Nothing is more important than considering the health of both your sewer line and drains this spring. Much like any other system in your home, both of these systems are prone to problems, especially clogs. A clog usually occurs when there is some sort of blockage found within your pipes.
Thankfully, there are ways around these series of backups. If you follow the following steps, you can keep your pipes running smoothly this season.
Typical Causes of Sewer Backups
Sewer backups can lead to In terms of residential backups; there are many contributing factors. These include:
- Tree Root Intrusion
- Grease Accumulation
- Improper disposal of paper products
If you do have a sewer line clog, follow these following steps to clear the blockage.
How to Remove a Sewer Line Clog
Use a pipe wrench to loosen the cap on your main drain line before you open it entirely. Once the cap is loosened, open it and let the buildup drain out. Once the cap is opened, make sure to step out of the way. If there is any waste caused by the clog, the backflow will spill out of the main line drain. Make sure to let it run off entirely before attempting any further repairs.
Next, feed the auger cable down the drainpipe. Each auger, or plumbing snake, is different, so be sure to follow the instructions that come with the tool for best results. However, the general principle is that you should gently feed the auger cable into your drainpipe until you hit the clog. You’ll know when you’ve hit it because the cable will get progressively harder to move through the pipe. Allow the auger to run until the clog has been removed. You’ll be able to see when it happens because the water level in the drainpipe will begin to gradually decrease and then drain out entirely.
That said, don’t stop running the machine as soon as the clog disappears. There could still be smaller pockets elsewhere in the pipe, which may cause additional problems down the road. Once the clog has been removed, spray the hose down your drainpipe at full blast. Doing so will simultaneously remove any lingering debris that is stuck in the pipe and clean off the auger.
Afterwards, pull the plumbing snake out of the pipe slowly. You most likely want to hose the auger cable off a few times before winding it back onto the machine. When you’re done, place the cap back on your drainpipe and use the pipe wrench to tighten it up.
Avoid Clogging Your Drains
While grease is the absolute worst substance you can put in your drain, there are other objects that should be avoided all together. This is especially pertinent if you have a garbage disposal unit as part of your drain system. These items include the following:
- Fibrous fruits/vegetables: This includes celery, artichokes, asparagus, lettuce
- Coffee Grinds
- Fruit Pits: Includes avocado pits, peach pits, etc.
- Corn Husks
- Egg Shells
- Potato Peels
- Pasta, Rice and Grains
If these items much like grease or oil, can clog up your drain or prevent the garbage disposal blades from working properly. If the blades are jammed, this can also increase the buildup in the disposal drain.
If you do experience a clogged drain, there are ways to remedy it.
Cleansing Your Drains
If your drains do have a clog, there can be a number of indicators. Thankfully, there are ways to prevent drains from clogging.
- Run hot water through the sink after each use. Hot water keeps oils in food products running down the drain, rather than building up on the interior surface of pipes, which can make drains sluggish and lead to clogs.
- Throw a handful of baking soda into the drain and follow it with hot water. Baking soda is a terrific cleaning agent, and it’s also great for absorbing foul odors and leaving your drainpipes smelling like a rose. Okay, maybe not like a rose, but a lot better than they otherwise would.
- Pour 1 cup of vinegar down the drain and let it sit for 30 minutes; then chase it down with very hot water. Vinegar is a wonder cleaner. It contains acetic acid, which acts as an excellent organic solvent in removing an organic buildup of crud in pipes.
Want to learn more about your sewer system? Call your local home service experts at KB Complete!