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Local building code requires a roof vent that is less than ten feet away from an operating skylight to extend a minimum of three feet above the skylight. Is there an alternative venting system, other than a straight pipe, that can be installed instead that doesn't extend as much?

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Do you know when this building code was started? If you have a house that was built prior to this code then it generally won't apply to you unless you are building an addition or doing major remodeling. –  maple_shaft Nov 14 '12 at 12:04
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Are you venting plumbing, fuel gas appliances, dryer, exhaust fan, the roof itself, etc.? –  Tester101 Nov 14 '12 at 12:05
    
@maple_shaft If both the skylight and vent predate code, then you may be grandfathered in. However, if you are adding either the skylight or the vent, current codes must be followed. –  Tester101 Nov 14 '12 at 12:07
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The purpose is to minimize the chance of undesirable or possibly even dangerous gasses entering your home. Assuming you are correctly applying this requirement, the only alternative is to reconfigure the elements so they are greater than 10 feet apart. –  bcworkz Nov 14 '12 at 18:48
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Which means if you install a vent pipe 10 feet or more away from the skylight then you can have a shorter vent pipe extension above roofline. I assume this is about a vent pipe from the kitchen outlet. As long as you do a proper and sound job that doesn't cause some silly damage, who's going to know if you only have a one foot vent pipe extension? I installed an additional downpipe in response to a poorly executed re-plumbing of my house (before i bought it.) I've joined the new downpipe to the only available connection the kitchen outlet, so now the rain downpipe acts as a vent pipe. I haven't had any problems. If this is about vent pipe from water closet instead, then you probably want a long vent pipe extension to avoid the aromas.

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As long as you do a proper and sound job that doesn't cause some silly damage, who's going to know if you only have a one foot vent pipe extension? It may not be an immediate problem but if he ever goes to sell the house then he could certainly get called out by a home inspector or code enforcement inspection. If code enforcement catches a problem like this then in some cases he may not even legally be allowed to sell his house. –  maple_shaft Nov 14 '12 at 12:02
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