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All Time Grossest Jobs

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  • All Time Grossest Jobs

    What was the grossest call you've ever been to? I'm talking oddly gross here.

    The Grossest thing I've ever done, was fixing a backgrading ABS soil and waste pipe in the parkade of a 15 story apartment building. I was a 1st year and my journeyman and I went there at midnight to avoid as many flushes as possible. The backgrade was over about 40 feet, so the plan was to cut the wye and cleanout, raise the pipe, then glue a new one in. But the pipe was already full of ****. So we brought these 50 Gal drums to dump the excrement into. I held this long run of full pipe, and the journeyman cut out the wye. When it came detached from the horizontal run of pipe, the **** was flying. Most of it went in drum, but as you can imagine we were also extremly shitty. Thinking the worst was over, I let my guard down. But when the journeyman cut the wye free from the verticle portion of the pipe, it fell 8 feet to the ground, and being ABS it bounced, spraying **** all over us again.

  • #2
    Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

    about 5 years back, i did a camera job in a guest house. this was my only time at this property and i didn't have a track record there. the other companies would snake the line and it would plug up days later.

    i pushed the camera out as far as i could go. the line was plugged and i couldn't see. so i located the camera signal and marked it.

    the owner gave me the ok to cut in a cleanout. the following week i came back with a borrowed helper from my buddies shop. we dug down the 3' and located the pipe. to my amazement the clay line was so misaligned that the 2 ends of the 4'' clay were over 6'' off center. as i was in the ditch cleaning along with the helper, i accidently dislodged what was holding the stoppage shut.

    the open pipe started to ooze a thick gravey like sludge. the sludge wouldn't stop as there was approx. 100' of piping from the guest house. we jumped out of the ditch as the level came up. the helper was now blowing chunks the smell and sight of this blob was amazing. fortunatly i had the downstream line open and as the level of the sludge raised, it started to flow into the downstream open line. the garden hose helped to wash and rinse the sludge down and with the hardness of the surrounding ground, nothing seemed to absorb into the ground. the helper came back from sitting far away to a totally clean and dry ditch.

    i later found out from the owner, a famous musician, that he would allow up and coming musicians to stay in this guest house. they were all just temporary. no one long term. the pipe and it's contents would just drain into the ground over the last 15 years. the real issue came when he rented out the house to a couple that was full time.

    the helper still reminds me of it everytime i see him at my buddies christmas party.

    rick.
    phoebe it is

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    • #3
      Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

      I like the war stories people post in threads like this. But would hate running into situations like this as well. I think I grew up a little bit germaphobe. I dont think you could pay me enough to handle other peoples crap. Unless its my boys. I guess I do that all the time

      Josh

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      • #4
        Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

        This isn't me, but how about people that work on farms or in nursing homes? Every day they get a free manure or vomit bath!!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

          Two of my worst ones that I remember...One was at a restaurant that had faulty plumbing under the slab leading to the grease interceptor outside the building,we located the broken pipe under the kitchen and started to jackhammer,as soon as we broke the concrete the most putrid smell you have ever smelt came from the hole.The pipe had no bottom of course,and all the food waste had been seeping into the soil for about 6 years,there was no soil under the concrete,just food waste 8" thick,25' across.I think rotting food waste is worse than sh_t in my opinion.

          The second on was at a house in the berkeley hills with a 4'cast iron lateral going in back of the house,down a 300 foot hill to the street.I told my helper to go down thw hill and find a c/o because there was none up at the top and I wanted to add a few to maintain the line.Well,he found a c/o all right,at the very bottom of the hill.Instead of letting me know he found one,he took off the cap.....300 feet of sewage from a very steep hill came raging out that c/o ...I had to hose him down and make him sit in the bed of the truck that day.He did learn a valuable lesson that day....s_it really does go down hill,and fast too,,,lol

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          • #6
            Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

            it's been awhile since I posted here. hi to y'all.

            as many of you know I do repair and remodels at a home for abused women south of the border.

            about a month ago, my buddy and I were installing bathroom light/fan combos in some bathrooms that had had absolutely no ventilation. Only the nuns' insistence on keeping the the walls and ceilings scrubbed down with bleach was keeping the mold to a minimum.

            we finished the job as night was falling and I started the clean up and moving the toolboxes out of the living quarters while the women and children looked on. I came back to the last bathroom we had worked on and my buddy asked my for a plunger. It seems that as he was cleaning himself up in the lavatory the shower drain backed up.

            I brought him the plunger but that didn't do anything to the stoppage. I have a drill mounted Rigid 1/4" auger that I then ran down into the drain. The noise of the drill and the cursing in English by me attracted a large crowd of children and women crowding into the bathroom to try to see what I was doing. After feeding about 10 feet into the drain I hit something solid with the auger. I then slowly extracted it. At this point my "fans" were but less than a foot in back of me, cheering me on as I slowly brought out the cable. The end of the cable came out of the drain, a brief hush settled over the crowd as they tried to figure out what was the large mass on the end of the auger and then as the stench of the mass hit the noses of those closest to me, the front row people turned around and tried to bully their way out of the room. Bedlam ensued, the bathroom cleared out rapidly and I was left with the odiferous mass on the end of the auger. I cleaned the end of the auger off and put the maloderous hairball in a bucket and reran the auger down the drain. After doing that 3 or 4 times the drain was finally unplugged and the bucket had close to 2 pounds of decomposing female nastiness.

            It was a good thing we had installed the bathroom fan but the smell had penetrated the sleeping quarters of the women. I was told they ran the fan all night long in order that the women might get a modicum of sleep.

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            • #7
              Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

              The worst I have ever dealt with is this:

              About 18 years ago me and another plumber were doing a TI in Norco, CA. The floor was sawcut, we trenched it by hand. I was down in about a 4' hole cutting into the main building drain. As soon as the cast iron was snapped a smell came up that made me leave. I was ready to puke. The guy working with me said I was a puss, so he jumped down. Yea, for about 2 seconds.

              We ended up cutting the line and capping every opening while we were working.

              It was an old mortuary, becoming a real estate office. The drain had handled human blood and parts.

              You want smell, work on that.
              the dog

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              • #8
                Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                Plumbdog, great avatar.
                Last edited by Josh; 04-03-2007, 08:42 PM.

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                • #9
                  Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                  I do not know which one is worse. Heck I almost blew chunks when the septic tank guy took the lid off my own septic. I did here a story about a guy jumping into a septic tank he was pumping to save a dog. That my friends is a true pet lover.

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                  • #10
                    Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                    Originally posted by Josh View Post
                    Plumbdog, great avatar.
                    To show everyone how smart I am I just today figured out how to do it. My inspiration was Rick. I figured if he could do it anyone could.

                    Now, if I could figure out how to do those little symbols (smiles, etc) I might avoid some problems in the future.
                    the dog

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                    • #11
                      Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                      I know how you feel I have been poking around different forums for a while and just figured out how to post pics the avatar has been on my mind lately

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                        Originally posted by Woussko View Post
                        This isn't me, but how about people that work on farms or in nursing homes? Every day they get a free manure or vomit bath!!!
                        (I don't think I could take nursing homes)


                        In my opinion animal manure is a lot less disgusting that human wast.
                        the cud chewing or ruminating critters have less disgusting smell than the single stomach or monogastric critter normally, horses being an exception eat enough hay/grass that the texture is different. and the cecum kinda process the food similar to a second stomach,

                        one farm job that is kinda gross is pregnancy checking cows,

                        First, we put the cow in a head gate/squeeze chute. He puts on an OB sleeve, lubes it up good and inserts his sleeved arm into the cows rectum and feels for the top of the uterus, which is called the uterine fundus. Based upon the size of the uterus, he can estimate how far along the cow is in pregnancy and whether or not she is pregnant or not.
                        http://konzababy.tripod.com/pregcheck.htm
                        it not to bad to do, just messy.

                        pulling a calf that is breech or upside down is a lot of fun as well, usually your shoulder gets a fresh pile of **** on it as your working on the calf and your up to your shoulder in her trying to get the feet positioned.

                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                        probably one of the worst was at the sewer plant years ago.
                        before I got there there was no maintenance done for years, the Imhoff tank was litterly full of solids, the trickle filter was not turning, and the final settling tank was nearly full, the return pumps were both non working, (it was no wander the EPA was on there case),

                        any way one day the chief of maintenance and I went down to the plant to see what we could do to get the pumps working, we ended up having to pull both pumps out of the setting tank and rebuild both pumps,

                        but in the process we were working on the one, and had started it a few times, but there was no effluent coming out of the discharge at the top of the imhoff tank, so we opened up a plug, plug was on the check valve, I remember it being a 3" line, in the process of opening up the cap on the check valve, the pie was partly full of sludge, Sludge came out and covered us both, my boss got it full in the face and just covered him, I just got splattered good, as it empty the line of the sludge we had just pumped into the pipe, (oh the joy of a sludge shower and anaerobic bacterias the smell).

                        (the impeller on the pump was lose on the shaft missing the key way).

                        I ended up running a fire hose off of a sump pump on the imhoff tank for over 30 days to break up the scum it was close to 7' deep, I drained off the sludge a number of times that summer and finally got it manageable,

                        rebuilt the trickle filter, replaced the heaters, rebuilt the recirculation pumps, and the chlorination, when I left it was running like it was designed to operate,
                        Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                        "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                        attributed to Samuel Johnson
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                        PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

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                        • #13
                          Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                          Originally posted by plumbdog10 View Post
                          To show everyone how smart I am I just today figured out how to do it. My inspiration was Rick. I figured if he could do it anyone could.

                          Now, if I could figure out how to do those little symbols (smiles, etc) I might avoid some problems in the future.

                          Dog,

                          The only thing smart Rick did was ask me to put the avatar on for him!

                          Mrs. Seat Down

                          dog, that's 1 ugly dog

                          i knew you were a little ruff, but that's hideous

                          ps. i had a bulldog once. not on the top of the smart's scale. my boxer is alot nicer on the eyes

                          rick.
                          Last edited by PLUMBER RICK; 04-04-2007, 09:54 AM.
                          phoebe it is

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                          • #14
                            Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                            I was jetting a 200' 2" line that led up hill to a leach field(frozen line). Of course the only access was on the down hill side in a small pump pit. After a few feet of jetting through Ice I felt the jet surge ahead and heard a little burp. I had just enough time to close my eyes and shut my mouth. Being jammed up in that pit, I couldn't even get out until my shower was over.

                            Another bad one. When I was a pipe layer I was cutting in a new sewer man hole on a live 24" clay main. the flow wasn't too bad so we didn't bother with a pumper truck or a bypass pump. I had the top off a 10' section of the main. While clean cutting the down hill side with my trusty Stihl cut saw, I steeped in the troth and instantly went down and slid into the pipe up to my arm pits. When I pulled myself out I expected to look up and see the ground crew laughing but, not a one even saw me almost go down the pipe. Here I am 15' in the ground and working alone and not one of the 5 top guys could take the time to make sure I was safe. I was PISSED and S***TY. I must of been quite a sight climbing out of that trench box covered in toilet paper and human waste and kicking and swearing every fowl word I knew.
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                            • #15
                              Re: All Time Grossest Jobs

                              Most service plumbers have it pretty bad. We all have stepped in crap, waded through crap and been sprayed by crap. We get used to it.

                              My worst was removing a leaking 4" No Hub trap to an indirect drain in a hospital sub basement. The darkest and creepiest corner of the building. No sooner did my torque wrench touch it, it falls off. Instinctivly tried to keep it from hitting the ground and not fall off the 10' step ladder I cradle it to my chest. Doing so it spashes about a 1/2 gallon of this brownish sticky liquid with bits of jello like pieces all over my face. was sort of expecting water but noooo!!...this particular drain was for the washdown slabs in the morgue AAAHHH!!!! You'd think the Bio-Hazzard warnings woulda tipped me off
                              That happened almost 20 years ago. I amaze myself when I think about what a dumbass I was back then

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