Hot Stop Tap & Cold Victorian Stop Tap Issue

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by verynewtothis, Sep 12, 2019.

  1. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Hello All,

    My Victorian property was built in 1905, two previous owners. The last owner ran a new blue water pipe from the main stop cock at the very front of the driveway into the kitchen at the back of the house. I'm now finding I have an issue with the redesigning the kitchen (knocking walls through) as the previous owner separated this main water feed into two and decided it was a good idea to have two stop cocks inside the kitchen. These are labeled up as a cold stop and a hot stop, both approx a meter or so away from each other on opposite sides of the external kitchen door. The left hand side pipes in particular will be an issue as a wall is going to be knocked through and a steel placed where some of those pipes are. The pipework is a bit of a mess to be honest and i'm not sure how to approach it.

    The previous owner said he separated the water feeds as a 'belt and braces' approach as he didn't want the water pressure to drop (Main combi boiler), however the pipework needs to be reconfigured and I have not got the slightest clue how to sort it out. The kitchen had two sinks, one in an awkward corner on the right hand side of the kitchen (last photo) which i have now taken (out but pipes still need to be removed), the other one is going to remain, an old Belfast sink, which is another problem as the bottom of that leaks - i'll save that for another day though!

    Any advice would be welcomed and I can get better photos if needed! Hope you can understand this, it's a bit of a mess tbh!

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  2. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    I'd try to remove one of the pipes and stop taps where it branches off and run everything from the other. Splitting the pipe won't make any difference to the water pressure (or flow) as they all come into the building from the same single pipe.

    While you're about it, lose that yellowing plastic push fit coupling from the cold mains pipe in your last photo (if that's the one you keep). A nice brass compression coupling will do just fine instead.

    You mustn't leave the branch just capped off or you'll have stagnant water in it, which is very bad news on mains pipework.

    Your house is Edwardian (Edward VII) incidentally (Queen Victoria died in 1901).
     
    verynewtothis likes this.
  3. The Teach

    The Teach Screwfix Select

    sometimes ripping it all out and starting again is the best approach,to avoid any confusion a single water service into the property should be considered ;)

    think of it as an opportunity to improve not a problem.

    TT:cool:
     
  4. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Morning all, thanks for the replies. I just wanted to check those taps inside the kitchen. If I turn the hot stop off, the whole hot water taps downstairs and upstairs all shut off. If I do the cold then the cold all shut off. Does that make sense?
     
  5. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    The 'hot' tap will be on the mains cold feed through your combi-boiler to all the hot taps. The 'cold' tap will be on the mains cold feed around the house to the cold taps, but not via the boiler.

    To get rid of one of them, you'd need to run a pipe from after whichever valve you keep to just after (ie on the house side of) the valve you get rid of. But as I said earlier, you need to also disconnect the redundant one at its branch from the main cold pipe in order to avoid a 'dead' pipe on the mains which will be potentially dangerous to health.
     
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  6. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Sorry for bringing this one back up, due to some family issues I had to take a back seat on it. However, I now need to try to rectify this pipework asap.

    So I understand that the old owner of the house separated the mdpe blue pipe coming into the house into two stop taps, one going into the boiler to feed the hot pipes/central heating the other stop tap to a separate stop tap on the other side of the kitchen that only feeds the cold taps water supply. I still don't understand why someone would do this?

    I am happy with the pipe work to the boiler, this is the cold (hot) stop tap I want to keep on the correct side of the kitchen. However the problem is how to work out how to move this other cold stop tap feed into that same area as the boiler pipework so it will be all kept all in one place. Do I just join the mdpe (cold mains) blue pipe that has been divided onto one feed going into the boiler? If so surely then the cold water will just go straight into the boiler to feed hot pipes. The cold pipework around the house won't work then i presume?

    Very confused of this, really hope someone can help in simply terms. Doing my head in!

    (I know one of the posts said sometimes best to start all over again, but in this case i honestly can't)
     
  7. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    Very simply, you have just the same set-up as everyone else in the land with a combi boiler, except yours has two stop taps on it. Most people have a cold pipe from outside to a single stop tap, and this then runs all round the cold fittings (taps, loos, showers, etc) in the house, but with a branch off to the cold inlet on their boiler which then feeds the hot fittings (taps and showers).

    You need to get rid of the current cold feed as close to the incoming blue pipe as possible and then tee off the remaining cold feed to the boiler back to wherever the current cold pipe runs around the house.

    If you like, all you're doing is moving the split from where it is now to just under (or relatively close to) the boiler.
     
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  8. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Morning Joe, thanks for the reply, that makes things alot clearer thank you.

    So just finally, will I still have two stop taps but now close to the boiler?
     
  9. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    You're welcome. You can have two stop taps if you want, but most people only have one. I suppose having two means you can isolate just the hot or the cold supplies while leaving the other one working, but it's fairly unlikely that's ever going to be necessary.
     
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  10. Jitender

    Jitender Screwfix Select

    Looks like two separate supplies were put in so it didn't have to have pipes running across the door.

    It does look like 32m MDPE (blue)?
     
  11. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Joe, thanks for all the help on this, I really do appreciate it.

    When I spoke to the previous owner he stated he did this because it was "a belt and braces" approach for any loss of pressure" or something like that. The previous owner is a carpenter, not a plumber. Do you think I have anything to worry about!


    Not sure what diameter it is, anyway to check easily without pulling the thing out?
     
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  12. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    Pressure is force/area. If you split a single pipe into two of the same size as the single one, the area doubles so the pressure halves. The carpenter clearly had a different understanding of this from me.
     
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  13. dcox

    dcox Active Member

    Pressure would stay the same in both but flow would be reduced. I think. **waits to be corrected**
     
  14. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Ok, I have taken another look at this today so sorry for not responding so quick. I had to get the bloody washing machine out of the way so I could access all the boxed-in pipework and look at first stop tap closest to the boiler so can try to decide how to deal with this. I can now see all the major pipework there.

    The stop tap goes from the blue mdpe pipe into a copper 22mm (i think) - 15mm reducer and then runs directly into the boiler. There is also another 15mm cold feed copper pipe running out of the boiler in that area and which goes around the house. If I now turn the other stop tap off in the other area of the kitchen it cuts all these cold feeds. That stop tap in the other area of kitchen is the one which needs to be removed. OK so far.

    My issue now is trying to find a way to connect the stop tap feed closest to the boiler to the 15mm cold feed pipe as they are pretty close together. The other problem is there is a **** load of other pipes, including a mains gas pipe which is right in the way of the bloody stoptap. It looks like it's going to be tricky connecting with all the other pipework. Could anyone provide any guidance to try to deal with this please? Is there a simply way of trying to connect these back together so I can then just remove the stupid second stop tap across the kitchen altogether? Could I tee off straight from the incoming stop tap feed (cold in on photo) that runs to the boiler? If you look at the photo you will see the electrical tape i have stuck around the pipes in question (are in blue) Could i also get away with something like speedfit or compression connectors? Any help greatly appreciated!

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    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
  15. ajohn

    ajohn Screwfix Select

    I had a similar problem but needed to keep the kitchen working. In my case it was best to add new pipes to suite the new layout. Fit leaving the old stuff working and then remove those when they were not needed. In my case all came down from upstairs using that circuit in a corner so that they could be boxed in. Gas was already upstairs so a gas person didn't need to do much work. That ran in the kitchen low down just above the floor - Ikea units :) - no void. I did the water myself managing to reduce the hot pipe length from boiler to kitchen tap. Mix of coper and plastic where copper was difficult to run. House built in 1911 so hot water was all 22mm so flow no problem as the tanks went a long time ago. I did the new stuff in 15mm but gas larger matching what was already there in case we decide to have the boiler put somewhere else at some point.

    The main stop cock had problems - one in the street couldn't be turned off so that had to fit a new one.

    John
    -
     
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  16. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    I am finding it quite tricky to work out how to fix this. I have looked at how I can connect the stop tap pipe (Cold In with blue tape on photo) to the cold house feed pipe (cold out with blue tape on photo) but the hot 15mm water pipe is right next to it, plus the gas. The only way I can see if trying to tee off, not sure if this is possible. Doing my bloody head in.
     
  17. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Ok, so just went for it today, didn't know if it was the right thing to do but used some compression fittings and teed off from the one incoming cold feed from the far away stoptap and onto the other cold feed fed from the other stoptap. So I am just using the one stoptap now closest to the boiler, the other is turned off until I get to dig out the blue pipe.

    Looks like it's working so far, although I did notice two leaks which come from the one 15mm cold pipe and looks like one 15mm which felt slightly hot on the underside of the Main Combi 30 HE bolier, I just tightened those off but not sure why that happened. Hope I got it right.

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    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
    Joe the Plumber likes this.
  18. Jitender

    Jitender Screwfix Select

    Looks ok.

    If you dig up the now unused MDPE pipe. you may be able to switch the T joint to a straight coupler maybe even the same manufactutre, that would avoid any dead legs.
     
  19. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Thanks Jitender, is it just a case of avoiding dead legs that are in copper altogether or can you get away with it with MDPE plastic pipe on it's own?

    I was thinking, instead of switching the T joint to a straight coupler, run a longer length of 25mm (say 3-4 meters) MDPE pipe close to the garage and then leaving a MDPE stop tap end on it. It was on the thinking of bringing a water feed into the garage for a washing machine. (another job to be done at some point)
     
  20. Jitender

    Jitender Screwfix Select

    Good ide if need water supply in garage.

    Re dead legs apply both to copper and plastic pipe.

    Im not too sure what is the min6lenght thats ok.
     

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