Clearing Drains with Air Pressure

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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com posted for all of us...

+1 What I was going to suggest.
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Tekkie

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In wrote:

I had already removed the entire ceiling in the living room below the second floor bath and I now have full access to the sink and bathtub drain lines from underneath. They are both the old style narrow lead pipes, and they both just come through the floor above and run horizontally right along the bottom of the floor -- with each one ending into the side of the toilet waste line. There really is no way to increase the pitch based on where they are now and where they currently tie into the sewer line. I have photos from underneath and I could post them, but I'll probably pass on doing that since what I just described is really the whole story.
Now that everything is open from underneath, I think that I am probably going to run new PVC sink and tub drain lines and route them in a different direction down inside the living room walls and into the unfinished basement. Then, I'll tie them into the 4-inch horizontal main sewer line in the basement. That would allow me to use a larger PVC drain pipe size (probably 1 1/2 inch PVC) and create plenty of pitch, and have both fixtures drain directly into the main horizontal sewer line in the basement.
That's really the only good fix for what I have now, but I just have to muster up the energy and the time to go ahead and do that. If I do that, the slow drain and easy clog issues that exist now will be gone forever.
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On Friday, January 15, 2016 at 4:03:25 PM UTC-5, TomR wrote:

Just keep in mind that running the pipes down the living room wall may introduce noise from the water running through. The issue is:discussed here...
http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/asktoh/question/0,,603768,00.html
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In typed:

That's true. I think the noise problem with PVC vs. cast iron is worse with 3-inch or 4-inch PVC for the toilet flushing. I will be leaving the cast iron stack for the toilet in place, but the new vertical PVC in the LR wall will be for the 2nd floor sink drain and tub drain. I may do some extra insulating for the sound, but I am not sure. However, I did something similar in another property for a 2nd floor sink and tub drain and I didn't do any sound insulating and the noise level isn't really a problem.
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On Thu, 14 Jan 2016 09:40:56 -0800, "Snuffy \"Hub Cap\" McKinney"
The "plumbers helper" has been used for decades and more - and there is a modification to the old standard that has a pump cyl in the handle that provides a good shot of air. I've had one for over 15 years and it works GREAT for clearing drains.

I would limit pressure to 30 PSi -and it will clean blockages but not the kind you get in a washer hose with 4 elbows in it. Flushing with hot water like you did is the best way to purge a soap-scum and lint blocked disaster in waiting.
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On Thu, 14 Jan 2016 19:53:44 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

OOPS - got an extra zero in there - limit to about 3 psi. - that's 5.1 pounds of pressure on the bung in a 1.5" pipe.
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On Thursday, January 14, 2016 at 12:41:12 PM UTC-5, Snuffy "Hub Cap" McKinn ey wrote:

I can see that could be useful where there are too many elbows in a small diameter pipe for a regular snake. Anyone have experience using pressure like this?

d first. And also what's a reasonable high pressure limit?

ere are 4 elbows before it gets to the main house drain. I was able to cle ar out part of the piping with a small diameter snake, but not all. Eventu ally got it cleared out alternating boiling water, then flushing with hot w ater, then drano, water flush, snake, etc. Also make a tight connection fr om the hot water faucet to the 1-1/2 standpipe and ran it until it flowed n ormally. All this worked, but it took a lot of time.
I bought a CO2 powered drain unclogger; it uses the same CO2 cartridges tha t I use in my seltzer bottle. Works pretty well but I have to cover the ven t hole in the sink with a wet rag.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwxPltLENic

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wrote:

When I lived in an apartment, I used a CO2 fire extinguisher to clear a chronically clogged toilet (wooden Q tips flushed) It worked great and we never had another clog. Unfortunately I had blown the pipe open down in the storage area below and we pretty much flooded the place before they found it.
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In

Oops. Funny story.
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I have seen these gadgets that use air pressure for drain pipe blockages. I can see that could be useful where there are too many elbows in a small diameter pipe for a regular snake. Anyone have experience using pressure like this?

Why not use a plunger? Same idea. Less money. I find a plunger often works for minor clogs. If it doesn't then a snake is probably going to be needed.
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I have read that there is a preferred pitch for sink waste lines and it mig ht be different for toilet waste lines. There is some particular slope/pit ch that is optimal for carrying the waste products along the pipe> Too flat and nothing moves vey well, but too steep and the water runs off too fast leaving the waste behind. I don't have an answer, just remember reading ab out the problem somewhere over the last 10 years or so.
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snipped-for-privacy@att.net posted for all of us...

DAGS or ask AHJ.
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Tekkie

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in message

blockages. I can see that could be useful where there are too many elbows in a small diameter pipe for a regular snake. Anyone have experience using pressure like this?

plugged first. And also what's a reasonable high pressure limit?

there are 4 elbows before it gets to the main house drain. I was able to clear out part of the piping with a small diameter snake, but not all. Eventually got it cleared out alternating boiling water, then flushing with hot water, then drano, water flush, snake, etc. Also make a tight connection from the hot water faucet to the 1-1/2 standpipe and ran it until it flowed normally. All this worked, but it took a lot of time.

Well, I pulled the outlet house out of the standpipe, connected a hose to the hot water spigot and turned in on full blast into the standpipe and it never even started to back up. Flow was much faster than the washer puts out. Just for fun, I gave it the hot water treatment plus 2 drano dumps, then replaced the washer hose.
Then I saw that the hose had backed out of the pipe and turned so that the water was now hitting the walls and not going directly down. I turned it and put some silicone around it to keep it from turning and took care of the backing up.
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in message

blockages. I can see that could be useful where there are too many elbows in a small diameter pipe for a regular snake. Anyone have experience using pressure like this?

plugged first. And also what's a reasonable high pressure limit?

there are 4 elbows before it gets to the main house drain. I was able to clear out part of the piping with a small diameter snake, but not all. Eventually got it cleared out alternating boiling water, then flushing with hot water, then drano, water flush, snake, etc. Also make a tight connection from the hot water faucet to the 1-1/2 standpipe and ran it until it flowed normally. All this worked, but it took a lot of time.

Well, I pulled the outlet house out of the standpipe, connected a hose to the hot water spigot and turned in on full blast into the standpipe and it never even started to back up. Flow was much faster than the washer puts out. Just for fun, I gave it the hot water treatment plus 2 drano dumps, then replaced the washer hose.
Then I saw that the hose had backed out of the pipe and turned so that the water was now hitting the walls and not going directly down. I turned it and put some silicone around it to keep it from turning and took care of the backing up.
And, yes, I sealed that sucker water and air tight. I was hoping that would kill the pump by now, but with my luck it will probably be there long after I'm gone.
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In

Oops, I don't think you are supposed to seal the washer discharge hose in the drain pipe where it is air tight and water tight. Anything that pumps water into any drain line is supposed to have an air gap in the system. That prevents the stuff in the sewer line from backing up into the water supply system. If you do a Google search for ---> sewer drain air gap <--- and then click on Google Images, you'll see lots of examples of how the air gap is supposed to be set up.
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TomR posted for all of us...

+1 for that it should not be airtight. So Snuffy you are telling us the drain is no longer constipated and everything is up to Snuff?
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Tekkie

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many

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I see what you mean about the suction break. I can't risk having it overflow. What about adding this tee and running a 1-inch line straight out the wall of the house to the outside?
http://oi64.tinypic.com/29dxpg3.jpg
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On Tue, 19 Jan 2016 16:28:26 -0600, Snuffy "Hub Cap" McKinney

Would a plumbing auto vent be a better solution?
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In

I think you could do something like that, but I would try to have the Tee come off of the PVC pipe and then go to the outside. Or, maybe it could be another "Y" like the one you have now and place it below the existing Y. Or, put the washer pump-out hose into the top of the existing PVC and run an overflow from the side of the exiting Y to the outside.
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Anyone

hose.

probably

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Tee

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Y.

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In this case, the Y is completely inside the wall. I will have to connect a tees between the Y and the washer hose.
http://i249.photobucket.com/albums/gg234/sammybinsnoozin/adapter.gif
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