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  • can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

    Tonight a service technician uses a drum auger to clear my main septic line. This line is 4-inch sdr3034 plastic pipe. After he went in 25 feet the pipe was discovered frozen. This was after using it for over a half hour. He then thawed the pipe with a garden hose, and used the auger again, for a few minutes. Finally, he used a camera and discovered the broken pipe.

    I believed that the pipe was originally blocked from Baby wipes and I knew as well as he that it was likely for the pipe to be frozen because of the wipes. I live in Wisconsin and the main line runs under a driveway.

    First, is it most likely that the auger broke the pipe?

    Second, if not will an sdr3034 plastic pipe break if the contents inside freeze? I do know how forceful water is when it expands, but the pipe was not frozen in the first 25 feet, so there was room for expansion.

    Any comments that helps identify possible cause is welcomed.

    Thanks,

  • #2
    Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

    Originally posted by grinder2009 View Post
    Tonight a service technician uses a drum auger to clear my main septic line. This line is 4-inch sdr3034 plastic pipe. After he went in 25 feet the pipe was discovered frozen. This was after using it for over a half hour. He then thawed the pipe with a garden hose, and used the auger again, for a few minutes. Finally, he used a camera and discovered the broken pipe.

    I believed that the pipe was originally blocked from Baby wipes and I knew as well as he that it was likely for the pipe to be frozen because of the wipes. I live in Wisconsin and the main line runs under a driveway.

    First, is it most likely that the auger broke the pipe?

    Second, if not will an sdr3034 plastic pipe break if the contents inside freeze? I do know how forceful water is when it expands, but the pipe was not frozen in the first 25 feet, so there was room for expansion.

    Any comments that helps identify possible cause is welcomed.

    Thanks,

    There are lots of reasons a pipe can break in the ground all of them due to nature or improper installation IMO.

    Water will freeze in the belly of a pipe and break it ,room to expand is not an issue ( I will skip the physics lesson here, google it).

    Do you have a copy of the video the plumber took? What tool did the plumber have on his cable?

    Baby wipes huh?

    I understand this is the age we live in now BUT do not be so quick to blame someone else for a problem that is not anyones "fault" IMO...

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

      SHEEPLE Always try to Blame someone else ...

      Thin wall Pipe is Junk ! Blame the Original Installer ...LOL

      Dave

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

        Let me be clear on the "blame" issue… THIS septic line was originally installed eight years ago with the full approval from the Dept of Commerce. Yes, it was properly installed. The plastic pipe is four inch sdr3034 and runs underneath a driveway. This pipe has never before been frozen or plugged until recently. As I mentioned previously the pipe was frozen because baby wipes plugged the line that resulted in allowing the water to freeze inside the plastic pipe. CAN THIS PIPE BREAK IF THE CONTENTS (WATER, HUMAN WASTE) IS FROZEN INSIDE THE PIPE?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

          Originally posted by grinder2009 View Post
          Let me be clear on the "blame" issue… THIS septic line was originally installed eight years ago with the full approval from the Dept of Commerce. Yes, it was properly installed. The plastic pipe is four inch sdr3034 and runs underneath a driveway. This pipe has never before been frozen or plugged until recently. As I mentioned previously the pipe was frozen because baby wipes plugged the line that resulted in allowing the water to freeze inside the plastic pipe. CAN THIS PIPE BREAK IF THE CONTENTS (WATER, HUMAN WASTE) IS FROZEN INSIDE THE PIPE?
          YES. The blockage you caused and freezing could cause the break. Now pay the drain person/plumber and whomever you choose to repair the pipe.

          J.C.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

            With the right machine in the hands of the wrong operator then yes, it could break the SDR pipe but not likely.

            Baby wipes on a septic system sounds like a bad combination to me.

            The ice may have broken the pipe. It also may have been broke 8 years ago 10 minutes after the inspector ok'ed it during backfill. I doubt you will know for sure until the broken section can be removed and closely inspected.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

              It is the pipe, 3034 is not good to use from the house to the tank, sch 40 or sdr-35 at a minimum, I dont care who approved it go after them! The original work was not done in accordance with common construction practices, thereby alleviating the drain cleaner from liability, had the work been done correctly originally witht he proper materials, yes you would have a case, but since it wasnt you are for lack of better terminoligy S.O.L. I dont care who approved the job from a municipal standpoint, they didnt do their job correctly but you cant go after them because building inspectors, plumbing inspectors etc. have indemnity.

              AND FYI the pippe was not properly installed, that is what you get for going with the lowest bidder~!!! All your energy spent looking for someone to blame and pay for your "shortcomings" should be spent interviewing a contractor to do the job RIGHT!!!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                No matter what the label on the wipes says, nothing should go in your toilet that didn't pass through your mouth on the way there~!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                  I get this blame game all of the time.

                  Let's break down the order of events

                  1. You flushed baby wipes down the commode causing the sewer to stop up

                  2. The water that backed up from the blockage that you caused froze in the cold weather.

                  3. You call a professional to clean the drain.

                  That's two out of three against you.

                  Now consider this. Why did the baby wipes get stuck in the first place?

                  The pipe may have been broken before you even flushed the baby wipes.

                  We will never know.

                  Also consider this. Looking back what would you have done differently?

                  Would you not call a drain professional and just leave your sewer line stopped up or just leave the clean out open and let the sewer back up outside?

                  Running cables is the conventional repair method for blockages!

                  If chemicals worked, half of us would be homeless!

                  Let's say you do it yourself, what would you rent? Cables!

                  We don't cause breaks, we discover them.
                  Last edited by HebertDrainCare; 02-13-2009, 11:46 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                    3034 is the thin walled pipe used for leader drains, and septic conveyance AFTER the septic tank!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                      Good Golly folks, who said that my family or I flushed Baby Wipes down the toilet. This house is a rental unit!!!

                      Thanks anyway for the criticism...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                        Grinder do not take it personally,

                        drain cleaners constantly get this when ever they pull some thing up like baby wipes, "I did not flush them down, there, it must have been so and so that was here",

                        I do some drain cleaning for a few, and there is one family member that lies like a rug on the baby wipes and then blames it on her grand son, and one time on her elderly mother who is now in the nursing home, no problems for 30 years until she moved into my mothers house, and I have pulled out baby wipes ever time. and NO ONE CAN FIGURE OUT HOW THEY GET THERE.

                        baby wipes probably keep many drain cleaners in busness that and roots, but it seems like nearly ever home owner/renter is surprised that there drain is plug by them, and many times are asked not to use them and some times in jsut a few days time there plug up again, from either diaper liners or baby wipes, then blame the Drain cleaner guy, for not doing the job correctly,

                        you said it was under the drive way, more than likely it was crushed, by the compaction of the traffic above it,

                        but freezing water can split off boulders off of granite mountains, it can split out steel tanks and heavy pipe, when water freezes it expands nearly 10%,
                        Property damage caused by freezing weather occurs more frequently and creates greater damage than is commonly thought. When water freezes, its volume increases by approximately eleven percent and this expansion exerts tremendous force. This force is sufficient to break concrete or even steel!
                        http://www.asaprestoration.net/Freez...er-Damage.html
                        so freezing water could easly do it, (more than likely split it) but why would the wipes catch there, more than likely it was either low, or broken by the road way above, and gave it some where to catch,

                        to break a pipe with a cutter it would nearly have to at a elbow or some thing, one could scratch it up good, or depending on the cutter hitting some thing solid like Ice or other, it is possible it could be deflected and "drill" throught the side but the operator would more than likely feel it doing that and back off,

                        like side before body eliminations and TP is the only thing that should be down the toilet, not feminine protection or baby wipes or other, TP is designed to disintegrate when in water, most other types of products are not,

                        when I worked in a small wast treatment plant I would rake off the in take screen ever few days, in a short time I had 55 gallon drums filled with rubbers and feminine protection products, this was before the "invention of baby wipes". I would have no idea what it would be now, LOL.

                        sorry your pipe is broke and that your renters have not helped the situation, but a light pipe should never be put under a drive way, unless one wants it crushed, (if it was close enough to the surface to freeze it was close enough to be crushed),

                        about the only option now is to have it dug up and fixed.
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                        • #13
                          Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                          Originally posted by HebertDrainCare View Post

                          Now consider this. Why did the baby wipes get stuck in the first place?

                          The pipe may have been broken before you even flushed the baby wipes.

                          We will never know.

                          Also consider this. Looking back what would you have done differently?

                          Would you not call a drain professional and just leave your sewer line stopped up or just leave the clean out open and let the sewer back up outside?

                          Running cables is the conventional repair method for blockages!

                          If chemicals worked, half of us would be homeless!

                          Let's say you do it yourself, what would you rent? Cables!

                          We don't cause breaks, we discover them.
                          Originally posted by grinder2009 View Post
                          Good Golly folks, who said that my family or I flushed Baby Wipes down the toilet. This house is a rental unit!!!

                          Thanks anyway for the criticism...
                          No matter who flushed the wipes, my point remains the same.

                          We don't cause breaks, we discover them.

                          Which came first? The blockage, or the drain cleaning company?


                          Sorry so defensive, but I've been accused of this kind of thing before.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                            Ohhhhh renters they never flush any thing down the drain
                            If the pipe didnt have a problem it woulnt have stopped up...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: can a drum auger break a plastic pipe?

                              Just checked my code book and D3034 is an ASTM #.
                              More than likely there is a belly in the pipe, and that section froze.

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