FAQs on Cast Iron Sovent® Systems

Is the Sovent® system a new product?

No, it's not… in fact, the Sovent® system has been around some 60 years as a proven DWV system. Sovent® was originally developed in the 1950s in Berne, Switzerland. Soon after, it was offered to other industrialized countries around the world. The first Sovent® project in the United States was installed in 1968, and new installations continue to the present day.

Is the Sovent® system patented?

The original patent on the Sovent® concept has long since expired. The name Sovent® continues to be a registered trademark name and requires licensing for its legal use in association with promotion of the Sovent® system. Conine Manufacturing Co., Inc. is the only licensed manufacturer in the U.S. marketing the Sovent® system in cast iron.

What project types are suitable for the Cast Iron Sovent® system?

Cast Iron Sovent® becomes cost-effective on projects with repetitive floor plans three stories in height or greater and generally where people spend the night. These projects can include hotels, motels, apartments, condominiums, hospital patient towers, and correctional facilities. Commercial office buildings can also benefit due to their repetitive core toilet areas. Conine Manufacturing Co., Inc. offers free consultation for product application and suitability.

What are the cost savings when comparing Cast Iron Sovent® systems to traditional DWV systems?

Cost savings resulting from reduction of labor and materials will vary depending on project type and overall height. Office buildings have fewer stack conditions when compared to hotels or apartments, but Cast Iron Sovent® still offers approximate savings of 10% on DWV costs. Hotels, apartments, and similar residential projects three to five floors in height yield 20-25% savings. Taller projects save even more money; history has shown that 30-35% savings can be realized on combined labor and material costs by using Cast Iron Sovent®. The system is many times offered up as part of value-engineering packages to bring projects under budget or to gain a competitive bid advantage.

What other benefits does Cast Iron Sovent® provide?

The system has a proven track record that includes testing in laboratory and field conditions along with thousands of installations. Cast Iron Sovent® requires significantly less chase/wall space for installation and thus returns valuable square footage to the project. It uses far fewer floor penetrations than traditional DWV systems and thereby reduces structural impact. Cast Iron Sovent® adapts to a wide variety of project floor plan requirements and can easily accommodate future additions or alterations. Accelerated construction schedules are easier to meet with reduced installation times. An all Cast Iron Sovent® system also yields superior acoustical properties when compared to other DWV materials.

Are special skills or certification required to install Cast Iron Sovent® systems?

Specialized training is not required. Cast Iron Sovent® systems require the same techniques and tools that traditional DWV systems use for installation. Good plumbing practices shall be followed with respect to hydraulic integrity, support systems, and installed slopes. These procedures in conjunction with approved drawings or methods detailed in Cast Iron Sovent® Design Manual #802 will result in a proper installation. Conine Manufacturing Co., Inc. offers plan review/approval services during all phases of the design/construction process.

Can other materials besides cast iron be used with Cast Iron Sovent® fittings?

Cast Iron Sovent® fittings may be used with stacks, branches, and run-outs made from any acceptable DWV material providing a proper transition coupling is used and the alternate material type is accepted by the Local Administrative Authority.

Are there any height limitations with Cast Iron Sovent® systems?

Cast Iron Sovent® stack sizing is unrestricted relative to vertical height and is based only on the total load of all drainage fixture units as calculated from our design criteria. Cast Iron Sovent® stack sizing shall remain constant from the lowest level De-aerator fitting to a point above the highest fixture. Telescoping of the stack size is not allowed.

Are yoke vents required with Cast Iron Sovent® systems?

Yoke vents—as found on traditional DWV systems—are not required. The velocity of falling waste in a Cast Iron Sovent® stack remains constant from top to bottom.

Can the Cast Iron Sovent® system accommodate future additions or be modified after the initial installation?

Cast Iron Sovent® systems are easily designed for capacities beyond the original construction scope. Good engineering practices should allow for some percentage of future capacity even if alterations are not anticipated. Modifications to the Cast Iron Sovent® system are usually easier due to the lack of attendant re-vent piping associated with traditional DWV designs. Conine Manufacturing Co., Inc. offers consultation and approval services for changes to the system.

How are Cast Iron Sovent® systems maintained or serviced?

The Cast Iron Sovent® fittings use full-sized waterways through the body with no internal restrictions. Furthermore, there are no movable or replaceable items within. All baffles are cast in place with the same wall thickness and durability as standard cast iron hubless pipe and fittings. Standard mechanical cleaning methods (snakes, augers, water-jets, etc.) can be used to clear blockages that can occur over time. Access to the system can be gained in a variety of ways including the roof vent terminal, fixture trap removal, installed wall/floor clean-outs, and other methods. There are no prescribed maintenance intervals specified or required.

Does Cast Iron Sovent® cause sudsing?

Excessive amounts of suds are the direct result of foaming agents found in detergents, and sudsing can occur in all types of DWV systems. Plumbing codes recognized this problem well before the advent of Cast Iron Sovent®, and there is no evidence that the Sovent® system itself is a contributing factor. Sudsing issues can be attributed to poor system design, poor installation quality, and improper end-user practices. Water hardness can also contribute to excessive suds generation. The procedure of the end user is typically the source of a sudsing problem, since design reviews and installation inspections protect against improper plumbing practices. Detergents have become more concentrated over time, and it is imperative that the proper type and amount be used to help avoid this issue. Our published criterion outlines specific values and sizing requirements for washing machine fixtures. In addition, model code suds-zone relief methods can be used in conjunction with our criteria to offer the best protection possible. Cast Iron Sovent systems, properly designed in accordance with Cast Iron Sovent® Design Manual #802 and installed with good plumbing practices, will perform satisfactorily under normal anticipated usage.