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Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

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  • Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

    I had a hell of a time last week snaking out the main line for a restaurant last week. When I first got there, the grease was caked on the walls of the 4" pvc so bad that it was barely recognizable as pipe! The restaurant is 15 yrs old and was never snaked or jetted. After trying to go through the roof vent(no success), the floor drain in the kitchen(the cable ended up coming out of the floor drain 10 ft away!!!!) Some "plumber" must have used sanitary tees instead of Wye's when he piped the drains. I was finally able to get the cable down a 2" handwash sink line and fed in 90 ft of 7/8" with just a spring head until i hit the grease trap...SUCCESS!!!!! This was last friday...I get a call today...it's backed up again. Now they said that they put some grease treatment down there...so do you think that it's chunks of grease that fell off the walls of the pipe??? OR do you think that it might be a collapsed(not sure if it's all PVC) pipe? I am also curious since I don't own a jetter just yet, what's the best liquid pipe cleaner that's made for cleraing out the grease?
    Last edited by vette850; 01-21-2009, 10:05 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

    "With just a spring head"
    Not being a pro just yet,but I'm wondering if maybe you could get a bigger head through there.
    Jetter would be nice

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

      Is the grease trap set up with a cleanout access or other way to get a set of blades upstream?

      Lenny

      Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

      I know, it doesn't make sense.


      http://www.hebertdraincare.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

        The 2" line is the only access unless I cable it upstream, and I'm afraid of getting it jammed up in the branches by doing that. I can't fit any other heads in a 2".

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

          [quote=vette850what's the best liquid pipe cleaner that's made for cleraing out the grease?[/quote]

          If chemicals worked I would not have a career.

          Lenny

          Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

          I know, it doesn't make sense.


          http://www.hebertdraincare.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

            When it comes to liquid pipe cleaner...I just meant for clearing out some more grease residue after I clear it out.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

              Originally posted by vette850 View Post
              The 2" line is the only access unless I cable it upstream, and I'm afraid of getting it jammed up in the branches by doing that. I can't fit any other heads in a 2".
              15 years is a long time, pipe is probably packed and needs a good reaming with some blades.

              I'd go upstream with blades, carefully if you can.

              The only chemicals I recommend are enzymes, and roots x. (As preventive maintenance, not for emergency)

              If not run (the cable) repeatedly with a hose running through the two inch.

              Explain the situation to the customer, cleaning a 4 inch line through a 2 inch access (that the original plumber left you with) limits your cleaning ability, and additional work will be additional charge.

              I'd look at maybe opening a wall to add a 3 or 4 inch clean out to vent possibly?
              Last edited by HebertDrainCare; 01-21-2009, 10:30 PM. Reason: ( ) added info

              Lenny

              Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

              I know, it doesn't make sense.


              http://www.hebertdraincare.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                You really need at least a 3" cutter in that line, uphill works just gotta use finess. I did one this summer for the local city owned golf course, went through the intercepter outside, sitting on the edge one foot on the manhole riser ledge and the other maintaining guidence on the cable, cleared it though, 2 1/2 hours.
                sigpic
                www.uandiplumbing.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                  I just went back there at 10 pm.....they said that the floor drains backed up in the morning...but have been draining since around 1 pm. I ran the hot water for 15 minutes straight with no problem draining. My guess is that the enzyme treatment they put down the drains on Monday loosened up the remaining grease that my spring head didn't get last Friday...and bam...clogged up one of the fittings this morning, only to be finally released into the grease trap sometime after. Any opinions on this theory? I'm keeping my fingers crossed!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                    Originally posted by vette850 View Post
                    I just went back there at 10 pm.....they said that the floor drains backed up in the morning...but have been draining since around 1 pm. I ran the hot water for 15 minutes straight with no problem draining. My guess is that the enzyme treatment they put down the drains on Monday loosened up the remaining grease that my spring head didn't get last Friday...and bam...clogged up one of the fittings this morning, only to be finally released into the grease trap sometime after. Any opinions on this theory? I'm keeping my fingers crossed!!!
                    Only time will tell, for sure. Can take a wait and see approach.

                    I would recommend they start using the Enzymes regularly for maintenance.

                    If it backs up in the future, I would try to go upstream from the G/T. If that's a no go, try to locate 3 - 4 inch vent and add clean out.

                    You can always start a once a month, or quarterly, maintenance contract with them at a discounted rate.
                    Last edited by HebertDrainCare; 01-22-2009, 12:21 AM.

                    Lenny

                    Pronounced A-Bear Drain Care

                    I know, it doesn't make sense.


                    http://www.hebertdraincare.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                      That line needs to be jetted, then set up on a enzyme injection system. Those enzyme based systems truly work for restaurants involving grease.


                      White Castle Industries Inc. has cut a 1/3 of expenses on drain maintenance/repair switching over to enzyme injection.
                      Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                        the great thing about a jetter is the fact that a 1/4''- 3/8'' jetter hose with theright nozzle and jetter, can clean a 4'' pipe from a 2'' opening without a problem.

                        since the jetter uses sprays of high pressure water, there is no blade to have to scrape the walls of the pipe.

                        a jetter is best, followed by the 7/8'' sectional with a nice 45 bend on a corckscrew auger. plenty of water while snaking should help out. do you have a camera to inspect the condition?

                        rick.
                        phoebe it is

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                          Originally posted by vette850 View Post
                          what's the best liquid pipe cleaner that's made for cleraing out the grease?
                          We use Plant Pro orange drain cleaner. WE buy the 1 gallon containers from USA Blue book http://https://usabluebook-onramp.com/cgi-bin/onramp.exe?custnum=RETAIL&password=&sesid=01220518 20&pgm=unixgrep.bbx&itemdesc=orange+drain+cleaner& image.x=0&image.y=0ℑ=submit
                          It has worked very well for us.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                            The only problems I have seen running a jetter is either you knock a hole through the blockage first with a cable machine or run the jetter in from the outside, otherwise you most likely will flood the place until the drain flows. Typically this is not a problem for a short main, but if its a long main it gets messy, and after or before hours is a must. In my experience.
                            sigpic
                            www.uandiplumbing.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Is it a collapsed line or just grease?

                              i always try to work from a c/o that is lower than all fixtures and open to the outside. also sizing the jetter to the job is important to get proper results.

                              2 days ago it was my trailer jetter all day. yesterday and today is my 18 h.p. portable jetter.

                              there is no 1 jetter to do all. a 13 h.p. is a good start for 4'' amd smaller pipe.

                              rick.
                              phoebe it is

                              Comment

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