I have a vent pipe that goes out the front of the house(just above the foundation)it goes down into the drain under the flooring in the basement.I have my plumbing vented already. I do have one toilet in the basement.When you sit on that toilet it (the pipe) is right in your face. I want to remove it, can I? it is made of cast iron and starts on the the floor of the basement goes up and out of the front of the house just above foundation.

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    What is the pipe made of? Where does it start? Can you provide a photo of it?
    – Tester101
    Nov 21, 2014 at 20:17
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    Could be a radon vent, sump pump drain, condensate drain, or some old obsolete pipe that's no longer used. hard to tell without knowing what it's hooked up to and more details of that nature.
    – iLikeDirt
    Nov 21, 2014 at 20:41
  • Can you guess how old the vent and the house are?
    – mikes
    Nov 21, 2014 at 22:23
  • The house is over 100 hundred years old and the pipes are cast iron.
    – roger n
    Nov 21, 2014 at 22:44

2 Answers 2


This sounds like the exhaust vent for a radon mitigation system. If so, there will be a fan constantly running in that system and the pipe will exhaust somewhere near the roof line. I would not recommend removing this since it was likely added after radon was detected in the area.

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    Radon vents in new construction typically start with no fan, leaving the option to add one later if tests demonstrate a need.
    – Zhentar
    Nov 21, 2014 at 21:03

I'd hesitate to remove it because it might be a radon vent. A preliminary search for the levels in Massachusetts (Appalachians=granite=radon) reveals some scary hits. It might have been a slow news day IDK, but you should find out what the levels in your area are and whether or not you do have one.

Does it face a driveway? We just installed a head-scratcher like this so we could empty the RV. It could also be a clean-out or just your standard WTF is this thing doing here?

If you feel like pulling your toilet, if you run a snake from the outside and can see it going under the toilet; go nuts. Cap it first, with the toilet still in place and make sure all plumbing still vents correctly (the sink trap should not gurgle; compare flow-rates).

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