Sink Disposal Problem

I put pasta down the sink disposal tonight.. Shortly thereafter, the water would not go down the disposal. The disposal works, cutters go around, but the water does not go down. Used a plunger and water goes out the sink overflow. Nothing is stuck in the cutters, but the problem is that something is clogged.
Anyone have any experience correcting this type of problem? Any suggestions what to do? (I notice that there are plastic pipes under the sink that go from disposal to plastic line that eventually goes into wall, which apprently can abe unscrewed by the fittings.)
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Les wrote:

Try blocking the sink overflow by having someone press a wet rag firmly over it while you plunge the sink again with water in it. You may get lucky and force the clog down the drain.
Oh, and if there's a dishwasher adjacent to the sink with a drain hose feeding into the disposer, clamp that hose shut too or the plunging pressure will just force water into the dishwasher.
If that doesn't work, you are in for disconnecting the drain plumbing and snaking out that pasta, or just hiring a pro to do it for you, and "fixing it with your checkbook".
Permit me to say that what you said you did (putting pasta down the disposal) was a very dumb thing to do. Disposers are for grinding up small bits of food left clingling to plates and stuff which gets rinsed off them when washing dishes. Garbage cans are for dumping big gobns of stuff into.
Live and learn, Les.
HTH,
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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Jeff Wisnia wrote:

...............what you said you did (putting pasta down the disposal) was a very dumb thing to do. Disposers are for grinding up small bits of food left clingling to plates and stuff which gets rinsed off them when washing dishes. Garbage cans are for dumping big gobns of stuff into............
Jeff-
I have to disagree with you about the use of an "in-sink" garbage disposal. for general food disposal.
Having lived in homes w/ & w/o garbage disposals I can speak to the benefits of waste food going down the sink rather than into the "trash"; use of the garbage disposal greatly reduces the stink & flies associated with trashing waste food; esp in the summer.
In my homes with garbage disposals everything went down the sink except: onions skins, corn husks, corn cobs, fruit pits (just off the top of my head)
Mixing hard objects with soft ones helps; bones & veggies
A reasonable feed rate, adequate water flow & a decent unit will allow the disposal to handle about just about anything edible.
The very few clogs I've experienced were caused by me force feeding the unit, I was in a big hurry & just jammed the stuff down quickly. Usually caused by large amounts of lettuce, celery or cilantro.
Clog clearance was usually acheived by removing the trap & clearing or using a hose bladder further downstream.
http://plumbing.gillroys.com/Drain_cleaners_and_fixtures/Drain_cleaners:_snakes_and_augers/Do_it_Best_Drain_Cleaning_Bladder-s486043.html
YMMW :)
cheers Bob
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BobK207 wrote:

http://plumbing.gillroys.com/Drain_cleaners_and_fixtures/Drain_cleaners:_snakes_and_augers/Do_it_Best_Drain_Cleaning_Bladder-s486043.html
You put it far more eloquently than I did Bob, and I have to agree with what you said, moderation is the key. I made what I thought was a valid asumption, that Les jammed a sizeable amount of pasta down his disposer "all at once", and probably came down too hard on him over that.
OTOH, I've never lived in a home with a septic system, but from what I've heard, folks who do try and minimize the amount of stuff they put down their disposers, if they even have one.
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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Jeff Wisnia wrote:

Jeff-
I have some pretty good data (although anecdotal) wrt garbage disposal use w/ & w/o septic tank.
My folks' house was built with a septic tank & some years later a municipal sewer system was put in place & homes switched over.
My dad insisted on putting everything down the GD (for a time he was a Hobart repairman). We had between 4 & 6 people living in the house and there didn't appear to be any septic tank performance problem from the waste food.
We had the thing pumped out about every 2 years.
Of course the food waste added extra load the septic tank and resulted in more frequent pump outs.
I guess my dad was willing to pay the extra cost of more frequent pumping to have a convenient & sanitary means of waste food disposal.
cheers Bob
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RG60 CATV wire down the drain witout the disposal, pushed it to the bottom of the tee, and used a vigorous up and doen motion to loosen things just enough to get moving. The the rest takes care of itself. If that doesn't work, you have to take the elbow apart. It's not difficult, just a little messy.
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I would have tried blocking overflow, but am concerned water will go down to dishwasher.
Before I call a plumber, what do you guys think of getting something LIKE Drano or Liquid Plumber to pour into the garbage disposal? I say like, for I would consider these products too STRONG for plastic pipes.

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Les wrote:

under the

Sorry for getting back so slowly
I recommend against ever using any chems in a GD....most sudden clogs respond better to mechanical attempts to clear rather than chemical means anyway
Often a (if no vents or other escape routes exist) a qucik shot with a good plunger will do the trick
Here's how to proceed in your case
Get a couple of cardboard boxes, put all the stuff from under the sink into them....get everything under the sink out of the way.
Put a low plastic tub or pail inder the trap & remove the trap....hopefully the trap is the location of the clog & you're done.
If not perhaps the clog is in the wall where the lateral meets the vent / drain pipe.
If you got the air bladder I suggested, shove it into the pipe in the wall, making sure it goes down, fire up the hose & blast that clog out of there!
If you don't have the air bladder you can substitute a snake.
If you've got standing water in the sink use your wet / dry vac to get all the water out before undoing the trap
let us know how it turns out
cheers Bob
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Thanks for all your comments and suggestions. Problem has been solved. I decided to block the overflow and use the plunger again on the garbage disposal side of sink. Initially it didn't work since I held a towel tight against the overflow, but the water still escaped there. So, I then used duct tape on the opening, and when I used the plunger, alas, IT WORKED!! It is now unclogged.

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