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  • Trap Seal Primers

    On a condo job we are using Watts MS-810 Trap Seal Primers to prime the trap connecting to the hot water tank drain pan. These are poppet style trap seal primers, and we are having a hell of a time dealing with them. The majority of them don't work and we've had to "play" with them to get them working twice now. We are removing the nut and the poppet and checking for debris, but you can't tell me there is debris in every one of them.

    Any expierience or recommendations on how to remedy this issue would be appreciate. Perhaps a different style? Is there a fix for this?

  • #2
    Hi Scott sorry your request got buried. I will research this for you and get back. Not familiar off hand with that number.
    Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.

    Comment


    • #3
      Does the MS-810 pre date the Watt's A200? Where are you finding these primers? You may want to try an A200 and see if there is any improvement.

      Mark
      "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

      I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

      Comment


      • #4
        YEARS AGO THE TRAP PRIMERS HAD AN ADJUSTING SCREW AND WE WERE ALLOWED A SHUT OFF VALVE TO ALLOW FOR SERVICE. NOW THE SAME ONES HAVE NO ADJUSTING SCREW AND WE'RE NOT ALLOWED A SHUT OFF VALVE ON THE PRIMER ONLY. IT HAS TO SHUT OFF THE FIXTURE FEEDING IT. TOO MANY WERE LEFT OFF TO ELIMINATE ALL THE HASSLES LIKE YOU'RE HAVING.
        QUESTION? WHY ARE YOUR WATER HEATER PANS TRAPPED? I PIPE THEM OUTSIDE OR ANOTHER APPROVED LOCATION. I DON'T PIPE TO AN INDIRECT WASTE. SAME AS A PRESSURE RELIEF VALVE.
        HOW ARE YOURS REQUIRED TO BE INSTALLED?
        IS IT POSSIBLE THAT THE FLUX RESIDUE HAS AFFECTED THE VALVE. THE FLUX I USE (EVERFLUX) HAS A SOAPY EFFECT WHEN THE LINES ARE FLUSHED OUT.
        LAST SUGGESTION, HAVE YOU CONTACTED WATTS CUSTOMER SERVICE TO HAVE A REP FIGURE THIS OUT. IF YOU HAVE THIS MANY THAT ARE AN ISSUE, I THINK THE REP SHOULD GET INVOLVED.
        FOLLOW UP WITH YOUR FINDINGS.

        RICK.

        just an update. the valves i use are made by ppp.
        (precision plumbing products). they also make an approved manifold, distribution box. saves alot on extra valves.

        [ 08-28-2005, 02:51 AM: Message edited by: PLUMBER RICK ]

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for the replies.
          I am unsure if they predated the A200 - I'm still an apprentice in all honesty so I haven't been in the trade long enough to say.

          Trapping a drain pan is standard procedure in our codes where I am as the drain pan stack ties into regular sanitary lines.

          These primers are not adjustble. The primer has a rubber poppet with a pin in the bottom. The ping oes into a hole. Water flows through the primer and the turbulence is supposed to lift up the poppet enough to let water drops through but the pin on the bottom of the poppet which goes into the drip hole prevents 1) the poppet pin from moving out of the hole 2) the drip from being a stream of water. The vertical space is just enough inside "the guts" that the poppet & it's pin won't lift up enough for the pin to leave the hole. We tie an adapter into the bottom of the primer and run pex right into the drain pan hole.

          It *does* say in the instructions that you should remove the poppet before soldering. I think the guy who did them (other apprentice - I wasn't involved in the installation as much so, more now I am involved in fixing this and it is damn frustrating b/c every single one of these is an issue and not just one or two which to me points in a design flaw to some extent) did not remove the poppet when he soldered them which could have left a little bit of flux residue (didn't find this in all honesty when I pulled the poppet) which could cause the poppet to stick.

          Anyways I'll get my boss to contact watts to see what can be done. Because this has honeslty cost about 10 hours of labour to date fixing these things and then re-fixing them in the same building. What a joke.

          Comment


          • #6
            I did a little internet research, which in my opinion is very little, and found only one reference to that model number. It was a cross-reference to a company I've never heard of. The current Watt's catalog contains no such model number.

            What does all of this mean? In my opinion the following:

            a) You are working in a juristiction that has specific specifications for trap primers, which Watts is producing.

            b) You are using outdated trap primers, which are no longer produced. Possibly for good reason. but not necessarily.

            My question would be the following:

            When you say they do no work are you refering to the fact that there is no water discharge to the trap, or do you mean it is spitting water from the primer itself?

            By the way, I think the fact that you, as an apprentice, go home at night and look for solutions to jobsite problems is impressive. I am sure that you will someday be a master plumber, and run jobs as a foreman.

            Thank you for entering the profession.

            the dog
            the dog

            Comment


            • #7
              Yeah Thanks for the info plumbdog. I did a little digging and I found a local rep from Watts. And like you I never found antyhing on the Watts USA or Watts Canada website. I contacted him but he said he was the wrong contact for tha sort of thing but he gave me the number of the proper contact. However I handed his number over to my boss and my boss didn't seem to keen for some odd reason? Maybe because we've already spent like 10 hours at least dealing with them.

              As far as not working what I mean is they are not doing what they are supposed to be doing which is priming the trap. The turbulence from water flow is supposed to lift the poppet and a drip is supposed to ensue but it's not even lifting the poppet and there is no drip at all. It is in my opinion a somewhat flawed design, or at least it seems that way.

              Thank you for the compliment concerning my being an apprentice and such. My main drive behind this is it is personally frustrating for me as I am the principal person who had to go deal with these trap primers going from suite to suite, two seperate times, to do the exact same thing pretty much almost all day. It would be one thing if some of them worked but when NONE of them work, AT ALL, it is very frustrating you are making up for what you suspect is a flawed design. I mean don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. I've said before I'll do any task as the bottom line is we need to get it done and that's the nature of the plumbing business. Whether it's grouting pipes going out of a parkade or the finer details of fixtures I'll do it, I don't care, as I enjoy seeing how things work and the work is very rewarding. But something irks me about having to waste company time on what I think is probalby a design flaw. Sort of like buying a vehicle that won't drive and we're supposed to fix it ourselves.

              Comment


              • #8
                scott, i guess it could be worse. the primers not shutting off.
                are the watts, the ones that have an inlet,outlet, and a discharge port?
                could the issue be where the valves are tapped into. a line too big or too small?
                the ones i use ppp are less prone to issues. they have an inlet and a discharge. they don't flow through. when they had an adjusting screw, i would throttle them open and close. they also had a filter screen on the inlet too.
                keep up your pursuit with watts. they must have a customer service rep. i'm sure you're not the first with this issue.

                rick.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think everything is plumbed correctly as far as our end. It is 1/2" sweat inlet, 1/2" sweat outlet (which we have sweated 1/2" copper into), and a basically "large" pinhole where the poppet pin sits. There isn't any room for adjustment. It's one of those things where it either works or it doesn't basically. We run a 3/4" cold main into the hot water tank. Off of this 3/4" main we tee 1/2" copper to the trap primer which sits vertically below the 3/4" mains. From the bottom of the trap primer we crimped a pex line that we ran right into the drain pan hole.

                  I'm not going to go into too much detail as far as some of the things we did to get them working the 2nd time (and I hope they stayed working) but let me just suffice to say that it involved a little mutiliation and "careful" manipulation of the rubber poppet if you get my drift. This is the only way we could figure out to get it working. However who knows, it could be like the last time and just stop working all of a sudden and we get called back to look at them again.

                  I told my boss about the rec. for PPP and he said he thought he heard, or had dealt with PPP trap primers with problems. But maybe it's worth a look and a bit of nagging on my part. I thought he also said they're costly, however when you factor in my labour it's probably cheaper to buy them and not have any issues then buy the cheap crappy ones and have to deal with them repeatedly.

                  I guess I may be looking forward to call back about a month or two after occupancy when the occupants can't stand the smell of methane sewer gas the way things may be looking if they stop working again.

                  [ 08-31-2005, 01:52 AM: Message edited by: Scott K ]

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    scott, just googled watts and came up with the series 200. didn't find your #. it showed a flow table for that valve. you mentioned the 1/2'' tee inlet and outlet. what is the 1/2'' outlet feeding? i got the 1/2'' in, and the 1/2'' pex outlet, but isn't there a 1/2''feeding a downstream fixture? or is this only on the 200 series? what is the pressure to the units? and look at the 200 specs. is this similar to yours?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      scott, dog gave me an idea.
                      i cross ref. this valve and it's a mifab. there is a canadian # to call 800-387-3880.
                      mifab model #mi tsp-1.
                      it has a 1/2'' sweat inlet, outlet and drip leg.
                      once again. where is the outlet going to feed. what's the flow rate to that fixture?
                      is this the issue? no piping to an outlet fixture?
                      look up this valve and the associated specs. i googled it real easy.
                      i'm gone for a few days, but look foward to your responce. good luck.
                      rick.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Scott,

                        Rick just refered you to the website I mentioned as: "another manufacturer.

                        What I can tell you is this: When I was an appentice we used to rough-in trap primers off of the supply drop to a lav. or sink. I remember my foreman telling me to install tees as close to the fixture as possible, because the primer worked on differential pressure. Since the primers you seem to be working with seem to be an outdated model number, I am beginning to understand the problem. They were probably designed to be roughed-in next to a frequently used fixture. They probably weren't, because modern primers work on a differt system.

                        I would suggest replacing the primers with PPP primers, which work regardless of the installastion point.

                        the dog
                        the dog

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks for the replies fellas - all taken into consideration and I'll push again with my boss on this matter a bit.

                          PlumberRick, regarding what the outlet is feeding, the flow of water through the trap primer is what causes it to drip (or it's supposed to anyways) hence it has an inlet for water to enter and an outlet for water to leave. The water is then returned to the 3/4" line by a tee. It branches off by a 3/4 x 1/2" tee to the inlet, goes through the primer, some of it leaves through the primer in the form of a drip, and the rest returns to the 3/4" line through the outlet and a tee back into the line (or like I said, it's supposed to).

                          One of the recommendations of the inspector to fix this problem was to perhaps put the trap primer in the main straight line instead of branching off to it. He felt that there might be less resistance so the water might prefer to flow in a straight line through the primer instead of branching off and the 3/4" main continues on as normal where the primer is just an afterthought sort of with tees to the inlet and the outlet. So on the next buidling we are trying 3/4 x 1/2 x 3/4" tees and branching the 3/4" line off and putting the 1/2" line the straight line and having the trap primer there. I suspect it could help but I sincerely doubt it'll make that much of a difference but you never know. It's worth a try I guess.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Scott,

                            If I'm reading your post right (which I may not be, because I've had a very hard week, and drank more than a few beers tonight) it may be that the primers are roughed-in wrong. There should be no tee on the outlet side of the primer. There should be no return line. The primer should be roughed in as follows:

                            1) A domestic water line should be connected into the inlet side of the primer.

                            2) The outlet side should be connected to either of the following:

                            a) A direct connection to the trap primer piping, which usually is stubbed-up from underground (when it is connected directly to a trap or fixture), or if it is exposed, running directly into the fixture itself (be it floor drain, floor sink, etc.)

                            or

                            b) Connected to an approved distribution box for multiple connections to fixtures.

                            The outlet side of the primer should have no tee at all.

                            I don't like putting down other foreman, but it looks like a wrong rough-in. There is no return line on a trap primer outlet.

                            No offense, but you are an apprentice. Could you be looking at it wrong?

                            If not they were roughed-in wrong.

                            the dog
                            the dog

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Dog, Maybe I should take a few pictures to show you the rough in.

                              You've been drinkin American beers and it's screwing you up? Try some Canadian Beer sometime!

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