Plumbing In Exterior Wall

 
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:08 PM   #1
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Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Have customer that wants to convert a soaking tub area to a5'x7' walk in shower. The tub area is partially in a bump out along the 7' side. To place the supply lines in middle of the of the 5' side they would be located in an exterior wall. I do not want to do this as it can get kinda cold in Missouri. Would I run into freezing problems and or moisture issues (mold) if I placed a full 2x4 wall in front of the exterior walls. The supply lines and mixing valve would the be placed in one of the wall bays of new wall. Thanks for any advice.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:17 PM   #2
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


That's what we would do down here in GA. If you frame up a second stud wall in front of the other one and insulate it, make sure you remove the vapor barrier on the existing insulation in the exterior wall. The new insulation would then have a vapor barrier.

I can't speak for how this would work in Missouri though.

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Old 03-07-2011, 07:32 PM   #3
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


What if I left existing wall intact and placed new wall in front of same?
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:36 PM   #4
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


what does the plumber have to say about it????
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:36 PM   #5
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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Originally Posted by coyotehills View Post
What if I left existing wall intact and placed new wall in front of same?
I wouldn't if you plan on insulating the new interior wall. The vapor barrier from the exterior wall needs to be removed if the interior wall is to be insulated. Leaving the vapor barrier on the exterior wall could trap moisture in the insulation between the 2 vapor barriers and lead to mold and rot.

At the end of the day it's not a lot of additional work to remove the wall coverings and do it right.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:43 PM   #6
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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Originally Posted by coyotehills View Post
What if I left existing wall intact and placed new wall in front of same?
I think you would want to be sure how well insulated that existing wall is and this is almost impossible to do by just looking at it. You could have a home inspector with a thermal image camera take a look for you. Probably cost you a couple hundo. One little bypass could freeze those pipes. I wouldn't risk it. If you have room you could put a layer of rigid foam over the exiting wall then build your new wall. Although you may run into moister issues doing this. Good luck!
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:52 PM   #7
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Is this the consensus?
1. Remove existing drywall
2. Remove existing vapor barrier
3. Insulate old and new cavities properly
4. Install new vapor barrier to new wall
5. Install 1/2" cement board
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:55 PM   #8
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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Originally Posted by coyotehills View Post
Is this the consensus?
1. Remove existing drywall
2. Remove existing vapor barrier
3. Insulate old and new cavities properly
4. Install new vapor barrier to new wall
5. Install 1/2" cement board
#1 - Consult your plumber on methods for exterior wall plumbing in your area.
#2-#6 as you have listed.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:57 PM   #9
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Run your water lines on top of the insulation so the pipes are right behind the wallboard. The heat loss through the drywall should keep the pipes above the freezing point. And don't run them through any studs if possible.
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Old 03-07-2011, 11:54 PM   #10
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Spray the exterior walls with spray in insulation as extra insurance. Can not hurt.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:20 AM   #11
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Do not run plumbing in exterior walls
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:33 AM   #12
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Rule of thumb, never use plumbing in the exterior walls.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:42 AM   #13
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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Rule of thumb, never use plumbing in the exterior walls.
How about an interior wall framed up against an exterior wall? Our plumbers here approve that method but freezing is not as big of a concern here as it is up north.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:51 AM   #14
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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How about an interior wall framed up against an exterior wall? Our plumbers here approve that method but freezing is not as big of a concern here as it is up north.
We do this in Wisconsin and it works. I don't like to do it and I wont warranty anything on outside walls so I have them sign a disclaimer with the understanding the sacrificing common sense can have consequences.

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Old 03-08-2011, 07:14 AM   #15
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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How about an interior wall framed up against an exterior wall? Our plumbers here approve that method but freezing is not as big of a concern here as it is up north.
If weather is not a concern, you can run the pipes on the outside. If you have seasonal weather changes and temperatures dip to single digits and can stay for long period of time, no plumbing should be installed in the exterior wall. You can build the wall up, you can insulate pipes and walls, double walls, foam the wall cavity... but the rule of thumb remains the same. Even if you run the water pipes inside of a garage, if a bathroom is located over the garage and has a shower or a sink on the exterior wall, the water line projection should be from the floor and not the wall.
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:14 AM   #16
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Quote:
Originally Posted by greg24k View Post
If weather is not a concern, you can run the pipes on the outside. If you have seasonal weather changes and temperatures dip to single digits and can stay for long period of time, no plumbing should be installed in the exterior wall. You can build the wall up, you can insulate pipes and walls, double walls, foam the wall cavity... but the rule of thumb remains the same. Even if you run the water pipes inside of a garage, if a bathroom is located over the garage and has a shower or a sink on the exterior wall, the water line projection should be from the floor and not the wall.
Are you talking both supply lines and DWV? Ideally no plumbing in exterior walls but is it more expectable to run DWV in exterior? How about just vents?
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:27 AM   #17
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


You don't want the water spraying on the door if you can help it. convince the customer to put the shower head on the interior wall adjacent to the commode and angled into the shower room. If you want a shower head on each side, put the water lines on the wall the door is on, one on each side of the door, and run lines to personal showers on the adjacent wall.

There is one more possibility. If the client really wants shower heads, not personal showers, and really wants them on the exterior walls as shown in your picture, put the controls on the interior wall, adjacent to the door with the shower line only going into the exterior wall. Use a tub/shower control with a tub spout on the wall below the controls so that when the water is turned off the shower line drains.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:44 PM   #18
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


There's really only one way to say this: Do not run plumbing in exterior walls.

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Old 03-08-2011, 04:57 PM   #19
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


Thanks to everyone for your great input and suggestions. I'm meeting with the customer tonight and will let them know that they want the shower heads on the interior walls as close to center as possible. I think with an articulated shower arm the head can be positioned near center but the plumbing will be safe in an interior wall,
Thanks
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:59 PM   #20
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Re: Plumbing In Exterior Wall


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Originally Posted by coyotehills View Post
Thanks to everyone for your great input and suggestions. I'm meeting with the customer tonight and will let them know that they want the shower heads on the interior walls as close to center as possible. I think with an articulated shower arm the head can be positioned near center but the plumbing will be safe in an interior wall,
Thanks
If they want a shower head on the exterior wall install a hand held on a slide bar. Put in a six port valve with a standard shower head in conjunction with the hand held.
Though I agree I frown against the shower head raining on the door discourage this strongly with the water lines on the outside wall.

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