rodding the drain

Discussion in 'Drain Cleaning' started by Ed from chicago, Sep 16, 2007.

  1. Ed from chicago

    Ed from chicago Member

    Messages:
    62
    Location:
    Chicago
    Hi all!

    I was rodding my drain today, from a Y in the basement, I ean my 1/4" augur 25' and was pulling it out, when low and behold, I could not pull the snake completely out. It apparently got hook on to something and I tried pulling until the augur started stretching, now I have about 5 to 10 feet of augur stuck in the drain. Has anyone else ever have this problem, and any suggestions, as to how to get the remaining 5 to 10 feet out?


    Thanks so much, you guys are full of info for us dummies.
  2. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    Yup i have had this happen and it does suck big time. You need to try and turn the cable in the reverse direction. It is not easy. The other choice is to dig up the line and remove the cable. Sometimes you can pull till it gives kind of like tug-of-war when the other side lets go you fly back.:D
  3. Ed from chicago

    Ed from chicago Member

    Messages:
    62
    Location:
    Chicago

    Thanks, for your input. I tried cranking in reverse, but to no avail. The drain pipe runs down into the concrete floor, so tomorrow, I will try again. Where the Y is located, I have limited space to struggle with the darn snake, and since it's only 1/4", I was afraid of breaking it. :(
  4. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    If you break it you will need to dig it up. If you can't get it out you will need to dig it up. I would try like heck to get it out. It sounds like your stuck on a broken pipe or hit something that caused your cable to double back on its self. This happens when the cable hits something that it cant handle. The pipe might be to big for that size cable. Is this the main your trying to cable? if not and it is a 2" cast iron line your cable could have left the pipe and got stuck in the dirt. If it is the 4" main the cable could just have balled up or left the pipe. I took a piece of pipe once and wrapped the cable around it to create a tee handle. This helped alot.
    If this is your 4" main the cable should pull out with some effort if its a 2" line you will have a harder time.
    This is the hardest part of drain cleaning and why we charge so much for the work we do.
  5. kordts

    kordts In the Trades

    Messages:
    551
    Location:
    exurban Chicago
    You need a real rodding machine and not a toy. You are at the point where you need to hire a professional to save the situation from getting worse. Hire a plumbing company that rods drains, not a rooter company.
  6. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    :(. Why not? All drain companies I have talked to charge for removing the customers cable and then charge for the drain cleaning and if they get there cable stuck they are very quick to cut take your $$ and run. A lot of drain companies are not plumbers and should not even do half the stuff they do without a license.
    Everybody is quick to blame one of the rooters for all the problems that are out there but i have seen more crappy work done by none rooters than any of the rooters. There are many rooters out there and saying all are the same is a pile of poop. Thats like saying all plumbers will charge alot of money and make a mess of your house.
  7. Ed from chicago

    Ed from chicago Member

    Messages:
    62
    Location:
    Chicago
    Thanks all for your input, it's a 2" iron pipe connected to the catch basin, I will try the pipe handle suggestion.
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,631
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    cable

    Ae you saying that the plumber should remove the cable for free, and then start charging for snaking the line? Not going to happen. We are saying that many, if not most "drain company" employees are paid on commission and the longer the job takes, or the more work that can be sold, the bigger the paycheck. So there is little incentive to do the work for the least total cost, and a lot of incentive to make the job as difficult as possible, or even perform work that is not needed. Since many of the companies give new employees a couple of weeks worth of "training" before sending them out on their own, the level of expertise, compared to a plumber who spends five years learning his trade, can be minimal.
  9. Ed from chicago

    Ed from chicago Member

    Messages:
    62
    Location:
    Chicago

    Thanks Patrick, I took a pair of vise grips and tugged until the snake stretched (1/4") and then was able to remove the snake it appeared that the snake tangled, but by stretching it, it came out.

    Thanks all.
  10. patrick88

    patrick88 Plumber

    Messages:
    836
    Location:
    Webster Ma.
    Good job. Now if you need to call a pro it will be a bit easer on the wallet.

    I trained as a drain cleaner for 16 weeks. I also learn new tricks often. I tend not to do drains being a plumber, we keep the grunt work for the noobs. I do know most plumbers don't know how to use a snake and the ones that do tend to mess stuff up.

    Oh and for everybodies info a 1/4" snake is no good on a 2" drain you need a 3/8" snake and it probably will not kink or tangle up. If you have good access trying a blow bag works wonders if used right.
Similar Threads: rodding drain
Forum Title Date
Drain Cleaning Drain Cleaning sewer main lines with backflow valves Aug 28, 2014
Drain Cleaning Finding the end of an exterior drain Aug 11, 2014
Drain Cleaning Cleaning blocked exterior drain line... Jul 30, 2014
Drain Cleaning Possible broken drain pipe, shower, toilet, sink clogged. May 31, 2014
Drain Cleaning Smelly drain - not sewer Apr 29, 2014

Share This Page