Drain Clogged in a very weird way.

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Old 04-24-17, 01:45 PM
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Drain Clogged in a very weird way.

Hi everybody,

After trying chemical solutions, a pump and two different drain-snakes, my drain is still 100% clogged (not a drop of water goes through anymore). I have measured the second snake (the first one was only 15 feet long, not enough I guessed) and it goes all the way through the main drain, which flows perfectly (It also goes past a second sink connected on the same pipe which also flows perfectly) as you can see on the drawing below.

What really puzzles me is that: when the snake is inside, pushed full-way through, I manage to make flow (using a gardenhose) some water, not much, maybe 1gallon per 2minutes, maybe even less... But when the snake is pulled back out, no water goes through at all. not a single drop. Even when using a pump and putting some real pressure to the pipe...

Any idea what to do now (I didn't design the house and cutting the pipe would involve destroying 20feet of walls... definitely not a solution...)?

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Thanks
 
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Old 04-24-17, 02:18 PM
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yo-

I not an expert for sure, but is there any way you really haven’t gotten the snake all the way to the 2nd sink? I know I’ve used snakes before and wasn’t really sure how far it went – but that may just be my lack of experience. Is there any way you can absolutely confirm the snake made it to sink 2 by doing something at sink 2?

Is the snake too small for the pipe (I think that can happen, not sure) so you aren’t really clearing the blockage?

I’m sure the experts will be along.

Good luck!

(p.s. I think they will tell you not to use chemicals)
 
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Old 04-24-17, 02:31 PM
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Hi, Thanks a lot.

Actually I was 99% sure due to the measurement and no other way for the snake to go, but I had the idea to check with a strong magnet and could stick the drain-snake to the magnet through the pvc main-pipe wall (and of course it didn't stick if I pulled the snake out few feets). So definitely 100% sure it went all the way through yes.

Regarding chemicals, I just used Lye (caustic-soda/NaOH), but was maybe thinking maybe some acid used carefully... Is that a very bad idea?

You are probably right regarding the diameter of the snake, it's not ideal, but I can't imagine that not a drop of water will go through if the snake actually passed all the way through... I was thinking adding some thickness to the snake using a metal-wire wrapped around, but was also afraid of losing the part in the tube... That'll probably be my next move though

Thanks again
 
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Old 04-24-17, 02:45 PM
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Somewhere in the system is a vent pipe. If you can stop the vent pipe temporarily, you can use compressed air or water to blast through the clog. You don't use chemicals because if a plumber comes out and has to cut the pipe, he can get burned from the chemicals in the pipe. If it comes to that, please warn him ahead of time.
 
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Old 04-24-17, 02:51 PM
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Thanks czizzi, that's actually what I meant when I was talking about a "pump". I would say I put something like 1.5 to 2bars pressure inside the pipe. Didn't move an inch.
 
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Old 04-24-17, 03:01 PM
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You can't just punch through the clog, you have to ramrod it in and out multiple times to break it up. If it is like my house it is a hair clog from my wife about the size of a squirrel that is matted with soap scum and other such stuff. What type of end do you have on your snake?
 
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Old 04-24-17, 03:15 PM
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I feel what you mean, but does it make any sense to you that it remains like 100% sealed after the snake went through (It actually went all the way through and out 3 times at least)? Like not even a single drop of water? That's really what I don't get... I'll try again anyways. But also since it's really sealed, pumping in and out doesn't really make any move... I'll try that again also anyways. Thanks
 
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Old 04-24-17, 03:19 PM
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The end of the snake (I added a smaller one at the end, which facilitates going through the turns...)

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Old 04-24-17, 03:22 PM
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Looks like a spring not a snake. A snake should have either a ball on the end or a corkscrew so you can grind through the clog.
 
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Old 04-24-17, 03:51 PM
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I see. That looked like a corkscrew to me actually... You can see how it differs from the rest of the body on this picture :

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It also has a crank handle on the other end. Anyways, would you be in favour of adding thickness ? Some sort of ball somewhere like 15/20" from the end using metal-wire wrapped tight around the snake body?
 
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Old 04-24-17, 05:00 PM
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I just think your snake end is rather wimpy. I would be concerned with something attached falling off inside you pipes that would be even worse than what you have. Possibly rent a more substantial auger to help you out.
 
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Old 04-24-17, 06:03 PM
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I rented something like this from Home Depot once, not this exactly this but very similar; it was called Easy-Rooter. Was very easy to use and has cutter attachments for the end. Worked great.

Auto-Feed Drain Cleaner 75' X 1/2" Rental - The Home Depot
 
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Old 04-24-17, 10:30 PM
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Make sure your snake is going down the drain

Have you confirmed that your snake is routing toward the house sewer? It may be headed up a vent or up another waste line that branches into that line.

Also, it could just be that your piping is failing. For example, an old galvanized drain pipe might be heavily corroded.

I had a situation once where an early remodel resulted in a slight short uphill section in a drain line. This was workable for over 50 years, only needed snaking or reaming every few years. Eventually, I cut out enough piping that I could get both a good downhill flow and had accessible clean-outs if there was a future failure.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 04:53 AM
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You have a very heavily corroded drain. I had a neighbor who I had to unclog a main drain. It took all day to ram through the heavy build up of junk. You need a heavy duty snake with a bullet head on it. They cost a bit but it's worth it.
 
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Old 04-25-17, 09:28 PM
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I rented something like this from Home Depot once, not this exactly this but very similar; it was called Easy-Rooter. Was very easy to use and has cutter attachments for the end. Worked great.
Yeah, what zoesdad said is probably your best bet. Especially because you said that when you run your auger through it does flow slightly vs none when the auger comes back out. Is this a kitchen sink clog or bathroom clog? Wondering more whether hair vs grease. Grease can be penetrated and then clog back up upon removal of something as thin as your auger.

The one you can rent such as in zoesdad's link may come with different tips. Check this out, it might look like this after you use one of the machines with a proper tip. Here is a pic of a real corkscrew tip like czizzi was saying, look how much it can pull out! Screw it in to clog and pull the line straight back out without twisting again (if possible) and you might pull out a chunk like this...:

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