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Thread: Why is everything draining into my kitchen sink?

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Ka's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Default Why is everything draining into my kitchen sink?

    Hello all,

    I'll start with a little background info: We live in an old house, but the plumbing is new. We replaced all of the old galvanized pipe in the house within the past 6 months. The previous owners completely replaced the septic system about 3 years ago.

    Now for the problem: we went away for 4th of July weekend and returned to find a bit of water on the kitchen counter (1st floor), and we were unable to determine where it came from. Thankfully I was still awake later that same night when our water softener (basement) went into its regeneration cycle and water started pouring out of our kitchen sink, all over the kitchen floor. Prior to this, the only indication that something was wrong was the shower (2nd floor) draining a little slower than usual. Now, whenever we shower we can hear water trying to gurgle up through the kitchen sink. We spoke to a plumber about this over the weekend and he said it sounded like a septic problem. We called somebody for septic and he said we needed a plumber, but he will be over to assess the situation this week.

    When my husband opened the drain pipe in the basement, water came shooting out of it. Neither of us know what is causing this, and we don't really know who we're supposed to be calling. For what it's worth, the toilet seems to be operating perfectly and we have no standing water near the leach field/septic. Does this sound more like a drain clog? Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    You have a plugged drain, but a serious issue is that the softener is apparently "hard piped" into the drain system which it should NEVER be. There is a very real potential for the sewer water to back up into the softener and contaminate your water supply. If it had been connected properly, there would still have been an overflow but it would have happened in the basement.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    The proper connection HJ refers to is similar to that required for washing machines and dishwashers. These drains have a air gap instead of a solid pipe connection. As he says, these don't prevent overflow, but they do prevent the overflow from getting to the innards of the appliance. I would appear the redo of the drains was done by a non professional. It would be wise to have a real plumber evaluate your entire drain system and correct this and any other problems before serious health problems occur. I would bypass the water softener until this is done. I suspect the softener has already been contaminated. This is not the time for a trial and error approach by a novice. E Coli is potentially fatal.

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