Basement backed up.. desperately need advice my wife is going to kill me

Discussion in 'Drain Cleaning' started by aluminex, Nov 15, 2008.

  1. aluminex

    aluminex New Member

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    4
    I am in desperate need of some good advice and direction.

    My wife and I purchased a house recently and the previous home owner is deceased. We have our washer and dryer in the basement and that is our main issue.
    The drain goes under the basement floor and it actually has a few drain holes throughout the basement. Everytime my wife washes clothes the water backs up and comes up out of the drain holes into our basement. Sometimes she can wash 1 load.. sometimes 3 or 4 before it backs up.

    How can I find out where the drain is stopped?

    There is a possibility the drain was covered on the other end when we had our driveway installed but I can't be sure. How can I find out where the drain ends if it's covered up?
  2. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    Last edited: Nov 15, 2008
  3. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    You may want to bring in a plumber with a snake so he can clear the lines.
    If it's roots downline, those can be treated later.
    First you need to getting it running again.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2008
  4. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I used ... Rooter, twice in years gone by, and I never had a problem with them, and, the bills were reasonable. Since, the last time, I had to have the drain declogged, I have been using copper sulfate and no more root problems. Well, at least for me, my clog were roots from some very large, 90 foot trees.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2008
  5. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

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    The most likely problem is a clogged drain line. You should call a plumber who do not have Rooter as part of his name, to auger the line. It is possible that roots could be partly to blame, but the first step is to clean the line. Do not even consider chemical drain openers or DIY snakes. The auger needed for the job is large and can be very dangerous for a novice to use. You probably couldn't even get one in the first place. Chemicals will only create a hazard for the plumber when you eventually call him. This is not to say that some products intended to keep roots out of the line might not be effective after the line is cleared would not work, but first they need to be cut out and the line cleared all the way to the end.
  6. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I maybe wouldn't use the one with Rooter in his name, lol, for other things... but, they are good for drains, I used them. NOW, on the other hand, I had some mighty fine plumbers in here for other things, where I had direly, wished I had used the other guy with Rooter in his name. Seriously. Not all is bad, not all is ever good.

    Since, I have used the copper sulfate OUTSIDE in the drain, never inside I have been virtually clog-free. WHAT a relief. It is horrible when you have to bang your clothes on a rock to clean them, :D
  7. aluminex

    aluminex New Member

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    The problem may be my clogged drain line but I have no idea where the actual line goes and I'm concerned when I had my driveway built we covered it over with dirt.. is this possible?

    Would it be feasible to assume the drain was just going outside into the ditch?
  8. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    It's possible, but probably not up to code. I'm assuming you don't have sewers and are on a septic system?
  9. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    Seeing that you just bought the house it would be extremely beneficial to hire a plumber to not only clear the drain but flil you in on the questions you have on your plumbing system.
  10. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

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    Copper sulfate root killer is illegal to use in CT, CO and the following counties in CA: Alameda, Napa, Santa Clara, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Solano, Marin, San Mateo, Sonoma.

    We use Root-X.
    http://www.rootx.com/
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2008
  11. Cass

    Cass Plumber

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    If the house is was built before 1975 or if you know that your drain pipes are not PVC I would also have a camera run down the drain if he pulls back any roots.
  12. nhmaster

    nhmaster Master Plumber

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    I have a suspicion that the laundry drains into the basement perimeter drain.
  13. aluminex

    aluminex New Member

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    perimeter drain?
  14. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    I checked your link and clicked on what it does, and oddly, it says:
    DOES NOT HARM TREES OR PLANTS... Is not a root a tree part? :confused:

    [​IMG]
  15. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    The main chemical is dichlobenil. Yikes. Don't go sniffing it.

    http://www.pesticide.org/dichlobenil.pdf

    http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Maintenance/pdf/dichlobenil.pdf

    Mode of Action
    Dichlobenil molecules are taken up by roots
    and transported throughout the plant.3 Inside
    the plant, dichlobenil inhibits actively dividing
    cells by disrupting the formation of the cell plate,
    a structure which forms during cell division to
    separate the two new cells.4

    So, it tells me, that chart to the link is WRONG. This is bad stuff and homeowners and plumbers are using it thinking it is not thanks to the great state of Ca.
    :)

    Infact, this may actually apply:
    http://www.epa.gov/opp00001/foia/affirmation.htm
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2008
  16. jar546

    jar546 In the Trades

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    Location:
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    Bingo

    Since you don't know where it goes why not just connect your laundry waste into your plumbing waste pipe. Probably a lot cheaper than screwing around with cameras and everything else.
  17. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

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    Location:
    Connecticut
    Cookie I don't make the laws.

    Copper sulfate is well documented as its toxicity to fish and other aquatic wildlife.

    I sewer line treated with Root-X does not kill the tree where copper sulfate may.

    The reason the copper sulfate was a concern in those areas is the emissions from water treatment plants of copper sulfate was exceeding the maximum allowed by the EPA.
  18. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    What? I thought you made that law!:D
    I was just pointing out that RootX is really not any better than copper sulfate, and it is pretty documented in those links. Why the great state of Ca does what it does only those in charge knows the reasons why. But, it is nice when the people knows some of the truth. It is really misleading the public to think one is safer than the next. Just my 2 cents worth for what it is worth to anyone.

    God, I wish I made the laws.

    [​IMG] All plumbers would get free chocolate chip cookies at their local bakery.





    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2008
  19. construct30

    construct30 New Member

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    590
    Location:
    NorthWest PA
    I would get some one to clean it with a camera and locator. If it does go into the perimeter drain or french drain as we call it here, I would get it figured out. If that drain is plugged it could cause other problems and still needs to be fixed.
  20. aluminex

    aluminex New Member

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    4
    Would this be hard for me to do or should I hire a plumber?

    I haven't worked much with plumbing but is this a project I should try on my own?

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