dishwasher detergent clogging drain

On 24/03/2015 16:49, Nick wrote:

+1
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On Tue, 24 Mar 2015 14:22:26 +0000, Rusty wrote:

Just checking - there is no chance that this is from a washing machine?
Reason I ask is that powder in washing machines can clog up drains if you put too much in.
One of my least pleasant memories is cleaning out a grid where the washing machine (previous owner) had filled the U bend with congealed white stuff.
Cheers
Dave R
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Thanks for responses. It is not lamb or other meat fats. It is a congealed, greasy, thin, near white cement type consistency, but greasy and sticky on the hands and arms. At its worst, the rods with claw end break free solid, then semi-solid crap. I keep the dishwasher topped up with salt which should soften the water. Nasty, very hard Cambridge water. There is no feed from a washing machine into this drain. It has a reasonable fall, but does turn a corner, maybe 45 deg as soon 6 inch after it hits the drain pipe. I'm not the only one. A colleague across town had similar, and so did his neighbour. The neighbour apparantly paid DynoRod ~£250 to fix ! But mine seems worse than theirs.
I think I'll try the hot caustic soda every 6 months.
Thanks.
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Sounds like it's the very hard water then.

Doesn't sound like it's the fat that that works with that is the problem.
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The problem with modern dishwashers is that they are designed to use a very minimum of water. Maybe not enough to flush away residues in this case. If a wash hand basin was also connected to the same drain it might help.
Most dishwasher detergents contain a softener.
Could be there is an obstruction in the drain. More likely if the drain is earthenware.
Or could be missized. Oversized is as bad as undersized.
Maybe you should get a proper chemical ion exchange water softener. But don't drink the water.
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I wonder if a liquid dishwasher detergent would help?
I'm intrigued as to what the deposit is as I've never noticed such a thing. But maybe that's because the drain here has the sink feeding it as well. Maybe it's something about he local water supply?

<snip>

Dishwashers include a built in water softner
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One thing that I've found clogging drains is shaving soap.
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On 24/03/2015 20:29, Rusty wrote:

I run the dishwasher empty every few months, on max temp, with an eggcup of caustic soda instead of detergent. I figure it flushes out any gunk in the dishwasher pumps etc, and then flushes the drain.
Not *recommending* this - it's worked for us for a long time, but maybe the caustic soda is doing something horrible to the dishwasher and it will blow up tomorrow.
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It isn't the dishwasher detergent that congeals.

Same one I have used for decades now.

I don't believe that. I am currently running my latest dishwasher on the 6' wide concrete slab that runs the whole of the length of that part of the back of the house, under the 6' eave there just because I have been too lazy to install it in the kitchen in place of the previous one.
So the drain is just lying on the ground, so I can see that nothing congeals at all.

Work out what is congealing.
At one time I used to tip the molten fat out of the big stainless steel pan I do the legs of lamb in and then just put the whole thing in the bottom of the dishwasher. That approach does end up with a lot of fat in the drain and that does certainly congeal there.
I don't do that anymore, wipe the pan out with kitchen paper and that has fixed the fat problem.

I don't believe that is going to make any difference. The solid pellets of detergent are completely dissolved during the wash cycle and that dissolved detergent doesn't ever congeal when its cold.
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replying to Rod Speed , A Cepeda wrote:

We do not have a dishwasher, we do not put fat or oils down the drain, but we wash our clothes a lot with liquid detergent. We have the same problem. I believe our problem is the cold and that the septic tank does not empty fluids fast enough when there is heavy use of the washer machine, toilet, showers, etc. (i.e., when the house is full of guests).
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On 10/01/2016 00:44, A Cepeda wrote:

For some time now I have been using Muck Munchers, placing it in the toilet bowl once a month. I have found it extremely efficient. I had the tank emptied before starting with the product, though this is purportedly no necessary. The money you save not having the tank emptied more than of sets the price of the product. apart from being a customer I have no connection to the company.
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On 00:44 10 Jan 2016, A Cepeda wrote:

Corr, that was an old thread you replied to! :-)
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On Tuesday, March 24, 2015 at 9:22:31 AM UTC-5, Rusty wrote:

I know this message was a couple of years ago, but we are currently experie ncing the same problem. I found this thread hoping to find ways to get it unclogged and prevent it from happening again.
I won't say which brand of powdered dishwasher detergent it was (except tha t it was a major brand), but I stopped buying it because I noticed it was c lumping together, sticking to the sides of the dishwasher, and giving our d ishes a powdery-film appearance.
When the dishwasher stopped draining, I opened up the filter to clean it ou t and found huge clumps of the dishwasher powder all caked together...subst antially larger than the filter-holes themselves, meaning it clumped togeth er inside the filter itself.
(Doubters please note, companies can change their ingredients without notic e, get a one-time shipment of ingredients that are substandard or fake, and some ingredients have changed due to recent federal regulations...especial ly ingredients previously used to soften hard water).
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On 15/06/2017 16:38, snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net wrote:

I don't doubt you, in fact I've wondered why it doesn't happen at times- having seen the problems you can get with liquid washing fluid in washing machines. In the past I've noticed quite a serious build up of 'gunge' in the waste. It seems, from what I've read on the net, the grey gunge is a mix of fat (body oil), washing fluid, and hard water deposits. Given there will be fat in dishwasher water, while the water is softened. unless the detergent is very different, why no gunge?
Changing back to washing powder seemed to do the trick with our washing machine, along with convincing my wife not to use too much.
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On 15/06/2017 17:19, Brian Reay wrote:

Run an occasional hot wash with a full 1kg of washing soda. https://www.tesco.com/groceries/product/details/default.aspx?id (5047163
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On Thursday, 15 June 2017 19:36:04 UTC+1, alan_m wrote:

way excessive
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I have no dishwasher but a plumber told me some time ago that although this detergent removes grease, the grease and the detergent can clump into what he termed fat Burgs in sewers which are surprisingly solid, and obviously filters and plumbing in houses have the same problem. I've certainly not found any answer, as even hand washing greasy plates with Fairy liquid seems to result in this congealing effect further down the drain. Brian
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replying to Rusty, John wrote: I have the same problem. Since we preprinted dishes it’s not grease buildup. We have a septic tank so all plumbing in in basement ceiling. It is definitely the detergent. We have been using the he’ll packs but will be going back to liquid Same thing happened to my daughter’s house. She used powder detergent. It filled the pipe with a sandy substance, which I assume are the filler materials added to the detergent
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On 26/09/2018 22:14, John wrote:

Never seen it with a dishwasher but, in the past, we had problems with liquid clothes detergent in a washing machine. The outlet and drain became gunged up with a grey, chalky, paste.
Some research indicated it was a known issue- detergent residue, body oil/fat (from clothes), hard water deposits, .... all mixed up. We don't get it with power.
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On Wednesday, 26 September 2018 21:14:04 UTC+1, John wrote:

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A lot of that doesn't make sense. If you have sandy deposits your drain isn 't draining well enough. I'd check the machine outlet is running freely & c heck the waste plumbing flow & layout.
NT
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