and filled with water in the tall standing section. Tomorrow the inspector will check and signoff so they can backfill the trench.
On June 24, 2021 we reached a milestone when the sewer pipe connection to the city sewer was approved by the inspector! Now we can backfill the trench and repair the broken irrigation lines.
After almost 4 months of effort, the Rough Plumbing Phase of the project came to a close on June 29 as the sewer line trench was filled in and many rocks carted off.
Video of the Completed Sewer Pipe Trench (1:03) June 15, 2021
Rough Plumbing Video #1 (0:17) June 14, 2021
Rough Plumbing Video #2 (0:18) June 14, 2021
Rough Plumbing Video #3 (0:51) June 14, 2021
Rough Plumbing Video #4 (1:18) June 14, 2021
Rough Plumbing Video #5 (0:17) June 14, 2021
Rough Plumbing Pipe Routing Video (1:44) April 7, 2021