Vent Pipe Unclogging


Old 04-19-03, 06:54 PM
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Vent Pipe Unclogging

If I suspect a clog in a vent pipe, how would I go about unclogging it? A toilet vent.

Must I go up to the roof and run a snake?

Can I test to see if it is indeed clogged first?

Any tricks of the trade?

Old 04-19-03, 07:23 PM
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First, I would be interested to know why you think you have a clogged vent... Second, I would like to say that I have done plumbing for longer than I want to admit, and I have NEVER seen a clogged vent... The vent goes out the roof, and before it gets to the first drain tie-in, it is just a dry pipe that never gets anything in it but a few ounces of rainwater occasionally... It does NOT get clogged... Now I have heard people claim that they have seen birds build nests in a vent, or squirrels stash a bunch of twigs and nuts in a vent, but I personally find this very unlikely at best and would certainly NOT be one of the first things I would consider if I were having funny symptoms from my toilet...

Having said all that, there are cases where a sink might drain into the vent for the toilet, and the sink line can gradually clog a very short section of the wet vent, but technically it is the sink line that needs the attention, not a clogged vent... In other words, if you are getting gurgling in your bathroom trap (i.e., the shower, tub or lav), then you can drop your p-trap on your sink and run a snake down the sink line... If your symptoms include a toilet that actually backs up, then you first need to clean out the toilet itself with an auger and if that doesn't solve the problem, then you look for a cleanout further down the line and see if you can rod out the main line from there... Any questions not covered here, ask away and we will try to help if we are able...

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