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  • Writer's pictureKevin Maxwell

Figuring Out Your Drain-Waste-Vent Lines.


If you are about to make some plumbing repairs at your place then it will help you to understand the drain-waste-vent system (DWV). Among all the sewerage pipes the fatter one is the DWV, carrying wastewater to a city waste line or any other private sewer treatment facility which is also known as septic field and tank.

  1. The waste line pipes remove material and water from the toilet.

  2. The drainpipes are used to collect the water from showers, sinks, appliances, and tubs.

  3. The vent pipes exhaust or remove sewer gases and allow the air to enter the system so that the wastewater can flow freely.

The drain pipes are made up of galvanized pipe, cast iron, plastic, or copper. The local building codes used in the DWV system have been revised over the years, so most of the older homes use a combination of materials. A normal bathroom sink is a great example of how all these components are working together. Have you ever spent time observing the pipes beneath your vanity, the whole process looks like this:

1. In a waste line inspection, you will come to know that water that runs down the sink falls into a p-trap which is used to fill up with water to prevent odors and sewer gases from getting into your house through the pipe. This water gets refilled whenever more water runs through it.

2. A drainpipe that is attached to the p-trap goes in the wall.

3. Only the waste line inspection tells you about what is behind the wall that is usually a vent line and drainpipe that leads to a soil stack thatcontrols the wastewater system. Drain pipes works in a way that it takes wastewater to the soil stack and after that the sewer gases are carried up through vent lines.

The Author Kevin Maxwell is the owner and operator of Maxwell Home Inspection Services, LLC. Kevin Maxwell is a certified Home Inspector located in Albany NY that has performed over 6000 Inspections.

Phone: 1-800-598-4754


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