Kitchen sink, New, Old Mobile home drains slowly

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by jim2100, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. jim2100

    jim2100 New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Hi
    First allow me to say thanks to all whom make this forum possible.

    I just installed a kitchen sink where the old one hadn't worked for some 14 years. A nice new double bowl house sink with disposal. This is a 1963 mobile home. When I run the water everything appears to be working fine, until the water backs up in sinks; after only a few minutes or less of water running. Then it takes a long time, very long time to drain down.
    Any idea why it takes so long to drain? Is it a vent problem?
    Thanks
    Jim
  2. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Lets just say we can see this one from 2,000 miles away....
    I picture an old galvanized drain pipe with a nice almost flat pitch on a long run down to about where the bathroom is about 40'...
    It was probably clogged or, just about clogged when they stopped using it 15 years ago...
    The pipe was left open and all that grease n glop dried out for 15 years...
    :eek:Good Gawd I'm Glad I'm Not Being Sent On This Call!:eek:

    Its not a vent problem! Its a clog of a magnatude that will make some poor drain cleaning pro cry himself to sleep saying, "Why me?" "Why do I work for a flat rate company?" "Why me?"

    You need a Pro for this one!
    Maybe even a pro with a sawzall!
    Whatever you do don't even think for a minute that disposer should be on that line!
  3. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Drama aside ;), Redwood is correct. You are likely going to need the entire drain line replaced between the sink and wherever it goes, and maybe even beyond that.
  4. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Drama???? What drama???:rolleyes:

    I'd be surprised if a snake made it through that line....
  5. jim2100

    jim2100 New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Thanks Gents!

    You are right, it no longer appears to be a drain problem. I didn't even realize anything about a vent pipe. I just seal coat it every several years and never gave it anymore thought. So, I took the cap off the vent pipe and indeed found several wasp nests or combs blocking the top of vent. Success I thought. I ran down to the sink hoping to see an empty sink, only to be disappointed. I ran a flexible fish down the vent and sensed no blockage; concluding that I no longer have a vent problem.
    I do believe you experts figured it out. The drain is really clogged somewhere. i thought that I rodded it well enough when we installed the new sink. There is one, two-foot section of drain connecting the run in the wall to the main drain under the bathroom sink that i did not rod out that is probably causing the problem now as you say, It must be blocked with dried soap etc. as was the whole run of 20 feet from kitchen to bathroom.
    I will attempt this tomorrow, and report back.

    Thanks Again Gentlemen

    Jim
    Gary, In.

    Sure is a beautiful sink, even if I can't use it. :confused:
  6. Herk

    Herk Plumber

    Messages:
    547
    Location:
    S.E. Idaho
    Trailer house kitchen drains tend to run most of the length of the trailer, and are undersized with only 1-1/2" pipe. Grease, which is present in virtually all food, tends to get rinsed with hot water and by the time it gets to the other end of the drain has cooled just enough to stick to the pipe. Eventually, the water flow through the pipe is reduced to a hole about the size of your pinky and all it takes is one bit of debris to plug it completely.

    And that's if there's no swale in the pipe.

    With luck, someone with a snake can get through it, but a grease clog can be small or blocking a long segment of pipe and it can take a long time to drill through.

    Sometimes, it might be easier to get through the skirting and find the pipe and cut it out and replace it.
  7. jim2100

    jim2100 New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Thanks Herk

    Thanks Again,

    We cut the pipe out and then actually rodded it out and am now gluing it back together, with a drain trap at the end if I need to rod it out again. It seems to be flowing well now.
    Thanks and God Bless
    Jim
  8. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I do hope that you mean cleanout and not a trap...

    Congratulations on getting that drain going!
  9. Lalamommy808

    Lalamommy808 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Hawaii
    I am having a similar issue. My mobile home is only 13 years old and there has been no lapse in the kitchen sink usage. I have tried Foaming Pipe Snake, plunger, and 15' drain snake. The snake went all the way down with no results...any advice?
  10. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Lalamommy,
    Most kitchen sink drains I have seen in mobile homes are considerably longer than 15'. Look under through the skirting and see where the large pipe exits your home into the ground. This is the approximate distancel the snake would have to go unless you have more than 1 bathroom. More than likely your snake is not long enough.

    Long flat drain runs are often very difficult. Kitchen sink lines are frequently loaded with grease. The snake has to go the full distance turning and breaking up this grease breaking it up into small pieces that mix with water and liquify then run down the drain without jamming up at any choke points or turns. It's not a task that a hand snake often succeeds at or will do a good job at. I recommend hiring a pro for this job.
  11. Lalamommy808

    Lalamommy808 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Hawaii
    ok thanks. I really like to do things for myself but if a pro is my best option I likely will. I do know about grease being a bad thing to pour down drains but we always put hot water and soap in to emulsify it and thinking it might be a grease block anyways, we poured about 2 cups of liquid soap and about 6 gallons of boiling water down to attempt to break it up to no avail.

    As far as the 15' snake goes...it was the longest one we could buy and we were hoping for the blockage to be not too far from the sink itself but seeing how the snake went all the way down with no result tells me it is more than 11' past the sink (figuring in roughly 4' of undersink pipes)
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2008
  12. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    As you can see the original poster did have luck with a hand snake but he also ended up under the trailer cutting the pipe to get the job done. I cannot say whether the method he used cleaned the pipe sufficiently or the method he used to reconnect is not setting the stage for future problems.

    He stated that he installed a trap at that location which if he did infact do that he created problems that will indeed bite him down the road.
  13. Lalamommy808

    Lalamommy808 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Hawaii
    you will not catch me under my house cutting out pipes for sure!
  14. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,387
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    The hot water and soap probably seemed like a good idea, but I'm afraid the water cooled before it did any good. Clogged drains almost always require professionals to either jet or auger the drain with equipment that you and I don't either have access to or have any business trying to use as it can be very dangerous. In the case of a mobile home, it is possible to cut the PVC and replace it more or less easily, but even doing that it might be best to hire a plumber.
  15. Lalamommy808

    Lalamommy808 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    Hawaii
    yeah...my last resort is to call my dad and see whats hanging out in the garage and what he has for advice before I call the checkbook killers. This will officially be the first clog of ANYTHING that I havent been able to master and thats saying something since I grew up in a house built in the early 1900's!
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