Pipes popped out of the walkway - What would you protect them with?

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While digging along a foundation to build a flagstone walkway, these pipes popped up out of the ground (so to speak!):

A standard irrigation valve box is too small to cover them.

Tomorrow, I'll go to Home Depot to get 'something' to cover these pipes to protect them as the walkway will be at the level of the top of the pipes.
What would YOU suggest I buy to protect the pipes?
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On Wed, 25 Jan 2012 17:56:28 -0800, Bob F wrote:

It's the Silicon Valley, so, it doesn't really get to freezing temperatures (all that much). The house is 30 years old so I assume the pipes never froze before.
They seem to also have a buried wire (looks like low voltage but I'm not sure) next to them. (Too dark now but I'll snap a closeup tomorrow.)
They were covered with sod which I dug up to in the process of digging a couple of inches down to start putting the flagstone walkway in.
I'm surprised they had no cover on top; just sod.
I guess I 'could' just put a flatstone on top of them - but that seems not to be the right way to do it.
I'm gonna look for a double-width irrigation box - but I wonder if there is something made for this. There are no valves, so I don't really need access to it. They're just PVC water pipes which were about 2 inches or 3 inches below the top of the sod.
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I would look at something in the commercial metallic cover type sort of thing to cover those pipes... That plastic irrigation cover will look very out of place with flagstone pavers surrounding it...
You are going to have to do a lot of work to properly set an access panel cover -- your walkway will probably have to be up higher than you are anticipating as you have to dig up around the pipes to set it in place and the ring/support for the lid has to be above the level of the pipes...
Plastic just doesn't strike me as standing the test of time nor the weight of the flagstone pavers and the concrete you will set them in...
~~ Evan
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On Thu, 26 Jan 2012 02:03:02 +0000 (UTC), Chuck Banshee

Yes, but now you've removed 2 or 3 inches of dirt, as you say below. How much were you planning to re-cover it with?

Did you actually walk on them before? Or just next to them?

That they are irriigation pipes doesn't mean you have to use an irrigation box. Anything that will spread out the weight of what is on top of them, and will last a long time, is okay. Make sure the dirt around t he pipes won't wash away, so that it's supportig your cover, so your cover isn't supported only by t he top pipe.

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On Thu, 26 Jan 2012 16:52:09 -0500, micky wrote:

Good point.
I was planning on covering it only with the irrigation box.

Maybe I should put fiberglass insulation inside before putting the cover back on?
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What works are these:
http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/video/0,,20053912,00.html
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On Fri, 27 Jan 2012 00:24:04 -0800, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Interesting.
1. Turn off the water and drain the old hose faucet, also called the sillcock. 2. Use emery cloth to clean the copper water pipe leading to the hose faucet. 3. Cut the pipe using a tubing cutter and then remove the old hose faucet. 4. Insert the new frost-proof sillcock into the hole in the wall, and mark its mounting-hole locations. 5. Drill holes on the mark and insert plastic wall anchors. 6. Apply silicone caulk around flange of the frost-proof sillcock. 7. Slide sillcock into hole, press tight to wall and secure with stainless steel screws. 8. Use an adjustable wrench to remove stem unit from sillcock. 9. From inside, solder a length of copper pipe to the end of the sillcock. 10. Use a coupling to solder new pipe to the existing water pipe. 11. Re-install the stem unit into sillcock and tighten with wrench. 12. Turn on water and test your work.
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On Fri, 27 Jan 2012 00:24:04 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

Thanks. Too hard to do. It would require for one faucet cutting a hole in basement ceiling, after removing all the books and disassembling the book shelf under that spot.
The other pipe is accessible, but iits above an old wardrobe, armoir, that's full almost to the top with camping equipment. Very hard to do the job without moving the warddrobe; hard to move the warddrobe.
Nothing is at eye level like in the video.
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re: " Too hard to do"
Imagine how "hard" (and expensive) it will be to clean up the mess when the spigot freezes and the pipe bursts.
I guess you will have to stick with either draining your spigot or *hoping* that the styrofoam cover works.
I certainly wouldn't trust a styrofoam cover. It's not like it generates any heat.
Try this experiment: Buy a cheap styrofoam cooler and put some water in it. Leave it outside in freezing weather and let me know how it works out. Why would that be any different than putting a styrofoam cap on a spigot?
I open my spigots and turn the shutoff to the spigots off. If they freeze and burst the pipe inside the house, I'll get about 3 feet of 1/2 copper pipe worth of water. I can live with that.
In the 25 years I've been in the house, it's never happened.
If fact, the only time I know of that the spigot froze is the year my son turned the shutoff on, went outside, turned the spigot on and nothing came out. He didn't know what was going on (he was 12) so he just walked away. A few days later my wife came home from work to find the spigot gushing water. It had warmed up enough to thaw.
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On Fri, 27 Jan 2012 07:49:15 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

That's not going to happen. I've been here 28 years. It's nol happened yet and the world is getting warmer.
The question is, can I stop putting the styrafoam covers on the faucets.

I thinik heat comes out through conduction in the pipe. After all it's 68^ in the house, only a few inches away.
I should find out if my neiighbors drain the last few inches, but I keep forgetting when I see them so I haven't asked even one. Thanks.

LOL
Not related really but I found a horizontal pipe in a brushy field near an expressway that was shooting water out 5 feet before it started to fall down. Took me calls to 3 offices before the water companyturned it off. But that was after the ground downhill from t here was flooded for 2 years. All from that pipe.
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<...snipped...>

I live in Baltimore too and I have seen in my lifetime, I belive back in the mid or late 80s, it get cold enough to freeze and break pipes _inside_ an unheated house. So I would say, yes, drain and shut off the line to your outside faucet. That said, it does have to get down in the teens for at lease a couple days straight before that happens, and the weather forecast is usually good enough to give fair warning.
--
Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler. (Albert Einstein)

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar. org
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Flagstone around it, and a steel plate to protect them?
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On Thu, 26 Jan 2012 02:03:02 +0000 (UTC), Chuck Banshee

Whoever put them there did no cement up the hole in the foundation. You likely have water leaking into the basement, and that may be worse now that they are uncovered. You should cement up that wall around the pipes. All you need is a small amount of sand mix concrete. Clean out the dirt, clean well, and fill the hole. Since it's always tough to do this around multiple pipes, some "Great Stuff foam might work better, but then apply tar over it, because that Great Stuff might absorb water. Either way, clean the hole out real well first.
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Try an industrial supply house (Global, others) for heavy plastic storage containers. Not too pricey, lots of options.
Joe
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On Wed, 25 Jan 2012 19:13:21 -0800, Paul Drahn wrote:

I'm heading off to Home Depot tomorrow morning. I'll see what they have.
The interesting thing was these plastic pipes were merely buried in the sod, and not protected. I guess nobody figured I'd put a walkway there so I might have to re-think where I put the walkway.
One problem is the pipes seem to go down at an angle so I'd have to extensively modify any box I buy ... but I'll see what Home Depot has.
Thanks. I'll let you know what I come up with.
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Or you would have to purchase a LARGER metal or fiberglass access panel and frame... But to do it right the finished surface has to up higher than the pipes -- you wouldn't build it so that the cover would almost be touching the pipes...
~~ Evan
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Some thoughts:
Why would you put a walkway right up against the foundation of the house? People need clearance to walk by, don't they? With the walkway where you say you're putting it, you'd have your shoulders right next to the wall. Normally that area would be used for an area a few feet wide with plants of some type and the walkway next to that.
If you insist on putting it there, the walkway is going to have to be a few inches higher for room for base/sand plus the stone. I'm assuming the pipes are irrigation. Can't tell the size from the pics, but the smallest one looks too small for irrigation and the largest looks to large for a home system. And whatever you put on top of the pipes to try to protect them may not be much better than just a flagstone properly set. The problem is without a support structure on either side to hold a protection plate of some kind, the weight from people walking is still going to be presenting a shear force down on the plastic pipes.
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On Thu, 26 Jan 2012 06:38:18 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Good question.
It's not really the 'foundation' of the house - it's the foundation of a three foot high (or so) structure that holds lots of plants next to the house.
My wife wants to put potted plants on that flagstone right next to the foundation - but the foundation is only a few feet high so you 'can' walk on it. Plus, I didn't know what to call it since a 'potted plant flagstone path' wouldn't make much sense.

This is what I just bought from Home Depot:

I'm hoping that box will support weight without putting it on the pipes:

The pipes are certainly active since there are water features in the cement structure along the wall (which I had called a foundation for lack of a better term).
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You mentioned using a flagstone. Is that what you will be using for the entire walkway? If so, I would just fill in and around the pipes with gravel, perhaps with some bricks or blocks at the periphery, and lay the flagstone on top. Maybe not the best way, but at least with the kind of soil in my own yard, I'd be pretty confident it would hold up OK. Taking you on your word that freezing is not an issue in your locale.
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I agree here. It's hard to guess from the pics, but they look like they could be Geothermal heating. Although the small one going into the bigger one is a question.
On 1/26/2012 9:40 AM, Stormin Mormon wrote:

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