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Drain Line Plugging Q's & A's

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Plumbing Problems 

Our master bathroom has a couple of problems I would like a second opinion on - The shower, tub and sink have a foul odor coming out of  their drains. I thought it might be a problem with the p trap, but it seems unusual to have the same odor coming out of all the drains.

  - The toilet in this room blocks occasionally.  It has been suggested to me that we may have a busted pipe. I have been asked if there are trees nearby,  thinking a root may have busted the pipe.

I am having a rooter company come in to try and clear the line.  I'm looking for other opinions before I settle for the worst. 

One possibility, is that the vent stack through the roof is blocked, causing the traps to be suctioned of water in them each time you flush.

This would account for both the trouble flushing the toilet and the sewer gas coming up through all drains.

If you hear a gurgling noise at the end of the drainage operation, then it is 95% sure that this is correct. You will still need the snaking company, but they will have to run the snake through the vent that goes out through the roof.

Trouble bathroom sink

My problem started when I lost a small part of my beard trimmer down my bathroom sink. At first I was able get it to drain by using a plunger or compressed air, but now it doesn't drain at all.What can I do? My bathroom is on a slab, so I can't work from under it.

The first thing I would try is to remove the trap under the sink and see if the part you lost is stuck in there.

Clogged Washer Drainpipe

The pipe that my washing machine water drains through seems to be somewhat clogged. The machine and pipe is in my garage, which has a concrete slab. I tried a little liquid Drano, but didn't work. Also ran a wooden stick as far as I could. Any suggestions? Alternatively, should I call a professional plumber?

* For under $10 you can buy a snake, which will go further than a stick and bend around the corners. Pick one up and the hardware store. As you run it through the lines turn it to help it go around corners. You should be able to 25 feet with one, so that should take you to the main pipe.

Look at our article on clogged pipes; click on the URL below:
Removing Clogs

Clogged tubs, toilets, and worms, oh my!

Today, our tubs and toilets stopped up after my daughter flushed an empty toilet and it overflowed. We have plunged and used an auger down the toilets and the tub drains (the bathrooms are back to back). We got mold and some sort of alien worm up into our tubs! They are about 1/2 inch long and ALIVE. We are now using Liquid Plumber and the drains are very slowly going down.

Any ideas on what the "worms" are. We have a ten-year-old house with a septic tank. This problem happened about a year ago except without the worms! That time everything started draining while auguring and we never felt the clog.

The worms are about the size of an inchworm and black. They have circular ridges around them. The worms went the tubs this morning but everything is still clogged. The kitchen sink is fine except the commodes gurgle if the kitchen sink is left running for a minute.

I have a book with pictures of various living creatures. The only thing I can find that might resemble what you have (it might fit the bill) is a millipede. They are from 1 to 5 inches long, black, with bands (ridges). If you were to look closely, do they have many tiny, tiny legs?

If so, this is what you have. They live in damp, dark places with the rocks, wood, leaves, and soil. They have to be millipedes. I can't see a worm (no legs) crawling up a slimy drain pipe. You must have a break in a line somewhere and they are getting in by way of the ground outside.

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We had a plumber come this afternoon and he got roots out of the line. We are ok now. They were worms, not millipedes. They didn't climb up the pipes, They basically backwashed up. The plumber said they were nothing to worry about! They were just eating "crap"! Sorry about that. Thanks again!

Click here for our Plumbing Tips Article
Click here for our Simple Toilet Repairs Article
Click here for our Clearing Clogged Drains Article

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