Slow Basement Drain

My basement drain seems to back up whenever I run the upstairs dishwasher or leave the water on for too long in the kitchen sink. The water eventually does drain, but very slowly.
I tried using Drain-O but did not have any luck. We have had quite a bit more rain than average this spring, could that be the cause, or do you think it is clogged?
Would it do any good for me to run out and buy a snake? If so, do you just run the snake down the drain, or do I have to find an access port?
Any idea how much Roto-Rooter charges?
Thanks, Dan
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lagman wrote:

It is not the floor drain that is clogged; it is the house drain downstream of the floor drain and kitchen drain.
Where do they meet and how far away is it?? No telling. Plus...the actual clog could be even further from that junction.
I'm all for DIY, but this one warrants hiring experience, I think.
Jim
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You could run out and get a small snake and run it down the drain but these are often too short or the blade too small for the larger 4" main drain. It won't cost much and it can't hurt to snake the sinks especially the bathroom once in a while just for preventative maintenance. Very often this kind of snaking just pushes debris against the partial clog turning it into a complete clog requiring immediate attention.
Once that don't pay off you should be able to get a drain cleared for less than $100. Look for a coupon or an advertized price in the yellow pages. There are many plumbers who do this not just roro rooter who is probably on the more expensive side. I payed $79 to have the main drain outside cleared, an inside drain might be same price.
In many cases the clog will be outside and caused by tree roots. If the clog is in your yard, you pay. If the clog ends up past the sidewalk, call the city and they will fix it. There should be a cleanout close to the house and another close to the sidewalk for suburban single family houses. Open the cleanout outside and see if the water is standing in there as well, that will prove an outside clog.
You see the backup in the dain you do because it is the lowest in your system and the first place for water to come out. Sounds like you are just a few wads of TP away from a complete clog

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I went to Lowe's and bought a $20 20 foot auger (the kind that works with a drill) and that did the trick. I went in through the access port on the side of the drain and found a hairball about 5 feet in. Everything drains fine now.
The only problem now is that the hole that the plastic cleanout screws into is rusted, so I can only get the cover back on about one turn. Not knowing much about drains, what could potentially happen if I leave it as is?
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lagman wrote:

I'm presuming your drains are connected to city sewage and not to your own septic system, but it wouldn't hurt to make that clear to us.
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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It is connected to the city. I assume the problem is somewhere closer to the house, since the basement drain only backs up when I use the dishwasher and kitchen sink. I can run any other faucet/toilet in the house for an hour and no back up.
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