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 Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: LI Guy (IN)

The laundry room is on the lower level of this split, and when they finished the basement, they built the wall out in the laundry room to accommodate the main plumbing stack and some other plumbing. The challenge is that instead of moving the laundry box out to the new wall, they boxed it in making it almost impossible to work on:



We bought a new washer and dryer when we moved in and immediately noticed that the shutoffs had been leaking. The fix apparently was to add new shutoffs after the original ones, which mostly worked when I disconnected the old washer.



I was dreading how I was going to get in that deep access to change those valves....well, when I opened up the kitchen wall, there was the back of the washer box!




My plan is to Dremel off the back of the washer box and replace the valves from the backside, then re-attach the back of the box with clear silicone. I was going to sweat on new valves, but after @bernabeu's comments on the other thread, I see his point about being easy to replace next time...I won't have access to the back of this box after the kitchen goes in.

So the plan is to sweat on these 3/4 x 1/2 FIP adapters, and then use these shutoffs:




I was going to reduce to 1/2" pipe and then sweat the valve on, but if I thread it on, I can change it easily from the front if need be.

Thanks again @bernabeu and plbg.com guys, I really learn a lot here!

- - - - - - -

Not a plumber by trade but a fierce DIYer



Edited 3 times.

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: hj (AZ)

You do not have to ANYTHING from the backside. You already have threaded valves so all you have to do is unscrew the shutoffs from those valves and install the new ones.OR unscrew the valves also and install new fip shutoffs.



Edited 1 times.

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: bernabeu (SC)

hj,


liguy 'could' simply replace the 'top' valves from the front


BUT


he will need access from the BACK to cut the 'main' valves in order to unscrew them

unless he gets very very lucky and the handles actually come off

AND

they then close completely

AND there actually is space for the 'turn'



liguy,

the EXISTING valves are NPT


smiling smiley

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: LI Guy (IN)

Those lower valves are blobs of corrosion, so I'm not sure they will unthread without a fight. The depth of the box also makes access very difficult. I could barely get a pair of slip joint pliers in there to unthread the old washer hose, getting 2 pairs in there will be a real challenge.

Not to mention the new units are very heavy front loaders on pedestals, so just moving them out of the way is a project.



So while it may not be necessary to change the shut offs through the back, and normally that wouldn't even be an option, I'm thinking I can take advantage of the situation with the kitchen wall open to get the job done quicker.

- - - - - - -

Not a plumber by trade but a fierce DIYer

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: packy (MA)

why not remove the old box and put a new one above it at the right depth ?
get one with a single handle so can shut it off between uses if you want.
the single handle valve can be easily replaced be removing 2 stainless steel screws.
[www.lowes.com]

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: bernabeu (SC)

"Pray" that the old plumbing accepts the HIGH volume discharge from the new HE machine.


You may end up 'reworking' it all ANYWAY.



BEST OF LUCK




ps. "Speed Queen" (yes, STILL made in Wisconsin) may be your best friend

[speedqueen.com]

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: LI Guy (IN)

So far no issues with water discharge. The hi-efficiency front-loaders use less water than the top-loaders, so that's probably helping.

- - - - - - -

Not a plumber by trade but a fierce DIYer

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: hj (AZ)

I take the bonnets off so the valves WILL unscrew. That's assuming I wanted to remove those valves, which in this case, I probably would NOT, since they are not the problem or even part of it;

Post Reply

 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: bernabeu (SC)

good luck removing the bonnets in THAT recessed location

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: sum (FL)

That's a DEEEEEP box!

If you cut the back of this plastic box off, then sweat on a new FIP adapter to receive MIP connection valves in the future, first of all it may be a challenge to sweat anything there without melting that plastic box sides, but in the future if and when you need to change out the valves again, you will have the same issue unscrewing them from the front with two pliers. Furthermore, with the drain pipe recessed so much, what if you have a blockage and need to do something to clear it? You can't even look down on the washing machine stand pipe with it recessed like that.

I would be tempted to consider leaving that opening accessible from the back side permanently. May be with an access door? Will this be inside a kitchen cabinet or just a wall? Raising the whole thing 6" to 12" to be entirely above the washing machine may also be better (provided that it is not higher than the max height for the machine to discharge without the pedestal).

Another option is to sweat on the copper a 90 elbows, then a short piece of copper, then a male or female adapter, then a boiler drain for both hot and cold so the controls are reachable easily without sticking half an arm into that box to turn things on and off.

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs thumbs
Author: LI Guy (IN)

Project accomplished, although I wound up sweating the new valves on. I thought it would be a benefit to be able to change them, but these are quality valves and should last a long time. We are also discussing a remodel of the lower level that will move the laundry to the other side of the house, so not worrying too much about the washer box for now.

I got out the Dremel and cut off part of the backside of the box:



Used the mini tubing cutter to get the valves out. The bottom one was soldered onto the pipe. In theory I could have changed the top valves but didn't feel optimistic about getting them to unscrew.




I use a piece of aluminum flashing as a heat shield and flame guard when soldering around sensitive areas like this:



Couplings went in fast with no damage to the washer box, PVC pipe or framing:



A bead of clear silicone to re-attach the back of the washer box:




- - - - - - -

Not a plumber by trade but a fierce DIYer



Edited 1 times.

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: packy (MA)

looks good..

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: sum (FL)

Good job!

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 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: bernabeu (SC)

nice workmanlike job



one teeny tiny 'nit-pick'

IMO (the key word being MY)

a Cu X (f)NPT adapter on top so the stops could be screwed on (for 'next time')

you would solder that 'stub' with the adapter in advance 'on the bench', put it down through the hole into the coupling, solder the lower coupling, THEN screw on the stop


BUT


good job

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

Post Reply

 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: LI Guy (IN)

That was the original plan, but when I went through my cache of fittings I only had one female 1/2" NPT adapter so I decided that rather than make a trip to the store I would just sweat the valves in. But I used the same process: solder the valve onto a 7" piece of pipe, let it cool, then insert the whole assembly into the washer box, and then solder on the coupling.

Selfishly, I'm at that age where when the time comes to change that valve, I won't be the one doing it....unless of course Mrs. LI Guy decides we are remodeling the lower level, in which case the whole washer box gets moved, and I'll have another change to thread on the new shutoffs... smiling smiley

- - - - - - -

Not a plumber by trade but a fierce DIYer

Post Reply

 Re: Replacing Laundry Shutoffs
Author: bernabeu (SC)

smiling smiley

- - - -

Retired U.A. Local 1 & 638
"Measure Twice & Cut Once"

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