How Much Does it Cost to Replace a Drain Stack?


A drain stack is part of the waste system that gets rid of the waste-water and sewage from buildings. In other words, it connects the interior plumbing system of a building to the exterior vents and sewer. Its main purpose is to standardize the air pressure in the waste pipes to facilitate smooth flow. For buildings using the drain stack, there are characteristic pipes that run vertically from the ground to its roof. There is always an occasional whizzing sound produced as water flows from an upper drain downwards. When wastewater leaves bathtubs, sinks, and toilets, it flows through pipes to a central drain stack. Upon hitting the vertical stack, liquids and solids go downwards while gases move up. At its bottom, it has an exit that connects to the main waste-removal system.

Replacing the Drain Stack

It is not a common thing to replace an entire drain stack. Sometimes in a very old home the drainpipe may crack due to corrosion, or damage from strong cleaning agents. Replacing an entire drain stack is complicated and will require the help of a professional.

Cost of Hiring a Professional

The cost also varies depending on several things.

  • The type of materials- You can decide to use PVC, ABC, or cast iron materials.
  • How easy it is to get access to the pipes- In some cases walls, parts of ceilings or floors may have to be removed to get to the pipes. This will add cost to materials and labor as they are removed and are replaced.
  • How size of your home. If you have a multiple story home with several plumbing fixtures, again you have to consider how much material, and how much tearing out and replacing of walls, etc.,
  • The cost of labor-Labor cost vary depending on where you live. The labor, or course will be more if the project is very involved due to a larger home, or a complicated system.

Cost and Benefits of Hiring a Plumber

Unless you have major experience with construction or plumbing you probably don’t want to undertake this project yourself. At you local home improvement story a 10ft piece of PVC pipe will cost you around $3 or $4. A 10ft cooper pipe will cost up to $20. The same piece of cast iron will run about $30. You will also need to add the cost of any joints and other small items. So the cost depends on what type of pipe you use and well as how long your pipe has to be.

When you hire a professional plumber, the replacement is done in a competent way because he or she has the appropriate skills and experience to handle the job. You should, however, put aside enough dollars for the plumber, materials, and labor. Be prepared to spend $2,000 or more based on the mentioned factors.

What works best?

The benefits of hiring a plumber outweigh the dollars you save when you do the replacements yourself. A plumber handles the work professionally and completes it in less time. In addition, there is guarantee for work done and materials used. It is also advisable to hire a plumber to avoid damaging other parts of the drainage system.

No matter what your situation, replacing your drain stack is not a simple project. It should not be considered unless very necessary. It is also not a project for the typical do-it-yourselfer.