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  • Funky plumbing in old house.

    I tried to locate drain lines without one cleanout in or outside the house using a snake and sonde.

    I pulled a toilet and sent down my sonde and it came out of a water closet in the bathroom on the other side of the wall.

    Then I tried the sink drain and it came out the sink drain in the other bathroom on the other side of the wall.

    Then I tried the kitchen sink which had some home owner special plumbing relocation which my snake could not negociate.

    Then i went to the roof with my snake and there was only one 1 1/2" vent pipe which i could not get through either.

    Then I tried the tub over flow and shower drain.

    Holy cow! This guy just wants to add a clean out but I cannot access the pipes with my 3/8 drain snake.

    Any help?

  • #2
    Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

    If I understand you, you want to locate the main line going out of the house so you can dig and install an outside cleanout? Also, your sonde is attached to your snake? Your bathrooms are back to back. You are lucky you came up out of the toilet and not through it. Put a kink in the end of your cable. Feed it in til you hit the bottom of the other toilet. put some tape around the cable to mark the distance from one toilet flange to the other. pull it out. mark half the distance, go back in that far and feel around for the drop.
    This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

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    • #3
      Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

      Thanks for the tip.

      I could feel it catch but I kept pushing past it and out the water closet


      I used a drop head but did not get it to drop. I was thinking of using a fish tape?

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      • #4
        Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

        I have yet to do anything with a fishtape I couldn't do with a cable. This line is not backed up; no water in it, yes? the drop will be close... within 3'... you may be able to see the connection with a dental mirror and flashlight to help you go down and not across... put a kink, about 45 degrees, about 3", in the end of your cable, then watch with mirror and light and see it go down. there are more sure ways with the right equipment, but this can be done.

        You have multiple recent posts in the location forum; I suspect you primarily do locates. If you do sewer lines a lot, think about buying a seesnake with a sonde in the camera. These sondes are 512... will your locator work with this? I have color-mini's; I am certain I could do this locate for you with my equipment. You might want this equip for yourself.
        This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

          If the line isn't to deep, I've attached a short chain to my bulb auger and had the homeowner feel the vibration. Anything over 2 ft and you can't feel it.

          A bigger question is why does a house with 2 bathrooms and a kitchen(this does have a kitchen?) have only 1) 1 1/2" vent?
          Last edited by gear junkie; 03-16-2008, 08:48 AM. Reason: keep my post count down
          Buy cheap, buy twice.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

            Originally posted by gear junkie View Post
            If the line isn't to deep, I've attached a short chain to my bulb auger and had the homeowner feel the vibration. Anything over 2 ft and you can't feel it.

            A bigger question is why does a house with 2 bathrooms and a kitchen(this does have a kitchen?) have only 1) 1 1/2" vent?
            Yeah. What the???? It is a home built in the 40s. I get these frequently. None of of them have had a main line cleanout yet either.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

              Originally posted by Ace Sewer View Post
              I have yet to do anything with a fishtape I couldn't do with a cable. This line is not backed up; no water in it, yes? the drop will be close... within 3'... you may be able to see the connection with a dental mirror and flashlight to help you go down and not across... put a kink, about 45 degrees, about 3", in the end of your cable, then watch with mirror and light and see it go down. there are more sure ways with the right equipment, but this can be done.

              You have multiple recent posts in the location forum; I suspect you primarily do locates. If you do sewer lines a lot, think about buying a seesnake with a sonde in the camera. These sondes are 512... will your locator work with this? I have color-mini's; I am certain I could do this locate for you with my equipment. You might want this equip for yourself.

              CORRECT NOT BACKED UP. I WILL TRY THE KINK NEXT TIME WITH A MIRROR.

              YES, I PRIMARILY DO LOCATES. I WANT TO GET A SEESNAKE. I BOUGHT A CHEAP CAMERA FOR $700 THAT CANNOT GET THROUGH SOME TURNS. CAN THE SEE SNAKE GO THROUGH A TOILET P-TRAP WITHOUT MARRING?

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              • #8
                Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

                If It's not too deep outside, then I've found countless outside sewers with nothing more than a probe. (Metal or Fiberglass poker)

                Orient yourself with the sewer vs. the house and see if you can find it. Pay attention though. Look around for gas, electricity, etc. that could be buried. I've found them all the time if they are not too deep. Then you don't have to go in the house at all.

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                • #9
                  Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

                  Originally posted by Hershall View Post
                  CAN THE SEE SNAKE GO THROUGH A TOILET P-TRAP WITHOUT MARRING?
                  Can't go through it at all. Certainly not for the distances you want. Pull the toilet or find a cleanout.
                  This is my reminder to myself that no good will ever come from discussing politics or religion with anyone, ever.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

                    Thanks guys! Appreciate your time and information. Hope you all have a good week.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Funky plumbing in old house.

                      I agree with others, to do a good job, get the right equipment if you want to provide a service to your customer and charge for it.

                      A seesnake will not go through a toilet, you need to pull the toilet, for you I would recommend a mini seesnake, as they pass closet bends easier and will go down 11/2 vents.

                      You will not be able to pass vent bends.

                      I have been able to pass back to back fixtures using string and going down a closet bend, not fun, but can be done.

                      I recommend trying to find a good place for a c/o. I also recommend you have a plumbers number handy if you get into trouble. Breaking open walls, drains and sewers requires knowledge, no matter how easy you think it is.

                      With the mini, I also suggest you get the scout locator, easy to use and locates to 15' in depth, I have had trouble pass 15'

                      Very easy to use. I have had 100% success, also speedy locations.
                      sigpic

                      Robert

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