Sewer Trap Replacement For A Busy Queens Pizzeria

Sewer Service
September 19, 2013

by David Balkan

pizza place

Sewer trap replacement work for a house drain can be required for various reasons. A sewer trap can rot out or break. Sometimes it can be mishandled and it may crack or break. In other cases the covers will no longer fit tightly back on. It that case foul sewer water or sewer gases can escape.

A trap prevents sewer gases from escaping into a building. A sewer trap also allows for easy maintenance of the house drain.

Recently a busy Queens pizzeria needed a sewer trap replacement for another reason. Because the existing access pit was located directly in the working area of the restaurant someone had covered it over with cement. Dirt was also put on top of it and open drains were placed over the open pit. Having an open drain is never a good idea and it does not meet plumbing code. However the real issue came about when the house drain and house sewer backed up. Because the trap was covered over a drain cleaner called to the scene had no way to clear out the stoppage. A sewer cleaning machine cannot pass through a buried trap. As a matter of fact one of the primary reasons for a sewer trap is to allow for sewer cleaning.

pizza place
Balkan job site location

Upon excavating to perform the sewer trap replacement Balkan discovered that the old trap was more than the typical one or two feet below the floor. It seems that an alteration had been done at some point in time. When that work was done the trap was cemented over and the floor may have been raised. Balkan also discovered that drain lines had been installed directly over the area. This prevented the drains from being legally connected to the house sewer system.

sewer trap replacement
Buried house trap and open drains

A unique sewer trap replacement solution

Balkan had to ‘think outside the box’ to perform this drain repair and sewer trap replacement properly. The experts at Balkan Sewer And Water Main decided to completely relocate to access pit and sewer trap to outside the building. By doing this future maintenance on the line would not interfere with the operation of the restaurant. In addition the drain lines that were previously running into the ground were legally connected.

A sewer trap installed outside a building must be below the frost level. Otherwise it can freeze and stop the flow of waste water.

Another benefit was that the existing trip hazard inside the restaurant was eliminated. The new access pit was flush with the surrounding area and not in a pedestrian area. It also had a locking cover that was slip resistant. After the sewer trap replacement by Balkan was completed a drain cleaner easily cleared out all the stoppages. By having expertise and know-how as a sewer contractor, Balkan was able to perform this drain line repair without the restaurant having any down time.

Digging for new location for trap
sewer trap replacement
Completed sewer trap replacement

A fresh air inlet for a house sewer

Fresh air inlets are very important for a house drain to function properly. A fresh air inlet allows for waste water to flow smoothly throughout the system. It is similar to when some one is drinking from a can or bottle – air must be let in for the drink to flow smoothly. On a house sewer it allows air to either escape or enter the system so the waste water flows smoothly. A fresh air inlet equalizes pressure in the house sewer system. On this job location Balkan also re-located the fresh air inlet so it met code and the drain system would function properly.

fresh air inlet
Fresh air vent for the sewer line

Many times a fresh air inlet will be damaged or deliberately removed for some reason. Many property owners do not realize the importance of a fresh air inlet. If a house sewer does not flow smoothly grease can build up or backups can occur. In addition in NYC a house sewer without a fresh air inlet is a code violation.

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David Balkan

David Balkan is the CEO of Balkan Sewer And Water Main, the largest and most trusted service in New York City. David is extremely active in various NYC plumber organizations being the Chairman of the Subsurface Committee in the Master Plumbers Council, and Vice President of the Subsurface Plumbers Association. In addition David’s expertise is respected by officials of New York City agencies such as the NYC DEP, NYC DOB, and the NYC DOT. He frequently provides valuable input on a variety of industry related matters.

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