Mr. President and Members of the Institute: I have here drawings representing two methods of plumbing the same house, one sometimes called the "two pipe" system, being designed in conformity with the average

Better Plumbing At Half The Cost 681

Fig. 650

*Paper read before the 44th Annual Convention of the American Institute of Architects at San Francisco, Cal., Jan. 18, 1911. By J. Pickering Putnam Delegate from the Boston Chapter A. I. A.

Better Plumbing At Half The Cost 682

Fig. 651

Better Plumbing At Half The Cost 683

Fig. 652 plumbing laws prevailing in the United States, and the other in accordance with a simpler or so-called "one-pipe" system which promises before very long to take the place of the more complicated and costly one. The plans are, with a few unimportant modifications, of a house in Boston which I have recently rebuilt in part and enlarged, and which, therefore, show plumbing substantially as it had actually been executed under Boston laws.

The simpler arrangement is the one I recommend but which the owners could not obtain on account of the plumbing ordinances. The cost would have been less than half that of the one which was executed, and its convenience and safety immeasurably greater. This statement of cost is corroborated by the estimates of three leading plumbers which I give herewith.

In the two-pipe arrangement in this building there are two independent rain water conductors, both trapped at the bottom before entering the house drain. In the simpler arrangement a single conductor is used, and it serves also as the only soil pipe required. It descends in an ample ventilating slot or recess in one of the party walls at about middle distance between the front and the back of the house.

The use of antisyphon traps on the fixtures does away with all need of back venting.

The bath room in the two-pipe arrangement has an outer exposure on the south front with a window for direct light and ventilation, while in the one-pipe plan the bath room occupies less valuable space near the centre of the house, where it receives continuous ventilation through heated flues and ample artificial light.

This house is occupied only in the nine cold months of the year, and is closed during the summer. Hence, when the bath room windows in the two-pipe arrangement are opened for airing, the ventilation acts of necessity in a direction exactly opposite to that which is intended because the warmer column of air in the house rises to allow the colder and heavier column from without to enter. The result is that all the bad air in the bath room, including all the imaginary disease germs still supposed by many to be inseparably connected with plumbing pipes, are blown straight into the house and distributed impartially through the various living rooms, parlor, reception and dining room for the equal benefit of all the occupants. This being lawful and fashionable is still accepted by the unreasoning public as the best possible arrangement.

The simpler plan provides a constant, powerful, upward and outward ventilation carrying all bad air and possible odors directly out of the house, incidentally ventilating the entire building and doing its work automatically and without the dangerous draughts necessitated by window ventilation.

Now that modern science has demonstrated the absence of disease germs from sewer air, we know that direct sun's rays are not required in bath rooms, and that, in fact, proper artificial lighting is actually preferable because it furnishes in its heat the motive power adapted to produce or increase the ventilation of the room.

On the other hand, sleeping and living rooms do need direct sunlight, so that the interior arrangement of the bath room performs the double service of ensuring for it immeasurably better ventilation, and of reserving all window space for the rooms which actually require it.

In our complicated arrangement the use of extra heavy lead-caulked cast-iron pipes is enforced by the law no doubt because thinner pipes could not stand the severe strains applied to the pipe by the caulking iron and by the hydraulic test, and because shrinkage and settlement in the building materials are bound to fracture thin pipes and plumbing fixtures where rigid lead-caulked joints are used.

In our simpler plant, on the other hand, we have designed to use flexible joints and to abolish the use of lead caulking and the hydraulic test altogether. In this case, pipes of so-called "standard" thickness, weighing just half as much as the "extra heavy" pipes, are known to be amply thick enough to serve in plumbing work with safety for a lifetime, and inasmuch as the new flexible jointing has been proved to be permanently reliable and less than half as expensive to make as the utterly unscientific and unreliable lead-jointing now in vogue, we are able to cut in two the cost of every foot of cast-iron piping used in the plumbing of the building.

Finally, the "main house" or "disconnecting" trap with its foot vent pipe has been omitted in our improved plan, in virtue of which, when this omission becomes generally adopted, the sewers will become so amply ventilated through every house drain and soil pipe that the air within them will surpass in purity that of the famous Paris sewers now visited by thousands of visitors of both sexes every year, as one of the very interesting sights of the gay metropolis.

The money savings effected by all these improvements are shown by the following careful plumbers' estimates already referred to.

In the two-pipe arrangement there are two main 4-inch extra-heavy soil-pipe stacks, which is the average number found in both city and country houses throughout the United States. These have here 100 feet of pipe, 40 joints and 18 fittings and cost for all material and labor, including applying the hydraulic and all other tests required by the law, as well as the usual fair plumber's profit, $133.00 (omitting the odd cents for brevity).