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HOW IT WORKS

Sovent single-stack sanitary drainage, waste & venting (DWV) systems transport
sanitary wastes from plumbing fixtures to a legal point of disposal while protecting
the trap-seal of each fixture. The Sovent system prevents pressure excursions
from exceeding +/- one inch of water column, which is the standard for sanitary
drainage systems. A Sovent system consists of a vertical stack open to the
atmosphere (Fig. 1), horizontal branches to each fixture (Fig. 2), Sovent Aerator
fittings (Fig. 3), and Sovent De-aerator fittings (Fig. 4).

A basic understanding of air and water movement in a sanitary system is required to


illustrate how Sovent accomplishes the DWV function in a single tube. Waste flow
in a vertical stack will cling to the interior wall surface, proceed downward in a
swirling motion, and leave an open airway in the center (Fig. 5). As the velocity
increases, the falling waste encounters air resistance, which reduces the airway
size (Fig. 6). As long as this airway exists, the pressures are balanced within the
stack. Left uncontrolled, the flow velocity will increase to a point known as "terminal
velocity" and may form a complete cross-sectional blockage of the tube (Fig. 7). This
results in positive and negative pressures that may cause trap seal failures through
induced siphonage and/or blowback. The Sovent system design eliminates the
formation of the "hydraulic plug" and maintains a core of air throughout the vertical
stack(Fig. 8).

The horizontal branches transport waste from the fixture to the Sovent stack. As
waste flows along the bottom of the pipe, the air remains above. Sovent branch
sizing criteria allocates approximately 75% of the cross-sectional area for venting
purposes (Fig. 9). Proper and sufficient slope on all horizontal components is
required to ensure good system performance. Sovent system branch run-outs
provide design flexibility by offering developed length limitations that far exceed
those of traditional DWV systems. At the fixture itself, the Sovent system employs
a proven sizing criteria designed to eliminate self-siphonage associated with
traditional "s-trap" configurations. A typical Sovent branch connection to a
lavatory would consist of a 1-1/4" tailpiece, a 1-1/2" trap-arm, and a 2" vertical
drop. The Sovent system is gravity operated, which makes it impossible to
completely fill a 1-1/2" trap-arm or 2" vertical drop from a 1-1/4" tailpiece (Fig. 10).
With flow principles clearly defined, we can now examine how the remaining
components work to ensure trap-seal protection.
The third component of a Sovent system is the Aerator fitting (Fig. 11). Aerators
are found at each typical floor of the Sovent stack. Interior waterways and baffles
are situated to control the effects of flow through the Aerator. Two distinct chambers
are found in the body of the Aerator fitting. The first, called an offset chamber, is
where flow from upper floors enters the fitting and actually offsets around the
horizontal branch inlet (Fig. 12). This offset is designed to reduce the flow velocity
and break up any partial hydraulic plug formation. After leaving the offset chamber,
flow will again cling to the interior surface of the pipe and leave the center area open
for air. This occurs at each Aerator fitting, resulting in fairly constant flow velocities
throughout the vertical stack and eliminating the need for the "yoke-vents" found in
traditional DWV systems. The second area, called a mixing chamber, prevents
horizontal branch discharge from blocking the stack's cross-sectional area (Fig. 13).
These two chambers are isolated from each other through the use of a separation
baffle (Fig. 14). As horizontal flow enters the Aerator branch inlet, it must transition
to a vertical flow before smoothly uniting with any stack flow. These actions take
place on an intermittent basis since stack and branch flows may not be present
simultaneously. An opening called a vent aperture is located above the separation
baffle, which provides the venting action between the branches and stack (Fig. 15).
A second baffle is located perpendicular to the separation baffle in the mixing
chamber to prevent cross-flow from opposing branch inlets (Fig. 16). Aerator fittings
have several inlet configurations available to suit a variety of project conditions.

The final component of the Sovent system is the De-aerator fitting. De-aerators
are found at the base of every stack and wherever the stack requires a horizontal
offset (Fig. 17). The transition of vertical flow to horizontal flow can create excessive
pressure fluctuations. This phenomenon is referred to as hydraulic jump, and its
severity is related to flow volume and velocity. In some cases, a complete cross-
sectional blockage of the horizontal pipe can occur (Fig. 18). The De-aerator fitting
has two features designed to overcome this adverse effect. The first is an internal
nosepiece, which reduces the flow velocity prior to the horizontal transition (Fig. 19).
It also allows the air and waste to separate in the main chamber of the De-aerator.
The second feature is the Pressure Relief Line or PRL (Fig. 20). The PRL allows for air
movement in either direction resulting from stack flow pulling air downward or
hydraulic jump pushing air forward. This maintains pressure excursions well within
established limits. The PRL connects to the horizontal drain beyond the hydraulic
jump zone, which extends ten stack diameters downstream of the vertical stack (Fig.
21). The Sovent concept ends at the termination point of the PRL serving the
lowest level De-aerator fitting. Fixture connections downstream of this point will
require traditional venting methods.

In summary, the Sovent system controls the hydraulic and pneumatic principles
that occur within a sanitary drainage system by using specific geometric waterways
found in the Aerator and De-aerator fittings. This eliminates the need for traditional
venting requirements, thus conserving resources and labor while protecting the
integrity of the trap-seal at each fixture. Contact our office for additional
information.
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