Tips for Fixing a Leaky Plastic Drain Pipe in Your Michigan Home

Tips for Fixing a Leaky Plastic Drain Pipe in Your Michigan HomeFixing a leaky plastic drain pipe is a task you’ll most likely have to face in the future. Drain pipe leaks may present themselves as major puddles or minor dribbles. However, leaks don’t repair themselves. In fact, they tend to get worse if left unaddressed. So once leakage is noted, you’ll eventually find yourself fixing a leaky plastic drain pipe yourself or hiring a qualified plumber to complete the job. 

In a typical sink, the plastic tailpipe extends from the sink basket to the U-shaped P-trap. The opposite side of the P-trap connects to the waste line leading to the household sewer. Most leaks occur in the tailpipe connection at the sink or at the P-trap.

  • First, place a bucket or pan underneath the drain pipes.
  • Then, completely loosen the coupling nut that secures the tailpipe to the bottom of the drain basket.
  • At the P-trap, loosen both coupling nuts, securing one side of the trap to the tailpipe and the other side of the trap to the waste pipe.
  • Carefully remove the P-trap and tailpipe. The trap is probably full of water, so dump the contents into the bucket or pan.
  • Next, slip the gasket over the new tailpipe all the way to the the upper end. Then, slip the coupling nut over the tailpipe up to the gasket.
  • Afterwards, install the tailpipe in the drain basket before tightening the coupling nut on the drain basket threads.
  • Insert the tailpipe into the longer vertical outlet of the P-trap. Connect the shorter joint of the P-trap to the waste line that leads to the sewer.
  • Next, hand-tighten both P-trap coupling nuts. Leaks in plastic drain pipes often result from over-tightening plastic coupling nuts, so hand-tighten these joints only. Don’t use a wrench.
  • Finally, run water into the sink and check for leaks at all joints.

For more advice on fixing a leaky plastic drain pipe or to hire a professional to get the job done, contact Team Bob’s Heating Cooling Plumbing.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Traverse City, Michigan and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about drain pipes and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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