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

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  1. #1

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

    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. #2


    The one thing I do is to use copper sulfate in my outside drain.

    I would do this after I got the clog out. I buy my sulfate crystals at where else, Home D.

    I do the sulfate twice a year and it helps in keeping out the tree roots on mine.


    Last edited by Cookie; 11-15-2008 at 02:29 PM.

  3. #3
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Bothell, Washington
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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 Cookie; 11-15-2008 at 02:29 PM.

  4. #4


    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 by Cookie; 11-15-2008 at 04:31 PM.

  5. #5
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Yakima WA


    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. #6


    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,

  7. #7


    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. #8
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    New England


    It's possible, but probably not up to code. I'm assuming you don't have sewers and are on a septic system?
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014


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