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Thread: Snake runs back and forth from one drain to another

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    DIY Junior Member crosjn's Avatar
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    Default Snake runs back and forth from one drain to another

    I'm a DIY guy with a clog / extremely slow bathroom drain - bathroom has just a sink and a tub. The sink backfills into the tub. Neither drains. Pulled the overflow off the tub and tried a snake. It runs over to the bathroom sink. So I pulled the trap on the sink and started the snake there. Runs right back over and up out of the bathtub overflow. I'm guessing someone saved a buck and used a T instead of Wye fitting? But anyone have any recommendation on what to do next?

    The sink drain is PVC. No idea on the tub. Anyone used the water pressure bladder things? I was thinking of sticking one in the sink and one in the tub and turning them on together? But I'm a little leery of pressure in the drain line.

    We're on a septic system so I'm double-reluctant to use drain cleaners. And there's a second bathroom not 6 foot away from this one and it drains fine. It sits slightly further from the septic holding tank.

    Jeff

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    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
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    Fill the tub with water and use a damp rag to block the overflow while using a plunger on the tub drain with a series or short, quick strokes followed by a few seconds of draining to try to dislodge what is likely a hairball. For me, that is a semi-annual event.
    "Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events and small minds discuss people." --Eleanor Roosevelt

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member crosjn's Avatar
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    Given that the sink backs up into the tub - doesn't that mean the clog is downstream of both fixtures? And as such, won't the pressure just run down the line and back out the sink? Oh, but I already disconnected the trap under the sink. I'll try plugging that outlet as well and see what happens. Thanks for the advice!

    Jeff

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    DIY scratch-pad engineer leejosepho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosjn View Post
    Given that the sink backs up into the tub - doesn't that mean the clog is downstream of both fixtures?
    Yes, so you could (at least theoretically) do your plunging at the sink and get the same effect.

    And as such, won't the pressure just run down the line and back out the sink?
    If you use a garden hose and actual pressure, yes, that will likely happen. But with a plunger, that should not matter as much as the tub overflow.

    Oh, but I already disconnected the trap under the sink. I'll try plugging that outlet as well and see what happens.
    If you end up trying actual water pressure, that might be a good place to apply it since the tub could contain the overflow and the tub's drain and overflow could be used to help control the pressure.
    "Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events and small minds discuss people." --Eleanor Roosevelt

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    DIY Senior Member Reach4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosjn View Post
    Anyone used the water pressure bladder things? I was thinking of sticking one in the sink and one in the tub and turning them on together? But I'm a little leery of pressure in the drain line.
    I have used a BrassCraft Drain Bladder for a drain pipe that served a basement washing machine, laundry sink, and a kitchen sink above. To get good access, I cut a section out of the copper down pipe about 5 feet above the basement floor. I fed the bladder on a garden hose down as far as I could, which I think got it down to basement floor level or below. That put it below the entry from the laundry sink and washer. I closed the drain pipe opening with the sawn-out piece of pipe and a pair of Fernco couplings. The bladder was effective. I did it a second time a few years later.

    Those things blow a small jet of water forward which would be more effective, I think, if you could get it closer to your blockage.

    I don't know how you would stick one of those bladders into a tub.

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    DIY Senior Member Hairyhosebib's Avatar
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    Is this resolved? If it is possible to get on your roof and stuff a wet rag in the vent pipe over this bathroom you might be able to remove the drain from under the sink and cap it off. Then stuff another wet rag into the overflow on your tub and then take a wet vac and just suck the stoppage out. More than likely it is a hairball.
    My Father in laws kitchen sink was backing up just a few days ago. I told him I wanted a ladder to get on the roof to plug off the vent and he could not understand after I explained this to him. After very few pulls of the plunger it was draining like new again. He was pretty impressed that he did not have to take the drain apart and run a cable in to clear the stoppage. If you have a two story house or a tile roof you might not want to try this.

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    TROJAN WORLDWIDE SALES RP MACPLUMB 777's Avatar
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    Professional plumbers and drain people know this and that is why in
    the south we go up on the roof to run our power snakes down though
    these vents on back to back drains to clear a blockadge

    MACPLUMB 777

    E-MAIL
    JERRYMAC@TROJANWORLDWIDE.COM


    35 YEAR MASTER PLUMBER, HEATING, ELECTRIC, DRAINS, FIRE SPRINKLERS, WATER HEATER
    AND BOILERS SINCE JAN, 1989

    281-706-1631 7 DYS A WEEK SALES AND TECH. SUPPORT
    Trojan Worldwide Web Site


     



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