clogged main drain line?

Discussion in 'Drain Cleaning' started by sandsapien, Jun 26, 2009.

  1. sandsapien

    sandsapien New Member

    Messages:
    4
    i have a 2 story home built in 1924 there is a full bath upstairs and one down off the kitchen
    here is my problem
    1st
    downstairs bath sink and tub drain super slo(takes at least 24 hours to drain a full sink)however toilet flushes just fine ,when the toilet is flushed there is a gurgling in the bathtub drain, but water does not back up past tub drain, the main drain line for this sink meets under the bath and goes out basement wall
    2nd
    kitchen sink drains slow but not as bad as bathroom a few feet away, the drain line for this sink goes down to underneath basement floor
    3rd
    this is where things get interesting, when water starts to back up in the sink, or just using alot of water anywhere in the house, it overflows a gutter line on the side of my house spilling waste water into my driveway.
    P.S.
    there is no back up visible upstairs but contributes to gutter drain overflow along with basement washing mashine
  2. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Sounds like you are describing a home in North Riverside. Very common for the main sewer to be clogged and back up out of the down spouts. Its time to call a sewer and drain cleaner. Just avoid anyone with the word Rooter in their name.
  3. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Toilet Paper and Poo coming out of the gutter is a good sign of a clogged Main Line where older combined flow sewer systems exist...
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,831
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    sewer

    You have what is called an "overhead" sewer, which is why it does not back up onto the basement floor. You may also have a sink without a vent which is why the toilet flushes but the sink does not drain. You need a plumber to unplug your main line. There is nothing "interesting" or unusual about your symptoms. The interesting thing is that you have tried to live with the symptoms this long, without calling a plumber.
  5. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    HJ is right, you should of had this addressed a lot sooner. The longer you wait the more the raw sewerage will turn into sludge, which can be very difficult to get cleared out with just a sewer rodder. I have been on many of these calls where someone lived with the problem for over two weeks, the only way i was able to get the line open was with a jetter.
  6. sandsapien

    sandsapien New Member

    Messages:
    4
    reply

    i wasnt too upset when i thought it was localized in the downstairs sink and bath, i just didnt use those lines, now that the sink is backing up and water(only liquid) is coming from the downspout, im trying to adress this, thanks for pointing out i should have called somone earlier that was NICE, but being a disabled veteran with limited mobility and funds i do what i can, but im finishing my pre med so good luck with plumber retirement there NICE guy. mabye when you come to get a bypass ill say thats not interesting but the amount of chips youv ate sure is, I mean really do u feel better now
  7. sandsapien

    sandsapien New Member

    Messages:
    4
    so is this a possible D I Y? if the pipes are that old will it be better to dig them out and get new pvc in or just have them cleaned. i think i could handle replacing the lines but ive never used an electric auger. also after experimenting with the situation i have found that the upstairs bathroom does not contribute to the outflow of the downspout drain and its main goes out through the floor. I highly appreciate HJ's limited advice but if anyone else can drop some more details on me i would be glad
  8. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I would recommend calling a pro!

    In most cases they'll have you up and running within a few hours of placing the call. They will also be able to tell if there is some type of problem with the line in many cases.

    The problem With DIYing drain cleaning is that a proper sized machine packs quite a bit of power and can cause serious injury or damage to the equipment. Rental equipment is not always heavy duty enough and tends to be in poor condition from all the inexperienced users. Some are downright dangerous due to their poor condition.

    I personally believe based on my own experience that it takes about a full year for a new guy just coming into the drain cleaning trade to get where he is really good at it...
  9. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I know some guys that been drain cleaning for 10 years and still have no clue. But I do agree drain cleaning should be left to a pro, I seen to many people get hurt by renting a machine. I know a lady that lost most her fingers on one hand from using a pistol rod she rented.
  10. sandsapien

    sandsapien New Member

    Messages:
    4
    called the pros

    Thanks for the advice everyone i was surprised how quick it was and relatively cheap. happy early 4th of July everyone
  11. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Good Choice!
    Glad to hear that you're draining again!
  12. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,459
    Location:
    MD
    please post a tutorial link on this machine, so I may learn. . .
    :cool:
    Interesting avatar.
  13. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

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    Location:
    Connecticut
  14. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    Cable machines and pistol machines are rentable. I don't know about jetters.
  15. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,459
    Location:
    MD
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2009
  16. SewerRatz

    SewerRatz Illinois Licensed Plumber

    Messages:
    1,705
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Jetters can cut you, but the fact it is injection of water under your skin is worse. I have three jetters. A small electric unit for sink lines and basic flushing, runs 1200 PSI at 2.2 GPM A 3000 PSI at 5 GPM and the other machine which uses the same nozzle as the chicken sandwich one is 1700 PSI at 18 GPM. They make units that go as high as 5000 PSI @ 12 GPM to 3000 PSI at 120 GPM. The GPM helps flush the line as the pressure breaks up the blockage. More GPM is needed in larger pipes to properly flush them out. To large of a jetter will take pipes apart.
  17. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Our's does 4,000 PSI. @ 18 GPM

    Yes it will cut roots.
    And we're not going to let it touch my skin...:eek:
  18. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,459
    Location:
    MD
    I got a book on hand injuries after my left hand lost a fight with a table saw blade, and in the book they talked about people getting paint under high pressure injected into the hand.
    Pretty grim.

    Power steering pump pressure can go to 4000 PSI and the auto books warn about this, too. Imagine getting that fluid in your eye? Yuck.

    That chicken-pulverizing video is sumpin' else. :eek:
    We're talking some real horsepower here.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2009
  19. kingsotall

    kingsotall Plunger/TurdPuncher

    Horsepower¿ :rolleyes:
  20. Thatguy

    Thatguy Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,459
    Location:
    MD
    Maybe 5 hp to get these pressures and flow rates? Dunno'.

    Never mind -
    4 GPM / 3200 PSI, 10 HP
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2009
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