How to Clean a Sewer Line - An A-Z Guide
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The sewage system in your apartment or house in Langley is designed to remove drains. However, due to improper operation and violation of the mode of its use in it may cause malfunctions.
The most common malfunction of the sewer is its blockage, that is, disruption of the normal flow of wastewater. What to do? In really serious cases, you can’t avoid calling a plumber, but in the overwhelming majority of cases, you can remove the blockage in the sewage system yourself, using elementary tools at hand.
CAUSES OF BLOCKAGE IN THE SEWER
In order to qualitatively eliminate the malfunction of the sewer system, it is first of all necessary to know how it functions and because of what blockages can occur.
The main elements of the sewage disposal system are sewage pipelines that connect sanitary facilities to the main riser (in an apartment building) or the sewage collection and treatment system (in a private household). This pipe system does not represent a straight line but includes turns and connecting elements, on which the normal movement of wastewater slows down.
As far as service is concerned, sewage pipes, especially those made of cast iron, overgrow with corrosive deposits on the internal surfaces, which inhibit the normal flow of water and accumulate garbage suspended in the wastewater.
Consider that when designing a sewage system for its own purposes, it is necessary to calculate its configuration so that the most vulnerable points of the sewage pipelines have more or less free access. So, in particular, when installing the external sewer system in private households, it is necessary to provide for the construction of inspection hatches or wells in all places where the street pipe makes a sharp turn.
If there is a large element in the wastewater flow, for example, a rag accidentally was thrown into the toilet, this element may catch on the irregularities of the internal surface of the sewage system. After a short time, it becomes overgrown with smaller particles and blocks the normal flow of the flow.
In addition, clogging in the sewage system can occur even after the substances that change their properties under the influence of the cold temperature of sewage enter the pipes. A classic example is a cold grease from a kitchen sink or dishwasher. Upon contact with cold drains, it freezes, forming build-ups on the inner surface of pipes. Gradually, this growth can completely block the cross-section of the sewer.
THE MAIN METHODS OF REMOVING BLOCKAGES IN THE SEWER
The main causes of blockages in sewage systems are dictated by the most popular ways to eliminate such faults:
Revision and restructuring of the sewer system. As an extremely cardinal solution, it can be recommended for frequent blockages on old pipelines.
Mechanical decontamination - used in the formation of the center of clogging of any solid object.
Dry cleaning of sewer pipes - used in the formation of pipes on the internal surfaces of pipe layers, which can be destroyed by aggressive solutions.
But remember that you will not have to learn any of the ways to clean the sewage system if you use it correctly: do not throw large things into it and do not pour liquids into it that can cause a mash.
CHECK AND CLEAN SIPHONS
The first barrier to a variety of littering items in your plumbing fixtures is a siphon. It is a device that performs two functions:
Creates a water barrier that prevents the penetration of unpleasant odors from sewage into residential areas. The water seal is constantly updated, a new portion of water enters it after each use of plumbing.
Also, the siphon has a kind of trap, which retains heavy small particles, not allowing them to enter the sewer pipe.
If you find that water stagnates in your sink or bathtub, then at the initial stage it is necessary to check the throughput of the siphon. This device is very easily removed and disassembled - all its component parts are fixed with each other on threaded connections. When disassembling the siphon, some water may spill out of it - so do not forget to put a basin under it or at least to put a rag on it.
After disassembling the siphon, you can immediately determine if there is a blockage in it that prevents the passage of wastewater. Remove foreign objects and rinse the siphon in a bucket of water or under a running stream, then assemble the entire device in the reverse order.
WE CARRY OUT CHEMICAL CLEANING OF SEWAGE
The next type of clogging, the procedure for eliminating which we analyze is the formation of layers on the inner surface of pipes that can be removed with the use of corrosive liquids.
The hardware stores sell a wide range of such solutions or powders, but before you pour any hellish mixture into your sewage system - start with the simplest solvent - hot water.
Many areas of the sewer system can become clogged with fatty layers, which are elementally dissolved by the action of hot water. But when applying this method, remember that some types of plumbing devices are very sensitive to the effects of boiling water - they may simply split. To prevent such a nuisance, first heat the equipment by pouring out not boiling water, but simply hot water. By the way, heating clogged sewer pipelines can also be a good way to get rid of the blockage. But do not overdo it - plastic sewer pipes, which are widely used in modern systems - can melt under the influence of high temperature.
After hot water, an ordinary soda solution is next in the "slaughter" rating in relation to blockages. Mix half a pack of soda with a bucket of water and pour this mixture into a device that does not let water through. Alkaline solution can affect clogged areas and remove obstacles.
Well, finally. At the last stage you can use purchased industrial tools. When buying them, be sure to review their composition and recommendations for use. Otherwise, the prepared solution can not only dissolve the obstacle for sewage, but also break the tightness of the sewer connections.
ELIMINATE BLOCKAGES MECHANICALLY
Whatever aggressive chemical solution is - some reasons for the blockage in the sewage system are not removed. It was a mistake to think that the soda solution would remove the doormat, carelessly flushed down your toilet. And here we will come to the aid of mechanical methods to eliminate blockages.
Let's start with the simplest tool that most likely is in every home - the plunger. This is a fairly simple device - a rubber hemisphere on the handle. Its principle of operation is based on the transfer of pressure to water. Water, as you know, is incompressible, and if rhythmic pushes exert pressure on water that stagnates in the sink or in the toilet - it will be transferred through the water up to the point of blockage and push the cause further, down to the main riser or simply destroy it.
The use of a plunger may be complicated by the fact that on the way to the site of blockage there will be branches of the sewer system. As a result, you will press on the water in the sink, and it will spill out in the next bathroom. In this case, we will come to the aid of plumbing cable.
Plumbing cable is also not the pinnacle of technology and innovation. This is a common piece of metal cable, at one end of which an l-shaped handle is attached, and on the other end, there is a sharp tip or a spiral nozzle. This nozzle allows you to use the plumbing cable, not only as a battering ram, breaking through the blockages but also as a hook that can be taken from the depths of the sewer stuck object. This is very convenient since in some cases it is simply impossible to push the jammed cause of blockage to the main sewage system.
Using the plumbing cable is quite simple. It is advisable to insert it into the sewer, the next after the siphon. After placing the tip in the pipe, push the cable with one hand and rotate the L-shaped handle with the other. The cable will be screwed into the tube, repeating all its bends, until it stops at the cause of the blockage. After that, either destroy the resulting barrier or pull out the cause of the blockage from the pipe.
It is also possible to clean the sewage system with a punching device, which is a somewhat modified plunger. There is no hemisphere in its device, and a piece of thick flat rubber is placed on the handle. Such a device is placed directly in the pipe and creates pressure, betraying it on the water in the pipe.
As you can see, it is quite easy to remove the blockage in the sewer system. To do this, you can use the improvised or widespread materials that can be found literally in any home.