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Old 12-10-2014, 07:35 PM   #1
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How to seal plumbing cutouts - ideas wanted

I have the belly skins off and have replaced the parts of my floor that were rotten. Now I'd like to seal off the cutouts where the plumbing drains come through the floor. I don't know if it was factory or a PO but for every pipe that has to go through the floor of my trailer there is a huge cutaway. Sometimes a 3" hole for a 2" pipe, sometimes a 7"x 12" hole to help hook up an otherwise inaccessible kitchen sink drain. Holes everywhere there is a pipe. Anyone have some good ideas on how to close these off? Most are too big for caulk only. Some sort of gasket? No idea is too silly for me to try.
Lorry
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:10 PM   #2
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If the idea is to cut the flow of air/weather how about cut and tape Reflectex to fit the cut outs. I did that in my Bambi II.
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Old 12-10-2014, 08:30 PM   #3
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Stuff the hole with bronze wool.
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Old 12-10-2014, 09:04 PM   #4
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Airstream (and the one Avion I owned) are famous for huge holes in the floor to run the drain and vent pipes through. It is a really big source of Mice entrance also. Once they get into the underbelly, up they come in on the pipe highway.

As you say, the holes can be pretty huge vs. the pipe size. I have cut scrap aluminum pieces to fit around the pipes lap over the wood floor. Then either put them down with caulk or some small nails. For the final seal against the pipe then the gap is small enough to use caulk.

I have also used expanding foam in a can for the sealing of the opening. I have never had any problem with deterioration of the foam.

So, get creative. The pipes are generally in hidden locations so the solution does not need to be pretty, just effective
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:16 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtomicNo13 View Post
Stuff the hole with bronze wool.
Atomic - can you find bronze wool at the big box hardware stores?
Thanks for the idea!
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:40 AM   #6
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Try that insulation they put over pipes Separate it and wrap it around the pipe and push it between the pipe and the floor . The drain will be alowed to move around while your traveling and not break while sealing the gap. Glue it to the pipe
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Old 12-11-2014, 10:40 AM   #7
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I have found stainless steel wool in a 3-pack at Walgreens, Shopko, and the Home Depot. It should work like bronze wool.

Dan
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Old 12-11-2014, 11:19 AM   #8
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I filled a 1" space around a drain in our Caravel a few years age dy doing the following:
I cut a old piece of upholstery foam into a strip a little wider than the opening. I then stuffed the foam into the opening. Then I mixed two part epoxy along with a couple of glugs of denatured alcohol in a paper bowl. I poured the mixture over the foam. The runny mixture soaked into the foam. The alcohol evaporated, the epoxy went off, and left a very nice seal which can be easily removed with a pocket knife.


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Old 12-11-2014, 11:22 AM   #9
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thanks for the good ideas, I will try several I think, no one approach will work for all of them. Might try scrap alum. to reduce the gaps and then fill the last bit with caulking or that expanding foam.
Lorry
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Old 12-11-2014, 03:52 PM   #10
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Smaller mom and pop places, Ace, Trustworthy, and Service star are the only remaining places I have seen it. Years ago believe it or not, Harbor Freight had some too!
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Old 12-11-2014, 03:54 PM   #11
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Farmer Dan is correct, stainless wool will work too, however the stuff I got very recently rusted.... Had some recycled Chinesium content in there!
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Old 12-11-2014, 04:12 PM   #12
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Thanks for adding a new word to my vocabulary, "Chinesium" I love it and will remember that !
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Old 12-11-2014, 04:58 PM   #13
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Always trying to help!
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Old 12-11-2014, 05:07 PM   #14
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Actually all these suggestions are very good, I've used steel wool (stainless) in more applications than I can count to keep out mice, but most every hardware store carries a foam sealant designed for filling in spaces around pipes, (plumbers use the stuff all the time), and I mean to tell you, this stuff can fill some big holes. Not only will it seal out moisture and moist mice (couldn't resist, sorry) but it can also serve to seal out drafts. The one warning, this stuff expands like crazy, you squirt a bit on thinking it is not enough and before you know it, you have got this bulbous glob. Happily the stuff is "relatively" easy to remove with a dull kitchen knife, and unlike the other remedies its fun to play with.
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Old 12-13-2014, 09:37 AM   #15
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I have used the steel or bronze wool and then filled into and around it with the foam and it has worked well for mice and sealing openings They don't eat far into the foam when they get to the wool.
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Old 12-13-2014, 06:59 PM   #16
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Seems like I always see things differently. I think sealing around the pipes through the plywood sub-floor is not very useful, and maybe harmful.
1. Some air return from the belly is necessary for the furnace to efficiently send more hot air down there. Some of those oversize holes are the air returns.
2. The duct from the furnace that goes down into the belly pan is a flexible duct, just hanging down in the belly with an open end. Any mouse that gets into the belly can find it's way through the duct system to the air outlets and into the interior. Or, a mouse can easily chew through the flexible duct at any point in the system.

It make sense to me to seal penetrations of the exterior belly skin, but not the sub-floor
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Old 12-14-2014, 03:20 PM   #17
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I'm not sure its actually possible to seal up the interior completely. I had forgotten about the huge cutout that my black water tank sits in. Now that would be awfully tricky to seal. Perhaps with reflectix or duct tape from above might be best bet. I think trying to seal the whole area inside the bellypan would be very difficult too, trying to seal where the tank drains come out would take some thought.
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Old 12-14-2014, 04:20 PM   #18
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I used Chinesium ss for temp use around the electric cord entering and two months later it is corroding, doesn't even look like iron rust. Bronze or brass wool would be better, use it to seal and either foam or liquid nails to solidify, aluminum flashing was used on large holes. If wires are going thru make sure they are chaf protected. Mice are a problem so metal best choice to stop them from chewing thru.
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Old 12-14-2014, 04:22 PM   #19
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They make a Great Stuff product that will prevent rodents for entering. Just back up one side with tape and fill the holes with the foam. When it dries cut it down.

New GREAT STUFF? Pestblock Insulating Foam Sealant

You can get it at Home Depot.
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